Conversations with Big Rich

Austin "Fish" Farner, the FishDood, on Episode 88

December 09, 2021 Guest Austin Fish Farner Season 2 Episode 88
Conversations with Big Rich
Austin "Fish" Farner, the FishDood, on Episode 88
Show Notes Transcript

The Fishdood, Austin “Fish” Farner joins Rich for Episode 88. Right seat, left seat, media, Fish has done it all. Listen in as they talk desert racing and Fishgistics.

5:19 – Where does Fish come from?

9:09 – we raced in the 1450 class back in the day

14:57 – you can barely get a flat tire anymore and expect to win a race

20:58 – “Oh my God, is he really doing that right now?”

27:51 – Anybody could get in a trophy truck and with a little skill you could go finish a race

34:16 – what’s it like to be a co-driver? What are your responsibilities?

41:34 – if you get motion sickness, you probably are going to get sick in a car 

46:34 – that’s the point, it’s a joke name that everybody will remember

54:12 – the game is going to change in the next two years as far as media and technology

1:03:18 – I was the only Sportsman truck entry Sal Fish had to put out a Press Release about after the race

We want to thank our sponsors Maxxis Tires and 4Low Magazine.

www.maxxis.com

www.4lowmagazine.com 

Be sure to listen on your favorite podcast app.

Support the show (https://www.buymeacoffee.com/BigRich)


[00:00:01.030] - Big Rich Klein

Welcome to The Big Rich Show. This podcast will focus on conversations with friends and acquaintances within the four wheel drive industry. Many of the people that I will be interviewing you may know the name. You may know some of the history, but let's get in depth with these people and find out what truly makes them a four wheel drive enthusiast. So now is the time to sit back, grab a cold one, and enjoy our conversation.

 


[00:00:29.370] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Whether you're crawling the red rock of Moab or hauling your toys to the trail, Maxxis has the tires you can trust for performance and durability, four wheels or two, Maxxis tires are the choice of Champions because they know that whether for work or play, for fun or competition, Maxxis Tires deliver. Choose Maxxis Tread Victoriously.

 


[00:00:55.990] - Speaker 1

Why should you read 4Low magazine? Because 4Low magazine is about your lifestyle, the four wheel drive adventure lifestyle that we all enjoy, rock crawling, trail riding, event coverage, vehicle builds and DOITYOURSELF tech, all in a beautifully presented package. You won't find 4Low on the newsstand rack. So subscribe today and have it delivered to you.

 


[00:01:20.290] - Big Rich Klein

On today's episode of Conversations With Big Rich. We have Austin Fish. Farner. Austin is an off road racer, Navigator, media personality. You might say he does a lot in offroad, especially in the desert racing scene, getting his feet wet in the ultra4 scene. So we're going to talk to Austin about his life and what brought him to where he's at Austin. Thank you for coming on board.

 


[00:01:47.660] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Right on. Yeah. Glad to be here. Thanks for having me on.

 


[00:01:51.130] - Big Rich Klein

Yes. So let's go ahead and get started first before I ask where you were born and raised. Is Fish actually your middle name?

 


[00:02:01.990] - Austin "Fish" Farner

No, it is not, actually, but it might as well be it might as well be my first name, because that's just what everybody calls me, right?

 


[00:02:09.190] - Big Rich Klein

Well, it's so much easier because when you say, hey, I talked to Austin. Everybody. Which one I talked to? Fish. Everybody knows it's either you or Sal.

 


[00:02:20.530] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah, exactly.

 


[00:02:23.290] - Big Rich Klein

I think Sal is more Sal.

 


[00:02:25.450] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah, exactly. And I'm not related. Some people are always like, are you related to Sal Fish? Like, no, just nickname.

 


[00:02:34.330] - Big Rich Klein

All right, so let's go ahead and get started with where were you born and raised?

 


[00:02:39.370] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Actually, right here in San Diego County, in Vista Vista, California. And I've been in either Vista or Oceanside most of my younger life. And, yeah, pretty much San Diego County.

 


[00:02:50.830] - Big Rich Klein

All right. So starting there. Is that more rural or is that more suburb?

 


[00:03:02.730] - Austin "Fish" Farner

No, it's suburb. Yeah, it's track home stuff. It's suburb. It's you're right next to the five and the 78 freeway, not far from the 15. It's kind of right in the middle of the five and the 15. So, yeah, that's definitely not rural.

 


[00:03:14.340] - Big Rich Klein

Okay, so you couldn't jump on a motorcycle at a young age and go ripping out in the fields.

 


[00:03:21.540] - Austin "Fish" Farner

No, but we did do some of that in my truck, and we got in trouble quite a bit for that, but, yeah, there wasn't a lot of opportunity to do that stuff.

 


[00:03:30.880] - Big Rich Klein

Well, let's talk about those earlier first, and then we'll get talk about that trouble on the truck. How did you do in school and did it influence your decisions in offroad later on?

 


[00:03:44.510] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Well, school. I don't know. It wasn't, like, super exciting. It wasn't, like the 4.0 student or anything. Definitely had fun. Got in trouble a little bit. Not too much. It was fairly nice in school. I had quite a few friends. And then, honestly, throughout school, I never really did anything with off road. Didn't have anything to do with offroad until maybe in, like, high school was the first time I was even introduced to anything off road. My parents didn't do off road or anything like that. I went to Mexico with my parents quite a bit.

 


[00:04:15.310] - Austin "Fish" Farner

We would go to San Felipe quite a bit or even Ensenada. We would go to Estero Beach and stay there just on family vacations and go fishing and stuff off the shore there. That was my first Mexico experiences. But as far as offroad racing, none of that really started happening until in high school.

 


[00:04:31.440] - Big Rich Klein

Okay. So what were your interest back then then?

 


[00:04:34.610] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Fishing, actually, fishing was my big interest, hence. It still is.

 


[00:04:40.130] - Big Rich Klein

Yeah.

 


[00:04:40.440] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I've been fishing since I was probably, I don't know, seven or eight years old. Maybe something like that going out on it started in the Lake. We lived right by a Lake. So there was Guhomi Lake. In Vista was actually right behind my house. We would just every day, like, walk back there and go fishing and there's little creeks there. We would go in there and do fishing stuff. And then it started transitioning into ocean fishing, and I would go out on the sport boats out of Oceanside and do ocean fishing.

 


[00:05:07.290] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And then that kind of took over. That was a lot more fun than Lake fishing, in my opinion.

 


[00:05:11.810] - Big Rich Klein

Yeah, I agree.

 


[00:05:12.740] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah.

 


[00:05:13.630] - Big Rich Klein

So then, of course, fish comes from your desire to fish all the time.

 


[00:05:19.570] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. As far as the nickname that everybody knows, it actually in, I think it was 2001. I signed up on racedessert. Com, which everybody knows Race Desert. And my nickname on there when I signed up was Fish dude. It was Fish D-O-O-D. That was kind of my nickname for any online message boards or anything that I did. So I signed up on there as Fish dude. When I was, I don't even know how old I would have been then. And that was 20 years ago. I guess so 17 years old then.

 


[00:05:48.830] - Austin "Fish" Farner

But that's where the fish nickname came from was being on Race Desert as Fish dude.

 


[00:05:53.660] - Big Rich Klein

Okay. All right. So then were you in school? Did you play sports or anything like that?

 


[00:06:02.200] - Austin "Fish" Farner

No, I didn't do anything like that, mostly just hung out with friends. I was pretty into baseball, but I did not play baseball, but we went to a lot of Padre's games as a kid, with my parents and stuff. We got to know a few of the players back then, and we had a lot of fun going to Padres games. That was probably the thing that we did the most was go to Jack Murphy actually was a Stadium name back then before Qualcomm or anything of that, anything like that.

 


[00:06:28.300] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So that was pretty much just that and fishing for fun back then.

 


[00:06:32.590] - Big Rich Klein

Okay. Excellent. So then let's talk about your truck. Those high school years. It sounded like it was when you were driving the truck. What kind of truck was it?

 


[00:06:44.720] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah, well, I first went to the desert when I was about 15 or so with some friends, and we went to Ocotilla Wells, and my friend had a Toyota T 100, and I thought it was the coolest thing ever because it had, like, a drop down bracket lift on it, which I didn't even know what a drop down bracket lift one was then, but it was nothing special. It's just a drop down bracket and bigger tires and a skid plate on the front. But we would go to Ocotillo, and it was like, it was super fun just riding around in that thing.

 


[00:07:15.240] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So I was like, Man, this is pretty cool. And so then when I turned 16, I was like, Man, what kind of truck am I going to get? So I just kind of started looking at trucks and I was like, oh, you know what? The T100. It never broke on us. It always seems good. I'm going to get a Toyota. So then I ended up getting not a T 100, just a regular Toyota pickup, four wheel drive, extra cab, 1992. That was my first vehicle. Was that car

 


[00:07:40.090] - Big Rich Klein

Okay. And did you modify it, or did you keep it stock, or did you buy it partially modified?

 


[00:07:47.410] - Austin "Fish" Farner

It was completely stock. When I bought it, it had the stock wheels and tires. It had everything stock. It was like an older man that had owned it. It didn't even have very many miles on. I don't remember how many totally stock. But then it was four wheel drive. So as soon as I bought it, we started using it and just going up on some trails around Vista and by Lawrence, Welk off the 15 and just doing some miniature rock crawling and going up some dirt trails.

