ENSENADA, Baja California, Mexico — Mexico’s veteran champion racer Gustavo Vildosola Sr has drawn the first starting position for the SCORE TT Legend class that starts along with the marquee SCORE Trophy Truck division for next week’s special format Lucerna Hotels & Resorts Tijuana 22nd SCORE Desert Challenge.
Round 3 of the four-race 2018 SCORE World Desert Championship will be held next Saturday and Sunday (Sept. 22-23) with pre-race festivities in Tijuana’s Zona Rio area next Thursday and Friday (Sept. 20-21).
Moving to the largest city on the Baja California peninsula last year, this race will again utilize a special split format two-day event with two laps each day over a 33.7-mile loop course (134.8 total race miles) as the Lucerna Hotels & Resorts Tijuana 22nd SCORE Desert Challenge.
Hotel Lucerna Tijuana on Avenida Paseo de los Heroes in the Zona Rio area of Tijuana is the official event hotel and the hospitality group (Lucerna Hotels & Resorts) is the SCORE Official Hotel for the SCORE World Desert Championship.
Considered legendary among the SCORE faithful followers in Baja, Vildosola, 65, is a successful businessman from Mexicali who is CEO, founder and owner of the prominent Mexicana Logistics trucking company.
In his long career in SCORE racing, he has three career SCORE Trophy Truck race wins as well as three more in the new SCORE TT Legend class for drivers 50 years and older. He also won the SCORE Class 5-1600 season point championship in 1995.
Starting with last year’s SCORE TT Legend class win in the BFGoodrich Tires 50th SCORE Baja 1000, Vildosola Sr is teaming with USA’s Scott Bailey, 58, of Riverside, Calif. The pair also won this year’s BFGoodrich Tires 50th SCORE Baja 500 as well and finished second in class in the season-opening SCORE San Felipe 250 in April. The pair drives the No.12L Chevy Silverado built by ID Designs.
Vildosola Sr made racing history in 2010 when he and his son Gustavo ‘Tavo’ Vildosola became the first Mexican nationals to win the overall title in the SCORE Baja 1000, winning in a peninsula run from Ensenada to La Paz.
Vildosola Sr/S. Bailey will lead a field of 14 starters off the line in the marquee SCORE Trophy Truck division for high-tech, 950-horsepower unlimited custom trucks. The field includes two trucks in the SCORE TT Legend.
With no qualifying for any classes in this race, the drawing determined starting positions within each class.
Among the other racers who drew first starts along with the number of entries to date in their respective classes are: Trophy Truck Spec – No. 276 Gerardo Iribe, Miami, Fla. (Rosarito Beach, Mexico), Curry/ISRT-Chevy 1500, (14 entries to date); Pro UTV FI – No. 2971 Wayne Matlock, Alpine, Calif., Polaris RZR XP4 Turbo (race-high 18 entries); Class 1 – No. 129 Brandon Bailey, Riverside, Calif., Alumi Craft-Chevy (six entries); Class 10 – No. 1062 J.J. Schnarr, Reno, Nev., Alumi Craft-Chevy (14 entries); SCORE Lites – No. 1258 Jeremy Davis, Chino Hills, Calif., Porter-VW (seven entries) and Pro UTV NA – No. 1985 Adrian Arellano, Jamul, Calif., Polaris RZR XP1000 (six entries).
Leading the motorcycles onto the course will be the No. 1x of Shane Esposito, Temecula, Calif., Honda CRF450X (nine entries) in the Pro Moto Unlimited Class. Starting first in the Sportsman Moto class will be the No. 200x of Miguel Pena, Tijuana, Mexico, KTM 450EXC (10 entries).
Pre-running on the official race course, exclusively for all car, truck and UTV classes is being held today and Saturday and pre-running exclusively for motorcycle and quad classes will be held on Sunday. There will be no pre-running on the race course allowed on next Monday through Friday (Sept. 17-21).
