— Walker Evans Racing build —
Polaris is enjoying great success with its first extreme-performance single-seat UTV. The RZR RS1 has racked up several major race wins, and we’re seeing quite a few of them in the dunes and desert. We tested the long travel, HCR Racing RS1 at Moab for the September 2018 issue and the Shock Therapy RS1 at Camp RZR for the April 2019 issue. Both were very impressive. We also got to try the Walker Evans Racing (WER) Hot Randy Special RS1 at the SxS Adventure Rally held at Sand Hollow State Park, Utah. In review, the HCR long-travel kit used stock WER needle shocks, and the ST RS1 used modified stock shocks. This WER RS1 upgrades to WER Velocity 2.5 shocks and much more.
RS1 VELOCITY SHOCKS
WER’s Velocity 2.5 shocks fit the RS1, XP 1000, XP Turbo and both XP4s, but each shock is built to order with a specific valving and needle for each model. WER needle-valve technology provides multiple stages of internal bypass without the complexity of inner/outer shock bodies and reed-valve ports. They also feature repositioned piggyback reservoirs for higher bottoming resistance while providing a smoother, improved ride quality on choppy bumps. The V2.5s are an upgrade over the front 2.0 WER OEM RS1 shocks.
Other upgrades include true dual-rate springs with adjustable cross-over rings and dual-speed compression adjusters on the piggyback reservoirs for a wider range of adjustments for racing or other applications. Velocity 2.5 shocks have Viton shaft O-rings, a 7/8-inch shaft, billet-aluminum construction with hard-anodizing, and steel FK spherical bearing shock ends designed to fit OEM mounts. They’re $899.99 each, and they only work on OEM suspension arms or long-travel arms with the shock mounts in OEM locations. Otherwise, they have to be custom-built, which WER can also do.
Front Velocity 2.5s bolt right on, but the rears require some trimming of the plastic fenders.
MORE WER RS1 UPGRADES
Walker Evans also upgrades ride quality and control with its Walker Links for the RS1 OEM front sway bar. Walker Links are tiny shocks that provide a smoother ride quality on stutter bumps with 1.5 inches of damped movement. They allow each tire to react to bumps independently while still allowing the sway bar to fight body roll in turns once the Walker Link travel is used up. They’re $395 per pair, and they have received new, improved steel bearings since we’ve tested them on the RZR XP 1000 (November 2016).
In that test, Walker Links provided a more predictable ride in rough turns, as hitting a rock with one rear tire no longer unloads the opposite tire. The same goes for these Walker Links in front on the RS1.
Also, the WER RS1 sports WER Legend Forged 15×5.5 beadlock rims. These UTV rims have the same strength and race-proven success as WER’s off-road buggy/truck wheels. They come in raw aluminum or can be had in polished, machined black, matte black or gloss black powdercoated for an extra charge. Legend forged bead-locks are $550 each, and this build has blue beadlock rings.
MORE RS1 BUILD UPGRADES
The WER wheels were fitted with 30×9.5R15 BF Goodrich KR2 Baja A/T tires, which are a big upgrade over the OEM 29×9-14 front and 29×11-14 rear Bighorns on the RS1. Front-width tires on the rear allow the RS1 to drift into turns easier, and the larger diameter provides a smoother ride via more sidewall flex and more ground clearance. Baja KR2s are BFG’s first UTV-specific radial tires, and they’re $252 each. There are also 32-inch KR2s now. Jackson Motorsports Group distributes BFG’s non-DOT tires. Call them at 800-RACE-BFG (800-722-3234).
Holz Racing Products (HRP) supplied the race cage with aluminum roof, seat mount and shifter. HRP’s Race Cage is a low-profile design made with 1.75-inch 4130 TIG-welded, alloy-steel, mandrel-bent tubing with corner bracing for added strength. The cage with roof is $2000 plus shipping. The HRP Billet Shifter saves weight, adds rigidity and increases precision. It’s CNC-machined from 6061 billet aluminum and includes new pivot bushings for more smoothness. MSRP is $119.95. HRP’s seat mount is $109.95 and is designed to work with Sparco, NRG, PRP and other hard-shell seats.
HRP also sells Sparco’s Evo seat ($800) and Mastercraft’s 2-inch, five-point safety harness ($105.95), which also went into the WER/HRP race build. A custom wrap by ProLine Wraps completes the WER RS1 Racing build. ProLine wraps start at $450 for Series 200, 300 and 400.
DRIVING THE RACING RS1
Sand Hollow is pretty unique, with desert, dunes and rock-crawling formations, but much of the dune area is also infested with rocks buried in sand. The Velocity 2.5 shocks and Walker Links improve ride quality in all of these conditions and allow more shock tuning for a smooth ride or bottoming resistance at race speeds. The Walker Links, bead-lock rims and BFG tires also offer greater control at any speed. We’re impressed yet again with the RS1 and the WER upgrades.
Walker Evans Racing
2304 Fleetwood Drive
Riverside, CA 92509
Holz Racing Products
6226 Chasteen Road
Lynden, Washington 98264
9140 Jordan Ave.
Chatsworth, CA 91311