Over the last few months, Todd Zuccone and his son Jacob have built the 2020 CanAm previously known as Hyper, into a fully-built Rally Race UTV to compete in the Best in the Desert series. The first race of the season is the Parker 250 in Parker, Arizona.
Last year we had the pleasure of working with Rick Ness from Discovery Channel's Gold Rush, at the Iceman 500. Rick raced an EVP-built CanAm in the event and had an impressive first race. He enjoyed it so much that he came back for more! Rick would drive the newly built U970 in the Parker 250, with Jacob as his co-driver.
A lot of the pre-race testing was done by Jacob, along with the guys at Shock Therapy and Jeffries Performance. Once the U970 was dialed, we loaded it up and headed to Parker to meet up with Rick and the team. The starting positions for the race were chosen by random draw. Rick started 19th out of over 30 cars.
Race Recap from co-driver Jacob Zuccone:
At the start line, we used the EVP launch control and got the holeshot. First turn into the course, Rick put the car on 2 wheels and I thought we were going to roll, but he wheeled out of it and we were back on track. About 4 miles into the first lap, I saw the belt temperature gauge was red which usually means hight belt temperature. I told Rick to back it off but after about 5 minutes of not going over 40 I realized the sensor was faulty. After this realization we went back into full race mode.
The whole first lap went smooth until about race mile 62. The course widened out and we took the left line which looked much smoother. As the course came back together, we didn't realize there was a car behind us trying to pass. They snuck up and when I caught them out of the corner of my eye I realized that car was not backing down. I didn't want to wreck our car or theirs, so I warned Rick of the passing car but at that time it was too late. As Rick checked up, the other cars driver rear tire drove over our passenger front tire. Their car turned sideways in the air and when they landed, their whole passenger rear corner flattened. We continued to push to the pits for fuel and a look over on the car after this incident. We found that our car was in perfect condition.
After the pits we headed out on course for lap 2. Lap 2 and 3 both went great. Lap 3 we definitely stepped up our pace and we were able to pull off an unofficial 5th place!
Thank you to all of our amazing sponsors who helped with this build. Your quality parts really held up to the abuse we put them through.
Also a big thank you to @deman_racing for helping us in the pits during the whole race!