Rick L. Johnson

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Biography

A legend in the sport of off-road racing, Rick L. Johnson got the off-road bug in the late 70’s as a spectator.  He turned to superstars like Larry Ragland, Walker Evans and Ivan Stewart for information on how to get his start as a driver.  In the 80’s, with some friends, Johnson purchased a Class 5/1600 BAJA Bug when he couldn’t even afford rent and the rest was history.  Today, Johnson is the president of the TrophyLite class in the BITD series and co-drives with Jim Riley in the Azunia Tequila truck in class 6100.  A historian of the sport, Johnson will continue to make his own history in 2013 as he navigates the BITD schedule along with the famed NORRA Mexican 1000.

Did You Know?

1.      Relationship status – Married 18 years this December to my better ½ Brenda, without her I would be lost in the desert somewhere.

2.      Twitter handle – @TrophyLiteRick  I am new to the Twitter thing, so come follow me.

3.      Favorite person(s) to follow on Twitter – @TeamGT, @AzuniaJim, @Agavehotel

4.      Dailey driver –1971 General Tire / Azunia Tequila “Snortin Nortin” Nova- GT Red letter Grabber 35/12:50/15 and of course my FORD F-350 4X4 P/U- General Tire Red Letter Grabber LT315/75/R16.

5.      Best thing I ever ate – Fresh caught Ahi Tuna Tataki Style. Cajun and peppered, seared then chilled. Served with wasabi and soy sauce along with an Azunia Tequila Skinny Margarita ;)

6.      Favorite place – Anywhere in BAJA, Mexico, especially the www.agavehotelandcantina.com relaxing with friends.

7.      Hidden talents – Making people laugh and having a good time. Killing fly’s with my bare hands. I can also make a pretty mean shrimp cocktail.

8.      What’s playing on my iPod – I listen to all types of music depending on my mood-Tim McGraw-“Why GOD made Mexico” / Ted Nugent “Stranglehold”, Anything Metallica and of course LMFAO-“Sexy and I know It”.

9.      I have to set my DVR for – “Saturday Night Live”, any UFC fight and “Jimmy Fallon Late Night”, because I fall asleep just when they start. LOL

10.    Three must see movies –

1. Dust 2 Glory

2. Tie- Saving Private Ryan / Master and Commander

3. Talladega Nights

11.    Person I admire most and why – That’s a loaded question, I have many people I admire. But my first choice, my Mom and Dad for raising three boys and teaching us the way of life and letting us interpret what that meant. My wife and children for sacrificing a normal family life so I can pursue a racing career. Anybody who has started their own business and succeeded in their own way.

12.    Most memorable race/event and why – I have been fortunate to share many great racing experiences in my career, but if I had to pick a few- 2004 SCORE BAJA 1000 to LA PAZ (Our 1st 1000 win) then backing it up in 2006 to La PAZ and again in 2007 to Los Cabos finishing 8th overall with a limited truck against many top teams. The three day Best in the Desert “Nevada 1000” was also a great team victory. Seeing my son Louis win his first race and then a championship, back-to-back. More recent the 2012 NORRA Mexican 1000 vintage race with great friend and racing partner Jim Riley handing me the General Tire / Azunia Tequila “Snortin Nortin Nova” in first place so my wife and I could drive it into Cabo San Lucas for the win. That was the first time Brenda has been my navigator in a race. Great Times!!

13.    Best advice I ever got – Do unto others as you would have others do unto you [Matthew 7:12]

14.    Other athletes I give big props to – All those who have failed many times over and never gave up to see their dreams become a reality.

15.    How I got my start racing/competing – After getting hooked as a spectator at off-road races in the late 70’s early 80’s in Barstow and Riverside, CA and Las Vegas, NV. I started asking questions on how to get started from legends like Larry Ragland, Walker Evans and Ivan Stewart. Reading about the BAJA 1000 in HOT VW’s dreaming someday of owning a race car. I purchased a class 5/1600 BAJA bug with a friend in the 80’s and we started competing in major races when I couldn’t even afford my rent. Scraping every dollar I had to prepare the car and make it to races. Meeting Rick D. Johnson along the way and buying our first race truck together, learning from him, race after race what it takes to finish and become a winner and then a champion. Starting my own team, buying more race cars and learning how to sell myself as a driver. Meeting industry suppliers, winning races and making many friends along the way. Having a great supporting wife and great friends as partners and teammates getting you to the finish line.