Native Las Vegan Brian Collins carried on a family tradition Saturday when he teamed with Chuck Hovey of Escondido to capture the Overall and Unlimited Truck victory in the Mint 400 off-road race south of Las Vegas. Hovey drove the first three laps, while Collins took over the driving duties on the final lap of the event promoted by the Southern Nevada Off Road Enthusiasts (SNORE).
Driving the Mopar Dodge Ram truck, the Collins Motorsports team bolted to an early advantage with a first-lap effort of 1 hour, 32.27 minutes before following with laps of 1:40.55, 1:39.45 and 1:43.48 for an overall time of 6 hours, 36.55 minutes over a 96-mile layout.
Collins, 45, comes from a family of talented off-road racers. His dad, Mart, and Uncle Al, each won the Mint 400 when the race was run north of Las Vegas more than 30 years ago.
Bobby Baldwin of Las Vegas finished runner up in the Unlimited Trucks with a 6:45.53, while Scott Steinberger of Cyprus, Calif. was third with a 7:21.32.
Collins was coming off a big win in the 22nd Tecate SCORE San Felipe 250 March 16. He took his fourth San Felipe win with a solo effort.
Other winners included TJ Flores in Class 1; Ruben Rodriguez in Class 1-2 1600; Donald Moss in Class 3; Rulo Solano in Class 5-1600; Joe Stone in Class 7; Carlos Sosa in Class 7S; Mike Horner in Class 8; Brandon Hughes in Class 9; CJ Hutchins in Class 10; Lee Banning Sr. in Class 12; Briana Bradley in Class 13; Wesley Stephens in Class 15; Ken Redelsperger in Class 18; Gary Messer in Mini Metal; Kent Kroeker in Stock Full; Eric Ludian in Class 1450; Ed Mahoney in Stock Bug; and Monte Tibbitts in Heavy Metal.
More than $100,000 in cash and contingencies were awarded in 19 classes.