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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

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Silver State 300 UTV Race Recap from

By Rusty Baptist,

Menifee, CA — April 27, 2010 — Alamo, NV would play host to the Best in the Desert Silver State 300. 199 entries (the most ever for BITD) and every class from 2 wheel motorcycles to 4 wheel Trick Trucks, the action was sure to be intense. was there to cover the class 1900 UTV’s tackle the 300 mile course.

Friday morning around 9:30am we pulled into tech at the Aliante Station casino + hotel. The weather was clear and 70°. We made our way to the media table to register and get our official Best in the Desert media vests. Tech was filling up fast with quads, buggies, trucks and UTVs. The UTVRA officials had set up tech station for the UTVs in the parking lot. The main tech guy and also BITD racer Corry Sappington had not made it to tech yet. I asked around and found out Corry had some motor troubles before the event and he was not going to make the event.

Saturday morning at 3:30am my hotel wake up call comes in and I know its race day. I gather all my equipment and head for my rig. With a 90 mile drive from the hotel to the start line I have to get an early jump to be at staging by 5:30am. 9 UTVs left the start around 6:10am. By 7:20 am the 1st UTV had made it to the road crossing at RM46. It was the 1954 Yamaha Rhino of Jason Leeper and Brett Vogel. The SV1000 powered Rhino had a solid lead. Next would come car #1919 Jagged X, 1937, 1927, 1917, 1934,1912,1950 and 1985. While waiting at Pit 2 Jagged X got word the A.T.s Electric car had rolled 6 times at RM65. No one was hurt but they were out of the race. Minutes later Jagged X pulled into the pit with drivability issues.

We set up to shoot pictures again at RM165. The 1954 car still had a commanding lead over the field but the 1912 car of RZRs Edge Racing piloted by Joe Conchola had moved into 1st place. Car 1917 and 1937 were battling for 4th place physical and this was allowing car 1912 to open up a gap. By this point in the race the field had spread so far apart that we could only follow the top 4 teams. At RM175 the cars came down a hill and then shot under the road through a small tunnel. Car 1954, 1912, 1917 and 1937 all made it under the bridge crossing without incident. We packed up and headed south to Calinte to try and catch the UTVs crossing a old wodden bridge. The only car to cross the bridge while we were on location was the 1954 car. We packed up and headed for pit 5 were found RZRs Edge looking for a way to get suspension parts to their broken car at RM190ish. We headed south for 40 miles to the finish. By the time we got to the finish, the 1954 car had already crossed the line for the overall win in UTV. Car 1917 crossed the finish 1st in class 1900. Car 1950 finished 2nd in class and 3rd overall. The 1912 was down for 2.5 hours making repairs. RZRS Edge was still able to save a 4th place finish. I asked Mike Cook of RZRS Edge how the race went. “The race started out great. Our HCR suspension and King shocks worked great. Going from 9th off the line to 1st by RM164 was great. But at RM190 we had a bolt failure of the rear suspension. This took us out for almost 2.5 hours. We fixed it and were able to continue on. The Pit Bull Tires held up great “No Flats”. We are very happy with the 4th place finish considering the down time buddy.”

All in all it was a great race. I got to meet many great people. Big thanks to Best in the Dessert for holding a great race and allowing the UTVs to be a part of it.

Check out more pictures from the race at:

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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

NC Motorsports Association – Off-Road Business Association Form Alliance

Concord, NC – Wednesday April 28, 2010

The North Carolina Motorsports Association (NCMA) and the Off Road Business Association (ORBA) announced today they have developed a working alliance. The two organizations will look for ways to work together on joint issues and networking of their memberships. The NCMA is the voice for the 6-billion dollar North Carolina Motorsports Industry, where nearly 90% of all NASCAR Teams are based and over 27,000 motorsports related jobs exists. ORBA, also a non-profit, is a National Trade Association composed of off-road related businesses united to promote common goals that support the prosperity and growth of the off-road industry. By forming an alliance both groups hope to further a similar mission.

“Motorsports is a massive industry in the United States. There are thousands of small to medium sized businesses that are supported by the activity of motorsports participants,” said Shawn Stewart, Membership Director of the NCMA. “Tracks, teams, and recreationalists contribute billions of dollars each year and provide thousands upon thousands of jobs across the nation in various forms of motorsports. By forming an alliance with ORBA we gain a further reach in telling the motorsports industry story.”

Fred Wiley President and CEO of ORBA recognized an immediate benefit to both organizations by connecting. “I was contacted by the NCMA and we immediately were on common ground. It just makes sense that we work together,” said Wiley. “We can be a gateway to the off-road industry for them and they can be a gateway into stock car racing and other forms of racing for us. There are many issues that are common to all motorsports enthusiasts and we are stronger by joining together. We look forward to growing and developing our new found relationship with the NCMA.”

About the NCMA:

The North Carolina Motorsports Association (NCMA) is a trade association representing the $6 Billion dollar motorsports economy and over 27,000 jobs in the state of North Carolina.

