King of the Hammers is an ideal event to showcase the engineering and race prowess of FOX technology, and 2020 was one of our best years. We catered to the race, overland, truck, UTV, Jeep and desert communities, taking home several podium spots across several categories while having a great time in Johnson Valley.
FOX had three support rigs at Hammertown: one for racers, one for public UTV and Can-Am support, and one for apparel sales. Our powersports rig serviced over 100 UTV shocks.
Our motorsports race support team was on the lakebed for two weeks starting January 27, to provide tuning and race support. They averaged working on approximately 40 shocks per day for the first week and over 24 shocks per day the second week. Going into the event, they had 27 pre-scheduled tuning appointments, but worked on over 60 vehicles. They tuned many of the top race vehicles, including Every Man Challenge (EMC) winners Brad Lovell and Dan Fresh.
Fresh and FOX Motorsports tuner Mike Kim won the 4500 class, redemption from the second place 2019 finish after leading the race and breaking a suspension link just miles from the finish, forcing them to push the vehicle across the line. They won the same class and EMC overall in 2018. Fresh also drove the entire race (and 4400 race) with a fractured hand.
4400 King of the Hammers
- 1st – Josh Blyler
- 3rd – Erik Miller
Josh Blyler is a first-time King, which is fairly rare (the same handful of guys typically win). He runs Erik Miller’s Pro Chassis, which is a solid axle chassis. This is significant because the trend of modern cars is going toward Independent front/rear suspension (IFS/IRS).
Erik Miller, two-time KOH, finished third; the next FOX finisher was John Webb in fifth. Forty-four finishers from 105 starters.
T1 Desert Invitational
- 1st – Bryce Menzies
- 2nd – Luke McMillin
Bryce Menzies won the Toyo Tires T1 Desert Invitational in his brand new AWD Mason Motorsports truck.
Seven of the 16 T1 trucks were AWD (latest trend), four of which were Mason Motorsports trucks. The attrition rate was very high: only 11 trucks survived the prologue and six finished the race (three on FOX: 1st, 2nd, and 4th).
FOX athlete Cameron Steele attempted to race all five races, including motorcycle, but bad luck would take him out of each. He had a very impressive run going in 4400, physically leading the race before a steering failure.
Kim also raced with Fresh in the UTV and EMC races. Despite winning the 4500 class in the EMC race, they suffered mechanical issues in UTV and flat tires in 4400 that set them back in those races. Fresh fractured his hand in the UTV race, but still raced EMC and 4400.
- 2nd – Kyle Chaney (Can-Am)
- 3rd – Phil Blurton (Can-Am)
Kyle Chaney and Phil Blurton both hit the podium with FOX-equipped Can-Ams; Chaney rolled the car while in the lead and as they flipped it back over, it rolled backward and over his leg, fracturing his foot, dislocating toes, spraining ankles and tearing his knee, but he managed to jump back in and finish second.
FOX EC Manufacturing Engineer Scott LeSage competed in the UTV race, finishing 12th out of nearly 130 competitors.
- Overall/1st 4800 – Brad Lovell
- 1st 4500 – Dan Fresh & Mike Kim
- 3rd 4500 – Matt Howell
- 2nd 4600 – Jon Schaefer
Brad and Roger Lovell took the overall and 4800 class win by 28 seconds in the same vehicle they lost the 4400 race in 10 years ago by 28 seconds.