SAN DIEGO — As pre-running the rugged 883-mile race course from Ensenada across the Baja California peninsula and back to Ensenada continues this week at an accelerated pace with just over two weeks before the green flag drops, the growing starting grid for the upcoming 46th Annual Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 already includes 87 racers who have combined for 288 class wins in the granddaddy of all desert races.
This year’s legendary desert classic, the final event of the 2013 SCORE Desert Series, will be held Nov. 13-17 in Mexico on a brutally-rugged 883.00-mile SCORE signature desert race course.
With the rugged course traveling on both sides of the peninsula, the world’s most famous desert race will start and finish in Ensenada, Baja California Norte. It is the longest course in race history for a loop race, starting and finish in the same location.
With pre-running of the official race course opening last Friday, this year will mark the 39th time in the first 45 years of the storied race that it has started in Ensenada and it will be the 22nd time it has finished there as well.
It’s the oldest and most well known of all desert races, and it remains as the single most appealing accomplishment to a driver. Since 1967, the mother of all desert races has been run over the mysterious and majestic Baja California peninsula.
Leading the group of racers with at least one class win in this event are 33 racers, each with at least three class wins in this classic, with 199 combined class wins between them are Rod Hall (22 class wins), Larry Roeseler (17), Chris Haines (13), Johnny Campbell (11) and Steve Hengeveld (10).
To date, in addition to 34 U.S. States and the U.S. Terrietory of Guam, racers have entered from Argentina, Australia, Austria, Canada, Columbia, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, Great Britain, Guatemala, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Taiwan. With 15 days before the green flag drops on Thursday night, Nov. 14, late entries will be accepted up to the start of the race for each group.
BREAKING IT DOWN
Literally in a class by himself, the venerable Rod Hall, Reno, Nev., one of the sport’s greatest ambassadors, will turn 76 on Nov. 22 and is the only person who has raced in all 45 previous Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 races. He has won in several classes including the overall win in 1969 with NHRA legend Larry Minor in a Ford Bronco. This year he will compete in the No. 762 Hummer H3 in the Stock Mini class, sharing driving duties with his granddaughter Shelby Hall.
Roeseler, 56, El Cajon, Calif., who has earned a race-record 13 overall race wins in this event, including 10 on a motorcycle, is racing with Terrible Herbst Motorsports where he will be the second driver in No. 19 Ford F-150 SCORE Trophy Truck of Tim Herbst, Las Vegas. Roeseler also has 11 career SCORE season class point crowns on his resume.
With a race-record career 11 overall motorcycle race victories in the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000, Baja legend Johnny Campbell, 42, San Clemente, Calif. now oversees the operation of his own JCR Honda factory-supported team and is race-ready and listed as a co-rider, if needed. The JCRHonda rider of record on a Honda CRF450X bike is Tim Weigand (1x).
Another of the top SCORE Baja racing motorcycle riders, Steve Hengeveld, 38, Oak Hills, Calif., has seven overall wins in this race and will be riding this year as one of the three co-riders with rider of record Robby Bell, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. on the No. 8x THR Motorsports Kawasaki KX450F.
Completing his first year as the new owner of SCORE International, based in Reno, Nev., Roger Norman has announced a first for SCORE as all Pro motorcycle, Pro ATV and Sportsman Motorcycle and Sportsman ATV classes will start on Thursday night, Nov. 14 at 11 p.m. with all the car and truck classes starting at approximately 9 a.m. Friday morning, Nov. 15 in the elapsed-time race where each vehicle will leave in various intervals.
This month’s race will cover much of Mexico’s majestic Baja California Norte portion of the peninsula, starting and finishing in Ensenada, Baja California. Upwards of 300 entries, from nearly 20 countries and 40 U.S. States, competing in 41 Pro and 8 Sportsman classes for cars, truck, motorcycles and ATVs are expected to compete in this year’s international challenge.
SCORE is celebrating its 40th year as the world’s foremost desert racing organization in 2013. As the World Series is to baseball and the Super Bowl to football, the legendary Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 stands as tall at the pinnacle of the motorsports world today as it did when it began 45 years ago.
Norman has also announced that for the first time in race history, there will be qualifying for start position for several classes. Held on Wednesday and not open to the public because of safety concerns, qualifying will be held for SCORE Trophy and the unlimited Class 1, by class along with all Pro Motorcycle and Pro ATV classes with each division grouped together. It will be held outside of Ensenada on a location that doesn’t include the race course.
