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After a full year of bar-to-bar, wheel-to-wheel racing in the deserts and mountains of Arizona (and California), the 2019 Arizona Offroad Promotions Rowley White RV Series has come to an end. With the year-end holiday season in full swing, AZOP rallied together one final time to bring races and race fans out to Canyon Motorsports Park in the foothills of Peoria for an exhibition race to celebrate everything that we all love about off-road motorsports. Sponsored by Triple X Seats and RideNow Powersports, there were to be 8 races packed into one perfect Saturday. The 5-mile course made great use of the motocross track and then dropped into the adjacent wash to run through the sandy low-desert washes. The unseasonably wet December central Arizona has had this year made for perfect conditions with soft, loamy soil and minimum dust (for a desert race).
The highlight of the day was the bike team race, and the starting area certainly lived up to the hype with bikes lined up several rows deep across the massive start line. In the end there were 48 teams competing for the podium on race day! The peewee classes all had similarly large turnouts and even the Quad/ATC classes had larger-than-average numbers as everyone seemed to show up for an opportunity to run on the killer MX track. The cold morning didn't seem to dampen anyone's spirits as several racers showed up with decorated vehicles and there were multiple sightings of Santa Claus out on the track working his way through the big tabletops and rhythm sections.
The worry with exhibition events is often that with nothing at stake the events won't be as much fun to watch, but the opposite was true in Peoria as there was a feeling of fun and nervous energy all throughout the day. Several series regulars were competing in new classes for the first time, getting valuable experience in advance of the 2020 season. Others were on brand new bikes or in newly-built cars, with intent to test and tune before the new year. Still others were there just to get one last race in before family responsibilities around the holidays forced them out of their seats for a few weeks. All things considered the racing and competitive spirit couldn't have been better at a race event that was truly "just for fun".
Now that the 2019 season has been put to bed, AZOP will take a short break and return in early 2020. The racing slate for next season will feature at least 12 championship points-paying events as well as a handful of exhibition events! Rowley White RV is back as the series title sponsor and the 2020 season will showcase a few new race locations, alongside the old favorites!
The 2020 AZOP season is just a few weeks away! The first race of the new year will be January 18-19 for the series-favorite Todd Peterson's Vulture Mine Hare Scrambles in Wickenburg, AZ. Registration is open now; go to www.azopracing.com for class rules, series schedule, and registration!
As always AZOP would like to thank all of the sponsors, staff, volunteers, racers, and spectators for making this another successful and fun weekend and a wonderful year of racing. For full race results, videos, and photos or to find out about upcoming events go to www.azopracing.com