Race headquarters will be the Hotel Lucerna in the heart of the Rio Zona area of Tijuana on Avenida Paseo de los Heroes. Racer registration will be held in the hotel on Thursday, Sept. 20 (2 p.m. to 8 p.m. PT) and Friday, Sept. 21 (9 a.m. to 4 p.m. PT).
Media registration will be held at the Hotel Lucerna on Thursday, Sept. 20, from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. PT and on Friday, Sept. 21 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. PT.
Contingency will be held in directly in front of the headquarters hotel on the historic Avenida Paseo de los Heroes from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. PT on Friday (Sept. 21) with tech inspection lasting one hour longer until 6 p.m.
Both being held at the Hotel Lucerna on Friday (Sept. 21), the mandatory aircraft pilot safety meeting will be held at 6 p.m. PT followed by the mandatory racer meeting will be held at 7 p.m. PT
WHERE THEY’RE FROM
With 152 official entries to date, there are racers from 22 U.S. States and eight countries. Nations are USA, host country Mexico, Austria, Canada, Germany, Italy, New Zealand and Peru. States with racers so far are Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Wyoming.
The unique-format race will be held in an area with a spectator-friendly start/finish line compound located on the southeast outskirts of Tijuana at the popular Rancho Casian off of Boulevard 2000 (Highway No. 201) at Km 22.
LA RUTA NUEVA
Starting and finishing adjacent to Rancho Casian in Southeast Tijuana, the partially new race route travels in a counterclockwise direction. The revised 33.7 tough terrain miles were designed and put together by SCORE Race Director Jose A. Grijalva. It covers much of the land used in last year’s 23.4-mile loop, especially from Rancho San Vicente (where the race started last year), considered the roughest section of the course.
There will be two full-stop checkpoints on the course. Checkpoint No. 1 will be at race-mile 16.1 and Checkpoint 2 will be at race-mile 25.8.
The hot pit area for competitors will be in the area around race-mile 3.6.
Heading back to Rancho Casian, the race course goes by the popular Rumorosita, a very popular area that is very rocky and rough.
The final sprint of several miles back into Rancho Casian at the end of each lap is expected to be the fastest section of the race course each day.
RACE DAYS SKED
The event features two days of racing scored as one race. SCORE Race Director Jose Grijalva has been forced to change the race route to a 33.7-mile loop course through the challenging hills in the area that each class will run two laps each day for four total laps and 134.8 total race miles. The classes will be split into three groups and will run one session each day to determine the final results.
The elapsed-time race with a two-hour-fifty minute time limit each day for Groups 1 and 2 and 2:20 for Group 3 will start at 6:30 a.m. PT each day. Group 1 will have motorcycle and quad classes, Group 2 will have the bulk for the car and truck and all UTV classes and will start their two-lap run at 11 a.m. PT each day..
Group 3 with the marquee SCORE Trophy Truck and SCORE TT Legend divisions along with the Unlimited Class 1, Trophy Truck Spec and Hammer Trucks will run the first half of their race (two laps) on Saturday afternoon (Sept. 22) and final half (two laps) on Sunday afternoon (Sept. 23).
Racing for Group 3 featuring the SCORE Trophy Trucks will start each day at 3:30 p.m. PT and racing will finish each day at approximately 6 p.m.
Celebrating its 25th year as the featured SCORE racing division for high-tech, 950 horsepower unlimited trucks, SCORE Trophy Trucks, the post-race awards celebration will be held in the start/finish line area at Rancho Casian on Sunday (Sept. 23), at 5:30 p.m. PT for Group 1 and Group 2 and at 7:30 p.m. PT.
“SCORE welcomes spectators to go to all of its races but consistently encourages safety and caution”, said Juan Tintos Funcke, SCORE Advisor.
“The colorful Contigency day and Manufacturer’s Midway from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm on Friday (Sept. 21) in front of Hotel Lucerna on Avenida Paseo de los Herores in the Zona Rio area of Tijuana, will provide a great pre-race family atmosphere to see the incredible desert racing cars, trucks, UTVs, motorcycle and quads and meet many of the famous racers”.
