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Kyle Leduc Returns to Lucas Oil Off Road Series Round 9 and 10 at Glen Helen Raceway

Kyle LeDuc Pro4 race truck

K&N sponsored driver, Kyle LeDuc's Pro4 race truck getting the once over after qualifying. Kyle jumped in to fix a little wiring.

Racing is a passion that can consume you. It requires more than just a dream, it requires dedication. Whether you are the occasional amateur racer or a member of the professional elite, the commitment is the same. And to excel in this sport takes a very special individual with a very special support system. Kyle LeDuc seems to be a very special individual. You might say Kyle's been racing all his life. Whether it was RC cars or bicycles behind dad, Curt LeDuc's Race Shop, he and his brother, Todd, were quite possibly born to be fast! While dad was in the shop building race trucks, Kyle and Todd, were building jumps in back for their RC cars, and riding bikes together almost every day. The boys need for speed eventually led them to winning championships racing downhill mountain bikes. Clearly they were natural's. As the boys got a little older Todd stayed the course of downhill racing, while Kyle chose to follow in his father's footsteps.

Kyle LeDuc Pro4 race truck #99

LeDuc, #99, getting major air over the tabletop jump at the end of the back stretch.

Kyle spent many a weekend out at the track with his dad as his spotter. He told K&N that he tried to encourage his dad to try different lines, angles that he'd seen the other drivers taking on the track that gave those drivers an edge. After a while Kyle told his dad he wanted to race. He wanted to see if his "sideline driving" from the spotter's station was enough to compete and win. His dad's response went something like, "Well you better build yourself a truck." It seems the rule in the Leduc family is "if you want to race it, you have to build it".

And so it began.

Kyle LeDuc congratulate Mike Hamrick of Wilwood Disc Brakes

Mike Hamrick of Wilwood Disc Brakes stopped by the pits after the race to congratulate Kyle.

Anyone who has attended a short course race in the last decade or so is familiar with the Leduc name and Kyle's accomplishments on the track. LeDuc is a threat to win anytime gets behind the wheel on the track. Kyle entered his first off road race in 2002 at the tender age of 20 where he spent that year testing and tuning, learning the mud and the line and what he needed to know to become the best driver he could be. In 2003, Kyle took the title of Prolite World Champion at Crandon International Raceway. This would be the first of many more wins to come. Back then "The Kid" was the youngest driver at these tracks pulling times just as aggressive as some of the off road legends. In 2004, Kyle's second full year of racing, he earned the title of Prolite Champion. The hard work and dedication to his passion was beginning to pay off.

As with most competitive racers, there comes a time when you want more. For Kyle that was in 2008 when he made the switch to Pro4 category. It didn't take him long to adjust from a 2-wheel drive race truck to a 4-wheel drive as evidenced by earning his first win in that first year! In Pro4 LeDuc was a force to be reckoned with earning countless podiums and wins. However, 2012 proved to be a most memorable year. Something Kyle had been working toward tirelessly became a reality. Kyle earned the title as Pro4 Champion. It was at that moment he recognized that his hard work, dedication and commitment, ten years in the making, paid off and he was crowned Off Road Pro4 Champion.

Kyle LeDuc in his Monster Energy Ford trailing Carl Renezeder in the Lucas Oil Pro4 race truck

Kyle LeDuc in his Monster Energy Ford trailing Carl Renezeder in the Lucas Oil Pro4 race truck by a couple of truck lengths, but not for long!

Not only is Kyle one of the off road world's most influential and successful competitors, he is a hardworking, dedicated family man. He is kind, generous with his time and LOVES this sport. It isn't a hobby for him, it's his career. And for that he is incredibly proud. Growing up around his father's fabrication shop taught him what was needed to build a competitive truck. He works on his own race truck telling us in doing so he knows what will work for him. He has the mind of an engineer and knows how to use his hands and how things work. The connection of man and machine gives him an edge. It's clear that he appreciates the other driver's and teams that he competes with as well. They drive him to up his game always, in all ways. Kyle's not just the Pro4 Race Truck driver, he's the mechanic, the set-up guy, the office staff, the janitor. He kind of does it all. Yes, he has a crew and people that he relies upon for help. But for him it's important to stay connected. And at the end of the day, he's not taking a private jet home, not sitting in a luxury bus with the A/C on while everyone else caters to his every whim. He's the guy.

Kyle LeDuc with White flag lap, turn 3

White flag lap, turn 3, Kyle drops down on the inside of Carl to take the lead!

