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Dirt Riot Southwest Round 1 presented by Maxxis Tires

The 2017 Dirt Riot season opener presented by Maxxis and locally sponsored by Jones Ford in Wickenburg was held in Congress, Arizona, the same site as the WE Rock season opener the week before. Thompson’s Ranch provided a new track layout, 6.5 miles, more transitions that flowed together and took the competitors off the straightaways, with enough hard turns and twists so that raw horsepower wouldn’t be an automatic champion. The area we use is a working ranch and they also harvest landscaping boulders, during the past year, more trails had been cut. We kept the high risk section of rock down in to the hot pit, but added a lesser risk but slower line that got used several times, by several classes, not just the more stockish vehicles.
In the 4400 race, the biggest story was the lead changes, to begin, every lap saw a lead change. Rawlin lead, then rolled, Airen Patrick lead then broke a shock.

Ken Goodall had only left side drive and needed every ounce to get through the course. The same car with different drivers won the 4400 class race two years in a row, Cade Rodd won in 2016 as the 4407, Matt McCowan bought the car, now the 4409 and won again in 2017. A tried and true Jimmy’s 4×4 car.

4500 race had some challenges, Beverly Croy came in to the hotpits on fire, so everyone came running to her with fire extinguishers in hand, she didn’t know about the fire. Quick thinking and action by the pit crews saved the car.  Winning the 4500 class was Kevin Rants in the MuddNuts Racing #4531
Another fire during the 4600/Mod Trail race had the KrackerFab 4600 car of Josh Atteberry burning, Paul Tyler stopped and put the fire out, got the 4600 unstuck and went on to win the race.  Paul entered the next race as well in the SuperMod class, by then the mud had become unpassable and Tyler again showed his sportsmanship by allowing his car to be used as a winch point to allow his fellow competitors to continue to race, after retaking the course, Paul finished in 4th.
Sportsman Mod and Stock Trail saw an awesome finish when Parker Jackson got stuck right at the bottom of the rock trail after several near rollovers, his codriver Bryce Santy got out to stack rocks.  Lots of help shouted from the pits and Big Rich helping him by kibbutzing through the process. They were able to get unstuck and finish the race.
Paul Tyler won the Mod Trail class.  Cade Rodd dominated the Super Mod race, starting 6 minutes back and then crossing the finish a full six minutes before anyone else.
UTV’s were a war of attrition, as they often are.  Logan Goodall won the ProUTV class and Carrie Schultz won the Sportsman UTV class.
The #23 of Wray Dix made the trip to Congress without him. On Tuesday, the new car owner and his codriver took the car out for a shakedown run outside of Tooele, Utah and ended up being helicoptered to the nearest hospital after cartwheeling three times. Both occupants were OK in the end and left the hospital soon after, but neither were ready to jump in and race, so the car builder, Victor Fontana, after inspecting for damage, brought the car for it’s first time on the track. We look forward to seeing this Utah crew on the track in Vernal for the Mountain Series opener on May 13.