“On race days, spectators are advised that the Boulevard 2000 has heavy traffic at certain times of the day, but that is the principal road in order to reach Rancho Casian from Tijuana or Rosarito Beach. The course map is available on the SCORE website.”
Tintos added that there will be several access points to the race course all of which will have Police presence including the Start/Finish line at Rancho Casian. There will be parking, food vendors and restrooms at that area.
“Extreme caution and awareness is always needed by spectators” Tintos continued. “Any spectators wanting to go inland on the route either from the Start/Finish area, from anywhere on the Boulevard 2000, from the Tecate-Ensenada road or the toll-free highway from Puerto Nuevo-Rosarito Beach, must do so before 6:00 am, because the road will be closed once the racing begins.”
“We can’t emphasize caution enough” said Tintos “All we ask is that spectators respect the danger and view the race from a hill or a distance of 30 meters. Having a large vehicle or hill to use as cover is a very good idea. Never drive or walk on the race course as this puts the spectators and racers in extreme danger and never stand or camp anywhere near the outside of turns or a curve.”
While this is the second time in Tijuana, the SCORE Desert Challenge has been held 21 previous times since it first began in 1995. It was held in Laughlin, Nev., USA, from 1995 through 2012, in Plaster City, Calif., USA, in 2014, in Rosarito Beach, Baja California, Mexico in 2016 and in Tijuana in 2017.
Prior to last year’s SCORE Desert Challenge, only two races in SCORE history had started in Tijuana. The first was the inaugural SCORE Baja 1000 (then called Mexican 1000) in 1967 and then again in 1995. In both of those years the SCORE Baja 1000 finished in La Paz.
Next on the broadcast airwaves for SCORE, the BFGoodrich Tires 50th SCORE Baja 500 race coverage show is scheduled to debut on the El Rey Network at 3 p.m. PT on Sunday, Sept. 9.
El Rey Network is a 24-hour, English-language lifestyle network and is available in 45 million homes across the country through cable and OTT providers and via satellite on DirecTV Channel 341 and Dish Network Channel 253. For more information on how to watch El Rey visit http://elreynetwork.com.
Official SCORE Sponsors: BFGoodrich Tires-Official Tire and official race title sponsor, Monster Energy-Official Energy Drink, King Shocks-Official Shock Absorber, Polaris RZR-Official UTV, RACELINE Wheels-Official Wheel, VP Racing Fuels-Official Fuel, Lucerna Hotels & Resorts-Official Hotel and official race title sponsor, Wide Open Excursions-Official Arrive and Drive Company, Crystal Bay Casino-Official Casino.
SCORE Official Partners: PCI Race Radios, 4 Wheel Parts, The Satellite Phone Store, Satellite Del Norte.
Additional SCORE Associate Partners: Proturismo Ensenada, Baja California Secretary of Tourism, Mexicali Ayuntamiento, COTUCO Mexicali/San Felipe, Cruz Roja Mexicana, Corporate Helicopters, McKenzie’s Performance Products, Advanced Color Graphics.
Lucerna Hotels & Resorts 22nd Tijuana SCORE Desert Challenge Special Partners: XXII Ayuntamiento de Tijuana, Baja California State Secretary of Tourism, Comite de Turismo and Convenciones, Comite de Marcadotecnia Turistica, Lucerna Hotels and Resorts, Asociacion de Hoteles del Noroeste.
For more information regarding SCORE, visit the official website of the SCORE World Desert Championship atwww.SCOREInternational.com.
Lucerna Hotels and Resorts Tijuana
22nd SCORE Desert Challenge
Sept. 22-23, 2018—136 total miles (2 laps, 68.0-mile loop course)
Round 3 of four-race 2018 SCORE World Desert Championship
Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico (Rancho Casian)
Total Entries: 152 (as of 9/14/18)
(from 22 U.S. States, Host Mexico, Austria, Canada, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, Peru)