|Lasher Motorsports Monster Energy Kawasaki’s
Irvine, Calif. (May 2, 2011) – Lasher Motorsports Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Mike Lasher blasted across the Nevada desert in his Kawasaki Teryx™ to finish third in the Bilek Racing Silver State 300. Located 180-miles north of Las Vegas, Nev., near the town of Alamo, Round 2 for the UTV class of the Best in the Desert series proved to be a high-speed, action-packed race. The 305-mile course consisted of tough desert terrain packed with every type of obstacle imaginable. From wide-open fire roads to tight rocky mountain-trails, this diverse course even included two water crossings. Although the sky was clear and sunny, the weather was freezing cold the morning of race day, with temperatures below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. The demanding race’s combination of speed and jagged terrain would take out two of Lasher’s tires and a wheel, before the end of the race. After almost eight hours speeding through the desert, Lasher and his co-driver outran 13 other UTV teams to finish on the podium in third place.
Bringing a Gun to a Knife Fight
Since the last BITD event in Parker, Ariz., Lasher made some significant upgrades to his Kawasaki Teryx to ensure he would have the edge over the competition coming into the Silver State 300. Among the upgrades included a Muzzy-built motor, Billett King’s new rear-brake kit, EPI tuned clutches, PRP podium seats, and a fresh tuned XMF long-travel kit with Walker Evans shocks. The improvements paid off as Lasher finished the race in less than eight hours, despite having to repair two flats and a punctured wheel.
“We had a great weekend,” said Lasher. “This was the first race we ran the Muzzy’s power-plant, and it was a monster. The Teryx was so much fun to drive, the power it had coming out of the corners was phenomenal. With the new engine we felt like we were bringing a gun to a knife fight. Because of the draw, we started out sixth in our class. We were able to get though the course relatively fast and powered our way into third place by the end of the race. Everything worked out great, from our overall race strategy to our pit-support. It was really cold all day which worked to our advantage as well. The temperature started out at 40 degrees and never got over 65 degrees, so we didn’t have to run any of our cooling fans the entire race. The course was really challenging, with some serious elevation changes, and loaded with really sharp rocks, but overall it was a lot of fun to race.”
At the half-way point of the race, Lasher handed over the wheel to co-driver Rick “Wally World” Wallace to finish out the race. Wallace took over the wheel in third place and rode a clean, fast race. He maintained the fast pace set by Lasher, and was making up ground when a rock punctured his wheel. After a quick wheel change he got back up to speed and crossed the finish in third place. Out of 220 total race entries, the Lasher Motorsports Monster Energy Kawasaki team finished the in the top 65.
The UTV class blasted off the start at 7 a.m., followed by the trophy trucks who left the start at 9:30 a.m. Since the trophy trucks are bigger and faster than the vehicles in the UTV class, the UTV pilots set a goal of getting across the finish before being overtaken by the pack of thunderous trophy trucks.
“Our goal was to finish ahead of the trophy trucks,” said Lasher. “Monster Energy’s BJ Baldwin started an hour and a half behind us in his truck. We kept checking for Balwin’s truck in our rear-view mirror throughout the race because we knew he was moving through the field pretty quickly. Those trucks can reach speeds over 120 mph and we like to get off the course before they catch up to us. Even though we popped a couple tires, and punctured a wheel, we still maintained a really fast pace and finished ahead of the trophy trucks.”
The Super Star of Gran Prix
In two weeks, the Lasher Motorsports Monster Energy Kawasaki team will travel to Parker, Ariz., for Round 3 of the Best in the Desert series at the Epic Racing Bluewater Gran Prix. Lasher and co-driver Wallace will be looking to have a flat-free race so they can climb to the top of the podium.
Best In the Desert – Bilek Racing Silver State 300
April 30, 2011
1. Matt Parks, Polaris
2. Brandon Schueler, Polaris
3. MIKE LASHER / RICK WALLACE, LASHER MOTORSPORTS MONSTER ENERGY KAWASAKI