A Bikeman Performance exhaust system, Stage 2 clutch kit, Sparks intake
system, K&N air filter and a full engine
build help this RZR put out a lot more
power than stock.
❏ In all types of off-road racing, male
competitors are the majority. Katie
Vernola knew that fact, and it just
made her hungrier to compete. She
started off racing in the Lucas Oil
Regional Off-Road Series, battled in
the women’s class of Terracross and
is now racing in WORCS. Katie V
needed a machine that could handle
racing in the Pro class just as well as
the cars of the other top racers, and
that is exactly what her new car is
designed to do.
Katie V’s WORCS Racing Polaris
RZR XP 1000 is anything but stock.
Fifty percent of the roll cage of her
UTV is stock, while the rest has been
custom-built for strength and safety by
Pete Corwin at Got Sand Performance.
Pete is Vernola’s mechanic, and he
makes sure that her car is ready to
perform in the harsh desert-style GP
terrain of the WORCS Racing series.
After building the frame and roll cage
that provides a center-seated design,
Pete added frame gussets, a custom
front and rear bumper, and nerf bars.
The frame setup allowed for major
weight reduction for her RZR. The
whole bed was removed to erase a
lot of weight while also allowing easy
access to the engine. Custom body
panels replaced the doors and the
extra weight associated with them. To
add personal touches, an offset dash
was built and added.
Engine modifications are a must
when it comes to racing against other
pro-level racers. A full engine build
was done by Bikeman Performance.
The engine included CP pistons and
Carrillo rods, a Bikeman Performance
Stage 2 clutch kit, and full exhaust
system that provides more power and
adds a nice, throaty exhaust note.
A Sparks Racing airbox was
installed on this RZR, along with a
K&N air filter to allow high airflow into
the engine. A Bully Dog tuner with a
custom Bikeman Performance tune
was installed to adjust the fuel-injection system’s mapping to the correct
air-to-fuel ratio for optimum power
ALL THE SUSPENSE
In the off-road racing scene, power
is very important, but not as important
as having great suspension, handling
and braking systems. In the cockpit of
Katie’s RZR is an NRG fiberglass seat
with a Super ATV five-point harness
to keep her in place. On the steering
side of things, a Super ATV Rack
Boss HD steering rack was installed
and paired with a Hess Motorsports
quick-steer system. Katie has a Joe’s
lightweight aluminum steering wheel
that is removable with a quick-discon-
One of the most impressive upgrades
to this racing RZR would have to be the
King shocks. The fronts are 2. 5 internal
bypass shocks, while the rears are
3.0 internal bypass shocks. They are
longer than stock, which allows for
more wheel travel. In the front, Super
ATV boxed A-arms with heavy-duty
tie-rods help suspend the Polaris and
are stronger parts than stock.
To help stop Vernola’s RZR XP
1000, she went with Streamline’s
oversized 270mm vented rotors with
Performance brake lines. Super ATV
provided brake pads for the build.
From the instant our tester clipped
the Crow nets back onto the roll cage
and buckled in to the center-mount-
ed seat of Katie V’s Polaris RZR, his
first comment was, “Whoa, the brake
pedal is on the wrong side, and I don’t
know how to feel about sitting in the
center of this thing!” As soon as he
took off and got accustomed to using
one foot for the gas and one for the
brake, our tester picked up speed.
The King shocks helped the RZR
handle like a dream. The machine
felt more stable in corners, it gobbled
up whoops and chop with ease, and
soaked up hard landings off jumps.
Improving the steering with the new
rack and quick steer box made turn-
ing the RZR a lot easier at lower
and higher speeds. The bigger brake
rotors improved the braking over stock
and decreased fade. Katie uses Fuel
Offroad beadlock wheels and tires for
her build. Each tire has 8 pounds of
tread rubber shaved off, which made
The whole stock dash was removed
from Katie’s RZR, and the steering sys-
tem was rerouted to be in the center.
Katie uses two KC Hilites amber lights
on her RZR, so her pit crew will know
when she is coming through the course.
Just like the whole roll cage, a custom
front bumper with a sway bar system
was incorporated on Vernola’s RZR from
Got Sand Performance.