 


[00:08:11.450] - Austin "Fish" Farner

We thought we were really cool back then, but just a couple of 16 year old friends having fun in it. And then it just progressed into a by the time I sold it in 2005, it was a full blown race truck by then. Okay.

 


[00:08:25.460] - Big Rich Klein

So you pre runnered it out?

 


[00:08:28.010] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Oh, yeah, we raced. I guess I could start back where it started. The first thing I did to it was a Total Chaos kit. So I became friends with Nicole and Matt at Total Chaos and got one of their kits for the front end. It converted it to a two wheel drive. When I did that, because we put a long travel kit on it. But I didn't put the axles ever in it because that was too much money. I didn't have the money to get the axles.

 


[00:08:52.290] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So I was like, oh, screw it kept the two wheel drive. And then I converted it to coilovers instead of the torsion bars. And then it just started evolving from there, and it just never looked back.

 


[00:09:04.340] - Big Rich Klein

Yeah, it doesn't.

 


[00:09:06.050] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah.

 


[00:09:07.250] - Big Rich Klein

Do you still have that truck?

 


[00:09:09.030] - Austin "Fish" Farner

No. I sold in 2005. We had the Total Chaos kit on it, and then it had a bed cage, and then it had a cage in it. And then I became friends with guy Mike Clark, who owned ESB Fabrications in Escondido, and we put one of his kits on the front end of it, which was better than the Total Chaos kit because it was bigger, wider, got more travel, a little bit better. And then we decided to start racing it. And then we did some MDR races with it back in the day, in the 1450 class, which back then, was the class to racing, in my opinion, because it was a bunch of kids with their home built trucks from their driveway.

 


[00:09:50.930] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Some people would drive it to the race and then race it, drive it home. And it was really a lot of fun. That was where I first got introduced to desert racing. Was that the MDR race.

 


[00:10:00.030] - Big Rich Klein

Wasn't that, like a two wheel drive pre runner class?

 


[00:10:04.370] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Not specific to two wheel drive, actually, when the class started, the only rules were a windshield and a license plate. You had to have a license plate on your car, so it had to be street legal, and you had to have a windshield and working doors. Basically, you couldn't have steel cab and working doors, so you couldn't have a fiberglass race truck and enter that class.

 


[00:10:25.480] - Big Rich Klein

Okay.

 


[00:10:25.770] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So it was all Toyotas, Rangers, a couple S tens, basically a mini truck class. And then every once in a while, you get somebody that had, like, an F 150, but most of them were the mini trucks that were in that class. Okay, cool.

 


[00:10:39.390] - Big Rich Klein

And how many years did you race that?

 


[00:10:42.110] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I actually raced with Dan Vance first. So I met my buddy Dan Vance. A lot of people know who he is from back in the day. He had a Ranger. I never raced his Ranger, but then he built a Toyota, and I got him hooked up with Total Chaos on it, and it kind of took off from there. He had a couple of Toyotas, but we raced in 2003. I think it was the first time I actually raced with Dan, and then we won the Championship in 2004 in his car.

 


[00:11:11.360] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And then in 2005, we ended up actually. Sorry. 2003. We won the Championship in his truck, and then he sold it. And we raced my truck in 2004, and we won the Championship in my truck. So we won back to back Championships in 1450 class.

 


[00:11:28.780] - Big Rich Klein

Wow. In different vehicles. That's good.

 


[00:11:30.880] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. It was super fun. We would just take turns driving. He would drive the first half of the race, and I would drive the second half, and it worked out well, it was a lot of fun.

 


[00:11:40.370] - Big Rich Klein

So let's talk about your immersion into offroad racing and some of the people that you've raced with. I know that you did some racing with Pistol. Yeah. I helped with his race effort back in the mid and late 2000s. Worked with him and Fast Eddie and Chad Bunch and all that.

 


[00:12:03.910] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah.

 


[00:12:05.330] - Big Rich Klein

I don't remember ever meeting you. So I don't know if the timing ever was right, but talk about your experiences there.

 


[00:12:14.510] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. Well, as far as Pistol specifically or just everybody. Yeah. So I think the very first time I ever raced was I rode in a class five car with Dale Hines. It was Frank Hine's son. And it was a five open car, and it was at Ridgecrest and MDR Ridgecrest race. And that was the very first time I was 17 years old. My parents had to sign a minor release just so I could race. And so I rode in a five car. And then it was super fun.

 


[00:12:41.790] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I was hooked. So that was even before I had my truck racing. So that was a lot of fun. And then after that, I raced, like I said, with Dan and then in my truck. And then since then, I've literally I think race almost every class that there is. I raced a class eleven one time with Dennis Sletten. That was actually really fun. Class eleven are awesome. We even jumped the wall back in the day for everybody who knows what that is. A lot of fun.

 


[00:13:06.330] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And then after that, I raced what else? There is seven truck, 7200 truck. And then I went to work for Flugor, actually, for Allen Fluger for a little while with John Hoffman. I was actually working with John Hoffman. He was running Alan's program, and I was on his team for a while. I did not race with him then, but I was on the team and he was racing pro truck when I first started working there. And then he got the trophy truck when I was there.

 


[00:13:35.140] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So then I was on a trophy truck team. And was it pretty cool because Alan's team was basically unlimited budget are very close to it. Whatever they needed to win the race, they got and they would have all the spares and everything. So it's my first time seeing what a real high level professional offroad team looks like.

 


[00:13:54.400] - Big Rich Klein

I've never been around one of those.

 


[00:13:56.220] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Well, yeah, much different than Pistols program.

 


[00:13:58.770] - Big Rich Klein

Yeah, I did help Roger in an offbeat kind of way. When Lance Clifford was his Navigator, I shadowed them because Lance was supposed when they finished with the trophy truck, I was supposed to take him back to Dave Cole's class one car, but we didn't end up having to do that because that car didn't make it okay. That was my working with a high end team like that.

 


[00:14:26.120] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah, definitely. It's definitely different. Once you do that, you really are envious of not being able to do that in the future. It's definitely nice. You can definitely see Alan was a super cool guy. The team was super professional. Alan was going there to win every race and anything Besides, the win wasn't really acceptable. We were going to win, and he was spending the money to do that. And he got a few race wins in trophy truck. It's just really hard to win trophy truck races, especially back then.

 


[00:14:57.340] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And there was a lot of parts failures back then. You had to be able to change the transmission. You could change the transmission during a race back then and still win a race. So nowadays that's unheard of. You can barely get a flat tire anymore and win a race. So it was definitely cool to see that. And then I worked there for a couple of years. And then after that, I actually moved to Hawaii for a little while for fun and worked for Allen over there because he owned car dealerships.

 


[00:15:21.110] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So I actually sold Hummers and Cadillacs at Allen's car dealership in Hawaii for, like, a year to rent on Oahu. Yeah, my girlfriend at the time, and we decided we wanted to move to Hawaii. I don't know why, but it was fun. It was cool for, like, a year. But then being away from racing over there wasn't too much fun. So that didn't last long.

 


[00:15:43.680] - Big Rich Klein

Yeah. I visited Hawaii once we went to the Big Island and then spent a couple of days on Oahu, and I realized that it's way too small for me.

 


[00:15:55.880] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Exactly. You can get from one side to the other in, like, an hour, and that's not acceptable. That's just not enough to do exactly.

 


[00:16:03.210] - Big Rich Klein

In less than two weeks, I drove every single paved road on the Big Island.

 


[00:16:08.050] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah, that's tough. Coming from San Diego and going to that, it's just not. I don't know. It wasn't for me either.

 


[00:16:19.570] - Big Rich Klein

Visit for a couple of days.

 


[00:16:21.440] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Exactly. Go on vacation there and then come back. Yeah. So then when I came back from there, I actually started working at one point for Mango Racing for Gary Magnus, and they had pro trucks. And I had some pro truck experience because I had worked with Allen on the pro trucks before. So I started working at the Mango shop out in Desert Hot Springs and worked for them for a couple of years. That was actually really fun because I got to drive the protrucks, too during the races.

 


[00:16:48.030] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So Gary would start and I would usually ride with Gary, and then Gary would get out for a little while, and I would get to drive a section. So that was a lot of fun driving something that actually had some power and was pretty fun class. So that was definitely a cool experience. I think the 2007 run down to Cabo. It's probably my favorite Baja 1000 still to this day, just because I got to be a part of it from chasing, driving every part of it, and it went all the way.

 


[00:17:14.730] - Austin "Fish" Farner

It's the last time it went to Cabo hasn't gone to Cabo since then. Definitely 2007.

 


[00:17:20.280] - Big Rich Klein

Yeah. That's that okay.

 


[00:17:22.900] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. So that was a lot of fun. Did it go one time after that, I forget it might have gone there one time after that.

 


[00:17:29.330] - Big Rich Klein

I think that's the time that we went down was with Pete, and we ended up in fourth place. Pete ended up in fourth, broke some teeth off the ring gear and barely made it in, and Robbie passed us before we got to the finish line.

 


[00:17:47.350] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Okay. Yeah. I think that was 2007. Then I did that for a little while, and then I started working. I didn't really like living out in desert hot Springs. It's kind of miserable out there. It's 130 degrees during the day in the summer, and then it's freezing cold at night, and just I didn't like living out there too much, kind of like Hawaii, I guess I really don't like living anywhere beside San Diego County. Sounds like I got over that. And then I moved back to San Diego County again, and then I started working for Race Desert actually.

