Udall takes secnd straight overall motorcycle victory, Carlos Olmos wins Class 1, other class winners: Cody Reid, Connor, Ampudia, Schueler, E. Lopez, Chamlee, Zazueta, Potter, Winkelman, Daniels; history-making 424.52-mile race was Round 2 of five-race 2015 SCORE World Desert Championship
LORETO, Baja California Sur, Mexico—Combining the grit, stamina, determination and talent of youth with the sage experience of a committed, sage, veteran team behind him, Mexico’s young gun Eduardo Laguna came from behind to capture the Overall and SCORE Trophy Truck victory in Saturday’s history-making Inaugural Bud Light SCORE Baja Sur 500 desert race.
Laguna, 24, of Mexicali, led racers from 12 U.S. States and five countries to the finish line in Loreto, covering the tight, technical 424.52-mile course that started in Cabo San Lucas in an impressive time of seven hours, 35 minutes, 41 seconds, averaging 55.90 miles per hour in the No. 17 RPM Racing Chevy Silverado SCORE Trophy Truck. The victory also represented the 83rd overall win in SCORE Baja racing for long-time SCORE major sponsor BFGoodrich Tires.
It was Laguna’s first SCORE Overall and SCORE Trophy Truck class win in just his second race in the marquee SCORE racing division for high-tech, 850-horsepower, unlimited production trucks that was introduced by SCORE in 1994. Laguna opened the season with a seventh-place finish in the 29th Bud Light SCORE San Felipe 250 in SCORE Trophy Truck. RPM Racing is based in Bristol, Tenn.
Celebrating its 42nd year as the World’s Foremost Desert Racing Organization, the southern state of Mexico’s majestic Baja California peninsula hosted the first SCORE race entirely run on the southernmost part of the peninsula. Round 2 of the five-race internationally-televised SCORE World Desert Championship will air on the CBS Sports Network with the first airing slated for late May.
With necessary penalties assessed the results were made official early Sunday morning following data tracking review by SCORE race officials.
Competing in Pro and Sportsman classes for cars, trucks, UTVs, motorcycles and quads, the race had 82 starters of which 59 officially finished the 424.52-mile course. With an exceptionally high finishing rate of 72.0 percent, the elapsed time race had a 17 hour time limit to become an official finisher. 4-WHEEL TOP FIVE
Spending over half of the race trying to run down early leader Carlos Lopez, another RPM Racing young gun who started first and kept the physical lead for over 300 miles, Laguna had a victory margin of three minutes, 49 seconds over defending SCORE Trophy Truck season point champion Steven Eugenio, Carlsbad, Calif./Armin Schwarz, Austria (Germany) and their No. 1 Galindo Motorsports Chevy Silverado. With Schwarz driving nearly the first half of the race and Eugenio the second, the pair covered the course in 7:39:30 at an average speed of 55.47mph.
Third in SCORE Trophy Truck and fourth overall was Las Vegas’ Rob MacCachren with a time of 7:47:15 (54.54mph) in the No. 11 Rockstar Energy MacCachren Motorsports Ford F-150.
With SCORE Trophy Trucks claiming eight of the top 10 overall four-wheel vehicle positions in this race, fourth overall and in the featured racing class was RPM’s Lopez, just 20, of Tecate, Mexico, in the No. 5 RPM Racing Chevy Rally Truck in 7:54:46 (53.65mph).
Completing the top five SCORE Trophy Truck finisher’s list was 2015 SCORE San Felipe 250 winner Gus Vildosola Jr, Mexicali, Mexico, in the No. 21 Branix Mexicana Logistics Ford Raptor in 8:38:36 (49.116mph). LAGUNA COMMENTS
An obviously elated Laguna commented in his native language during the finish line interview, saying (translated to English), “This was justmy second race in a SCORE Trophy Truck and I’m proud of the win and to be representing Mexico and winning in Mexico. We caught our teammate Carlos Lopez, who was the leader at about race mile 310 but had a hard time getting around them. At one point we went over a jump and got a flat tire.”
“We decided about race mile 160 to skip our scheduled tire change in favor of track position. One tire shredded and we finished the race on the left rear rim. But this BFGoodrich Tires KR2 tires are made for desert racing and they are tough to beat. They are designed to last about 160 miles but they are so tough. RPM Racing has helped me so much and let me race in several classes it’s an honor to race for them. FINISH LINE
In Loreto, La Mision Hotel was the race headquarters with the finish line in front of the resort on the Malecon alongside the Sea of Cortez. The awards celebration concluded the festivities on the Malecon also in front of La Mision Hotel-Loreto late Sunday morning. MOTORCYCLE MAGIC
In the motorcycle action Colton Udall of Oceanside, Calif., was the overall two-wheel vehicle winner for the second straight SCORE race, riding solo to victory in the Pro Unlimited class, finishing the race in an elapsed-time of 7:41:38 (55.18mph) on the No. 5x Ox Motorsports Honda CRF450X. His Ox Motorsports teammate Mark Samuels, of Yucca Valley, Calif., was runner-up for the second consecutive race on another privateer Honda CRF450X in 8:08:04 (52.19mph).
