Just minutes before the start of the 45th Tecate SCORE Baja 500, the motorcycle and ATV teams gathered at the starting line in Ensenada, the pre-dawn peace and quiet was occasionally shattered by staccato exhaust notes in anticipation of the start.
Gathered at the front of the line, four motorcycles, led by THR Motorsports/Monster Energy Kawasaki rider Robby Bell, was the picture of focus in anticipation of a repeat of the team’s 2012 race victory. Bell said that he just wanted to have a mistake-free race.
Factory FMF KTM Offroad riders Kurt Caselli, Mike Brown, and Ivan Ramirez have been down in Baja California, Mexico, preparing for the upcoming SCORE Baja 500. The riders left the line this morning to tackle the 500.99-mile course, but a great deal of preparation went into this team – well, every team’s effort – to complete the grueling race.
This video just released by KTM shows the team getting ready for the Baja 500, giving a behind-the-scenes view of what goes into not only completing the race but also trying to win it.
Jericho, UT – Factory FMF/KTM rider Kurt Caselli took his fourth consecutive win of the AMA National Hare & Hound Series at the sixth round held in Jericho, UT.
Caselli got off to a great start sitting in third position at the end of the bomb run. His teammate, Ivan Ramirez, earned the holeshot and led the pack as they began the first loop.
Caselli quickly passed into second place part way into the first loop. Moments later he was able to get around his teammate after Ramirez got turned around on the course. Once in the lead, Caselli quickly gapped the field and went on to collect his fourth win of the season with a four minute lead over the second place ride of Jacob Argubright. Ramirez eventually got back on track and was able to come back to a fourth place finish.
Once a year the sleepy beach town of San Felipe is awoken by the sounds of chase crews, pre-runner vehicles and race machines tearing around the streets and nearby desert in preparation for the season opener of the SCORE Baja series. The town may be a destination for those seeking relaxation and an escape from the hustle and bustle of the American way of life, but the race itself offers nothing of the sort. The terrain is brutal. The course features more whoops than most racers would care to hit in a lifetime and embedded rocks blending in so well with the dirt that it makes racing feel a bit like a game of Russian roulette. Maintaining focus over such unreadable terrain is of the utmost importance as the slightest mistake could end your race. Couple the mental test with the physicality of the course and the speeds required to compete and it can be argued that the San Felipe 250 is one of the toughest off road races in the world.
Murrieta, CA – KTM Motorsports is excited to announce the extension of Factory rider Kurt Caselli’s contract to race the Dakar Rally and SCORE/Baja events through year 2016.
Caselli, who has been a member of the KTM Factory team for the past 11 seasons, is excited to stay with his orange family for an additional three years while also adding new events to his schedule.
The 29 year-old rider raced his first Dakar Rally in January 2013 where he impressively won two stages of the event. His speed, eagerness to learn and ability to quickly adapt to the surroundings caught the eye of KTM’s Director of Racing, Pit Beirer. Together, Beirer and Factory FMF/KTM Team Manager Antti Kallonen, reached an agreement that would allow Caselli to represent the Red Bull KTM Factory World Rally Team for the next three years while also continuing his US based SCORE/Baja racing efforts as a member of the Factory FMF/KTM Team.
SAN DIEGO — Fresh from victory in San Felipe, Mexico’s Gus Vildosola will be the guest host tonight at 7 p.m. Pacific Time on Roger Norman’s Dirt Live weekly internet broadcast. Airing on www.score-international.com, the show is broadcast from the SCORE International tech shop in San Diego.
Roger Norman’s Dirt Live one-hour show is broadcast live weekly and the show is anchored around Norman’s two desert racing series, the SCORE Desert Series and the High Desert Racing Association as well as the new bonus points championship purse program he has developed called the World Championship of Desert Racing. Broadcast studios are located at the SCORE tech shop in San Diego. All live events this will be the ninth Dirt Live show to air.
SCORE Officials announces today a shakeup in the overall finishers at the 2013 Mastercraft Safety Tecate SCORE San Felipe 250. After receiving a penalty for veering too far off the course (a 500-foot rule was instituted by SCORE’s Roger Norman), Bryce Menzies moved backed to second place which meant Gustavo Vildosola moved into the first-place spot for the overall victory. Finishing after Menzies in third place was last year’s winner Rob MacCachren, who moved up a spot after Juan Carlos Lopez was assessed a penalty.
In the Pro Motorcycle class, KTM-mounted Kurt Caselli was unofficially named the winner but later penalized for straying too far off course, giving the win to JCR Honda’s Timmy Weigand. Caselli moved back into second place, while Kendall Norman (who solo-ed the race) moved up into the final podium spot.
Murrieta, CA – Factory FMF/Bonanza Plumbing KTM rider Kurt Caselli and Ivan Ramirez will return to San Felipe, Mexico to defend their SCORE/Baja San Felipe 250 title this coming weekend aboard their number 2X KTM race machine.
The two riders won the event last year aboard the carbureted version of the KTM 450 SX-F. Caselli and Ramirez have both been in Mexico for the last week alongside fellow KTM riders Mike Brown and Toby Price. Brown and Price will race on an identically prepared KTM 450 SX-F with the number 3X. All four riders have been pre-riding the course since the course opened to competitors last week.
“So far our riders have reported that the course is slightly different than last year but that they are happy with the changes,’ commented Team Manager Antti Kallonen. “We are looking forward to getting out front early and hopefully having a repeat of last year’s win.”
SAN DIEGO—Colorful SoCal desert racer/TV action sports commentator Cameron Steele and champion motorcycle racer Kurt Caselli will be the featured guests Tuesday at 7 p.m. during the new Roger Norman’s Dirt Live weekly desert racing internet broadcast on www.score-international.com.
Roger Norman’s Dirt Live one-hour show is broadcast live weekly on Tuesdays at 7 p.m. Pacific Time. The show content is centered around his two desert racing series, the SCORE Desert Series and the High Desert Racing Association as well as the new bonus points championship purse program he has developed called the World Championship of Desert Racing. Broadcast studios are located at the Norman Motorsports race shop in San Diego. All live events, this will be the fifth Dirt Live show to air.
When gearbox trouble struck for Cyril Despres 30km into the marathon stage of the bike race it looked like his dream of a fifth Dakar victory was over for this year. However, help arrived from Orlen Team’s Marek Dabrowski who offered to swap engines with Cyril.
After Stage Eight the gap between Cyril and the top of the timings in the bike race stands at 24m26s. Now Cyril has the Rest Day to plot his tactics for clawing back this time in the second week of the race.
“With the help of Marek and my team-mates Ruben Faria, Kurt Caselli and Joan Pedrero we took two hours to change both engines. It goes without saying that I owe all the guys a huge debt of gratitude. It was a very eventful day at the Dakar that’s for sure.”
Nasser and co-driver Lucas Cruz had made a bright start to the stage before the heavens opened and the day turned into a washout. Nasser’s Buggy was the fastest car over the first 100km before Stage Eight came to an unscheduled stop.
The ultimate decision of the race stewards was to hand all of the cars that were unable to complete the stage the same time as the last competitor who finished before the neutralisation. This revised result keeps Nasser in second place overall and trailing Stephane Peterhansel by just 3m14s.
“It was our plan to come to the Rest Day with the lead but sometimes we must accept what will be. There’s still a long way to go at this race and after the Rest Day I will start the following stage as the sixth car. This will give me a great chance to make up some time in this race.”