 


[00:18:21.670] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Then. So I had been on Race Desert for forever. Yeah. And I've always been friends with Curtis and Klaus. And then after Mango, I came back and started working for them for a couple of years and did race other stuff.

 


[00:18:35.690] - Big Rich Klein

What kind of work did you do with the race teams at where with Mango Racing or with flugr. What kind of work are you doing?

 


[00:18:45.790] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Actually, prepping the race cars.

 


[00:18:47.350] - Big Rich Klein

Okay.

 


[00:18:47.710] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. Like mechanic, mechanic work and then chasing during the races and everything. And I'm definitely not like a lead mechanic or anything. That's for sure. I would work on the cars, and it was fun. But I don't know, it was fun, but it kind of got you burned out on it at the same time. Long hours working on the car. You're kind of over it by the time you're done, and it doesn't make it as much fun anymore. I think it's more fun for me if I'm able to do something else and then go do that for my fund.

 


[00:19:15.840] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Go racing for fun, right. Racing is a little bit more enjoyable when you're not doing it all day, every day, also, in my opinion.

 


[00:19:23.730] - Big Rich Klein

So what did you do for Race Desert?

 


[00:19:26.930] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So for Race Desert, I did basically, like, message board stuff. I did the random classifieds on there, just kind of helped out. I would go to the races, all the races we would do with them. Klaus had some live timing stuff that we were working on then. So I would go and help Klaus at the races with our live timing. We actually were one of the first people to do the live broadcasting during a race, like, have a live camera during the race at the finish line and talking to people and stuff.

 


[00:19:54.490] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So that was cool. I think it was like us and dirt news. Tim Sanchez was actually doing that back then. Also, kind of so we were kind of not really competing, but that was the only person that was kind of doing something similar back then. That's actually where I met a lot of people, too, in the race community was from doing that with Race Desert either met him on the message board. There was a lot more racers that posted on the message board back in those days than there is now, really.

 


[00:20:21.040] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And going to the races, I would talk to everybody because I'd be at the finish line or at the start line and just start talking to everybody and make connections, get their race stories and stuff. So that was always a lot of fun working for Race Desert.

 


[00:20:34.310] - Big Rich Klein

So let's talk about some of that race desert years when you're there reporting on the races and you're talking to the racers. What's probably the most memorable story that somebody gave to you.

 


[00:20:58.530] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I mean, I know some, like, funny stories that happened a little bit or something, like, one time we were at the start line, and it was the Herbs Brothers. It was Alan Fluger, and it was Scott Steinberger, and they were talking right before the start, just in their suits and everything. Scott comes up behind Alan and he's got his catheter on, and he just starts pissing and he puts his catheter right in Alan's shoe. We're kind of like, just sitting there like, oh, my God. Is he really doing that right now?

 


[00:21:29.600] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And then it took a minute for Alan sock to get wet, and then he was like, what the hell? I don't know. That was just one story for some reason that sticks out in my head at the start line, seeing everybody there. So that was kind of funny. And actually, the thing they were talking about, they were trying to make a gentleman's agreement to not take some of the lines that they had all found because this was back when there was only stub cans. Right. Right.

 


[00:21:57.330] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So there was no tracker, there was no VCP, there was none of that. It was basically go from here to here. And if you have the stubs in your can, you're good. So there was a couple of Haines and they were like, look, let's make an agreement. We're not going to take this line or this line, and they're like, okay, sure. You weren't really going to believe anybody.

 


[00:22:18.150] - Big Rich Klein

And then it's all burned in.

 


[00:22:20.220] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Oh, yeah. So I don't know. That was a fun start time there. And then I don't know, I'd have to think about specific story. There's been so many of them. It's crazy. I don't know. There's too many to even remember one specific. Honestly.

 


[00:22:38.810] - Big Rich Klein

So let's talk about then after or I know that you did a lot more racing after that. Didn't you race with Daily for a while?

 


[00:22:53.670] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. Let me try to. I've done so much. I'm trying to think of where out of my timeline. So, yeah, that was in. Let's see. So race desert. And then who did race with? Yeah, Pat Daily. I think after that, he got a trophy light. He bought a trophy light, and actually, no, you know what? Before that, I raced with Camberg for a little bit. Okay. In their trophy truck. When they first had their trophy truck program, I would go up to Camberg and help them work on a little bit, and then I would co drive with them.

 


[00:23:23.450] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So I did a few races with Jerry and Jason there at Camberg. That was actually the first Baja 1000 that I ever raced in was 2009 Baja 1000. I raced with the Cambridge trophy truck, and that was pretty fun. Me and Jerry did the second half of the course, basically to the finish, and we didn't have any problems. Really. Jerry got stuck one time in a wash and I got to get out and get strapped and somebody pulled us. But that was fun. That was my 1st 1000 experience in a trophy truck.

 


[00:23:53.370] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I should say I had done other BA, obviously. But in a trophy truck, that was my first time.

 


[00:23:57.340] - Big Rich Klein

So that was fun when you step in from, say, a five or a seven or whatever, and you jump into a trophy truck for the first time. What's the difference? What's the feeling for those of us who have never gotten a chance to ride in one pretty much like, Holy shit.

 


[00:24:21.330] - Austin "Fish" Farner

You're going over the stuff and it eats up everything in front of you. It's smooth as long as you know how to set it up. It's indescribable. Honestly, you have to do it. Go testing with somebody some time and go for ride on, and you'll kind of just get an idea of it. And the trophy trucks have just evolved so much over the years, they're just even so much better than back then. Now they're really unreal. Honestly, you can throw it into anything and it just takes it.

 


[00:24:55.130] - Austin "Fish" Farner

It definitely does not beat you up. Really, if it's set up, right.

 


[00:24:58.860] - Big Rich Klein

Okay. So have you had a chance to ride in one of the four wheel drive trophy trucks?

 


[00:25:03.590] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yes. I've gone in, Andy's. I think once, maybe twice just in testing. I have not ridden one in a race.

 


[00:25:11.230] - Big Rich Klein

But, yeah, I've gone with Andy in his what did you think of the difference between the four wheel drive and two wheel drive?

 


[00:25:17.700] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Definitely out of the corners. It's way faster, like, noticeable. Like before, you would come into a corner in a two wheel drive and you're sliding through the corner, right. Like the rear end is coming around where in the all wheel drive, you go in the corner and you hit the gas and it just pulls you out of the corner, like, night, day difference in the truck, right. It's so much faster out of there on the straightaway. You don't really notice it as much. There's not too much difference on the straightaway, because maybe the acceleration is a little better since there's less wheel spin, but out of the corners is where it's most noticeable.

 


[00:25:51.700] - Big Rich Klein

Okay, cool. So then let's see. We went camp and then was it daily?

 


[00:26:01.490] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah, I think so. I think Pat was 2010. I think 2010 or 2011, I think, is when we did the trophy light and man, that thing, not the bash of trophy lights or anything, but that thing was quite a bit of a pile. Every race, we were just breaking something. And Pat was honestly driving. It probably too hard. He always had the fast lap, and he always started, and he would always have the fast lap out of, like, the whole trophy, like class. So we named him Fast Lap.

 


[00:26:33.270] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Pat. That was his nickname because he'd always just go out there. But something would always seem like something would always break. Or we just always had problems with the thing. The front arms would break. They just weren't built strong enough. The rear end housing would crack. The chassis would just break by the four link mounts in the front. It was a fun class, and it was cool because it was a spec class. So they were all pretty much the same truck. They had all the same parts on them.

 


[00:26:59.740] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So you weren't necessarily that much faster than the other guy. You really had to drive the thing, right?

 


[00:27:05.010] - Big Rich Klein

If you overdrove it, you were definitely going to break it.

 


[00:27:08.200] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. Or roll it. People roll those things all the time. They're super narrow, and they're pretty top heavy for what they are. So you come in the corner, you're biking that thing all the time. You're driving it on two wheels in all the corners. So if you can drive a trophy life fast, you could drive a trophy truck fast. Really kind of the same thing with a 16 car. I think the best trophy truck drivers are 16 car drivers. And if you look, Rob Mack, 16 car driver Luke McMillan, 16 car driver.

 


[00:27:35.770] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Andy used to drive 16 cars or one car buggy. You know what I mean? If you can drive those, you're going to be quick in a trophy truck, because those are way harder to drive than a trophy truck, I think.

 


[00:27:47.620] - Big Rich Klein

Yeah. You have to be able to be a wheel man.

 


[00:27:51.750] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yes, a trophy truck. Anybody could get in a trophy truck just about if you have a little bit of skill and you could just go drive and you could go finish a race. I'm not saying you're going to win the race, obviously, but you could just go out there and do that. Where if you just take any driver and you just put them in a trophy light or a 16 car or something like that, they're going to crash if they go out there. If they don't know how to drive a little bit, you can't just cruising those things and do.

 


[00:28:15.860] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Okay.

 


[00:28:16.280] - Big Rich Klein

Yeah. 16 car doesn't spend a whole lot of time with all four wheels on the ground.

 


[00:28:20.390] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I don't think they ever do if they do, you're not driving it fast enough.

 


[00:28:24.810] - Big Rich Klein

I've never seen a picture of a 16 car unless it's parked with all four wheels on the ground.

