NOTE: SCORE Trophy Truck numerical entry list, all-time stats at bottom of text
ENSENADA, Baja California, Mexico—Envied by some, admired by many more, loathed by a few and respected by all as the ‘Monsters of the Desert’, 36 SCORE Trophy Trucks are ready to roar in next week’s 2nd SCORE Baja 400, presented by VP Racing.
The marquee SCORE racing division for high-tech, 1000 horsepower, unlimited custom trucks was created by iconic former SCORE owner Sal Fish in 1994 and pre-running continues this week in Mexico’s majestic and mysterious Baja California peninsula for Round 3 of the four-race 2021 SCORE World Desert Championship. WHEN
The youngest race in the long and storied nearly 50-year history of the World’s Foremost Desert Racing Organization will be held next week (Sept. 14-19) in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico. CLOSED START/FINISH
Because of the significant health and safety BioSecurity protocols developed by SCORE in conjunction with and the approval of Mexican state and local health authorities as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, all race-week festivities and the start/finish line compound will be restricted access only and closed to the general public.
The SCORE Baja 400 race start/finish compound will be located Northeast of downtown Ensenada, one-mile east of the end of the extension of Avenida Ruiz on Libramiento Ensenada which can also be accessed off of Highway 3 (Ensenada-Tecate).
Use the following link for the map to the SCORE start/finish compound: https://score-international.com/raceinfo/map-to-compound/.
Spectators, adhering to the protocols, will be allowed to watch the race from around the 400-mile race course. WHO…WHAT
Round 3 of the four-race 2021 SCORE World Desert Championship has entries from all across the United States and around the world competing in classes for cars, trucks, UTVs, motorcycles and quads are anticipated for the upcoming internationally-televised desert race in Mexico’s Baja California. QUALIFYING
Qualifying (closed to the public) for starting positions within their respective classes on a special 5.37-mile course will be held on Wednesday (Sept. 15), starting at 8 a.m. PDT. Classes that will be qualifying for the SCORE Baja 400 are SCORE Trophy Truck, SCORE TT Legend, the unlimited Class 1 and the Trophy Truck Spec class. MAGICAL MONSTERS
Roaring through the desert terrain with the grace, beauty and power of the Bolshoi Ballet, the 36-truck SCORE Trophy Truck field for this year’s SCORE Baja 400 includes 20 racers who have combined to win 88 of the 136 races in the history of the featured class.
Enjoying its 28th season at the forefront of the sport, this year’s field also includes six racers who have combined to win the SCORE Trophy Truck season point championship in 13 of the first 27 campaigns.
Included in that elite group are the season champs of the last six consecutive seasons in the SCORE World Desert Championship.
‘Chairman of the Board’ in SCORE Trophy Truck is Las Vegas Off-Road Motorsports Hall of Famer Rob MacCachren with 17 all-time SCORE Trophy Truck race wins. The ‘Mac Attack’ is the winningest racer in the history of off-road racing with more than 300 class victories in multiple classes in the desert, short-course and stadium off-road racing, the amiable MacCachren has also won three SCORE Trophy Truck season point titles (1994, 2007-with Mark Post, and 2018). He drives the No. 11 BFGoodrich Tires Ford F-150 (built by Geiser Brothers).
Also entered are three of the four racers tied for second in career SCORE Trophy Truck race wins with 11 victories each are second-generation racers Robby Gordon and Tim Herbst along with third-generation desert racer Andy McMillin.
Another ORMHOF inductee, Gordon, Charlotte, N.C., who has had racing success also in IndyCar, NASCAR, Rally and Stadium, drives his No. 77 Chevy Silverado built by his own R. Gordon race shop. He has two career SCORE Trophy Truck season point titles (1996 and 2009).
Another Las Vegas ORMHOFF inductee, Tim Herbst pilots his No. 19 Ford F-150 built by Herbst/Smith Fab. Sharing the driving duties with Herbst will be fellow-Las Vegan Pat Dean who has one career SCORE Trophy Truck race victory
Herbst and his older brother Ed Herbst earned four SCORE Trophy Truck season point crowns over a five-year period (1999, 2000, 2002, 2003).
San Diego’s Andy McMillin, son of former SCORE champion Scott McMillin and grandson of the late Corky McMillin, leads the 2021 SCORE Trophy season point standings in his No. 31 Chevy Silverado built by Mason Motorsports. He has a second and third place finish in the two races so far this season. He also won the 2019 SCORE Trophy Truck season point champion while finishing second in the inaugural SCORE Baja 400 in 2019.
