King of the Hammers (KOH) 2022 is the first major off-road race show to start the year that combines desert racing and rock crawling! This ultimate off-road event is a 9-day race week experience held annually in Means Day Lake in Johnson Valley, CA. The event hosts hundreds of race teams and thousands of spectators in the first week of February. The first official non-spectator race began in 2008 with 50 drivers running 30-second intervals through the desert on a 60-mile race. KOH race week began as one race, Nitto King of the Hammers, and evolved to a series of races held throughout the week. KOH race week expanded from one race, Nitto King of the Hammers, to a series of races held throughout the week that includes the Can-Am UTV event, the Holley EFI Shootout, the 4WP Every Man Challenge Race, Toyo Desert Challenge, and the new Can-Am UTV Grudge Match.
Race Vehicles And Rules
Vehicles participating in King of the Hammers are known as Ultra4. The vehicles vary from front straight axles to independent front suspension. These rigs are capable of speeds over 100 miles per hour for the desert sections with gear ratios of 100-to-1 or lower for technical rock crawling. Competitors begin side-by-side, two vehicles every thirty seconds, and must complete the 165-mile course in fewer than 14 hours. Each team must pass through seven checkpoints. It is a no-chase team race; repairs can only be done on the track by the racers or in the pit area.
The races are broadcasted live at www.ultra4racing.com showcasing the blend between desert racing and rock crawling. Tens of thousands of spectators watch more than 400 teams race UTVs and other varieties of four-wheel rigs. Visitors are generally allowed to explore the surrounding race area during the evening when it is not being used for an official race.
Vendor midway, popularly known as Hammertown, has the Jumbotron TV which live streams racing action and interactive elements. Also on display are thousands of products in a first-class open-air showroom in one of the coolest race environments imaginable.
Attendees, vendors, manufacturers, and racers gather to talk about the day’s highlights at different pop-up neighborhoods around Hammertown. KOH creates a community enjoyed by all attendees, no matter if they are staying in a tent, camper, trailer, RV, truck camper or rooftop tent.
Can-Am UTV Race
Kyle Cheney took the title of UTV King of the Hammers after completing the course with a total drive time of 4 hours and 26 minutes.
Can-Am UTV Grudge Match
Brian Deegan won the 1st Can-Am UTV Grudge Match. He competed among the UTV King of Hammers top twenty finishers in a grueling four laps for a cash prize of $10,000.
Toyo Tires Desert Challenge
Chase Warren took the Desert Limited Race title with his Alumi Craft Race Car’s Class 10 Buggy with a total time of 4 hours, 16 minutes and 39.716 seconds. Kyle Jergensen was in rhythm and won the Desert Unlimited Race with a time of 4 hours and 50 minutes and 45 seconds.
4WP Every Man Challenge
Dan Fresh continued to dominate with his 4th win streak claiming his throne as King of EMC. This brutal challenge tested drivers as they endure up to 10 hours of 151 miles of deeply rutted out roads and high speed lake beds to rocky canyons of boulders. Only 34 of the starting 135 vehicles finish the challenge.
Holley EFI Shootout
When the sun goes down, the ULTRA4 and rock bouncer vehicles come out to play. The Shootout is a timed rock scramble race and a multi-level rock wall climb. Paul Wolff dominated the rock scramble race with the quickest time of 11.042. From backflips, full tilts, tumbles, rollovers to strategic crawling lines, the rock wall portion of the challenge is something you don’t want to miss. Jeff McKinlay’s crab-walking buggy was the first to conquer the rock wall. However, Dave Wong earned the crown with a time of 2:52.57 to cash out with the prize of $2,500.
A New King is Crowned
The Gomez family members have been chasing the title for many years. With motivation and perseverance, Raul Gomez of the Gomez Brothers Racing took the coveted crown at King of the Hammers 2022 with his brand-new UFO Fabrication buggy that endured all obstacles with a total finishing time of 9 hours, 16 minutes, and 17 seconds.
If you missed the 2022 King of the Hammers show this year, you can watch the broadcast on Ultra4 Racing’s YouTube channel here. Whether you’re a racer, a crewmember, or an Ultra4 fan, you don’t want to miss this exhilarating coverage!
VIAIR – Leader in Off Road
VIAIR is a leader in the off-road market offering a complete line up of Onboard Air kits tailored for various applications. These operations include powering air tools, tire inflation, air lockers, train horns and more!
A VIAIR equipped sponsor, LGE CTS Motorsports, attended King of the Hammers. LGE CTS motorsports is a family owned and operated business best known for specializing in truck accessories, suspensions and custom fabrications since 1982.
VIAIR gave away our NEW 50005 Expedition High Pressure Onboard Air System during the end of the week raffle with LGE CTS Motorsports! This pre-packaged compressed air solution provides 200 PSI rated at 100% duty cycle to easily air up off-road tires and power a variety of pneumatic applications! It features a Stealth Black 444C compressor, 2.5 gallon air tank, 180 PSI digital tire inflation gun, and all necessary components needed to install a working system. Learn more about our NEW Adventure Series – Overlanding OBAs in our blog post here.
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