Shannon Campbell Takes the Crown at the Can-Am UTV King of the Hammers

Shannon Campbell Takes the Crown at the 2017 Can-Am UTV King of the Hammers
February 9, 2017 (Hammertown, CA) – While all eyes were on UTV legend Mitch Guthrie and defending champion Blake Van de Loo, it was the Campbell family who stole the show at the 2017 Can-Am UTV Race Presented by RCV. One of Ultra4’s favorite racing families, all three members of the racing Campbell clan—Shannon, Wayland and Bailey–took the start line at 8 a.m. None of them had ever competed in a UTV race before, although all three have competed several times in the King of the Hammer’s main race. Shortly into her UTV debut, Bailey—the only woman driving in two classes at King of the Hammers–was out in front as her father (Shannon) and older brother (Wayland) chased her down. “To tell you the truth when Bailey was out in front, I was like, ‘that would be so cool if she won’,” said Shannon, who has won King of the Hammers twice. Ultimately, Shannon took the lead while Bailey and Wayland stayed close behind. Wayland, who was 5th off the line, started to pick off riders until he finally caught up with his sister on Sledgehammer. When he saw that she was stuck, he stopped to help her out.  “We winched her out,” said Wayland. “We are family and a team. You can spare the time; it’s not an issue.” Wayland then moved his way into second with Bailey close behind. Unfortunately, about 10 miles before the finish, Bailey suffered a mechanical, and she fell back to 15th place. Shannon and Wayland went on to finish 1-2 on the podium, the first time the father-son duo have stood on the same podium at KOH. “I wouldn’t say it was easy,” said Shannon about winning his first UTV race,” because at every corner we felt like we were going to flip. I would say we were lucky, though.”**WATCH THE CAN-AM UTV KING OF THE HAMMERS HIGHLIGHT VIDEO!** Race Nuggets:

It was a rough day for perennial favorite Mitch Guthrie, who has captured eight UTV wins at King of the Hammers during his career. He actually passed Shannon Campbell for the lead around mile 30 but then the mechanicals started. First there was a flat tire, then a burnt belt and finally a front differential problem ended his race. He DNF’d.

Mitch’s son, Mitch Guthrie Jr., who always raced as Mitch’s co-driver, broke off and raced his own UTV race in 2017. While Guthrie Jr. posted a great qualifying time, he also DNF’d.

The defending champ coming into the event, Blake Van de Loo, who thwarted Guthrie’s streak in 2016, was hoping to prove he wasn’t a one hit wonder. Unfortunately, Van De Loo lost his transmission at the top of After Shock, and he also DNF’d.

After winning Wednesday’s UTV race, Shannon Campbell said he might consider driving with a co-driver from now on. Campbell typically races the main KOH race in a solo-seater IFS car. After competing in the UTV race with co-driver Jason Berger, though, he said he thought a co-driver was a benefit.  Berger is competing in Friday’s main race with Jason Scherer. 

All three Campbells will compete in the main race on Friday. Shannon has won King of the Hammers twice, while Bailey was the first woman to break the top five in 2017. During qualifying for the unlimited class, Wayland finished 6th, Shannon finished 9th, while Bailey finished 24th.

The only all-female team competing at King of the Hammers, Sara Price and Erica Sacks had a great competition finishing 18th overall. After qualifying in the 20th position on Saturday, the women had to make adjustments to their car. They burned the candle working on it for hours on end before Wednesday’s race. Their efforts paid off, as they had no mechanicals, although they did flip once on Backdoor.

Defending KOH champion Erik Miller also competed in the UTV race. He was the first vehicle off the line, since he posted the fastest time in qualifying. Miller had a solid day finishing 4th. He’s likely saving his energy for Friday’s main race where he will also be first off the line after finishing 2nd in qualifying in the unlimited class.

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