General Tire Collects Four Wins To Start the 2013 BITD Season

Feb 06, 2013
  • Camburg Racing kicks off 2013 with a win in Class 6100.
  • Randy Merritt wins at hometown track in 7200 with his son by his side.

Parker, AZ – February 6, 2013.  The “Parker 425” is not for the faint of heart.  The three-lap loop race, known for its rugged terrain and dusty conditions, kicked off the 2013 Best In The Desert (BITD) season and General Tire had plenty to celebrate.  Camburg Racing, with Jerry Whelchel behind the wheel and newcomer Mike Childress navigating, came from deep in the field to win in Class 6100.  Childress was thrilled to start off the year with a new team, new class and the win.

“We had a flawless day,” said Childress following the race.  “Jerry Whelchel is an animal.  He was really brave in the rocks and our General tires stood up to the punishment.  We were much heavier than the baby trucks in our class so we struggled in the sand a bit and probably need to put the truck on a diet.”

As for the team’s chances at a championship, Childress thinks they’re headed down the right path.  “Starting off the year with a win is a huge step to winning the championship.”  Childress continued, “If we can put the Camburg truck on the box every race, then we have a good chance to win the championship when it’s all said and done.  And that’s our ultimate goal.”

In addition to a win in Class 6100, veteran driver, and hometown favorite, Randy Merritt, captured a win in Class 7200 with Shawn Giordano rolling to second, also on General tires.

“It was a tough race from start to finish,” said Merritt.  “My 16-year-old son, ‘RJ’, rode with me the last two laps so it was awesome we got the win. At one point early on we were 21 minutes down but picked it up to win.”

Banning Motorsports claimed first and second-place in Class 1100 with Bryan Folks and Ali Banning in the driver’s seat respectively.  Navigating through silt, over jagged rocks and across treacherous terrain, Team GT’s newest member, Steve Alexander, rolled to a win on General’s in Class 5000 in his KC-HiLites machine.

“Congratulations to all four of our teams who were able to put a check in the win column at Parker,” said Travis Roffler, director of marketing.  “It’s certainly a great way to start the year and we look forward to celebrating many more wins with all our teams.”

Team GT returns to the desert in March, for the notoriously challenging General Tire Mint 400.  Fans can go behind the scenes at The Mint by joining the conversation on Twitter (@generaltire), Facebook ( and YouTube (


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For more than 95 years General Tire has offered a complete quality line of ultra-high performance, passenger, light truck, off-road and commercial tires to meet all your needs.  General Tire is a proud supporter of Lucas Oil Off-Road Racing Series, Best in the Desert Racing Series, Major League Fishing, Chili Bowl, Pro-Pulling, Late-Model Dirt Series, Drag Boat Series, American Sprint Car Series, Tour, Zero One Odyssey, and Spec Tire of Trophylite and JeepSpeed.  Team GT supports off-road and short course teams including Banning Motorsports, CJ Hutchins, Garrick Freitas, Harley Letner, Jerry Zaiden/Jason Campbell/Jerry Whelchel/Mike Childress (Camburg), Jim Riley, Justin Lofton, Macrae Glass, Randy Merritt, Ray Griffith, Rick L. Johnson, Sean Backus, Steve Alexander, Steve La Roza, Carey Hart/Josh Merrell/Ryan Beat/Rob Naughton (Hart & Huntington), Carl Renezeder, Casey Currie, Kyle Lucas, Robby Woods, Ryan “Fluffer” Hagy, Marc Burnett, and Johnny Campbell.

General Tire is part of Continental Tire the Americas, LLC. (  With preliminary sales of €32.7 billion in 2012, Continental is among the leading automotive suppliers worldwide. As a supplier of brake systems, systems and components for powertrains and chassis, instrumentation, infotainment solutions, vehicle electronics, tires, and technical elastomers, Continental contributes to enhanced driving safety and global climate protection. Continental is also an expert partner in networked automobile communication. Continental currently has more than 170,000 employees in 46 countries.


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