Bryce Menzies Wins the 2012 SCORE Baja 500 - Video
After battling through 450 miles of rocks, silt, ditches and dust, only a few seconds separated BJ Baldwin and Bryce Menzies for the overall four-wheel win at the SCORE Tecate Baja 500. With Baldwin crossing the line first in the #97 Monster Energy Chevy Silverado Trophy Truck, the team held its breath waiting to see if the #1 Trophy Truck of Menzies would cross the finish line shortly thereafter.
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After a few moments, the Red Bull Menzies Motorsports Ford F-150 came flying around the corner so fast that Bryce actually misjudged the turn and spun out. He quickly straightened out and crossed the finish line thinking he had lost the race.
“Yeah, I kinda thought that we only had four seconds to win so I just hucked it in at the finish, and I finally did a donut, but not on purpose at all,” Menzies said at the finish line. “We started first last year and came away with the win. This year, we started 19th and we knew we were just going to be in dust all day, and I got three flats (all which were my fault), so that held us up a bit. Just what a tough race … I’ve never driven that truck that hard in my life.”
When the times were tallied, Menzies edged out Baldwin by a mere 11 seconds – a margin so close that it would’ve made his go-for-broke final that much more heartbreaking had he lost. Finishing in third place in Trophy Truck was Jesse Jones, mentor to Menzies and his driving partner for the upcoming Baja 1000 run to La Paz later this year.
“We were in bad, bad dust all the way to mile 275 – I got by Robby there – and it kinda started to open up a little,” Jones said. “But, I don’t know, these guys just got away from us and we really couldn’t run them down.”
Finishing in fourth place was the team of Dan McMillin and Chuck Hovey. The team had issues when they lost the rear brakes earlier in the race, which Hovey said definitely made it tough bringing the truck in for the finish.
“It was a tough day, one of the toughest drives I’ve done probably because this thing wanted to keep tipping over,” Hovey said. “You drive this thing with the rear brakes and we really didn’t have much rear brakes so it was tough.”
Other Trophy Truck finishers included Mark Weyrich who finished fifth in class, Andy McMillin who earned sixth with co-driver and father Scott, and Chris Kemp finished seventh in class.
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