While Andy McMillin leads the 2021 SCORE World Desert Championship, MacCachren is in fourth place followed by Herbst in fifth at the midway point of the season. MORE STALLIONS
Leading the next wave of SCORE Trophy Truck stallions entered in this race are Bryce Menzies, and Gus Vildosola Jr with six career race wins, Larry Roeseler with five and Ryan Arciero who has four career SCORE Trophy Truck race victories.
Menzies, also of Las Vegas, was the 2011 SCORE Trophy Truck season point champ while also winning the 2011 SCORE Rookie of the Year Award. He pilots the AWD No.7 Ford Raptor built by Mason Motorsports. He opened the 2021 campaign by winning the SCORE San Felipe 250.
Part of the most prominent Mexican racing team in SCORE, Vildosola Jr, of Mexicali, has returned to full-time competition and drives his No. 21 Ford Raptor built by the team’s Vildosola Racing shop.
Dubbed ‘Mr. Baja’ because of his amazing history in SCORE Baja racing both on two-wheels and four-wheels, Roeseler, Boulevard, Calif. will be driving the No. 43 Baja Jerky Toyota Tundra built by ID Designs. A member of both the Off-Road Motorsports and America Motorcycle Association Halls of Fame, Roeseler earned his fifth career SCORE Trophy Truck race win by capturing June’s 53rd SCORE Baja 500 where he now has 12 career overall victories including nine on motorcycles, two in open-wheel desert race cars and one in SCORE Trophy Truck. Roeseler also won last year’s SCORE Baja 1000 as the second driver for Luke McMillin.
Arciero, Foothill Ranch, Calif., returns as the defending SCORE Baja 400 overall winner from 2019 as the race was cancelled in 2020 because of the health pandemic. In this year’s race he will be the second driver for Mike Walser, Comfort, Texas, in the No. 89 Mason-built Chevy Silverado.
Entering this year’s SCORE Baja 400, Roeseler is second in SCORE Trophy Truck points behind A. McMillin and Vildosola Jr is third at the midway point in the 2021 season. VILDOSOLA SR
Joining his son at the starting line will be Gus Vildosola Sr, Mexicali with three career SCORE Trophy Truck race wins. Vildosola Sr will be driver of record in this race to debut his sparkling new AWD No. 12 Ford Raptor built by Mason Motorsports. Splitting the driving with him will be AMA Hall of Famer Ricky Johnson, Trabuco Canyon, Calif.
In 2010 Vildosola Sr teamed with his son as the son/father team became the first Mexican nationals to capture the overall and SCORE Trophy Truck in the iconic SCORE Baja 1000 peninsula race from Ensenada to La Paz. DOUBLE TROUBLE
Father and son Juan C. Lopez and Carlos ‘Apdaly’ Lopez, of Tecate, Mexico and ORMHOF inductee Cameron Steele each have earned two career SCORE Trophy Truck race wins.
The Lopez father/son have won once together and once separately. For this race the family duo will race together in their No. 9 custom-built Ford Raptor.
The popular Steele, San Clemente, Calif. who is also a renown professional action sports TV announce and does the intro and close for the SCORE race TV shows, will be driving his No. 16 Desert Assassins Ford Raptor built by Geiser Brothers. McMANIA
If one McMillin racer wasn’t enough to compete against, the SCORE World Desert Championship includes Andy McMillin’s cousins Daniel McMillin and Luke McMillin. Carrying the banner of the Big Blue M racing machine, Daniel and Luke each have one career SCORE Trophy Truck race wins and Luke is the reigning SCORE Trophy Truck season point champion. MORE SINGLES
Also part of the field in this race with one career SCORE Trophy Truck race win each are brothers Alan and Aaron Ampudia, Ensenada, Mexico, Josh Daniel, Vista, Calif., Rick D. Johnson, Barstow, Calif. and Eduardo Laguna, Mexicali.
The Ampudia brothers will again race together while the other three will be the second driver for their respective SCORE Trophy Trucks.
Daniel is teamed with Justin Matney, Bristol, Tenn., Johnson will split the driving with Rolf Helland, Morris, Ill., in SCORE TT Legend, and Laguna will be the additional driver for Mario Fuente, Juarez, Mexico in the unlimited Class 1. POSSIBLE MAS
Nothing is for certain in SCORE Baja racing especially when 36 thoroughbreds glide their way over the unforgiving terrain of the Baja peninsula.
While 20 of the 36 entries in the behemoth class have tasted victory in the premier desert racing class, several other contenders will be in contention for coveted spots on the podium.
Youth may be served with the likes of 16-year-old Jax Redline, San Antonio, Texas and 17-year- old Madix Bailey, Riverside, Calif., in the starting grid.