 


[00:28:31.080] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I wrote in a 16 car one time and it was with Luke McMillan at Battle at Prim, and it was actually very boring. We started first off the line and we finished first off the line. We didn't see anybody. I don't even remember if we lapped anybody, maybe like one or two people. And I was never beaten up so much in a car and wanted out of a car as much as that, I was like, wow, I was like, that wasn't even fun. That was just stupid.

 


[00:29:00.010] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I have no desire to ever get in a 16 car again. And you can call me a whistle or whatever, but no, thanks.

 


[00:29:08.410] - Big Rich Klein

It's like going and getting in a Barbara with six guys and you're by yourself.

 


[00:29:12.850] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah, you're just getting your ass beat. It doesn't matter what. Who did you ride with after daily, I think, is when I started riding again with Mango, not working for Mango, but they now had a trophy truck and 2012. No, you know what? Take that back. Sorry, I forgot. 2012. I actually raced with Flugr in Chris Kemp's trophy truck. We were second off the line and Pistol Pete was first off the line. So here's a funny pistol story. Yeah. So Pistol Drew number one. He was all excited, all happy about it.

 


[00:29:54.820] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And Chris Camp drew number two, and Chris was going to start in the car, and then me and Alan were going to get in at San Agnosio, and we were going to go San Agacio to La Paz because 2012 was a Peninsula run to La Paz, right? So we pre ran and everything. We had our section all ready to go. And then the race started and Pistols going. And that's when you dropped in the wash. It's not of there. He had those Max tires that would always get flat tires on him.

 


[00:30:21.220] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And he got a flat tire right in the wash. Right off the start. So his number one start lasted from the start line to about mile one. Wow. That's where he got his flat. So then Chris kept past him, and Chris was now first on the road. So me and Alan are sitting in San Ignostian. We're like, oh, this is cool. Now he's first on the road. So he actually stayed first on the road all the way over to San Felipe. And then he had some transmission problems, and they had to have a long hit, and they lost some time and some positions there.

 


[00:30:52.990] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And then that race was kind of a nightmare for me. It's actually the only time I've ever got out of a race car during a race and didn't finish the section I was supposed to do. Wow. Why was that? Well, it was so long, like, the race started the first day, and we were awake in San Ignacio. And I don't know if you've ever tried to sleep on race day, but you can't. It's impossible. We knew we weren't getting in until late at night, but I couldn't sleep.

 


[00:31:18.420] - Austin "Fish" Farner

There's no way I'm watching the tractor. I'm listening to updates. There's no way I'm going to sleep. So I was up all day, and then the truck had those problems. By the time it got to us, it was super late at night already. And then we get in the truck and we go, I think it was, like, 50 miles and the transmission blows up like, lose all the gears. So we're like, oh, crap. So we made it over to Scorpion Bay, and we stopped at Scorpion Bay.

 


[00:31:43.950] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Well, back then, the roads into Scorpion Bay weren't paved, and there wasn't the access that there is now. So we had to wait forever for our chase truck to come all the way around with the transmission, and then they finally get it over there. We get it changed now. It is the next morning now. So we go to leave, and I was up all night. I couldn't sleep over there. Like, it's hard to sleep in a trophy truck just sitting there, you know what I mean?

 


[00:32:08.030] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And it's cold out at night and all that. So then the next morning, we get a transmission change. We go about 40 miles. The rear end blows up. I'm just like, oh, my God, you got to be kidding me. So now the chase truck that's over there doesn't have a rear end. The other chase truck does. So we're like, oh, my God. So now we have to sit there and wait all day in the middle of the desert for the rear end to get there. It doesn't get there until night time.

 


[00:32:34.780] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So now we're on the second night, you know what I mean? Oh, yeah. The second night and I've been up for the whole time. Haven't slept at all, haven't eaten anything Besides some granola bars or whatever we had for a snack so now I'm like, I'm just done. At that point, I'm physically, like, getting works. Kind of. So we changed the rear end and we go to Loretto, and I'm like, Look, I got to get out, Loretta, I don't want to make a bad call on the GPS.

 


[00:32:58.830] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Like, I'm falling asleep or I'm just like, you know what I mean? I had to get out. I was like, if I stay in the car, I don't want to make a bad call and have us crash the truck. So I got out of Loretta, and then we put the other back up code river in, and that's the only race I ever got out of the car and looking back on it. Honestly, if I could go back, I probably would have just sucked it up and just stayed in because it would have been cool to say, I never had to get out of a car, but it should happen.

 


[00:33:21.670] - Austin "Fish" Farner

That's the only time I ever did that was 2012. That was kind of an experience.

 


[00:33:28.070] - Big Rich Klein

Yeah, just a long one.

 


[00:33:31.610] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. And the truck did finish. It finished the next morning. So it was probably a 50 hours time limit. Then it probably finished in 48 hours or something like that. I don't even know. But the finish. Yeah, they got it to the finish. So that was cool for those guys. Alan stuck it out in there and finished. But that was fun. After that is when I started racing with Mango 2013. They had their trophy truck, and I started co driving for Mango in the trophy truck and did that.

 


[00:34:03.630] - Big Rich Klein

Nice. And let's talk about what it is. That a co driver Navigator, what your responsibilities are during the race.

 


[00:34:16.710] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Well, honestly, you do a lot. I think it's more important to have a good co driver than a driver, because if you're a good driver, it doesn't really matter if you don't have a good code driver to go with you. Unless you want to try to say, like, Ivan Stewart didn't have a code driver, and he was really good. But Ivan didn't race nowadays either. You know what I mean? They didn't have GPS's back then. That give you huge advantage. They didn't have MSAT. They didn't have all the tools that you can use as a co driver.

 


[00:34:42.750] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Now to make you that much faster. If Ivan was still racing, I guarantee you he would have a co driver with them nowadays. Probably just because I don't think you could win anymore without a co driver. So you do anything from reading the GPS every turn all the way. Nowadays, people have literally thousands of notes on their GPS that they're calling out during a race. So you have to go pre running and Mark all that. That's your job to Mark all those. Then on race day, you got to call those out.

 


[00:35:11.840] - Austin "Fish" Farner

You got to keep the driver focused. You got to tell them when to go faster. When to slow down when they're being an idiot. And everything's always your fault. So it's always a co driver's fault, no matter what. That's the rule. Unless you win, it's still your fault. Even when you win. Any flat tire is always a co driver's fault. If the car rolls over, it's always a co driver's fault. So it's definitely not a super fun job because everything's always your fault. So I really do respect all the code drivers out there.

 


[00:35:42.620] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And just changing the freaking tire on these trophy trucks nowadays is gnarly. I'm literally five, seven and weigh like £150, which is how much one of these tires weighs, if not more. So getting out and trying to change the tire, it's definitely not fun. Some of these guys that can do it, like Andy McMillan's, co driver Johnny Nelson. He can do it in less than a minute all by himself. Bryce Mensy is his co driver, Orin he can do it in less than a minute himself, like major props to those guys because they're not real big guys, either they got a dialed, which is pretty cool to see those guys do that stuff.

 


[00:36:19.020] - Big Rich Klein

So I know that there's different styles for calling out while making the calls as the driver is driving and you're making calls on left, right, take us through. This is for people that have never been in that seat. What are the kind of calls or how did you go through that? What was the process?

 


[00:36:47.620] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Well, it depends on the driver, mostly what they want their style to be. There's a couple of different styles there's rally style, which I did not used to do. But now when I drive nowadays, I have my co driver do rally style, and I like it way better. But when I was codriving, we didn't do rally style just because people weren't really doing it back then and there wasn't anybody doing it back then. So it was different than the now explain Rally  style. So rally style is you basically do the degree of the turn coming up in the gear, like you're in a five or six speed gearbox.

 


[00:37:24.300] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So say you have a five speed gearbox. Right.

 


[00:37:26.630] 

Right.

 


[00:37:26.890] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So if you're coming up to a right and it's super tight, like a 90 or 180 or something, it's going to be a right one. So you're going to be in first gear for that turn right. And you'll see the distance in 300ft R one, 300ft R, 150ft R one. And then you've got to get all the way down, like first gear. And then if it's an R five, it's basically just an easy turn. You can go pretty quick. So you'd be in like, fifth gear almost wide open.

 


[00:37:57.220] - Austin "Fish" Farner

But you're going right. So same thing, 300ft are five and then you kind of know and then dangers. You can do the same thing either danger one or double danger if it's really bad. Skulls a lot of people use skulls for danger on the GPS. So it'd be like skull coming up, skull, skull, skull. Something like that. Everybody does it a little bit differently, and it really depends on what the driver wants that you're with. And then the co driver kind of matches what the driver wants.

 


[00:38:27.910] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Some of the co drivers nowadays, they ride in with a bunch of different people, for instance, like Ericka Sacks. She rides in a bunch of different cars, and she just keeps her same style and makes the drivers learn her style because it wouldn't make sense for her to ride with five different people and have five different styles.

 


[00:38:44.570] 

True.

 


[00:38:44.920] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So she does the rally style. And if you have her riding with you, you learn to have her style. And she wrote with me last year in the Baja Light, and that style was perfect. Like she has it dialed. If you ride with her and you drive and have her ride, you want to use that style every time. So I think the rally style is the way to go for sure.

