JFR crew chief Mike Neff, son Chase to drive Carquest Trophy Truck in Mint 400

01 Mar 2017
Posted by NHRA.com staff
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Carquest truck

Mike NeffJohn Force Racing crew chief Mike Neff and his son Chase will compete in the Mint 400 off-road race in the Nevada desert.

The Neffs will race in the Trophy Truck Spec class (7200) in a truck sponsored by Carquest Auto Parts.

"This is something I've always wanted to do," Mike Neff said. "Now, with my son being 18 years old, it's the perfect time to get back out there and race. I'll get to hook back up with friends I used to do this with years ago, and to be able to do with my son is exciting."

The championship-winning NHRA crew chief has a background in off-road racing and has driven part-time in several off-road races in recent years, including winning in his class in the Henderson 250 in 2015.

The Mint 400 -- the "Great American Off-Road Race" -- is the biggest event of its kind in North America. The race began in 1968 and grew into a big event, attracting star power across motorsports and entertainment. Some of the past racers include Indianapolis 500 winners Parnelli Jones, Al Unser, Rick Mears and Rodger Ward; off-road champions Mickey Thompson, Ivan Stewart and Walker Evans; actors James Garner and Steve McQueen and NASA astronaut Gordon Cooper.

The continued through 1988, when the Mint Hotel was sold, but it returned in 2008.

"The Mint 400 is the biggest off-road race in the United States," Neff said.

"All the festivities and all the stuff they have going on, it's going to be exciting just to be a part of it."

Mike Neff has two championships as a crew chief in NHRA, including guiding John Force to the 2010 Funny Car title. Neff is also an accomplished Funny Car driver, scoring 10 victories in his career, including back-to-back wins in the prestigious U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis in 2011-12.

Son Chase has a background racing motorcycles and motocross. This will be his first Mint 400, and he'll start the race for the team behind the wheel.

"It's awesome to have Carquest support us," Neff said. "We're both really looking forward to driving the Carquest truck."