After having jack issues and struggling to get a spare tire on, McMillin says they lost about 10-12 minutes, which allowed Juan Carlos Lopez and Baldwin to get by him.
“We took off right behind BJ, tried to catch him and tried to pass him,” McMillin said. “We knew we had to get in front of him. Even though Bryce was way out front, you never know what can happen, and obviously something happened to them, but it’s just a bummer because the guys prepped a great truck and Rob drove a really good race and that one flat tire cost us the win.”
MacCachren knew it was going to be a tough race, and he and McMillin were with 6 minutes and 18 seconds of a Baja 1000 victory and class championship.
“Our two trucks were within a couple of miles of each other,” MacCachren said. “They never separated more than a couple miles. It was a battle. It’s a chess game. The cards are played, and when things happen, you deal with them. When BJ got in front of us, he kind of had us in the place where he needed us, and we needed to get ahead of him to beat him on time and it didn’t quite work out. We’re happy to be here. It’s very rewarding to finish this race, it was very difficult – the most difficult Baja 1000 loop race that I’ve ever been involved with – and we’re happy to be here at the finish line.”
Finishing in third place in Trophy Truck was the team of Troy Herbst and Ryan Arciero. After a tough qualifying session, the team started further back off the line than they had hoped, but after a solid first 380 miles by Herbst, Arciero took over and drove the truck to the final podium spot.
“It was a long day for both of us,” Arciero said. “The elements got to us a little bit. Being that deep in traffic it cost us some time on the track during the race, but we just started knocking them off one at a time. (Troy) gave the truck to us in about eighth or ninth place and we just started picking off the guys to get us to third.”
Arciero also elaborated on exactly what made this year’s 1000 such a tough race.
“I’ve done about 20 of these, and we say it every year but this is the toughest one that I’ve done,” he said. “I think more than anything it was just mentally draining because of how technical it was, and I mean technical from the get-go, and then you add in the elements, you add in the mist that was down south, you add in the rain coming into the finish line, you had the dust in there, and I tell you what you put the recipe together for the toughest race that SCORE has even put on.”
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Finishing in fourth was Juan Carlos, who shared driving duties with his 18-year-old son Apdaly. Another family team finished just behind them, as Dan and Luke McMillin and Chuck Hovey crossed the line in fifth.
“We had a solid start going, and at mile 70 we chucked a starter and were forced to pull that out, and then the truck jumped into a limp mode of some sort, so we lost probably 15 minutes there,” Luke McMillin told us after the race. Although the team had a mostly clean race after that point, but Dan did have an issue with a booby trap later in the race. “He hit a booby trap and took out a driveshaft, but other than those issues we had a clean day.”
Finishing in sixth place in Trophy Truck was Robby Gordon, who’s team rebuilt his Trophy Truck prior to the race but lost an hour and a half after breaking his right front spindle on his truck early in the race. “You never know in Baja,” Gordon said. “It was a good run for us. It was a tough course. Good job Roger [Norman] and Score International.”
Be sure to check out Off-Road.com’s 2013 SCORE Baja 1000 coverage here.
Unofficial Results – Trophy Truck
1. BJ Baldwin – 18:36:10.017 (47.471 av. mph)
2. Rob MacCachren – 18:43:28.944 (47.163 av. mph)
3. Troy Herbst – 19:15:33.776 (45.853 av. mph)
4. Juan Lopez – 19:37:56.304 (44.982 av. mph)
5. Dan McMillin –19:54:23.346 (44.363 av. mph)
6. Robby Gordon – 20:19:51.650 (43.436 av. mph)
7. Ron Whitton – 22:30:12.145 (39.243 av. mph)
8. Bryce Menzies – 23:39:48.766 (37.319 av. mph)