El Centro, California – In less than thirty days the Imperial Valley will be flooded with tens of thousands of people traveling from all parts of the region and beyond. They will not be arriving just to enjoy our great weather, but to be a part of the very first Score International Imperial Valley 250 race.
The event begins on April 25th through April 27th with the actual race day being Saturday April 26th. Off-roaders from all over the country and Mexico are expected to participate in the race and with them, scores of enthusiasts descending upon the desert community where dirt dreams are made.
Although SCORE International is known worldwide for off-road racing their acronym is setting the stage this time where its roots began as the: Southern California Off Road Enthusiasts. The Imperial Valley region definitely fits that bill as being in the southern most part of the state and has excellent terrain for racing, much like the beloved Baja races. The race is also expected to boost the lagging economy for the area.
The race is sponsored by SCORE International, the El Centro Chamber of Commerce, City of El Centro along with many area businesses. The race area is located just west of El Centro California in Imperial County with the area bordering just minutes from Mexicali Mexico. The region is prime for formal off-road racing as the desert to the west, the famous Glamis sand dunes and the Colorado river to the east are already key locations for off-roaders. The region also offers good roads and easy access for travelers from all directions and amenities that can be difficult to find in some locations are readily available in the area.
“The El Centro Chamber of Commerce wanted to bring the IV SCORE 250 to the Imperial Valley and during our discussion there was no question in my mind other than to do it” states Darletta Willis CEO of the El Centro Chamber. “This is a great opportunity for El Centro and our merchants” she stated. For Jaime Honold, President of the El Centro Chamber and owner of the popular Burgers and Beer restaurants made the IV SCORE 250 his number one priority. “Our area benefited greatly when the SNORE (Southern Nevada Off Road Enthusiasts) race was held here a couple of years ago. The Imperial Valley Mall saw sales increase during the race that were better than holiday sale numbers” says Honold “There is no doubt that people really enjoy racing here and the IV SCORE 250 race has the potential to be even greater for our local economy” he finished. There was more support lined up for the IV 250 as the City of El Centro stood in support of bringing the race to the area. “Our City Council as well as many of our residents felt this race was important to not only want it here but to support the efforts of bring the race here” said Ruben Duran, City Manager of the City of El Centro.
The Imperial Valley is indeed home to many off-road enthusiasts as local businesses also clamored to bring the IV 250 to El Centro with the likes of Marty Coyne owner of the IV Cycle Center “I participated in many off-road races and this is huge for Imperial Valley to have a SCORE race here. We are working diligently to make the IV 250 a race of all races” says Coyne who is also on the committee for the IV 250. “Having the race in the Imperial Valley is just a fantastic venue and can certainly pave the way for more racing in the area” says CEO of SCORE International Roger Norman “the race provides a great opportunity for off-road racers on both sides of the border”.
Contingency, the event that brings out all off-roading vehicles for safety inspections will be held at the Imperial Valley Mall in El Centro on Friday April 25th with the race beginning on Saturday April 26th with the start line near Wheeler Road. Spectator and driver safety is priority one for the IV 250 with proper safety markers (see map). “Imperial Valley’s logistics are perfect for this kind of event. As a past SCORE race series participant I can attest that this is the best area.” says Rob Zimmer owner of Spectrum Advertising and IV 250 committee member. “I want to see everyone have a great and safe time. When watching the race be sure to leave racers plenty of room and stay a safe distance from the track and pay attention to signage. Off road racing is not like pavement racing. The race coarse is eroded every time a vehicle passes. Part of what makes viewing fun and hazardous is the dynamics the soil creates as it changes.” says Zimmer.
SCORE International is famous for its flagship event, the Baja 1000, as well as the Baja 500 and the San Felipe 250. Founded by Mickey Thompson in 1973, SCORE continues today under the direction of Roger Norman who purchased SCORE from Sal Fish in 2012. For more information, please visit ivscore250.com.