It’s not everyday that you get to go riding with a legend on a winding desert course that said legend laid out. But it happened to a lucky group of UTV’ers. Twice. But, thankfully there’s a possibility of more to come.
Called “Let’s Ride With LR” and hosted by 13-time Baja 1000 winner, Hall of Famer and all-around fast guy Larry Roeseler, the events took place in September and October 2017. Roeseler led his guests on two loops of fun around the Borrego Springs and Superstition OHV area. We talked ourselves into the October run, and had our Yamaha YXZ ready to try and keep up with LR’s dust. Everyone assembled at the Coyne Powersports Motorplex facility/practice track in the Superstition, and LR led us out on the first 50-mile loop. The loop featured everything from fast power line roads and sand washes to up hills and down. LR kept the speeds to approximately 30-50 mph depending on the section, which really was plenty fast enough for us mere mortals. The second loop was to be slightly shorter but more technical.
Be aware if you’re thinking of joining in that this is driving in the desert at a reasonably fast clip with the distinct possibility of dust kicked up by the vehicles ahead of you. It’s as close to desert racing as most will ever come, and though it’s a blast, just as in any desert race, the terrain can bite you. A Can-Am driver found an island in a dusty sand wash and tore most of the suspension off its right-hand side. Unlike real desert races we’ve been in, thankfully there wasn’t 20 straight miles of whoop-de-do’s. (Try that at full throttle in dust so thick you can’t see 10 feet and watch your admiration of guys like LR, MacCachren, and Voss rapidly elevate).
There were frequent stops to let everyone catch up, chat, check out each other’s ride, and generally enjoy the day. Being October, the weather was great and everyone was having a ball. The response to the first two rides was so popular that Roeseler and his sponsors (Safecraft, UTV Underground, Coyne Powersports, Polaris) decided to make it virtually a monthly event; depending on Roeseler’s schedule, that is. He is still racing and has a lot going on after all, but he’s decided that he’ll do as many as possible.
The ride is free to attend (heck, they even feed you for free!), but the number of entrants is kept to only about 20 or so, so there are limited spots available. The way to get on the list is to go to the UTVUnderground.com and fill out the form. There’s no telling how many are ahead of you, but if you wait your turn, you’ll be happy you did.