Udall said afterwards, “I iron-manned this race and that’s the biggest milestone for me. This Inaugural Bud Light SCORE Baja Sur 500 was an awesome experience but I wish I had a helicopter because there was a lot of scary stuff out there. One exciting moment in the race for me was when Justin Morgan (Ricky Brabec No. 1x co-rider) and I were racing just after La Paz (approximately race mile 160) and we battled back and forth and we both had the bikes wide open. It was a battle for the power of the dust. I’m happy that I’m here and I didn’t put the bike on the ground once. We used a different strategy for this race by using a four-gallon tank that is nearly a gallon bigger than our normal race tank.”
“When you are starting in Cabo it is a different game because it is harder to stay focused because it is a party town. I love it down here. There was a lot of the terrain similar to races starting in Ensenada but not so many whoops and the course is very fast. I’m holding the bike wide open a lot down here.”
“I really like the fact that SCORE races are being televised because that is huge for our race team. We are running this race team on heart and that is pretty much all. We have some key sponsors like our new deal with Michelin Tire that are getting the job done but it is a lot of work and a huge investment that I hope will pay off in the end.” CLASS 1
Winning Class 1 for the first time in a SCORE race while finishing fifth overall among four-wheel vehicles was Carlos Olmos of Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. He drove a Chevy-powered Jefferies open-wheel desert race car in a time of 8:30:31 to defeat a race-high 15 starters in the class. TWIN WINS
Besides Udall, starting the season with their second straight class win were Larry Connor (Trophy Truck Spec, Chevy Silverado), Chad Broughton/Paul Broughton, Scots Valley, Calif. (Class 3000, BajaLite-Chevy), Victor Cesena, Cabo San Lucas, Mexico (Class 5, VW Baja Bug), Mark Winkelman, Cedar Hill, Texas (Motorcycle Class 30, Honda CRF450X) and Derek Fletcher, Abington, Va., (SPT Buggy, RPM-Chevy). MORE CLASS SUPERS
Class 19 had 12 starters. Winning the class was the team of Brandon Schueler/Chad Hammer/Scott Kiger, Phoenix in a Polaris RZR XP1000.
In Class 1-2/1600, brothers Aaron Ampudia/Alan Ampudia of Ensenada, Mexico won their class and finished an extremely high ninth overall among as well among four-wheel vehicles with a time of 8:52:46 (47.81mph) in an Alumi Craft-VW.
Other four-wheel vehicle class winners included Dan Chamlee, Summerland, Calif. (Class 7, Ford Ranger), Cody Reid, Apple Valley, Calif. (Class 10, Custom-Chevy) and Enemecio Lopez, La Paz, Mexico (Class 8, Ford F-150)
Among the other motorcycle and quad class winners were: Collie Potter, Las Vegas (Class 40, Honda CRF450X and Kevin Daniels, Bishop, Calif. (SCORE Ironman, KTM 500XCW. HOME DESERT
Enjoying the benefits of racing in their home-country desert, Mexican nationals ended up winning a SCORE record of nine classes in this inaugural event. A SPECTACULAR FIRST
Following two years of negotiations and finalization of details by SCORE CEO/President Roger Norman with Mexican officials, SCORE, known worldwide as trail blazers in the sport of desert racing, presented the inaugural Bud Light SCORE Baja Sur 500. The race started at the luxurious tourist destination of Cabo San Lucas on the southernmost tip of the peninsula and finished in the picturesque ‘Pueblo Magico’ city of Loreto on the glistening Sea of Cortez on the east side of the peninsula.
SCORE was founded in 1973, SCORE Baja racing began in 1974 and SCORE is celebrating its 42nd year in 2015. With three races held annually for nearly 30 years in Baja, this race is the historical first time a SCORE Baja race started and finished exclusively in the southern state of Baja California Sur. Previously the legendary SCORE Baja 1000 desert race has finished 20 times in La Paz (most recently in 2014) and twice in Cabo San Lucas (2000 and 2007). HISTORIC COURSE
A magnificent 424.52-mile course was plotted with five physical checkpoints along the route from the start in Cabo San Lucas to the finish on the Malecon in Loreto. Much of the race course was never used before in the 22 times SCORE has finished a race in either La Paz or Cabo San Lucas.
