Dennis Beebe admits he likes a challenge.
Even after a mountain biking accident left him paralyzed with only the use of his shoulders and arms seven years ago, the longtime Williams Lake resident said he adapted without much of a fuss.
“It was not a big, tough transition for me,” Beebe, now 41, said.
“I was always a guy who liked challenges and liked to push myself so this was just a new challenge for me.”
Beebe’s most recent challenge has him not only competing, but winning against able-bodied drivers in his rookie season of the Kamloops Off-Road Racing B.C. (KORRBC) series.
His modified 2014 Polaris Ranger RZR 1000 XP — equipped with a hand throttle and brake — has put Beebe contending for first overall in his UTV 1000 class.
As an added test Beebe raced in the UTV 1000 Pro class where he’s sitting in solid position for a second- or third-place overall finish, despite driving a stock RZR 1000.
“The difference there is UTV 1000 is a stock unit and in the UTV 1000 Pro class you can make modifications,” he said.
KORRBC takes place at the Whispering Pines Sports Complex in Kamloops on a 1.3-kilometre-long track.
Currently Beebe occupies the top spot in the UTV 1000 class with 164 points after the first three race weekends. The second-place driver, Travis Squair, has 134 points. Points are accumulated based on how many drivers are in the race and driver final position.
At the final KORRBC event of the season on Oct. 6 Beebe finished third out of eight drivers overall in the UTV 1000 class.
“I picked up second in the first heat, third in the second heat and I was leading for seven-and-a-half laps [out of nine] in the main event but blew out a tire which put me in fifth,” he said. “That gave me third overall for the day.”
Heading into the final race day in the UTV 1000 Pro series Beebe sat in fourth place. But based on a stellar performance Beebe could be propelled into second or third overall.
“I’m anxious to see the final results,” he said.
“I could easily leap frog into second place [in the pro class] depending on how the points go.”
The final point totals, however, won’t be tallied until KORRBC hosts its awards night and banquet later this year.
While he waits for the final tabulation of results Beebe said he’ll continue to enjoy the outdoors with his UTV and his snowmobile with his buddies.
“I’ve always been involved with the recreational side of it. It’s great,” he said.
“It’s fun, I like it, it gets me out with my friends and out in the recreational world with the things that I used to do. It’s a lot of fun to push myself.”
Beebe said he’d like to thank his employer, Spectra Power Sports, for supporting him throughout the season, along with Steve Durst, Derek Christiansen and Jill and Tom Wasstrom for driving him to and from the races.
KORRBC also features pro trucks, pro buggies, outlaws, limited lite trucks and pro lites, on top of the UTV classes.