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R-N-R Steel
Robert VanBeekum Finishes Seventh in BITD Parker 250
R-N-R Steel's Best in the Desert Parker 250 Race Report

Mesa, AZ (1/12/2018) - R-N-R Steel’s Robert VanBeekum had a productive weekend during the Best in the Desert Series Parker 250. VanBeekum competed in both the desert race, where he finished seventh in Pro UTV Production, as well as the short course event.

Robert Vanbeekum Polaris RZR Racing
R-N-R Steel's Robert Vanbeekum finishes 7th in BITD Parker 250

The desert race was held on a rough and difficult 80 miles of desert, rocks, sand washes and canyons. Though he had several issues during the three-lap race, VanBeekum fought through every challenge and scored a seventh-place finish.

“We had some electrical issues early on, but we held onto 13th and fixed it in the pits,” said VanBeekum. “On the second lap, we set our fastest time and made it all the way up to sixth. On the third lap, we had another issue. We had no power steering and we had fought a suspension problem, but we held on for seventh.”

Robert Vanbeekum Polaris RZR Racing

As is always true in racing, one race can make a difference. Last year’s Parker 250 was that one race for VanBeekum as a DNF dashed his hopes for a title. With that in mind, VanBeekum made several changes to his car preparation and racing weekend programs, which paid off in this year’s race.

“We had a DNF last year here and that’s what kept us out of the championship,” said VanBeekum. “So to start out the year with a finish is good. This year we’re looking for a championship in Production and about halfway through the season we’re going to start building a turbo car for 2019.”

VanBeekum also competed in the special short course event. He brought out a brand new Polaris for the event and had the lead until a belt problem ended his race.

“We brought out a brand new car that had .02 hours on it,” said VanBeekum. “We did a little bit of clutching on it, but everything else was stock. The car ran great. I was second out of the start. I took the lead, but then had a belt issue.”

Ryder Vanbeekum Polaris RZR Racing
Ryder Vanbeekum won the Polaris RZR 170 after Dallas Gonzalez's Family donated the RZR back into the drawing for another racer

For VanBeekum, racing is important, but family takes priority. His son Ryder was also competing during the weekend in the 170 class and he won a RZR 170 that was given away by the Gonzalez family. Once the new car is built, VanBeekum is going to give back to the sport he loves. He will take his old car and prep it for less fortunate kids to be able to race.

“Dallas Gonzalez did the giveaway,” said VanBeekum. “It’s amazing for people to do that. My son was so excited to win this car. Jimmy at XMF had a bet with Ryder that if he won, he’d build the car for free, so we couldn’t let that one go. Ryder even picked up Walker Evans and Method Wheels as sponsors.

“After we build this new car, we’re going to donate his old car to kids who aren’t able to race,” added VanBeekum. “So we’ll enter other kids to give them the chance to race.”

VanBeekum will next head to the King of the Hammers in Johnson Valley, CA in February. He will also compete in select AZOP events with his son, Lucas Oil Regionals, and the Crandon World Cup.

Robert VanBeekum’s 2018 Sponsors:
Polaris, Maxxis Tires, Walker Evans, DragonFire, Method Wheels, R-N-R Steel

R-N-R Steel

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