The exciting and challenging course ran northwest along the Pacific Ocean up through Todos Santos before moving northeast and inland at race mile 120. As the race enters the La Paz area it moved alongside the Sea of Cortez where it headed north to San Evaristo at race mile 220. From there, the course turned sharply southeast, heading back into the center of the peninsula. At Las Golondrinas (rm 260) the course turned back northwest and then north into Loreto passing near Cd. Constitucion and Cd. Insurgentes on the way up through Santo Domingo and San Javier into the finish on the Malecon in Loreto. SCOREscope
In its 42nd year as the world’s foremost desert racing organization in 2015, the five-race 2015 SCORE World Desert Championship series includes four special events in Baja California, Mexico, and one in the United States. Here is the 2015 SCORE World Desert Championship schedule:
• 29th Bud Light SCORE San Felipe 250, held Jan. 22-25, San Felipe, Mexico
• Inaugural Bud Light SCORE Baja Sur 500, April 15-19, Cabo San Lucas to Loreto, Mexico
• 47th Bud Light SCORE Baja 500, June 4-7, Ensenada Mexico
• 3rd SCORE Imperial Valley 250, Sept. 24-27, Coyne Powersports Motorplex-Plaster City, Calif.
• 48th Bud Light SCORE Baja 1000, Nov.18-21, Ensenada, Mexico CBS SPORTS NETWORK COVERAGE
All races in the 2015 SCORE World Desert Championship series, along with the special SEMA SCORE Baja 1000 Experience and qualifying for the Bud Light SCORE Baja 1000 from Las Vegas Motor Speedway, will once again be aired in the USA and Canada on the CBS Sports Network. New for 2015, in addition to SCORE Trophy Truck coverage, the shows will also feature top action and highlights from many other classes of trucks, buggies, motorcycles, quads and UTVs – making sure that the most exciting footage and most compelling stories are now part of each race event broadcast.
Capping off the 2015 broadcast season, the Bud Light SCORE Baja 1000 broadcast on CBS Sports Network will be expanded to a full two-hour program – providing the most expansive television coverage of the “Main Event” of all desert races ever, allowing all the major class action to be showcased around the globe to the SCORE International fan base. 2015 CBS Sports Network Original Broadcast Schedule (subject to change, check local listings)
• Bud Light SCORE San Felipe 250 (first telecasts-Tuesday, March 17, 7 p.m. ET & 11 p.m. ET)
• Bud Light SCORE Baja Sur 500 (first telecast-Sunday, May 31, 9 p.m. ET)
• Bud Light SCORE Baja 500 (first telecast-Sunday, July 26, 9 p.m. ET)
• SCORE Imperial Valley 250 (first telecast-Sunday, November 15, 9 p.m. ET)
• Bud Light SCORE Baja 1000 Qualifying @SEMA SCORE Baja 1000 Experience (first telecast-Sunday, January 10, 2016, 9 p.m. ET)
• Bud Light SCORE Baja 1000 (two-hour special-first telecast-Sunday, January 17, 2016, 9 p.m. ET)
CBS Sports Network is available across the country through local cable, video and telco providers and via satellite on DirecTV Channel 221 and Dish Network Channel 158. For more information, including a full programming schedule and how to get CBS Sports Network, go to www.cbssportsnetwork.com. SCORE SPONSORS…
Official Sponsors: Bud Light-Official Beer/Official Race Sponsor, Monster Energy-Official Energy Drink, BFGoodrich Tires-Official Tire, Rigid Industries LED Lighting-Official Lights, King Shocks-Official Shock Absorber, Polaris-Official UTV, Vision Wheel – Official Wheel, Axial R/C-Official R/C Vehicle, CBS Sports Network-Official Television Partner, Coca-Cola-Official Soft Drink, Coyne Powersports-Official Powersports Supplier,Wide Open Excursions- Official Arrive and Drive Company, Crystal Bay Casino-Official Casino.
Associate Sponsors: All Road Satellite, Symons Ambulance Company, Aero Calafia, Tessco.
Additional SCORE Partners: Proturismo Ensenada, Visit Baja California Sur, Baja California Secretary of Tourism, Baja California Sur State Government, Mexicali Ayuntamineto, COTUCO Mexicali/San Felipe, Cruz Roja Mexicana, Corporate Helicopters, Instant Mexico Auto Insurance, GoPro, PCI Race Radios, McKenzie’s Performance Products, Advanced Color Graphics.
For more information, visit the official website of the SCORE World Desert Championship at www.SCORE-International.com.
SCORE MEDIA CONTACT: Dominic Clark, firstname.lastname@example.org