People will do almost anything to get their most recent ATV or side-by-side creations featured in our magazine, and we love how crazy it gets! Becoming jaded by the status quo or what many of us would consider average, we seem to be drawn toward those rare exotic and simply amazing rides that leave us dragging our jaws back to our trucks. Nestled deep in the thick wooded hills of North Carolina, there is just such a creation, and with our curiosity piqued, we not only wanted to view it with our own eyes, we wanted to pilot this beast.
Just outside Mooresville, North Carolina, High Energy Racing and an innocent Polaris RZR S were on a collision course with the end result being a super-tricked-out side-by-side that was built for the rigors of Grand National Cross Country racing. The gang over at Racer Productions have quickly realized there was yet another reason for racers to come to their events. With that said, a new testing ground was laid and select venues would carry the extra weight of side-by-side racing.
This is where a plan began to unfold in the minds of High Energy Racing and GBC Tires. GBC Tires had purchased its 2008 Polaris RZR S with hopes of being master speed junkies and terrorizing anyone who dared to take the team on. The Polaris base-model RZR is a very sporty feeling and very exciting side-by-side to drive. Throw in several more inches of width and some tunable long-travel suspension and you have the RZR S. The overall width of a base-model RZR is right at 50 inches, which allows it to cruise up any ATV trail system without any hassle. But when you add the "S" to the nameplate, it gets you over 60 inches and that's when things get tricky for the tighter GNCC courses.
The first plan of attack was to improve safety, and High Energy Racing's Kevin Johnston gave Pro Rhino a call. The GNCC series requires some type of door on the race vehicle. The great minds at Pro Rhino have a door setup made of tubular galvanized steel and covered in cloth. Thinking "race vehicle," Kevin decided to go with the upper net edition rather than the soft poly-windowed option. This door has a simple latch system, and if you want to remove the door for any reason, just lift up on the frame and it'll come right off. The next additions from Pro Rhino were these cool roll bar grab handles. These things make it possible for the passenger to get a grip no matter what the terrain. Made of a seat belt-type webbed fabric, these grips can be installed anywhere on the race cage to add, you guessed it, more safety. I can tell you from experience that even though you have a set of passenger bars in this ride, test driving this beast with Editor Thad Josey made me want a hundred other places to hold onto.
This leads us to the seats, and you might ask why we needed any improvement there... Well, as with any race vehicle, you want to stand out in the crowd and you surely need to be comfortable doing so. The seats were sent off to Custom Covers to be treated to a little extra padding and some comfy new covers to make a statement. The total seat cover was installed and the color scheme was a simple black center and white sides with a touch of red on the headrest area.
Both of the stock versions of the RZR and the RZR S sport seat belts, but only offer minimal security. This setup works great in average riding conditions, but when pushing things to the max, more protection is a must. That's where this Crow Enterprizes four-point harness came into play. This harness utilizes a cam-lock-style latching system, which is wider than the stock belts and fits more comfortably over your upper body. Having two belts, one on each shoulder, meeting in the lap with a super-strong crossover belt makes the racing experience a lot more pleasant. Knowing that you are strapped in tight frees your mind to follow the track more intensely.