 


[00:39:03.960] - Big Rich Klein

Okay. Cool. So what other kind of nuances for somebody? Let's say somebody wants to get in a car and maybe they've worked for somebody or been down to the races and stuff. How would you suggest somebody get a position like that?

 


[00:39:24.790] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Well, there's two ways you can do it either. If you have money, you can just go buy your way into a seat, doing arrive and drive, for instance, the rentals. They have a really good arrive and drive program if you can afford it. And you want to go race a spec truck. The rentals literally bring a spec truck, chase, trucks, crew everything to the race for you. You pay them, you show up at the race, you get your suit and your helmet and you go get in the car at the start line and you go race at the end of the race, you get out of the truck and you fly home and you come back next race and do the same thing.

 


[00:39:57.540] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So if you have enough money, that's kind of a cool way to do it. Except that's not cheap, I would imagine. Yeah. So if you don't have the money your best way, if you don't have a race car and you want to get in it, it's going to be really hard. The best thing to do is try to go volunteer for a team and kind of maybe work your way up, in my opinion. And you're going to have to have something to offer because everybody wants to get in a race car.

 


[00:40:22.360] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So why are they going to let you get in a race car, right? Do you know what I mean? It's honestly very hard. If you have no experience who's going to put you in the car? Like, why would you I wouldn't. I wouldn't put somebody in the car with me when I'm driving. That has no experience because it just is too dangerous. You know, it's really tough, honestly, to get in a car, right?

 


[00:40:47.730] - Big Rich Klein

One of the things that I really remember was Pete having the three seats.

 


[00:40:52.650] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah.

 


[00:40:53.050] - Big Rich Klein

And a lot of that is because of his vision. But the gauge guy was kind of the guy that paid for his seat. It seemed most of the time the Navy was the guy that was there because he could navigate the gauge. Guy was there because he had a checkbook.

 


[00:41:14.850] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Exactly. That's exactly what Pete did. Pete couldn't go racing without that guy. Exactly.

 


[00:41:21.510] - Big Rich Klein

I remember seeing so many of those guys get sick just riding in Harbor freight.

 


[00:41:29.690] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Oh, yeah.

 


[00:41:31.830] - Big Rich Klein

I can't imagine that.

 


[00:41:34.720] - Austin "Fish" Farner

No, if you get motion sickness, you probably are going to get sick in a car. Honestly, it's the same thing. It's just like being on a boat. You're going up and down. Honestly, it's even worse than a boat some of the time because you're looking through your visor, so you're not even looking straight out. And then you're looking through the cage in the car, which has in front of you, and you're looking through a window net on the side. So there's literally a layer that you're looking through all over the place.

 


[00:42:00.170] - Austin "Fish" Farner

You're not just sitting on a boat, just looking out in the open ocean and getting sick. So it's even worse a lot of times. And then if your visor gets scratched now, you have scratches on the screen right in front of you or when it's dusty, you can't see. And then if you're trying to look at the GPS at the same time, you really got to not get motion sick to be in a car.

 


[00:42:19.750] - Big Rich Klein

That'S for sure, right? I don't know if I could do that. I think I could drive, but I don't know if I could navigate.

 


[00:42:27.510] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And driving is totally different because you're concentrating on just what you're looking at. You're not really looking around at much else, right?

 


[00:42:33.730] - Big Rich Klein

I know the worst that I've ever gotten sick on a fishing boat was I reached into the tool bag and we were probably in six to eight foot, and they were pretty close, and we were getting bounced around a lot, and the outriggers were bolted, and we were trying to get the outriggers out. And there was like three of us had all put our heads into the toolbox to grab tools to get the bolts out. And all of us got sick with just 30 because you're looking down exactly no same thing in the car.

 


[00:43:10.760] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Same thing in the race car. If you're looking down too long and you're going through an up and down section over through bushes and both sides real narrow trail, you could definitely get sick like that very easily. And I think the buggies actually get more sick than the trucks, because just because the way they work, I don't know how to say it the way they float or their movement. I think it's easier to get sick and a buggy than it is a truck. Just my personal opinion.

 


[00:43:37.390] - Big Rich Klein

Because it's more violent, like tighter, bigger seas. Yeah.

 


[00:43:41.710] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah.

 


[00:43:44.250] - Big Rich Klein

So let's talk about stepping into the four wheel drive scene. I know you've done some stuff now with Ultra Four. What have you done out there?

 


[00:43:55.890] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Well, I went to Ultra Four race maybe ten years ago or something to watch the 4400 race before I really knew what it was. And I was like, okay, that's kind of cool. I'm not really into the rock crawling stuff too much like Jeep, slow trails and stuff. But I was like, man, these guys are actually going pretty fast and they're going over. They're going in the desert, and then they're going rock crawling. It's like that's kind of cool. It's a little bit more exciting than just watching a Jeep trail or something for me.

 


[00:44:19.570] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So I thought that was kind of cool. And then I didn't really do much with it for a few years. And then the last couple of years, when they brought the they had the T one. They were calling them there the trophy trucks. When they brought that out, Dave brought that. I was all about it. So I'm like, oh, this is cool. Now we're going out and we're watching the trophy trucks at the same event. Like, this is cool. This is exciting. And it's a little bit different than any other kind of race because it's definitely a harder course.

 


[00:44:45.990] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I think doing the King of the Hammers race in a desert truck puts as much or more stress and works your car almost as much as doing, like, a Baja 500, probably or a Vegas to Reno or something like that. And it's only about a 200 miles race or whatever it is, 250 miles, whatever the course is. It's definitely very rough, hard on equipment. That's what I was going to say. So that was fun going and experiencing that.

 


[00:45:13.040] - Big Rich Klein

So at those races, then, were you reporting?

 


[00:45:19.870] - Austin "Fish" Farner

No, the first couple? Well, yeah, I had started my fish logistics thing before the trophy truck started racing there. So when they started racing there, I was doing some coverage of it. But Dave had such good live stream that I was like, you know what? I'm not going to try and do my coverage. I'm just going to help go and help Dave in them with their coverage because I think I can add some stuff to their coverage. So the very first year of the trophy trucks racing, I sat in the TV production truck right next to the producer during the race because those people, they didn't have any idea who any of these desert people were.

 


[00:45:57.170] - Austin "Fish" Farner

The people that were running the TV show, the guys in the truck, they knew the rock crawler guys and stuff, but they had no idea who the desert race was. So I was sitting in there and just kind of helping them with what I was seeing on the monitors. If I got an update that's Bryce Menzie, that's Andrew McMillon, they didn't know, like when they're showing a truck, they didn't specifically know who it was. So I just kind of helped them out the first year with information in the TV truck.

 


[00:46:21.230] - Big Rich Klein

Okay. Cool.

 


[00:46:23.110] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. And then it kind of just evolved from there.

 


[00:46:25.480] - Big Rich Klein

And so let's talk about your fish just sticks that's hard for me to say because I want to say fish. Yeah.

 


[00:46:34.050] - Austin "Fish" Farner

That was the point. It's a joke name almost that everybody will remember. Yeah.

 


[00:46:38.340] - Big Rich Klein

Absolutely. Hungbusters get me, though.

 


[00:46:42.270] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. It's called everything fish, Dicks, fish, Dicks. Everything.

 


[00:46:53.270] - Big Rich Klein

So let's talk about what you do. Like what you just did with the Baja 1000.

 


[00:46:59.690] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. That was actually some of our biggest audience was watching that. That was one of our biggest ones I've done yet. So that was cool. It's catching some traction, basically what it is for people that don't know during the big races. First of all, I have the social media Haines on Instagram and Facebook and YouTube. It's just Fish gistics. And I have those channels I post in between races, all kinds of updates, media, anything. I go testing with somebody I post on there. So that's my content in between races.

 


[00:47:34.100] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And then during the races for the big races, like the score and the best in the desert races. Every hour, I go live and do a live update. So I go live on all those channels, not Instagram, but on Facebook and YouTube. And I talk for, like, 15 or 20 minutes and do a summary of the last hour of racing. So I show the tracker, which kind of shows where everybody is either the score tracker or the best in desert tracker. And then I will do I'll talk about it and people can come in and interact and be like, hey, do you know where this car is or where this car is?

 


[00:48:07.120] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And I kind of help them find their cars and stuff like that. And then it's kind of caught on that I've been doing that. And so it's getting a little bigger and bigger, and it just kept growing. And every race that I do that we get more viewers and people seem to like it. And it's definitely helped having the contacts that I have throughout the years for either the different teams that I've worked with or met at races or met at events, because during the race, my phone is just blowing up with information pretty much the whole time.

 


[00:48:37.950] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I kind of know, honestly, like, almost somebody one person on almost every big name team. I know at least one person on it and a lot of the teams I know at least one person on it. So they'll give me updates on what's going on with the race card during the race.

 


[00:48:52.490] - Big Rich Klein

That's awesome.

 


[00:48:53.660] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. It's pretty cool to be able to share that information, because Desert Racing is very hard to spectate either in person or there's no live TV of it. Dave has live coverage at his rate, but that's kind of like a closed loop rate. It's a little bit different. The Baja 1000. There's no live coverage of it Besides what score does, but it's like they have a camera here. There. There's not a consistent you can't watch the whole thing the whole time, like you can't.

 


[00:49:19.440] - Big Rich Klein

Yeah, you can't watch it play out exactly.