As a membership organization the NCMA:
  • Advocates on a local, state, and national level for the interests of the motorsports Industry.
  • Hosts Industry-focused networking events.
  • Conducts Workforce Development initiatives.
  • Engages in Youth Outreach and educational programs.
  • Works as a Clearinghouse for motorsports industry resources and information.
  • Provides Consulting and advocacy for tracks, teams, businesses, and educational institutions.
About ORBA:

The Off-Road Business Association, Inc. (ORBA) is a professional trade association composed of off-road related businesses united to promote common goals that support the prosperity and growth of the off-road industry. ORBA makes decisions and takes actions that maintain and expand off-highway vehicle recreation opportunities. ORBA works closely with its partner organizations on local, state and federal issues that have potential impacts to the off-road industry. We are dedicated to making it possible for the OHV industry to have a voice in land use issues.
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New Kawasaki Teryx Half Doors Available from Holz Racing Products

Aluminum Half Door Panels (aka: Kick panel) are now available from Holz Racing Products.

These doors help keep debris from entering cab area as well as protects legs and other items from falling out of the cab area in the event of a roll over or precarious situation.

Both panels feature a rolled top edge for strength as well as passenger safety. Fits perfectly in O.E. door opening.

Available in Powdercoat Black. Panels are made from precision laser cut .063 aluminum and include all hardware necessary for installation.

Direct link to product.

About Holz Racing Products:
For the past 10 years, Holz Racing Products has engineered and extreme tested the finest quality, most effective performance parts available for UTV, ATV and snowmobile applications. Manufactured in the USA and race tested around the world, HRP leads the field in Polaris RZR accessories and performance products. For more information visit their website at or call 360-398-7006.

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By Bill Schueler, Jagged X

Well so to speak anyway, the Jagged X / Polaris Racing team headed to Las Vegas last week with high expectations and lots of positive energy after taking the win at the Parker 250 in January. This Silver State race marked the 22nd BITD race for Jagged X since teaming with Polaris at the beginning of the 2007 race season. Since then the team had racked up a perfect record of 21 finishes - the majority being wins or podium finishes - complete with three class championships. An unprecedented achievement in UTV racing, let alone most other classes of desert racing. Deep down, our entire team knew that eventually fate would deal us our first DNF. We had no idea that our first DNF would be quite so dramatic.

With plenty of time to prepare and ample testing under our belts we headed to Alamo, NV at 4:00 am on Friday morning feeling pretty good about our chances for this race and hoping to add momentum to this young season. Brandon had drawn the 2nd place start position, so the plan was to try for some clean air early and stay ahead of the trucks and buggies all day if possible and hope for a podium finish or even better yet, a win.

The Irritrack had us leading the field coming into pit one so we all gave a thumbs up and headed towards pit 2. About the time we had a visual of the 1919 coming across the valley Chad radioed us and said the car was flat and not running right? (scratch heads) "Okay, get it in here, lets check it out". The motor had a severe stumble and the idle was way off. We are not used to having engine trouble so we started going over each system one by one checking and replacing parts as we managed to burn up nearly two hours. The final determination was that the TPS had failed. We changed the throttle body assembly and problem solved! Hopes of a win were diminished but we were going to finish and so we sent Brandon and Chad off again with fingers crossed.

All reports were that the car was back to 100% and they were trying to make up some valuable time as the trucks and buggies began catching us near pit 3. A splash of fuel at pit 4 and all was still well. Our chase team headed to ward pit 5 still feeling good that we were still possibly in the running. As we waited in Caliente our team moral was up and we were happy to be still running strong. Justin had gone down pit road to help Yancy Reynolds with some minor problems on their Polaris RZR. Then came the "call". It was our co-driver Chad Riccio.
"We're out of the race, the car's on fire!"
"Excuse me? What do you mean, the car's on fire?", I said!
"It's burning, BIG flames, BIG BIG flames" was the response, "get someone here quick, we can't put it out. We're both okay but get someone here fast."
About that time we lost service and were disconnected but I knew this was no joke. Several minutes later I received a pix message on my phone confirming that our teams flagship race car had flames shooting ten feet in the air.

I had already initiated contact with BITD on the radio and within minutes their amazing staff had their main man Donald on site. I must commend BITD for their amazing performance handling the emergency. Donald was able to pull the car off the course and bring our drivers back to the highway where we were instructed to meet them. KUDOS to BITD truly proving once again that they are "The Best in The Desert".

We really have no idea what caused the fire and never will. Unfortunately the race car is a total loss. The pictures really don't even do justice for the incredible damage fire causes. The most important thing to mention is, thank god that our drivers (my son and my friend) were not injured. Clearly this is the worst day of racing we have ever had. We are working on devising a plan to get a new racer on the fast track and we plan to show up at the Bluewater Grand Prix ready to start over and get back to racing.

We want to thank all of our friends, suppliers and sponsors who have pledged their support and for all of their kind words and gestures. It means so much to have a great team behind you. The 1919 team will be back!
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