The 2016 Lucas Oil Off Road Series season started off a little rough for our #99. While practice and qualifying was always stellar it seemed Kyle was plagued by mechanical issues that would prevent him from not just winning a race, but in some instances rendering him unable to complete or even start the race. In Round 1 & 2 at Wild Horse Pass he had a power steering burst that caused a fire during Saturday's main event and mechanical failure with the 4-wheel drive prevented him from making it through turn one on Sunday. At Lake Elsinore for Round 3 & 4, more of the same. Great practice and qualifying times with more mechanical issues in the main events. Kyle's luck would begin to improve in Round 5 & 6 at Utah Motorsports Campus. He would finish 4th on Saturday and sweep the competition on Sunday earning his first win of the season.

With all the mechanical issues behind him, LeDuc would go on to Ensenada, Baja California, MX, to compete on the beach sand of the Estero Beach Resort for Round 7 & 8, where he would once again be back on the podium earning a third place finish on Saturday and a first place finish on Sunday. Once again LeDuc was proving that yes he was a force to be reckoned with and that more over - he was back!

Kyle LeDuc with his son

Pro driver and family man - Kyle LeDuc shares the podium with his number 1 fan!

The Lucas Oil Off Road Series returned to the US for Round 9 & 10 that took place at Glen Helen Raceway, CA on July 23rd and 24th. Southern California was literally a blaze with the massive Sand Fire which would go on to burn more than 60 square miles in the Santa Clarita area. The temperatures were well in to the triple digits, but that didn't stop our racers or fans from taking part in the excitement. Opening ceremonies on Saturday at Glen Helen included a bittersweet remembrance to the "14" victims killed in last December's terror attack in San Bernardino. Bob Patison, president of the Corona Based Lucas Oil said, "We wanted to do something for the survivors to honor the victims of this terrible event." And Lucas Oil Off Road Series along with 14 drivers did just that. The names of the 14 people who perished were displayed on fourteen driver's vehicles. As well, a number of the "First Responders" to the scene were on hand to participate in the ceremony. After a moment of silence and prayer, the fan's gave San Bernardino's finest a standing ovation for their commitment and courage. You could feel a deep sense of gratitude from everyone in the stands as the crowd cheered. But now it was time to do a little racing.

Kyle LeDuc 1st place finish on Saturday and Sunday at Round 9 & 10 of the Lucas Oil Off Road Series at Glen Helen Raceway

Congrats to Kyle LeDuc on his 1st place finish on Saturday and Sunday at Round 9 & 10 of the Lucas Oil Off Road Series at Glen Helen Raceway.

The weekend was riddled with distractions but our #99 didn't miss a beat. He was most assuredly back on his game, relaxed and ready, with the mechanical issues that had proved problematic early on in the season, now by the wayside. Kyle was consistently laying down fast lap times during practice. He was seriously in the zone. In qualifying we saw the same thing. LeDuc was eating up the competition, qualifying second on Saturday and first on Sunday. His mark? Carl Renezeder. Those two would put on the best show of the season thus far in Saturday's Pro4 Main Event. With an early caution bunching up the field, LeDuc could stay right on Renezeder's rear end, lap after lap. Multiple yellow flags would continue to wreak havoc on the field, not to mention the track itself. Just when Renezeder would increase the gap between him and LeDuc, the off road Gods seemed to say, "Not today Carl, not today!" and Kyle would be right back on his tail!

As the white flag dropped with Kyle still trailing by a half a truck length, this race turned in to a real nail biter. Everyone in the stands was on their feet. Anywhere it seemed Kyle could pass, Carl shut him down. The crowd was literally going wild. And then it happened in turn 3. Kyle LeDuc snuck passed Carl Renezeder and started to pull away. With just a few whoops, a few jumps and a few turns to go, LeDuc had everyone's attention. But no matter how hard Carl charged, Kyle charged harder ultimately winning Round 9 on the last lap. Carl would come in a close second with Doug Fontin coming in third. After the excitement of Saturday's main, we are proud to report that Sunday went even better! The competitors saw fewer caution flags and a second or two quicker lap times. LeDuc won the main event having led the entire 16 laps, with Renezeder a close second and Menzies rounding out the podium with third.

Lucas Off Road Racing Series will descend upon Wild Horse Motorsports Park in Spark, NV for more intense wheel to wheel racing on August 13th & 14th. K&N wants to congratulate K&N Race Team Driver Kyle LeDuc for his incredible success at Glen Helen Raceway this last weekend and look forward to seeing LeDuc wheel his Monster Energy Ford Pro4 Race Truck to another epic victory next month.