Then there are cagey veterans like Justin Lofton, Brawley, Calif., Dan Myers, Newport Beach, Calif., Mike Lawrence, Banning, Calif. and Eric Hardin, Orange, Calif.
Adding even more spice to the palatable pot is veteran Dave Taylor, Paige, Ariz., who has recruited SCORE racing champion Sara Price, Canyon Country, Calif. as his second driver. Price, who is competing this year in the new Formula-E Off-Road Series of electric SUVs returns to SCORE as the 2019 SCORE TT Spec season champion.
An extra topping of competition will come from Dakar Rally racer AJ Jones, Litchfield Park, Ariz., whose father Jesse Jones, who won the 2010 SCORE Trophy Truck season point championship, may end up as a second driver for his talented son.
Easy to see then, anything is possible when these SCORE ‘Monsters of the Desert’ start their engines. PRE-RUNNING
Official practice, or pre-running, on the official 400-mile race course for this year’s 2nd SCORE Baja 400 began this past Saturday. Pre-running starts at race mile 33.43 and finishes at race mile 366.64. The first 33.43 miles, which will be used in both directions during the race, will be available for pre-running only on Thursday (Sept. 16) and Friday (Sept. 17) and only in the outbound direction.
The official post-draw starting list, qualifying order entry list, course map, Racer’s Brief, Course Notes, GPS files and Penalty Brief are all now available on the SCORE website at the following link… https://score-international.com/raceinfo/2021-baja-400-sept-14-19-2021/. COURSE PREVIEW
The race features a course designed, plotted and marked by SCORE President/Race Director Jose A. Grijalva, of 400 miles of rugged Baja California terrain.
Running in a clockwise direction, the race will start and finish without spectators in the SCORE compound on the Northeast side of Ensenada.
The race features an impressive course of 400 miles. It runs west to Ojos Negro then south down the middle and then up the Pacific Coast side of Baja California.
There are two physical checkpoints, 138 virtual checkpoints including two narrow virtual checkpoints for this race course. It also has 13 speed zones for a total of 64.08 miles.
The two physical, full-stop checkpoints—Checkpoint 1 will be located at race mile 94.2 at Independencia and Checkpoint 2 will be at rm 228.82 at the end of the crossover road at Llano Colorado.
The course goes east through Ojos Negros and then begins its Southern journey through Tres Hermanos, east to Highway 3, south through El Alamo, Leyes De Reforma and south through Valle de Trinidad.
From there it winds its way back towards the Pacific Ocean going over the hill at Mike’s Sky Rancho, and then through a new crossover section to Checkpoint 2 and south to make a loop just in north of Colonet. The course than parallels and draws close to the Pacific Ocean going through San Vicente, Santo Tomas and Uruapan before heading back northeast up to Tres Hermanos, Ojos Negros and back to the finish line. ENTRIES
Of the 190 entries from online racer registration, 20 U.S. States are represented plus racers from host Mexico, Bolivia, Canada, Ecuador, France, New Zealand, Peru and South Africa.
Leading the way are SCORE Trophy Truck (including three in SCORE TT Legend) has 36 entries, the Trophy Truck Spec class which has 27 entries to date, the Pro UTV FI (Forced Induction) class with 24, Class 10 (15) and Pro UTV NA (Naturally Aspirated) has eight entries. Leading the Sportsman classes is SPT Motorcycle with eight entries.
For more info, visit https://score-international.com/raceinfo/2021-baja-400-sept-14-19-2021/. GREEN FLAG
The SCORE Baja 400 will be an elapsed-time race with staggered starts as the green flag on Saturday (Sept. 18) will drop first for the motorcycles and quads at 6 a.m. (PDT) and approximately 10 a.m. (PDT) for the cars, trucks and UTVs. While the fastest vehicles are expected to finish in around eight and one-half hours, all vehicles will have a 20-hour time limit to become official finishers in the race. THE FIELD
Over 200 vehicles are expected at the start line for this second-time SCORE race with racers from as many as 20 U.S. States and 10 countries anticipated. SCORE major sponsor BFGoodrich Tires has posted a US$5,000 contingency bonus for the overall 4-wheel race winner to help commemorate this newest race on the SCORE schedule. START GRID-SCORE BAJA 1000
The results of the SCORE Baja 400 also will determine the start order within each class for November’s iconic season-ending BFGoodrich Tires 54th SCORE Baja 1000, presented by 4 Wheel Parts. REGISTRATION/CONTINGENCY
In accordance with the current requirements of the Baja California Secretary of Health BioSecurity protocols, all pre-race activities and the start/finish line SCORE compound will be closed to the public.
