Saturday, November 15, 2008

General Grabber & Baja 1000 Racing Takes Notice


UPDATED! After the 2008 Baja 1000

General Tire Unleashes the Fury at 2008 Tecate SCORE Baja 1000
Race Caps Off General Tire’s Return to Off-Road Competition

General Tire capped off its triumphant return to off-road competition with a stellar showing in the 2008 Tecate SCORE Baja 1000. When the dust finally settled on the unbelievably grueling 631-mile desert course, General had scored two class wins, two 2nd place and two 3rd place class finishes.

Marc Burnett, driving his Ford Ranger “Ironman-style” through the entire course, took the win in Class 6 with a time of 27:02:31 (23.35 mph). In Class 9, 1st placewent to Cisco Bio and his co-drivers Jorge Martinez/Pancho Bio/Francisco Guerrero, with a time of 21:51:40 (28.88 mph). In addition, this team took 1st in Class in the same car that won the Baja 1000 in Class 9 in 1998.

The team of Mike Horner, Cory Susag and Ted Hunnicut piloted their General Tire/Synergy Motorsports Toyota Tundra to the 2nd place podium in Class 8, with a time of 24:57:05; and Kent Kroeker and co-driver Rudy Iribe took the General Tire/KORE Dodge Ram 2500 to a 2nd Place podium finish in Stock Full.

Rounding out the 3rd place position Ernie Negrete, Oscar Venagas and Gabriel Diaz-Peralata came in with a time of 20:52:27.

Honorable mentions include Trophy Truck driving of Mike Childress who displayed unbelievable heart to complete this race. Childress holding a 5th place position and closing in on the 3rd place podium spot hit a local man-made hole and flipped the truck end-over-end multiple times now coined “the mikey baja roll” courageously endured a possible broken sternum and a near death experience to fix the motor which took 4 ½ hours to complete and finish the race for General Tire. Mikey concluded the race in 15th position.

“We’re still reeling from such an exciting race, and we’re so proud of all of our teams – they helped show the desert racing community that General Tire is BACK, and we’re here to stay!” said Travis Roffler, General Tire. “This course was one of the toughest, most challenging Baja courses ever, and for these teams to power through all of that to the finish line speaks volumes about their dedication and skill behind the wheel.”

“This is the climax of an amazing SCORE race season for us,” he continued. “When we announced our return to off-road competition, we never imagined we would have the astounding results that our teams have brought home for us, and we want to extend our heartfelt thanks and appreciation to all of our drivers for a job well done!”

All of the teams raced on General Tire’s Grabber™ competition tire or the Grabber AT2 tires. Grabber™ competition is designed with a tough, three-ply Duragen™-reinforced body construction to stand up to the rigors of off-road conditions; the Grabber also features a newly-developed competition-specific tread compound. In addition, the Grabber name and General Tire logo are prominently featured on the sidewall in red and white letters. The Grabber competition tires are designed in size 37x12.50R17 for class 8 and trophy truck/trick truck and 35x12.50R17 for class 1, 6, 7, 7 S, stock mini and ProTruck.

General Tire also has a complete line of Grabber tires for the passenger and light truck market (hitting stores later this year), including the new Grabber DOT-approved off-road tire; the Grabber HTS, which delivers the perfect synergy of comfort, durability and performance; the Grabber UHP, which sets a whole new standard in performance and ride quality for SUVs, light trucks and crossover vehicles; and Grabber AT2, designed for aggressive all-terrain traction in all weather conditions.

General Tire is part of Continental Tire North America, Inc. ( CTNA, based in Charlotte, North Carolina, is a company of Germany-based Continental AG.


General Tire-Continental Tire North America, Inc. (CTNA) is a tire manufacturer headquartered in Charlotte, NC. CTNA is owned by Germany-based Continental Corporation, a leading supplier of brake systems, chassis components, vehicle electronics, and tires. Continental is the second largest tire manufacturer in Europe and ranks fourth worldwide.

In 2007, at the start of General’s Roffler era, a new ad series was started, “Competition in the tire industry is fierce, so these ads are meant to grab consumers and make them take notice of the revitalized General Tire brand,” said Travis Roffler, General Tire’s Director of Marketing. “They’re a little bit edgy, a little bit fun, and they literally leap off the page. Consumers will definitely know that this is an all-new General Tire.”

Announced earlier this year, General Tire will provide a $170,000 contingency program for this Baja 1000 for teams running on General’s Grabber Tires. This will be the largest contingency for one race in the history of SCORE International. General Tire will be providing free pit support to all General Tire racers running product and decals.

In a recent interview, Roffler discussed the Baja 1000 Pit Support program and the future of General in off-road racing and consumer truck tire sales.

Just days ago at SEMA in Las Vegas, General Tires Travis Roffler proudly announced that the General Grabber will be available for sale in the third quarter of 2009. Building upon the wild success it has attained in only a short amount of time since re-entering off-road competition in 2008, General Tire announced today at SEMA 2008 in Las Vegas that it is bringing its off-road competition technology to the light truck market with the introduction of the new DOT legal General Grabber.

The new off-road addition to the Grabber family, the General Grabber is engineered with rugged good looks and race-proven performance. A tough, three-ply reinforced body construction and a race-proven Duragen tread compound is designed to stand up to the rigors of off-road as well as highway conditions. General Grabber’s optimized tread design and multiple tread edges work to deliver great side bite and lateral traction – especially in off-road conditions.

The General Grabber’s aggressive, self-cleaning tread pattern includes continuous tread blocks and precisely spaced lugs with a high void ratio to actively protect against the threat of tread damage. General’s patented “Strake and Chamfer” technology allows the General Grabber to dig into muddy terrain. Puncture resistant sidewalls and a specially designed rim protection rib have been incorporated to assure the tire can stand up to any terrain.

The General Grabber is designed to perform on the highway and on the streets as well. General has engineered the Grabber with what it calls AMST – Acoustic Modulation Sound Technology – a sound wave suppression technology that works to reduce road tires noise.

“We’ve taken the best elements from our wildly successful Grabber Competition tire and re-engineered it with a balance of off-road capability and on-road manners for today’s light truck market,” said Roffler, director of marketing for General Tire. “This is a true off-road enthusiasts tire – engineered to deliver equally strong on-road and off-road performance.”

Roffler said that the production tire, which will be available for sale in the third quarter of 2009, will be negligibly different than the prototype shown at SEMA. “The tread design will change a little bit [on the production tire],” Roffler said. “The look and feel of it will be very similar to our competition tire.” Travis boldly led Toyo Tires into the off-road racing arena, now General is on the verge of Baja Glory

The General Grabber will be available for sale in the third quarter of 2009,” Roffler said that General plans to offer it in 14 of the most popular light truck sizes, including wheel diameter sizes from 15 inches to 20 inches and tire diameters from 31 inches to 35 inches, thus hitting the most popular fitments in the marketplace.”

The General Grabber from General Tire/CTNA, when available, does not sell direct but rather does business through a reseller network that includes mass retail chains like Sears and Wal-Mart, distributors and retail locations throughout North America. Baja Racing has been informed, the tires will be built in the USA.

General Tire Baja 1000 wrap editorial

Baja Racing