RJ Anderson Takes SxS Pro Win at Honolulu Hills
Taft, CA – The 2014 Rocky Mountain ATV MC WORCS Series presented by Motoworks and Dirtwheels season kicked off at Honolulu Hills in Taft, California this weekend. There, RJ Anderson would earn the first win of the season in the SxS Pro Class followed by Mitch Guthrie Jr. & Ryan Piplic placing second and third.
Racers were greeted with ideal racing conditions with temperatures in the low 80’s all day. Although California is in an extreme water drought, the WORCS crew did their best to water the dry track to cut down on the dust.
There were a total of 64 SxS entries that showed up for the 2014 WORCS Season Opener. With this many cars battling for the top position in each class, it made for one interesting race with a lot of traffic with 29 entries in the Pro Class alone! This year, the WORCS Racing Series decided to start with a clean slate for all SxS racers. Each racer had to draw for starting position, unlike in the past where starting position for the opening round was determined by the position you finished at the end of the previous season. After round 1, class points will once again determine each racers starting position.
RJ Anderson did not have the best luck of the draw when it came to his starting position. Anderson would draw to start on the second row, forcing him to have to make several passes for the lead. Despite his unfavorable starting position, RJ Anderson was able to make up some ground after coming through scoring at the end of lap 1 in seventh position. By the end of lap two, Anderson began battling with 2013 WORCS SxS & ATV Pro Champion Beau Baron, but would soon loose his power steering forcing him to use more effort to keep the near stock 2014 Polaris RZR XP 1000 under control.
“My finishing rate was a little rough last year, so to come out in 2014 and start off with a win in Round 1 I’m super pumped! I didn’t really know much of the track, I only got about a lap in yesterday to check it out, so a lot of it was unfamiliar to me. I had an awesome battle with my Beau (Baron) who is my Holz Racing Teammate. We were battling the whole time but something mechanical bit him, but it was such a fun race. The Polaris RZR 1000 is awesome! I am actually running a stock drive train, so my motor is bone stock just with Muzzy exhaust on it. Pretty much, it shows that in stock platform you can come out to a WORCS race just with the safety modifications and go battle for the top spot!” stated RJ Anderson.
After winning the 2013 WORCS Racing SxS Production Class, Mitch Guthrie, Jr. made the move up to the SxS Pro Class in his Polaris RZR XP 1000. Gutherie made a big statement when we landed on the podium in second place proving he has what it takes to be a top contender in the SxS Pro Class. Contributing to his impressive finish at round one, Mitch Guthrie, Jr. started the race out front by grabbing the SxS Pro Class Holeshot and holding on the physical lead the entire race.
“It was my first Pro race I was really excited and I got the Holeshot. I knew that all these guys on the second row were coming for me and they did. But I am happy with my second place finish. There is a lot of competitors in the pro class, Beau (Baron, RJ (Anderson), all these guys but I feel like I can compete with them” stated Mitch Guthrie Jr
Rounding out the SxS Pro Class podium was 2012 SxS Champion Ryan Piplic in third place. Piplic would also start in the second row and would round the first corner right behind Beau Baron. Piplic would continue to pursue Baron and would soon take over the position after Baron experienced mechanical issues. Piplic would finish just a half of a second behind Mitch Guthrie, Jr. with adjusted time.
“I started on the second row and I got second start right behind Beau (Baron) and we just kind of paced each other. I knew it was going to be a survival it was laid back and I did about 80%, I did’nt want go out there and break the car, so we could get some points” explained Ryan Piplic of his third place finish
Finishing fourth in the SxS Pro Class was Michael Camp followed by Keenan Rogerson in fifth.
In the SxS Production Class, David Haagsma earned the first win of the season in his 2014 Polaris RZR XP 1000. Haagsma made the move up the SxS Production Class after winning the championship in the SxS Production 700 Class and has made the switch to the Polaris RZR XP 1000 from the Polaris RZR 570. After grabbing the Holeshot, David Haagsma lead all four laps to earn the win.
Finishing second was Ronnie Anderson who finished almost a minute behind David Haagsma. Anderson would remain in the top three positions from start to finish.
Matt Hancock, also made the move up to the SxS Production Class for 2014, and he claimed the final spot on the podium in the Polaris RZR XP 1000.
After a great start at Honolulu Hills, the 2014 Rocky Mountain ATV MC WORCS Series presented by Motoworks and Dirtwheels Racing Series will head to Buffalo Bills Hotel & Casino in Primm, NV on February 7-9.