Valcourt, Québec – Can-Am Maverick 1000R X rs side-by-side Pro Marc Burnett won the San Felipe 250 and Can-Am Maverick MAX racer Derek Murray finished second to give Can-Am a 1-2 finish at the SCORE International opener In Mexico. Also, in Boyd, Texas, Hunter and Cody Miller recorded the UTV Expert and ATV Pro class victories, respectively, at the opening round of the Texas Off-Road Nationals.
“We were thrilled with Marc Burnett’s significant victory at the San Felipe 250, and to have the Murray Racing team join him on the podium,” said Jeff Leclerc, Racing Project Leader, Can-Am. “These guys have been working extremely hard, dedicating themselves to winning, and this historic 1-2 effort, which included the first-ever win in Baja for a Can-Am side-by-side, proves that both our teams and the Maverick 1000R platform are hard to beat.”
San Felipe 250
The 2014 SCORE International series opener, the 28th Annual Tecate SCORE San Felipe 250 greeted side-by-side racers with a mostly unique course that was altered due to weather and a reroute. The revised course had racers travel roughly 219 miles from start to finish. Fourteen Class 19 teams entered the race, including three Can-Am Maverick squads. Along with Burnett and the Derek Murray, Desert Toyz Racing’s Cory Sappington, who tallied two SCORE series podiums in 2013, also raced (he finished ninth).
Burnett, a proven desert racer with numerous wins on a bike and in trucks, came into the San Felipe 250 seeking his first finish and podium behind the wheel of the Maverick. He and co-pilot Fernando Flores logged an average speed of 38.5 mph on the course, which featured heavy rain, rocks, mud and varying temperatures and elevations, in 5:41:17 to notch his first victory with the MB Motorsports / Can-Am Maverick side-by-side. He also earned the first-ever SCORE series victory and Baja win for Can-Am.
“I am really glad to be a part of Can-Am history. It was awesome to get the first win in a SxS in Baja,” said Burnett. “Racing UTVs for the first time last year was a learning curve for me. I went from racing and winning on bikes and trucks to not finishing a race in a UTV due to aftermarket parts. This year we are racing mostly stock except the suspension. We learned Can-Am builds an awesome car and there is no need for aftermarket parts.”
Burnett started seventh off the line and passed many vehicles in the first 20 miles of the race and had caught up to the class leader about 10 miles later. However, a mechanical issue slowed the team and forced it to play catch up for much of the race. Once Burnett reached Mike’s Sky Ranch and a familiar section of the course he knew he was back in the race. Burnett drove aggressively the rest of the way and learned at the finish he had won the race.
“We pushed hard the last 40 miles of the race,” said Burnett. “We put so much time into testing the vehicle all of last year and up to the last day of the race and it paid off! I dedicated this race to my grandma who passed away in December. I would also like to thank everybody at Can-Am for believing in me, despite last year.”
The Can-Am / ITP / Murray Racing team, comprised of Derek Murray, Steve Amarine and Monty Aldrich, also had an outstanding race, completing 219 miles in a little more than six hours. The team, racing without Derek Murray who was recovering from his finger surgery, was running with the leaders early on, but was slowed by a loose injector wire. Once the issue was fixed, the team pushed hard to the finish line, but ended up second.
Can-Am racers Hunter and Cody Miller each competed in the ATV Pro and UTV Expert classes at the TORN opener, coming away with two victories and two second-place finishes. The hare scramble style off-road race was held in unseasonably cold weather in Texas. In the UTV Expert class, Hunter edged Cody for the win. Cody was in second and Hunter in third after lap one, but lap two saw Hunter put in the fastest lap in his Maverick to take the win over his brother by two seconds. However, Cody won the seven-lap ATV Pro class race by nine seconds aboard his DS 450™ over his brother.
For more information on Can-Am racing, the entire 2014 schedule, the contingency program and all amateur racer support programs, please visit www.can-amxteam.com.
Photo: Ernesto Araiza, UTVUnderground.com