Explorer Sport Dances around a Motocross Track: Muddy Monday

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Wrecked Explorer handles the flooded oval with ease, but the driver never attacks the big jumps.

This week’s “Muddy Monday” video comes to us from the ak96 YouTube channel and it features a Ford Explorer Sport racing around what appears to be a motocross practice track. The venue could be used for a variety of things, but it is a small, dirt oval with a large box-top jump, a smaller jump and a whole lot of mud on one of the ends. This track in this condition would be impassable for many vehicles, but the three-door Explorer Sport proves itself to be a worthy mud machine.

Mall Crawler in the Mud

While the Explorer is one of the best-selling SUVs in the history of the American market, it doesn’t get a world of respect for its off-roading abilities, often being labeled a “mall crawler”. Sure, many of the people who buy Explorers didn’t shop with off-roading in mind, but that doesn’t mean that the vehicles aren’t capable of having some fun in the mud.

Second Gen Ford Explorer Wrecked Front

We don’t have any details on the vehicle in action, we can see that it is a second generation Explorer Sport in three-door form, so it is likely powered by the 4.0-liter Cologne V6. That engine offered 210 horsepower and 254 lb-ft of torque in stock form, but more importantly, you could get it with a 5-speed manual transmission. It sounds as though the vehicle in action here has the manual gearbox.

Ford Explorer Sport on the Hill

Dirt Track Fun

The odds are good that when this small dirt oval is used for its primary function, it is dry and there is no lake on one end. All of that water wouldn’t be much fun in a pack of dirt bikes, but it makes for the perfect conditions in which to punish a wrecked Ford Explorer. As the battered SUV makes laps around the small oval, occasionally cutting through the grassy infield area to change direction, the driver keeps picking different lanes. As a result, the Explorer slides along the slick mud on some laps while fording the deep water on other laps.

Ford Explorer Sport Mud Splash

Sadly, the driver avoids both of the big jumps, but in every other part of this flooded oval, the Ford Explorer Sport shows that it is capable of offering big fun in the mud.

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"Before I was old enough to walk, my dad was taking me to various types of racing events, from local drag racing to the Daytona 500," says Patrick Rall, a lifetime automotive expert, diehard Dodge fan, and respected auto journalist for over 10 years. "He owned a repair shop and had a variety of performance cars when I was young, but by the time I was 16, he was ready to build me my first drag car – a 1983 Dodge Mirada that ran low 12s. I spent 10 years traveling around the country, racing with my dad by my side. While we live in different areas of the country, my dad still drag races at 80 years old in the car that he built when I was 16 while I race other vehicles, including my 2017 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat and my 1972 Dodge Demon 340.

"Although I went to college for accounting, my time in my dad’s shop growing up allowed me the knowledge to spend time working as a mechanic before getting my accounting degree, at which point I worked in the office of a dealership group. While I was working in the accounting world, I continued racing and taking pictures of cars at the track. Over time, I began showing off those pictures online and that led to my writing.

"Ten years ago, I left the accounting world to become a full-time automotive writer and I am living proof that if you love what you do, you will never “work” a day in your life," adds Rall, who has clocked in time as an auto mechanic, longtime drag racer and now automotive journalist who contributes to nearly a dozen popular auto websites dedicated to fellow enthusiasts.

"I love covering the automotive industry and everything involved with the job. I was fortunate to turn my love of the automotive world into a hobby that led to an exciting career, with my past of working as a mechanic and as an accountant in the automotive world provides me with a unique perspective of the industry.

"My experience drag racing for more than 20 years coupled with a newfound interest in road racing over the past decade allows me to push performance cars to their limit, while my role as a horse stable manager gives me vast experience towing and hauling with all of the newest trucks on the market today.

"Being based on Detroit," says Rall, "I never miss the North American International Auto Show, the Woodward Dream Cruise and Roadkill Nights, along with spending plenty of time raising hell on Detroit's Woodward Avenue with the best muscle car crowd in the world.

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