Off Road

Johnny Greaves rolls and wins in wild Mayhem at the Motorplex

3 Mins read
Credit: Championship Off-Road/FloRacing

John Holtger admitted he was “feeling a little confused” at what unfolded during Sunday’s Pro 4 race at Dirt City Motorplex.

Don’t worry, John. Most of us were.

After a tumultuous offseason, it seemed fitting that the 2024 Championship Off-Road campaign began on an equally chaotic note. The second Pro 4 round of the Mayhem at the Motorplex best exemplified this as Johnny Greaves went from rolling his truck to scoring his 104th career win.

Greaves’ race started inauspiciously when he and Jimmy Henderson made contact, only for the latter to retire with wheel damage after tangling again in the hairpin. At the front, his son and defending Pro 4 champion CJ Greaves had the early advantage only to drop out with a mechanical issue, starting a bizarre trend as every truck to spend time in first suffered some sort of problem.

When the race resumed following a caution for Kyle Chaney catching fire, Saturday winner Adrian Cenni took the lead before his right-rear tyre came apart, which shot Johnny into the lead. The older Greaves battled with Andrew Carlson before the former went over twice after hitting a rut in a corner, seemingly knocking him out of contention for the win until Carlson rolled as well upon colliding with a tyre in the infield, while Pro 4 newcomer Kainan Baker also retired after his right-front wheel came off. Holtger inherited the lead amidst the carnage and seemed poised to escape with the win before a local caution flag flew on the final lap to facilitate cleanup. Cenni noted that “The track looked pretty good, but something’s going on. It’s upsetting the drivetrain or something because we were dropping like flies out there.”

As Holtger slowed down, mistakenly believing it was a full-course caution, the older Greaves caught up to him before striking upon exiting the caution zone. Holtger settled for second while Cenni survived to take the last spot on the podium.

“I don’t think I missed a trick out there as far as screwing up,” Greaves commented. “I was catching Andrew, I went out deep, I rolled over, got hooked in there, then my steering was bent from rolling over so I couldn’t keep it straight on the straightaway until I finally convinced myself to move my hands. Johnny (Holtger) got held up a little bit after we exited the caution. Took advantage of it and got a good run on him in the turn and we brought it home.

“I can’t believe it. It felt so good. I almost forgot what it’s like to do this. I think I want to do it again.”

Holtger wrapped up the weekend with four medals: his Sunday Pro 4 second, a third in the Pro 2 race on Saturday, and victory and second in Pro Lite. He held off Trey Gibbs for the first Pro Lite win before Gibbs returned the favour the next day.

Ricky Gutierrez overcame an early vehicle issue to win the Saturday Pro 2 race while Ryan Beat claimed the Sunday event. 2023 champ Cory Winner was not present as he has scaled back to a four-race schedule to focus on family, with his season début set to take place at Crandon in June. Kyle Greaves, who won at Lena in Pro Lite in 2023 (also rebounding from a rollover that weekend like his uncle Johnny), recorded back-to-back seconds to assume the Pro 2 points lead.

Dylan Parsons, a friend of The Checkered Flag and fresh off signing a new sponsorship deal with Toys for Trucks, scored his maiden professional truck victory in Pro SPEC from the pole on Saturday. Coupled with a runner-up the next day, he leaves Lena—where he won in 1600 Single Buggy in 2022—as the Pro SPEC points leader.

“We got out front early, and I was able to manage the lead to keep the competitors behind us,” Parsons said. “These tyres really live up to the Podium2Pavement moniker. It was really a great weekend. We were able to claim our first win and back it up with a second-place finish.”

Despite the disastrous ending to their Pro 4 weekends, Carlson and Chaney still salvaged wins in Pro SxS (formerly Pro Turbo SxS). Pro SPEC champ and now-Extreme E competitor Gray Leadbetter finished ninth on Saturday but bowed out the next day in her return to the side-by-side, well, side.

West Coast short course ace Lorenzo Bonacci won the second Pro Buggy race in his inaugural COR weekend. Other first-time winners included Kyle Jenshak in Stock Truck and Tyler Wusterbarth in Sportsman SxS.

The Mayhem at the Motorplex, previously reserved for Sportsman categories, is a new addition to the COR schedule for 2024. The Lena track also has a date in July.

Class winners

Pro

ClassSaturday WinnerSunday Winner
Pro 4Adrian CenniJohnny Graves
Pro 2Mickey ThomasRyan Beat
Pro SxSAndrew CarlsonKyle Chaney
Pro LiteJohn HoltgerTrey Gibbs
Pro Stock SxSOwen VanEperenJeb Bootle
Pro SPECDylan ParsonsNick Visser
Pro BuggyBilly ButhLorenzo Bonacci

Sportsman

ClassSaturday WinnerSunday Winner
Pro Am SxSJared JadinDavid Gay
570 SxSDraxton SzymikEllah Holtger
Super Stock TruckBraden BeauchampJoe Maciosek
Sportsman SxSTyler WusterbarthTrent Peetz
1600 Single BuggyJohn FitzgeraldColton Berns
170/200 SxSDrake DreherDrake Dreher
Mod KartAvery HemmerAvery Hemmer
Short Course KartCaleb BellFinley Holtger
Youth SxSRyker RemingtonHudson Houle
1600 Light BuggyConnor SchulzConnor Schulz
Stock TruckKyle JenshakDustin Rogaczewski
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Justin is not an off-road racer, but he writes about it for The Checkered Flag.
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