During contingency and the race on Saturday, Sept. 18 until the course closes on Sunday morning, Sept. 19, live streaming will be broadcasting race activities and start and finish line interviews. Popular Rat Sult will once again serve as host of the SCORE Live streaming. Assisting Sult will be Dave Arnold.
SCORE live may be launched from the home page of the SCORE website. SCORE REGISTRATION TENT
The SCORE Registration tent at the start of the SCORE compound will be the site of many of the activities surrounding the 2nd SCORE Baja 400, presented by VP Racing Fuels. Racer registration and media registration will both be held on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday (Sept. 15-17).
Racer registration will be held on Wednesday (Sept. 15) from 12 Noon to 8 p.m. PDT along with 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. PDT on Thursday (Sept. 16) and from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. PDT on Friday (Sept. 17).
On Wednesday, no new entries will be accepted after 7 p.m. PDT, on Thursday after 4 p.m. PDT and on Friday, no new entries will be accepted after 3 p.m. PDT
Media registration the SCORE Registration tent will be held on Tuesday (Sept. 14) and Wednesday (Sept. 15) from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. PDT and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. PDT on both Thursday (Sept. 16) and Friday (Sept. 17).
The SCORE Media Center will be in the SCORE Registration tent during the race (Sept. 18-19) with internet access and live race updates, vehicle tracking displays including unofficial elapsed times. SCOREscope 2021 SCORE SKED
Here are the remaining two events in the four-race 2021 SCORE World Desert Championship which will all be held exclusively in Baja California, Mexico for the sixth consecutive year:
2nd SCORE Baja 400, presented by VP Racing Fuels—
September 14-19, Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico
November 15-20, Ensenada, Baja California to La Paz, Baja California Sur, Mexico ESPN TV NETWORKS AGAIN IN 2021
For the third straight year, the 2021 SCORE World Desert Championship races are airing on the ESPN family of networks. The four-races will air as specials on the World of X Games program on ESPN2.
ABC first covered the 1967 and 1968 Baja 1000 races on the old ABC Wide World of Sports show with Jim McKay and again in the late 1980s with veteran motorsports journalists Sam Posey and Jack Arute.
All of the SCORE race coverage shows also continue to air internationally in nearly 25 countries in Europe, Asia, Latin America and South America via syndication and ESPN International. The shows are co-produced by SCORE International and SoCal’s award-winning BCII TV. 2022 SCHEDULE
Here are the dates for the four-race 2022 SCORE World Desert Championship which will be held in Baja California, Mexico for the seventh consecutive year.
November 15-20, Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico SCORE SPONSORS… Official SCORE Sponsors: BFGoodrich Tires-Official Tire and Race Title Sponsor, Monster Energy-Official Energy Drink, 4 Wheel Parts-Official Off-Road Retailer and Race Presenting Partner, Ford-Official Truck and SUV, King Shocks-Official Shock Absorber, Polaris RZR-Official UTV, RACELINE Wheels-Official Wheel, VP Racing Fuels-Official Fuel, Wide Open Excursions-Official Arrive and Drive Company, Crystal Bay Casino-Official Casino and PCI Race Radios. SCORE Official Partners: The Satellite Phone Store, Instant Mexico Auto Insurance, Lucerna Hotel. Additional SCORE Associate Partners: Baja California Secretary of Sustainable Economy and Tourism, XXIII Ensenada Municipal Government, Ensenada Hotel and Motel Association, Ensenada Tourism Marketing Committee and Cruz Roja Mexicana.
For more information regarding SCORE, visit the official website of the SCORE World Desert Championship at www.SCORE-International.com.
