Best in the Desert Cal City Desert Challenge: Race Preview

After a change of venue late in the game, the 2021 Best in the Desert season is set to wrap up in Cal City, California this weekend with the Cal City Desert Challenge. With all of BITD’s dozens of classes set to be in action for the final time this year, the two-day event will crown champions in each of the series’ car, truck, motorcycle, quad, and UTV divisions.

Cal City’s 30-mile loop will play host to six race splits across each day, with three laps on the course per split for a total of six on the weekend. The racing starts at 7:30AM on Saturday and 6:30AM on Sunday with the limited classes, while the Trick Truck and Class 1500 entries wrap up Saturday’s racing and the UTV Pro Turbo, Unlimited, and Open divisions close things out on Sunday.

The Trick Truck championship will most likely come down to Kevin Thompson and Kyle Jergensen facing off head to head. Tied in the standings but with more than 30 points in hand on any other competitors, the higher finisher between the two over six laps at Cal City will likely claim the championship. Things are similarly close in the premier UTV Turbo division, with just a single point separating Ryan Piplic and Dustin Jones, and Mitch Guthrie Jr. lurking just 16 points out of the lead.

The gap between first and second is a little wider in the 6100 trucks, as Dustin Grabowski looks to preserve a 20-point advantage over Ray Griffith. The other two Pro UTV divisions also feature a bit of a gap, with Josh Row boasting advantages of 17 points on Dallas Gonzalez and 22 on Angie Mitchell in the NA class, and Michael Isom 21 points ahead of Jim Beaver in Unlimited. All of the above title contenders will be on the entry list in Cal City this weekend.

After Cal City, Best in the Desert regroups for its 2022 season, which kicks off in Parker, Arizona in January for all divisions; the Parker 250 for motorcycles, quads, and UTVs leads things off on January 6-8, and the Parker 425 for trucks and cars returns January 20-23. 

Chris Leone

A veteran of the motorsports industry (both physical and digital), Chris Leone contributes coverage of race events of all types to Off-Road Racer. Elsewhere, he is the marketing/communications manager at iRacing, media director of Jim Beaver's Down & Dirty Show, and a frequent contributor to UTV Underground.

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