For the past few months, the team has prepared their bodies and machine for the long 1000-mile trek on the KTM 530 XC-W. The Bonanza Plumbing/FMF/KTM team did a great deal of pre-race testing, including a 24-hour test ride to prepare for the race.
The Bonanza Plumbing/FMF/KTM Off-Road Racing Team members include FMF/KTM factory rider and the 2007 Hare & Hound National Champion David Pearson, multi-time Baja Champions Steve Hengeveld, Mike Childress and Shane Esposito, along with the youngest member of the team Ivan Ramirez. Ramirez is a native of Mexico and a dubbed a “guardian” to the team.
“We are so thankful to have Ivan on our team,” Pearson said. “This is the first time I have raced Baja where we have a rider that can communicate with all of the promoters, race fans and officials. I feel like we already have an advantage.”
In the history of the Baja 1000, there has never been a Mexican citizen on top of the podium, and the KTM team hopes they can accomplish this while also stopping the dominance of the Honda team, this year hoping to beat the JCR Honda 1x and 8x bikes.
Ramirez took the bike off the line this morning in Ensenada, and from there the running order will be Pearson, Childress, Esposito and for the final miles Hengeveld.