The second big off-road race of 2024 is coming up on Saturday, February 24th with related events slated from Wednesday of that week. The Parker Dam 500 is organized by Legacy Racing and will be preceded by qualifying races, pre-runs and a Downtown Experience on Arizona Avenue in Parker.
The fact that there are two races in Parker this winter is the result of a competition for permits from the federal Bureau of Land Management, after the earlier holder of the permits, Best in the Desert (BITD), failed to meet the event requirements for 2023. Legacy Racing, run by Donald Jackson, was one of the winners of the permits for 2024; the other was the Martelli Brothers, who ran the Parker 400 for the first time last month.
Donald is best known as the right-hand man of the late Casey Folks, having worked with him at BITD for 13 years until Folks’ death in 2017. In the wake of Casey’s death, his sons took over BITD, and Donald offered to buy the company several times, according to UTV Sports magazine. Ultimately, Donald resigned and decided to launch his own racing organization along with his wife Kristy and Liz Marshall, another former BITD team member. Legacy Racing is the result.
The Parker Dam 500 will officially begin on Wednesday, February 21st with qualifying races, a pre-run of the new course on Thursday, and tech, vendor row and the much-loved Downtown Experience on Friday from 9 am to 5 pm on Arizona Avenue in downtown Parker.
The race itself is split into two: one that begins at 5:30 am on Saturday, February 24th, featuring Class 10, Ultra 4, Class 5, TrophyLite, Class 1450, Pro UTV, NA UTV, Unlimited UTV, Pro Stock, Class 11, Jeepspeed 1700 and 3700, Sportsman, Vintage, Stock Mod and Pro Stock 1 classes. The second race begins at 1:30 pm and features Unlimited Trucks, Class 1, Class 6100 and Jeepspeed 4700 classes.
Spectators can watch the race at Shea Road, Upper Bouse and Bouse Y spectator areas. Camping is allowed on Shea Road and Upper Bouse. There will be no racing at the ‘Parker Python’, also known as the ‘gauntlet’, this year.
An awards ceremony will be held on Sunday, February 25th at 9am at BlueWater Resort & Casino. A full schedule of events can be found at LegacyRacing.net.