Lake Havasu, AZ
Steady improvement, with two top ten finishes, was the weekend takeaway for the Team Honda Racing Off-Road Honda Talons in the UTV World Championships held in Lake Havasu, AZ on Saturday, October 10th. The new race course was a compact, rough, technical 28.6 miles in a four square mile area – translating to lots of zig zags and dust with nowhere to go.
“I’m so happy with our results from the race weekend,” shares Team Principal, Jeff Proctor, “ Eliott executed a his race perfectly. I’ve enjoyed watching him grow throughout the season. This race wasn’t without its unique challenges, but he stayed focused on his race craft, managed the Honda Talon equipment, and ran a clean race. Between he and our other Talon driver, Bud Ward, they ran with the lead pack all day. For a first year program, on a new platform, I couldn’t be more proud.”
Both Talon entries improved their finishing position by ten spots from qualifying – Watson, No. T903, finished P6 and Ward, No. T940, followed him closely with a P7 finish. Initially, Ward got the holeshot, but after a couple laps, Watson got by his team mate and they stayed tight to cross the finish line together.
Watson recaps, “The most challenging thing about this race was how tight the course was and how many laps were ran on it throughout the weekend. The Production Turbo class was the 8th race of the weekend, so it made every part of the course rougher and more demanding. My teammate Bud Ward and I started side-by-side and settled into a rhythm for the first couple of laps. As the sun started to set, we were battling together for top 10 spots against some of the fastest drivers in the sport. We both were able to push hard all day with zero issues, and ended up 6th and 7th on time.”
He continues, “It’s crazy to see how far this team has come in such a short amount of time. We still have a lot of work to do, but I know we are headed in the right direction for our next race, the Baja 1000!”
No. T940 driver Ward says, “This event was a true test of what these Honda Talons can accomplish. The amount of punishment they could withstand was unreal. The entire Honda off road team did an amazing job and I cannot wait to get back in and go again!”
Proctor continues, “Our progress on the Talon race program is going great. We’ve been able to continually improve our equipment while at the same time improve our track position. The Honda Talon durability has proven itself. A huge accomplishment in the desert race terrain.”
Up next for the Talons is testing and pre-running for the Baja 1000, starting in Ensenada, Baja, Mexico on November 20th.
Photography By: Bink Designs