 


[00:49:22.050] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So you don't really know what's going on. You can only know what they're showing you on the screen at that second, and then it gets dark, and there's nothing that they can show because it's dark.

 


[00:49:30.870] - Big Rich Klein

Right. And that's one of the things that I think is it's not detrimental, but it's a hurdle to get over with marketing partners for teams or the associations because of the logistics out there. Cell phone coverage in Baja is much better now than back in the mid 2000s. That's for damn sure.

 


[00:49:57.280] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Oh, yeah. Night and day difference. Yeah, but it's still not good.

 


[00:50:00.250] - Big Rich Klein

Right to give that return on investment to the partners. There's so much that has to be done before and after, because during is nearly impossible. Unless you have somebody dedicated, like yourself or somebody that's working with a specific team that they're feeding information so that they can get it out across social media.

 


[00:50:27.210] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yes. And that's honestly why I started doing what I'm doing with statistics because there was nothing like that. Nobody was doing anything like that. So during the race, nobody had any idea what was going on. You're sitting at home and you're like, you could look at the tracker and see a little dot going around. But you don't know what it meant when they stopped. You didn't know what it meant when their tracker stopped working. You didn't know where they were. You had no idea any of the backstory behind everything Besides seeing a little dot going around the screen.

 


[00:50:52.870] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So I try to get the information from everybody and then kind of fill in the gaps. Nowadays. It's pretty cool because it's like, Andy or Bryce or one of those big guys in the short term gets a flat tire. Someone on their team will literally all know that they got a flat tire before their tracker stops moving and goes to 0 mile an hour. So I'll be like, I'll be like, oh, crap. Luke just got a flat tire watch. He's going to get a flat tire here.

 


[00:51:16.540] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And his tracker says, like, 40 miles an hour. And then within 30 seconds, his tracker updates and it goes to 0 mile an hour. And I'm like, don't worry, he just has a flat tire. But people would never know that. Looking at it, they're like, oh, no. Did Luke break or just something like that, for example, he's going to be fine. He's changing the flat tire. And then sure enough, a minute later, his tracker is moving again, and you're like, okay, there was a flat tire, but nobody would know that.

 


[00:51:38.340] - Big Rich Klein

Right. So are guys, like, texting you?

 


[00:51:42.150] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. Texting me. I also have an MSAT here that I have a few teams channels on. Okay. So I literally have direct communication with some teams, for instance, Dave Cole. You guys all know Dave. I had an MSAT directly with Dave at the Baja 1000, so it was actually pretty fun because he was the only person in the car. And he's like, Dude, call me as much as you want because I'm going to have nothing else to do Besides driving. He's like, I'll talk to you on the radio as much as you want.

 


[00:52:07.080] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So during a few of my hourly updates, I actually called Dave Live during my hourly updates. And so we were talking to Dave on the MSAT on my live update. So that was the first time that's ever been done anywhere. No one has ever done that before. In offroad desert racing, it was kind of cool.

 


[00:52:24.000] - Big Rich Klein

I have to say that I did pay attention this year to the Baja $1,000 and what you are doing with logistics, not fish stick Dicks. And I heard some of the conversation with Dave at times, and I thought that was pretty cool. So Congratulations on getting that done. And I thought your coverage is pretty unique. I remember back in the day, there were guys like that. Ben Yen. I think his name was Robert Yen. Robert Yen. Yeah. Bob Yen.

 


[00:53:02.810] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Oh, yeah.

 


[00:53:03.310] - Big Rich Klein

Bob Yen, 15 cameras and microphones. And God knows what else. And he was trying, I mean, just kind of a unique person. And then I know that Tim Sanchez was trying to keep things update. But with the change in technology, especially with, like, the MSAT, with what you were able to do this time, I'm sure there's going to be others that are going to go here's my number, call and talk to me.

 


[00:53:39.030] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. And it's really going to change more in another year or two. Also, because Starlink Elon Musk Starlink, when Starlink gets over Baja and you have a mobile antenna that is just like the MSAT, you are going to have Internet, basically a WiFi zone in every single one of these race trucks if they want to. So in theory, you could have a live camera or multiple cameras on all of these race trucks streaming during the race. You could have their Motec, all their data logging, all of that.

 


[00:54:12.090] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Anyone could see that anytime they want to, anywhere on the Peninsula or any desert race. The game is really going to change as far as media and technology in the next two years. It really is. And it's pretty cool. I can't wait for that to happen, because I imagine if you could have 30 cars all streaming live in car video, and all you do is go on a website and you push a button and you watch whoever you want. Kind of like, Sunday ticket, your NFL Sunday ticket.

 


[00:54:40.390] - Austin "Fish" Farner

You have, like, eight games playing at once. Well, you put eight cameras up on the screen and you're watching eight in cars at the same time. Wow, that's within two years, within two years, that will be happening. I guarantee you at the most two to three years. All it's going to take is that mobile antenna and those satellites to get over Baja and have coverage or Nevada or wherever they're actually over Nevada now. And that's going to happen. And it's going to be pretty cool.

 


[00:55:06.670] - Big Rich Klein

That will definitely change the game. I like that. I don't remember the name, but it was like something star, Global Star or something like that or Global Global Star is a satellite provider of.

 


[00:55:21.960] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Like, an Iridium network type thing, but it's a different network.

 


[00:55:24.320] - Big Rich Klein

No, that's not what I'm thinking of. It was some guys that I remember. Pete had, like, one of the first units, and we put him into a couple of the Chase trucks so that they could look at the screen that they had in the race truck and see where the Chase crews were at. And the Chase crews could see that get data acquisition and everything else off of the truck as long as it was all hooked up and we could follow along. But I was like, okay, Pete, what's one of those costs?

 


[00:55:59.960] - Big Rich Klein

I want to put one into my truck, and I forget what it was. It was like, five grand or ten grand or something. I was like, all right, I'll ride with somebody.

 


[00:56:11.450] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Rob Mac has that in his truck. Croix has that connected to Rob Max truck, so Croix can actually monitor his the whole time. But it works off of a satellite, a high orbit satellite. So getting the connection to there is very slow and it doesn't work very reliably. So the Starlink is a low orbit satellite, which is much more reliable and much easier to connect with. And the speeds are just night and day difference. So they'll be huge. And you'll have 100 megabits where right now you have, like, two if you're lucky to a satellite.

 


[00:56:40.320] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So it's going to be game changer once that is up there for sure.

 


[00:56:44.560] - Big Rich Klein

Well, and I think that's really going to change a lot of different things. I'm now a boat owner, and we don't go out long distance in our boat, but eventually we plan to, well, that's all going to help for our family and friends and everybody else to watch what we do, but also for people that are really into boating, yachting, watching the big races, worldwide races and all that kind of stuff. I think you're going to see especially these big long distance type events where there were no spectators.

 


[00:57:21.470] - Big Rich Klein

I think we're going to start seeing more spectators involved in it, which for sure help the sports.

 


[00:57:30.290] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah, it's going to help them grow. Like I said, it's hard to watch a desert race. If you don't know what you're doing, you can't watch a desert race. You don't just turn your TV on to CBS and watch it live like you do a NASCAR race or F one race or whatever. You can't do that right now. Dave Cole with his race is the closest you could do that. Really? With his live streaming. Yes, it's pretty close. But you go on your computer, go on the Internet and watch it.

 


[00:57:55.410] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And he does a great job. And honestly, that's why I have not ever tried to do any of my stuff on that same day. Like I said, I just go and help them. So last year I went and he asked me to do the commentary. He's like, hey, why don't you go do the commentary with them and see how it goes? And that was actually really fun. That was my first time I've ever done live commentary in person like that at a race. Besides, what I do during my hourly updates, that was pretty cool.

 


[00:58:19.480] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I guess I didn't do too bad of a job. I didn't get fired because he wanted me to do it again this year.

 


[00:58:24.890] - Big Rich Klein

He fired you, you'll know about it because it's going to happen immediately. He's going to walk in wherever you're at.

 


[00:58:31.070] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah, exactly. Well, you know, this is a funny thing. I told him. I'm like, Look, I don't even want to get paid, because if you're not paying me, you can't bitch at me. You can't get mad at what I'm doing. Well, he can, but I'll just tell him F off. I don't really care. You know what I mean? Because I'm not getting paid. So if I'm not getting paid, there's no requirements of what I'm supposed to be doing as far as I'm concerned. Exactly. So I'm going to do it again this year, and I'm going to have fun with it again.

 


[00:58:55.620] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And it should be fun. I think I'm going to do both days of the desert racing this year. Last year, I just did the T one the trophy truck day. So I think I'm going to do both days this year. That should be fun.

 


[00:59:08.990] - Big Rich Klein

Dave and I go way back when he was rock crawling in our series.

 


[00:59:15.350] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Okay, right on Dave's cool guy. I think he has a short temper, but definitely I've seen that. But at the same time, I think his intentions are very good.

 


[00:59:35.250] - Big Rich Klein

Besides, the Starlink coming. What's on the horizon for you?

 


[00:59:45.270] - Austin "Fish" Farner

That's a really good question. I don't really know. I don't know. I'm kind of just going with the flow right now. We'll see how the fish just thing goes. I still have a Monday to Friday job, too. I don't know if everybody knows that. I work at Daily Engineering in Temecula. We build dry sump oil pump systems for all these race cars, actually. So a lot of people in desert run our stuff now. All the trophy trucks do and a lot of other people. But yeah, so I do that Monday through Friday, and I just do fish just on the side.