SCORE BAJA, OF COURSE
SCORE has announced that this year’s race will have the longest course in history for the years when it is a loop race. This year’s single-loop course will be approximately 883.00 miles, starting and finishing in the heart Ensenada and covering both sides of the Baja California peninsula in the Baja Notre state from Ensenada on the Pacific Ocean over to San Felipe on the Sea of Cortez and back. There will be eight physical checkpoints used during the race as well as over 70 virtual checkpoints.
The longest previous course distance in the 26 previous years it has been a loop race was 822 miles in 1985. The longest loop course since 2000 was 808 miles in 2003. The longest distance the course traveled in the history of this race was the once-in-lifetime 2000 Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 which covered a total of 1,679.54 miles from Ensenada to Cabo San Lucas to celebrate the new millennium.
GPS files and course notes will be available Thursday night on the SCORE website at www.score-international.com.
Live pre-race and race days internet coverage produced by the SCORE Dirt LiveHD team will be airing on www.score-international.com. This race will also debut SCORE’s new tracking system that will also be accessed through the SCORE website. On-site in the start/finish line area, fans will be able to enjoy the live coverage of the race displayed on SCOREvision, SCORE’s new huge LED screen.
BFGOODRICH TIRES UNMATCHED
In 2013, BFGoodrich Tires is celebrating its 38th year as a major player in SCORE Baja racing. In addition to being the official tire of SCORE International for nearly four decades, BFGoodrich Tires has produced the tire of choice for 25 of the overall 4-wheel vehicle winners in the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000, including 25 of the last 27 years along with a record-run of 20 straight from 1986 through 2005.
BFGoodrich Tires also provides unmatched pit support for pre-registered racers using their tires with seven full-service pit areas along the race course out of and back into Ensenada along with complete radio relay the entire 883.0 miles.
SCORE IRONMAN CLASS
This race will mark the debut of the SCORE Ironman class, where eight Pro motorcycle entries to date will compete against each other and the clock as they attempt to complete the entire course under the time limit while riding solo. To date, a total of eight racers, have entered the class with the intent to ride the entire race solo in their quests for the SCORE Ironman awards.
AWARDS LIKE NO OTHER
Iconic GRAHAM-Watchmaker of Switzerland, has returned as the Official Timekeeper of SCORE International. GRAHAM has designed and produced for the second year a high-end SCORE Baja 1000 collector’s timepiece that will also be one of two unique and special awards to be presented to the overall winners of the race. One of the unique collectible timepieces will be awarded to each of the three overall race division winners—the overall 4-wheel vehicle, motorcycle and ATV champions at this year’s granddaddy of all desert races.
In addition to the once-in-a-lifetime GRAHAM SCORE Baja 1000 timepieces, the overall champions in the race will also receive, like they have for over 20 years from SCORE, the specially-designed bronze statue of Cuauhtémoc, the last of 11 Aztec emperors from early Mexican history, one of the most revered figures in the history of the country.
In addition to season class point championships and World Championship titles, the racers are also competing for part of the nearly $400,000 in cash purse and contingency postings each race. There are also the numerous annual SCORE Off-Roadsman of the Year Awards. Drivers in the Pro car and truck classes are also attempting to earn prestigious SCORE Toyota Milestone Awards given to all car and truck class drivers who complete every required mile of the race season. With 44 racers still in the hunt, these awards are being presented by Toyota Motorsports for the 28th consecutive year.
BY THE NUMBERS
While entries will be accepted up to just prior to the start of the race, as many as 50 late entries are expected during race week in Ensenada.
The car and truck classes with the most entries to date are SCORE Trophy Truck (33), Class 10 (20), Class 19 (17), Class 1 (13), and Class 1/2-1600 (11).
Among the motorcycle and ATV classes, Class 30 for motorcycles for riders over 30 years old has the most entries to date with 11.