2nd SCORE Baja 400, presented by VP Racing Fuels Round 3 of four-race 2021 SCORE World Desert Championship
September 14-19, 2021—400 miles – Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico Total Entries: 190(as of 9/6/21) (from 20 U.S. States, host Mexico, Bolivia, Canada,
Ecuador, France, New Zealand, Peru, So. Africa) (Number, driver of record/additional drivers and/or Navigators, vehicle, engine)
SCORE TROPHY TRUCK (*36) (Unlimited CustomTrucks including Builder)– 1 Luke McMillin, 28, San Diego, Chevy Silverado (Mason) 4 Justin Matney, 35, Bristol, Tenn./Josh Daniel, Vista, Calif., Chevy R-6 (Geiser) 7 Bryce Menzies, 34, Las Vegas, Ford Raptor (Mason) 9 Carlos ‘Apdaly’ Lopez, 26, Tecate, Mexico/Juan C. Lopez, 46, Tecate, Mexico, Ford Raptor (Custom) 10 Alan Ampudia, 30, Ensenada, Mexico/Aaron Ampudia, 28, Ensenada, Mexico, Ford Raptor (ID) 11 Rob MacCachren, 56, Las Vegas, Ford F-150 (Geiser) 12 Gustavo Vildosola Sr, 68, Mexicali, Mexico/Ricky Johnson, 56, Trabuco Canyon, Calif., Ford Raptor (Mason) 14 Bobby Pecoy, 57, Anaheim, Calif./Mike Byrd, 47, Parker, Ariz., Ford Raptor (Geiser) 16 Cameron Steele, 53, San Clemente, Calif., Ford Raptor (Geiser) 18 JP Gomez, 37, Placerville, Calif./, Ford Raptor (Geiser) 19 Tim Herbst, 58, Las Vegas/Pat Dean, 51, Las Vegas, Ford F-150 (Herbst/Smith) 21 Gustavo ‘Tavo’ Vildosola Jr, 39, Mexicali, Mexico, Ford Raptor (Vildosola) 22 Jax Redline, 16, Amarillo, Texas/Apdaly Lopez, 26, Tecate, Mexico, Chevy R-2 (Geiser) 23 Daniel McMillin, 33, San Diego, Chevy 1500 (Mason) 26 Dave Taylor, 47, Paige, Ariz./Sara Price, 29, Canyon Country, Calif., Chevy Silverado (Geiser) 27 Jonathan Brenthel, 42, La Cresta, Calif./Kyle Jergensen, 26, Phelan, Calif., Chevy Silverado (Brenthel) 29 Madix Bailey, 17, Riverside, Calif./Brandon Bailey, 39, Riverside, Calif., Ford Raptor (ID) 31 Andy McMillin, 33, San Diego, Chevy Silverado (Mason) 35 Carlos Penunuri, 40, La Paz, Mexico/Carlos Ortiz, La Paz, Mexico/Jose Ivan Sanchez, La Paz, Mexico, Chevy 1500 (Chevy) 40 Chris Miller, 47, Rancho Santa Fe, Calif./Adalberto Cruz, 30, San Diego, Chevy Silverado (Mason) 41 Justin Lofton, 35, Brawley, Calif./Ray Griffith, 31, Downey, Calif., Chevy Silverado (Mason) 43 Larry Roeseler, 64, Boulevard, Calif., Toyota Tundra (ID) 45 Gary Magness, 67, Denver/Devin House, Denver, Ford F-150 (Herbst/Smith) 52 Rick Sanchez, 44, San Vicente, Mexico/Enrique Varo, San Vicente, Mexico, Ford F-150 (Padmur) 65 Dan Myers, 43, Newport Beach, Calif./Steve Myers, 55, Newport Beach, Calif., Toyota Tundra (R. Gordon) 66 Shane Redline, 45, Amarillo, Texas/Travis Clarke, 41, Encinitas, Calif., Chevy Silverado (Geiser) 71 Eric Hardin, 39, Orange, Calif., GMC Sierra (ID) 77 Robby Gordon, 52, Charlotte, N.C. (Santa Ana, Calif.), Chevy Silverado (R. Gordon) 79 AJ Jones, 25, Litchfield Park, Ariz./, Chevy Silverado (Mason) 85 Mike Lawrence, 33, Banning, Calif./Brad Manka, 45, Yucaipa, Calif., Ford F-150 (Herbst/Smith) 89 Mike Walser, 54, Comfort, Texas/Ryan Arciero, 47, Foothill Ranch, Calif., Chevy Silverado (Mason) 90 Raul Gomez, 42, Placerville, Calif./Darian Gomez, 20, Placerville, Calif., Ford Raptor (Geiser) 92 Paul Nauleau, 24, France/Joe Desrosiers, 52, San Marcos, Calif., Chevy Silverado (Fusion) *SCORE TT LEGEND (Unlimited Custom Trucks, includes builder, Drivers over 50 years old)– 5L Clyde Stacy, 76, Bristol, Va./Nick Vanderwey, 54, Litchfield Park, Ariz., Chevy V-16 (Geiser) 37L Rolf Helland, 61, Morris, Ill./Rick D. Johnson, 55, Barstow, Calif., Ford Raptor (Mason) 53L Wade Morris, 54, Durham, Calif., Ford Raptor (Brenthel)
SCORE Trophy Truck® (debuted in 1994, for 950 horsepower unlimited custom trucks-136 total Desert races, 3 Stadium-short course)