 


[01:00:14.090] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So it's kind of turning into a little bit bigger of a thing than I initially thought it would. So I don't know what will happen in the future, but I'm just going to keep going with it and keep doing it as long as I'm having fun. If I stop having fun, then I'm going to stop doing it. Obviously, I make a little bit of money doing fish just now because I have some sponsors that have come on board, but it's for fun. I don't do it to make money.

 


[01:00:39.080] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I didn't start doing it to make money, and I never will, because as soon as you start doing it to make money more than have fun, it changes the way it works. I think it works good now because I'm having fun doing it, and I like doing it if that changes, I don't think people want to watch it anymore.

 


[01:00:55.450] - Big Rich Klein

The only way you can make that work that way is if you take some guys that enjoy it like you do put them to work on it, and then you're the front man.

 


[01:01:08.680] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah.

 


[01:01:09.170] - Big Rich Klein

You ride that technology wave at the front like you're kind of doing and you perfect it before anybody else can do it. And then you get a couple of guys, young guys or women that want to be that end and do the 48 hours wide awake, and then you can ride the front. That would be the way to do that.

 


[01:01:33.820] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. No, I agree. And honestly, I don't even know anybody that I could really ask to do it right now. And I'm not trying to be big headed or think I'm the best at it or something, but it's really hard to have. I've worked over all the years to get all the connections and have I think most people like me or talk to me, at least even if they don't like me. Whereas a lot of other people in desert racing, it kind of seems they have their own little niche group.

 


[01:02:02.640] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And if you're not in that group, they're like F, that guy or whatever. That guy, you know what I mean? Cameron Steel is probably the prime example. Everybody likes Cameron Steel. I don't really know anybody that doesn't. I'm sure somebody doesn't. But Cameron gets along with everybody everywhere. If they do it's a jealousy thing 100%. They're jealous because he's the nicest friendliest guy in offroad and does the most he can do for anybody at any time, and he's helping me out a lot too, which I do appreciate.

 


[01:02:29.250] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I think it just takes a special type of person to be able to do that. I don't think I could just hire very many people to do that, and it'd still be the same. I think it is what it is because I'm the one doing it. And as soon as I change that, I don't know if it's going to be good anymore, and then I don't want to do it anymore if it's not good. So I don't know, it's kind of a tough spot to be in.

 


[01:02:51.570] - Austin "Fish" Farner

But like I said, I'm having fun doing it. So we'll see how long that lasts.

 


[01:03:01.030] - Big Rich Klein

So what else you touched on that you're building the dry sumps, working on the engineering end of it, and any prime stories that you got from the past that we can share with anybody?

 


[01:03:18.930] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Well, the one good story that everybody always, if you're racing back in the day, kind of remember, is when I went and did the 2005 Bahaman thousand in my truck, my Toyota truck. And it kind of created a lot of a stir on the Internet back in the day. And I'm still, to this day, the only Sportsman truck entry that Sal Fish has ever had to put out a Press release out about after the race.

 


[01:03:45.310] - Big Rich Klein

Really?

 


[01:03:46.390] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah.

 


[01:03:46.840] - Big Rich Klein

Let's talk about that. What was the first release?

 


[01:03:50.230] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Well, I'll just tell you the story real quick, because otherwise it won't make any sense. So 2005 1000, I went down there with Klaus with Race Desert, and we went down to Spectate. We drove my truck down, so drove my race truck down. It was still street legal because it was 1450 truck. We drove it across the border, drove it down to the race. We're at Contingency, and I'm walking around, and all of a sudden, I see a Ranger come through. Like, what? We had raced in an MDR, and I walked up to the guy and I'm like, hey, what class is 1500 if you had 1500 number on there, and he's like, oh, it's Sportsman truck.

 


[01:04:24.400] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I'm like, I didn't even know. I'm like, what is Sportsman Truck? He's like, oh, there's no rules, really. It's just sportsmen. It's a $700 entry, which was about half of a normal entry. There's no payback. And you start in the back. You're like, the last class to go. I'm like, really. I'm like, okay, so I had a couple of buddies with me, and I'm like, hey, why don't we do the race tomorrow? I drove the truck down here like, the truck is ready. We can probably just go do a couple of little things to it and a little extra prep, and then we just let's race tomorrow instead of spectating, like, let's go race.

 


[01:04:56.600] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And so they're like, okay, I guess so. This is when I didn't have any money, barely. So I'm like, scrounging together money. I'm like, okay, well, how much money do you have? And my buddy pulls out money. He's got a couple of $100. Another guy. I'm like, how much do you have? I'm like, we just need $700, and then we need to be able to get enough for, like, gas. And then we're good. So between a couple of people, we came up with enough money for the entry, and I called my buddy ESB, who built the truck, who was up here in Escondido.

 


[01:05:24.220] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And I'm like, hey, can you go over to my parents house? I was living with my parents. I'm like, Can you go to my parents'house and grab my helmet and grab the light bar and my race suit? And he's like, oh, God. Why? I'm like, we're racing tomorrow. He's like, what he's like, really? I'm like, yeah, we're going to raise the ball 500 tomorrow. So he's like, okay, I'm on my way. But I've never been to Mexico. So where do I go? I'm like, just go across the border, stay to the right and follow the signs of Ensenada.

 


[01:05:50.240] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And then when you think you're getting close to Ensenada, start calling us on the race radio and we'll meet up from there. So he's like, okay, anyways, so he goes and gets the light bar, gets the race used, gets the helmet. I go over to the flugr pit, and I talked to Allen and Scott Senburgers over there and a couple of people and they're like, what are you doing? I'm like, I'm racing. They're like, what? And they're like, Well, they're like, that Mike Sky Ranch loop is really gnarly.

 


[01:06:16.060] - Austin "Fish" Farner

They're like, if you haven't pre run that, I don't know if you're going to make it because we were all the way in the back. They're like, by the time you get there, that section is going to be pretty gnarly. I'm like, and we had no chase or anything. So they're like, Why don't you just take the crossover trail, which is what everybody knows is the crossover trail. Just take that as like, a shortcut. I'm like, okay, I guess, like, whatever. So we start the race and we have no dump cans.

 


[01:06:43.910] - Austin "Fish" Farner

We have no anything. So we're like, Well, the course goes by the pemx in a couple of spots. We'll just fill up at the Pimax, so we get down to past colonette down there. It's like, Sankatin. I think it was. And we go off the race course first fuel stop. We fill up at the Pema. So we come up with our suits on our helmets and everything. We're in the race and we fill up at the pemx, and then we get back on the course. And then we go up and where the course went off to go to the mic sleep.

 


[01:07:09.850] - Austin "Fish" Farner

We didn't do it. And we went back up and we took the crossover road. So we get over the crossover road and get to Valley T. And at this point, we had passed a bunch of cars that we didn't realize, right? Because we got jumped in front of a bunch of people. So we're like, what are we going to do now? It's dark. We don't really know who's coming we don't know anything. We're doing much. We're like, screw it. Let's go on the course. So we're like, we're waiting there, and all of a sudden, Larry Ragland comes by and in his trophy truck, and I'm like, he's usually pretty fast.

 


[01:07:40.430] - Austin "Fish" Farner

We might be up towards the front a little bit too much tacos. Yeah. So we're like, screw it. Let's just go. It's night time. We can see lights coming. We'll just move out of the way as soon as we see lights behind us anywhere. So we jumped on the course and we did the finish, and I think we got passed by one car, and that was it. So we get into the finish long story short, and they come to check our stub cans because there's no trackers, and I was like, oh, yeah.

 


[01:08:05.190] - Austin "Fish" Farner

We don't have all the stubs. Like, we were just doing it for fun. Like, we didn't do the whole thing. So the guy he's like, oh, okay. Whatever. The Sportsman truck, they don't really care. So we're like, okay, cool. That was fun. We did 500 most of the course, and now we're going to drive the truck home the next day. So we drive the truck home, and I get home, and I go on race desert, and all these people are like, oh, fish won the Baja 500.

 


[01:08:28.350] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Like, what? They're looking at the results. And in the sportsman class, they had me as a finisher, and they had me as winning it. I'm like, I'm like, this is not good. So it started a huge thing on race desert because I was like, well, we didn't really do the course, and people were like, Well, how did score give you a finish? They had finished. Are they not checking the subs or, like, this is blah, blah and started a whole big deal. So then Sal never even called me or anything.

 


[01:08:53.380] - Austin "Fish" Farner

He just put it. They put out a Press relief. They're like, due to Austin's own admissions of not completing the whole course. They have been DQ from the race and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. So I don't know. I thought that was kind of a funny story back then. We did the whole thing, and they made a big deal out of it. But we never went to the awards. We never went to get our plaque or anything because we didn't finish. You know what I mean?

 


[01:09:14.870] - Austin "Fish" Farner

We knew we were going to be DQ. We didn't have all the stuff, right? So they kind of just a sportsman truck. They didn't really care. They're just, like, or whatever.

 


[01:09:22.910] - Big Rich Klein

How did the Ranger do?

 


[01:09:23.880] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Do you know, nobody finished in our class? That was the only car. Yeah. And that's why I didn't even feel that bad about it because nobody else even finished didn't even get close. So I think there was three cars in our class.

 


[01:09:35.780] - Big Rich Klein

There was like, nobody that's awesome, though.