46th Annual Tecate SCORE Baja 1000
Schedule of Events (as of 10/30/13)
TUESDAY, Nov. 12–(All times PST)
10a.m. – 4 p.m. Annual SCORE Chassis Inspections (Las Dunas Motel) Two blocks south of contingency next to Velmar Hospital
2 p.m. – 8 p.m. – Racer Registration, Casino Room-Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center (adjacent to S/F)
3 p.m. – 6 p.m. — Media Registration, Casino Room-Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center
WEDNESDAY, Nov. 13–(All times PST)
9 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. – Qualifying-SCORE Trophy Truck, Class 1—LOCATION RESTRICTED
Noon – 2:30 p.m. – Qualifying-Pro Motorcycles, Pro ATVs—LOCATION RESTRICTED
Noon – 6 p.m. –Racer Registration, Casino Room-Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center (adjacent to S/F)
1 p.m. – 6 p.m. — Media Registration, Casino Room-Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center
7 p.m. – Midnight – Monster Energy SCORE Papas & Beer Street Party, Avenida Ruiz (adjacent to Papas Y Beer) All are welcome
THURSDAY, Nov. 14–(All Times PST)
9 a.m. – 5 p.m. — Racer Registration, Casino Room-Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center
9 a.m. – 5 p.m. — Media Registration, Casino Room-Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center
10 a.m. to 5 p.m. — Contingency Row, Boulevard Costero, Next to Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center
10 a.m. – 6 p.m. — Technical Inspection, End of Contingency Row
4 p.m. — Wildman Adrian Cenni first ever 360 Truck Barrel Roll in the wash just off start/finish line area
7 p.m. — Mandatory Racer Meeting-Cathedral Room, Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center
7 p.m. – 2 a.m. – SCORE Baja 1000 Goes Green, Monster Energy SCORE Motorcycle Start Party, Blvd Costero (adjacent to S/F) All are welcome
10 p.m. – Midnight (Nov. 14) – Late Motorcycle/ATV racer registration—Casino Room, Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center
10 p.m. – Midnight (Nov. 14) — Late Tech Inspection (Motorcycles & ATVs), start line, next to Riviera CC
10:30 p.m. – 12:30 a.m. (Nov. 14-15); BFG Tires/Baja California Secretary of Tourism/SCORE Media Center—Casino Room, Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center
11 p.m. – RACE START – Pro Motorcycles, Pro ATVs, Sportsman Motorcycles, Sportsman ATVs
STARTING ORDER (Subject to change): (One Pro vehicle every 120 seconds, one SPT vehicle every 60 seconds)
Motorcycles—Pro Motorcycles (based on qualifying results), non-qualifying motorcycles by entry date/time; ATVs—Pro ATVs
(based on qualifying results), non-qualifying ATVs by entry date/time, SPT M/C>, SPT M/C<, SPT ATV
Race in Progress — Posting of Unofficial Results — SCORE Media Center, Casino Room, Riviera CC
FRIDAY, Nov. 15–(All Times PST)
7 a.m. – 9 a.m. – Late car & truck racer registration—Casino Room, Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center
7 a.m. – 9 a.m. — Late Tech Inspection (Car & Truck), start/finish line, next to Riviera CC (Tecate Arch)
8 a.m. – Midnight - BFG Tires/Baja California Secretary of Tourism/SCORE Media Center—Casino Room, Riviera CC
9:00 a.m. (APPROX) RACE START – Cars and Trucks
STARTING ORDER (Subject to change): (One vehicle every 30 seconds)
Cars and Trucks–TT, 1, 10, TT Spec, SL, 8, HM, 7200, BC, PT, 6100, 3000, TL, 4000, 1/2-1600, 5, 7, 7SX, 5-1600, 2, 2D, 3, 3700, 1700, 4400, SF, SM, 9, 11, 19, SPTUnl Truck, SPT Buggy, SPTLtd Truck, SPT UTV
TIME LIMIT: All vehicles will have a 36-hour time limit from the time each starts.
Race in Progress — Posting of Unofficial Results — SCORE Media Center, Casino Room, Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center
SATURDAY, Nov. 16–(All Times PST)
12:01 a.m. – 11 p.m. – BFG Tires/Baja California Secretary of Tourism/SCORE Media Center—Casino Room, Riviera CC
Race in Progress — Posting of Unofficial Results — SCORE Media Center, Casino Room, Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center
SUNDAY, Nov. 17–(all times PST)
7 a.m. – Noon — BFGoodrich Tires/Baja California Secretary of Tourism/SCORE Media Center—Casino Room, Riviera CC
8 a.m. — Posting of FINAL UNOFFICIAL Results—Casino Room, Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center
10 a.m. — Awards Celebration-Amphitheater, Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center