The long-standing tradition of off-road racing in Parker continued Feb. 2 with the running of the BlueWater Resort & Casino/Best in the Desert Parker 425 presented by Impact. Race trucks and buggies roared through the desert in two starts. The slower and two-lap classes ran in the morning, while the faster classes, including the Trick Trucks, ran in the afternoon.
There were 59 entries in the three-lap classes in the morning, 22 entries in the two-lap classes and 95 entries in the afternoon race for a total of 176 entries. Of these, 132 finished the race.
The winner in the afternoon start also posted the best time for all the three-lap racers. Brett Sourapas of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif. drove No. 88, a Ford, in the Trick Truck class. His co-driver was his father, Steve Sourapas. Their time on the course was 6:45:57.991. Their sponsors included Coors Light, BF Goodrich, Baja Designs, Kartek, Power Steering Solutions, and Herbst-Smith Fab.
At the awards ceremony held Feb. 3 at the BlueWater, Donald Jackson, Operations Manager for Best in the Desert Racing Association, noted the Sourapas family has been in off-road racing for years. He said Steve taught racing to his family. He added this was Brett Sourapas’s first career win.
The overall winner in the morning start was Chase Warren of Phoenix. He and Martin Richardson of Mesa drove No. 1088, an AlumiCraft. Their time on the course was 7:15:34.793. Their sponsors included Warren Brothers Racing, Baja Designs, Hooked Up Motorasports, Fox, Hostyle, and Magik SC.
The overall winner in the two-lap classes was Sam Wasson of Quincy, Wash. who drove No. 8124, a Chevorlet, in the Sportsman class. His co-drivers included James Wasson of Hobart, Wash., and two drivers from Parker, Ariz.: Kyle Jones and Tate Broesma. Their time on the course was 5:45:24.793. Their sponsors included J. Wasson Enterprises, First Line Seed, KPJ Racing, and Lucky 7’s.
Among the racers from Lake Havasu City or Parker, Keith Waibel had the best overall finish, coming in 8th overall in the morning race and 8th in the 1000 class in No. 1072, an Alumi Craft. His sponsors included Pirates Cove Resort & Marina and UTVEngineRebuilds.com.
Randy Merritt of Parker-based Mongo Racing placed 13th overall in the morning start and second in the 7200 class in 7281, a Ford. His co-drivers including three Parker racers: R.J. Merritt, Jake Larson and Chris Golding. Their time on the course was 7:46:27.929. Their sponsors include Tri Ave Tires, ADS Race Shocks, Sundance Saloon, Si Valve, HPS Performance, Jamar, FK Rodends, TNC Machine, DaLu Insurance and Running Man Fuel.
Norman Turley of Parker placed 4th in the 7200 class and 27th overall in the morning start in No. 7272, a Ford. His co-drivers included Trevor Turley of Parker and Brock Keenan of Alta Loma, Calif. Their time on the course was 8:35:51.463. Their sponsors included Sundance Saloon, Turley Motorsports, Desert ATV, Relentless Racing Apparel and Baja Shop.
Jim Beaver of Parker placed 25th in the Trick Truck Class and 66th overall in the afternoon start in No. 15, a Ford. He completed one lap in 2:24:58.225. His sponsors included Polaris RZR, Dirt Fish, Impact, Gibson Exhaust, Assault, Motoshield and the Down & Dirty Show.
At the awards ceremony, Jackson thanked all the racers who participated, the fans who attended, and the various entities that supported the race. He said he hoped to see everyone at the Mint 400.