Jesse Jones is the owner and driver of Jones Motorsport, competing in Trophy Truck events in Mexico and the USA. Recently, the team unveiled their new stead, a 1,100hp, all-wheel-drive Mason with a livery inspired from past Trophy Trucks and complete with Motul stickers. We gave Jesse a call to find out more.
What’s your story, Jesse? How did you get into Trophy racing?
I’ve been racing off road for about 20 years now. I started when I was 32 years old, so you could say I was a bit of a late starter! I was looking for a new hobby and, basically, I don’t play golf [laughs]. I primarily raced in Mexico, in Baja, as well as a little bit in the top western part of the United States. Being from the western part of the United States, Mexico is our playground and is where we’re drawn to.
Is this new Trophy Truck one you’ll enter into the next Baja?
We’re not going to race the Baja 1000 this year, only because we’re getting my son, Austin Jones, ready for Dakar. And so, we’re doing three-day training missions right now in the dunes. Next year, though, Austin will race a full season in Baja in the all-wheel-drive Trophy truck.
The new truck looks great. Can you tell us more about it?
The truck is built by Mason Motorsports and is all-wheel-drive, which is a new evolution as far as Trophy Trucks go. There are currently seven of these trucks that are being used out there and this is the latest and greatest one with all the bells and whistles. Obviously, the advantage of AWD is you accelerate out of the corners faster and have better traction control. It has a specifically-built Joe Gibbs Racing motor. Joe Gibbs is famous for its Nascar racing. They’re the owner of Jimmy Johnson’s team. They built the motor for our truck. It’s a much higher-revving motor than we had before. We shift at 8,500rpm and we only see a 1,500rpm drop when we shift gears. It has a five-speed “Masonmatic” transmission, with paddles.
It sounds exciting to drive?
Oh yeah. It’s amazing, there’s no doubt about it. It has 1,100hp. It’s a heavy vehicle: it weighs nearly 7500 pounds and so we need all that power.
With such sophisticated machinery, I guess it’s vital you pay attention to the lubricants you put in it?
100%. We use a lot of Motul’s products. We need to get to the end of the race and the better the lubricant the less friction and the less heat. Heat is our biggest enemy in the off-road industry. We’re out in extreme environments all the time and anything we can find that can give us that advantage to reduce friction is always a friend of ours.
What’s the story behind the striking livery of the new truck?
I am one of the oldest off-road racers here in the United States. When we were going to introduce the new truck to racing, we thought let’s look back at some of the old liveries that I remember from when I started racing. This one was originally run during the 1990s and early 2000s. So, we choose that and incorporated the Method wheels logo (and Motul) on the side of it. We could not be more pleased with the way the truck looks.
What’s the plan for next year?
With 2020 and Covid-19, we’ve been on a reduced schedule. For 2021, the plan is for my son to race the new truck in the SCORE Series. That consists of four races in Mexico and also cross-country rallies throughout Europe and the rest of the world with South Racing. I’ve handed the racing over to my son. I’ve enjoyed watching him race more than I ever enjoyed driving myself.