 


[01:09:38.200] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. So that was a fun story. From the past, which is funny, because nowadays they have the Sportsman shortcut during score races. So I always kind of joke with people. And I'm like, yeah, we created the Sportsman shortcut. The Sportsman shortcut usually goes around the gnarliest part of the course right nowadays. And that's what we did back then before it was a Sportsman shortcut. It's just kind of funny. It's come full circle.

 


[01:10:05.570] - Big Rich Klein

That's awesome.

 


[01:10:06.750] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah.

 


[01:10:08.770] - Big Rich Klein

One more story like that. Anything you got?

 


[01:10:12.190] - Austin "Fish" Farner

I don't know. I mean, I can talk for hours before I probably get bored. No, not at all. Yeah, I don't know. Let's see. What do I got? Well, I'm still doing some racing now, so I might have some more stories coming shortly. Okay. I've been racing with my buddy, actually, Pistol Pete's story, my buddy that I raced with now is Phil Casey, and he's from New Zealand. And I don't know if you know, Phil or not. He did the 2012 Baja 1000 when it went to La Paz.

 


[01:10:41.110] - Austin "Fish" Farner

No. Sorry. 2017. He did the 2017 Baja 1000 when it went to La Paz in one of Pistol Peaks rental Baja Lights.

 


[01:10:49.520] 

Okay.

 


[01:10:50.470] - Austin "Fish" Farner

He'd never done a desert race before. He just moved here from New Zealand a short time before that. And he's like, I want to go racing. So he found Pete's rental program, and he's like, I'm going to do the whole course. So he rented a Baja Light from Pistol. He pre ran the whole course with Pistol, and then him and his co driver drove the entire Baja 1000 without getting out of the car in Pistol Pete's Baja Light. I mean, they got out to get out when they got stuck and stuff, but they stayed in the car driving the whole race.

 


[01:11:19.700] - Big Rich Klein

They iron manned it.

 


[01:11:21.240] - Austin "Fish" Farner

The Iron man. It. Yeah. Which technically, it's not an Iron man. If there's a co driver with you, I have learned. Oh, really? It's called soloing it if you guys stayed in it like that and the Internet people will get you if you call an Ironman just so you know.

 


[01:11:38.750] - Big Rich Klein

Yeah. Well, those people that are bitching about that, they ought to try it.

 


[01:11:42.040] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah, for sure. So I'm told people that ride a bike by themselves. Iron Man, it and Ivan Stewart. Iron Man. It because he was the only one in the car, right? Yeah. So anyways, he soloed it, and that was with Pistol. So now I race with Phil randomly. He fishes also. And we kind of ran into each other through mutual friends with Pete. And so Phil, actually, after Pete had his accident, Phil bought that truck from the Sorens.

 


[01:12:09.870] 

Okay.

 


[01:12:10.220] - Austin "Fish" Farner

So Phil owns that Baja Light now. And for the past two years or so, I've been racing with Phil in the Baja Light. I can't race the big races because I have to do my coverage. So we'll do, like, a snore race or a more race in between or record race. We've done a record race earlier this year. So we're doing Rage of the river next weekend. So that's my next race that I'm going to. I'll be driving the Baja Light.

 


[01:12:35.740] - Big Rich Klein

Well, excellent.

 


[01:12:37.090] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah.

 


[01:12:37.520] - Big Rich Klein

Glad to hear that.

 


[01:12:39.350] - Austin "Fish" Farner

You got to get some driving in. I've officially retired from the right seat, though I'm never codriving again for anybody. I will just do some driving.

 


[01:12:48.110] - Big Rich Klein

That's good that you can do that.

 


[01:12:50.290] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah, it's fun. Well, people still ask me all the time. I want to write. No, I'm like I'm over it.

 


[01:12:59.550] - Big Rich Klein

Saying that same thing.

 


[01:13:01.710] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah. It got to a point where I don't want to be responsible for if I make a wrong call or just I don't know anything. One of our co drivers got killed in the 2015 Baja 1000 when I was with Mango, the guy riding in the other car. He got killed during the race, and it kind of just changed my perspective on it and just, you know, I don't know, I'd like to be the one in control of the car and just go from there.

 


[01:13:26.600] - Big Rich Klein

Understood?

 


[01:13:28.290] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah.

 


[01:13:29.850] - Big Rich Klein

Well, Austin, thank you for coming out and spending some time in the interview and sharing your life and giving some perspective to off road racing. Most of the people that listen to this podcast are four wheel drive guys, so they're Jeep enthusiasts, or they may race either have raced with us in Dirt Riot, which was kind of a regional type thing for the Four series or alongside, not with, but kind of like I should say, and they haven't had that experience. A lot of them are stepping up and going out to race desert racing now, especially here in Texas.

 


[01:14:14.020] - Big Rich Klein

There's quite a few little associations going on, but I want to say thank you so much. And I remember the first time I actually had conversations with you was I had posted up some 49 Er tickets for sale. Okay. And you got the San Diego Charger tickets when they were still in San Diego.

 


[01:14:36.150] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah.

 


[01:14:37.710] - Big Rich Klein

That was the other thing I was going to bring up to you is the only problem about living in San Diego is all you had was the Chargers and the Padres.

 


[01:14:47.500] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Tell me about it. And I was one of the biggest Charger fans ever. We would go to all the games. I even met my current wife at the Chargers game when they left. It sucked. And we are no longer Charger fans, and I'm actually no longer going to football fan anymore. Mostly, I got so pissed off when they left, I don't know. Maybe one day they'll come back and, you know, they're really funny on, like, the Jeep thing and the four wheel drive thing or whatever. I went to Sand Hallo this year for my first time, and that actually was one of the most fun places I've ever been.

 


[01:15:23.460] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And we took our UTVs. I took my Polaris Razor there, and that was so much fun. I can't wait to go back next year. We're actually going to go. We already booked place again, and we're going longer than we did this year. Excellent. Is definitely fun.

 


[01:15:37.830] - Big Rich Klein

What event did you go through?

 


[01:15:39.740] - Austin "Fish" Farner

We didn't even go through an event. We randomly. I've seen a bunch of people talking about it, and I'm like, you know what? We normally have a yearly Pismo trip that one of my friends started a while ago, and then Pismo was shut down for COVID. So we're like, oh, crap. Where are we going to go for our Pismo trip. And so I'm like, let's go to Sand Hollow, like, all these people keep talking about it, and it looks like awesome. Let's go there. So we did.

 


[01:16:02.270] - Austin "Fish" Farner

And now we're hooked. I think our yearly pismal trip is gone now, and we're doing a yearly sand hall trip now.

 


[01:16:07.560] - Big Rich Klein

Well, you know, Keith hooked. He runs the UTV. There's an Internet site that he runs.

 


[01:16:15.630] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yes, I know. Keith.

 


[01:16:16.780] - Big Rich Klein

Okay. Keith runs the UTV section at Trail Hero and Trail Heroes, my son's event.

 


[01:16:23.260] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Yeah, I know. We were there the week before that event, actually, this year. Yeah.

 


[01:16:29.560] - Big Rich Klein

It's a great area.

 


[01:16:31.290] - Austin "Fish" Farner

It's super fun. So it's kind of like a four wheel drive stuff. I'm kind of getting. I don't want to say I'm getting into it because I wouldn't call myself a four wheel drive person at all. I'm still in the desert racing stuff, but that was fun to go do. And honestly, having it. I used to make fun of these UTVs all the time and call them golf carts. I still call them golf carts, so they'll always be golf carts. But they're very capable now. And it is pretty cool to have a vehicle that you can go to a place like that and do a little bit of everything.

 


[01:16:56.730] - Austin "Fish" Farner

We literally drove it on the street from our house. Then we drove it in the desert section, and then we drove it on some rock trails, and then we drove it over to the Lake. We went on the dunes like it had everything and the UTV goes everywhere. So it's pretty cool to have a vehicle that before you used to have, like, a Jeep, and you'd go on Jeep trails, or you have a desert truck and you go on desert trails and bar stool or whatever.

 


[01:17:19.510] - Austin "Fish" Farner

But now you can have something that you can do, like, everything with. So it's kind of cool to be able to merge the different the groups in. And even when I was there, some of the ultra four guys were out there randomly and met up with us. And I met some new guys. So it's kind of cool just to kind of intermingle with everybody perfect in the different genres or whatever.

 


[01:17:36.760] - Big Rich Klein

Excellent. Excellent. Okay. Well, again, thank you for coming on board and having the conversation with us, and we'll have to do it again.

 


[01:17:46.010] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Okay. Sounds good. Thanks for having me.

 


[01:17:48.010] - Big Rich Klein

All right. I appreciate it. Thank you.

 


[01:17:49.870] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Okay. All right. Bye.

 


[01:17:50.850] - Speaker 1

Bye.

 


[01:17:51.460] - Austin "Fish" Farner

Bye. Bye.

 


[01:17:53.130] - Speaker 1

If you enjoy these podcasts, please give us a rating. Share some feedback with us via Facebook or Instagram and share our link among your friends who might be like minded. Well, that brings this episode to an end.

 


[01:18:05.540] - Big Rich Klein

I hope you enjoyed it.

 


[01:18:06.540] - Speaker 1

We'll catch you next week without the conversations with Big Rich.

 


[01:18:09.710] - Big Rich Klein

Thank you very much.