ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Ride reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 12-09-2008, 05:17 PM   #16
PacWestGS OP
Life Is The Adventure!
 
PacWestGS's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: A Worldly Traveller
Oddometer: 10,866
The Race - (Part One)

Race Day: OK, so here it is as I can remember it. Starting this about 10-minutes away from the actual start. We’re all standing around BSing, just taking in the moment, watching the riders’ ahead of us push or ride up to the line.
(Photo by Springer or at least his camera)

The remaining order after the Pro’s was Sportsman Over, then Sportsman Under (us) and Sportsman Quad. The Trophy Trucks would be starting their race two and half-hours after the last quad left the starting line, so that gave us almost a three-hour head start. I was absolutely calm, thinking of how I would run the race. Remembering, the words of Fines Double Racing – “Go slow, if you are passing others you are going too fast. Watch out for large groups of locals on the side of the road, if they are egging you on too much, be wary of what you can’t see; slow down. They are out to f*ck with you, they like to see big air, or big crashes.” I was remembering everything I told the team, “Go as fast as you can when you can. Go as slow as you have to when you have too.” “Success is turning over a working motorcycle to the next rider; don’t break the bike, don’t break your body.” I was trying to diminish any thoughts of some of the bad things that had happened along the way, unresolved issues. Right now, at this moment, none of that mattered, I was here, I was guaranteed a chance to ride the bike, and race the Baja 1000. I was thinking – just be smooth and don’t feck it up. I tried to time starting my DVR (helmet cam) at the last possible moment to capture as much of the racing action as I could, because even though I had extra batteries and memory cards, I wasn’t planning on stopping very often or for any time. I was trying to remember where the pits where located, RM55 and RM90, get to RM147 (Rider change and pit). Somewhere in here, Springer reset the IMO trip computer to – ZERO. I could see the end of the Sportsman Over class approaching (there were 43 of them; the most in any class) and began my getting ready ritual: camera on, helmet on, take off jacket, put on gloves – breath, stretch. OK, here we go this is it! I plugged in the helmet-cam battery, turned on the DVR, checked to make sure it was running, and then handed it to Jimmy (who had been my camera support guy for the last two-weeks) to wrap up in a towel and stuff into the top of my backpack. I mounted the bike and fired it up just to warm up the engine a bit, then turned it back off. I sat there, still calm, still with other distractions on my mind (I wish my wife could be here right, but she wasn’t. I knew why she wasn’t but just the same, the hotel was a long way off both in time now, and in distance – she was having a bad day). As the time came to roll out and enter after the last rider from the ‘Over’ class, I pushed the bike into position. Again, we were right there at the steel gate only a few feet from the dirt mound. I pushed the bike forward to where Sal Fish was standing and he reached out to take my hand. Shaking one hand, and placing his other hand on my shoulder he gave me the, “Be safe, have fun, and I want to see you guys at the end of the race”, speel. I have no idea what I said, but it must have been “Thanks, I hope to be here too.”
(Photo by Springer)


Springer asked me, if there was anything else, and I said it would be nice to have an extra chain in my pack, he said, “Don’t worry it’ll all be alright.” I started the bike and rode up the hill, staring straight ahead at the big red “TECATE” arch, I waited my turn for the rider in front of me to get the green flag and take off (every 30-seconds). I rode down the hill to the starting line (under the arch) and stopped, checked the gas petcock, looked over the instruments – all working. At this moment, my heart began to race a little; I could feel the sweat start to bead up on my skin. “I’m sitting on the start line of the fucking Baja 1000, and in less than 30-seconds this guy’s going to give me the green flag and point his two fingers down the road.” How fucking unbelievable is this! [repeating – “Russ, run your own race, it’s a long way to the finish line, don’t fuck this up.”] In gear clutch in – low, idle…
(Photo by NoahDL88)


Five-fingers, then five, four, three, two, one, and a wave of the ‘green flag’ and a hand gesture away, I’m gone, burrrrrrrrrp, shift into second – burrrrrrrrrp, roll off the throttle, roll through the first left turn. Burrrrrrp, third – burrrrrrrp, fouth – burrrrrrrrrp, just rolling along nothing fancy, no tire smoke, no wheelies, no skidding around on the pavement, just rolling along past hundreds or thousands of spectators lining the road. I navigate the first intersection, heading for the wash. I enter the wash and can see where a hundred or more motorcycles and quads had began building multiple little berms, the dirt looked wet, and slippery, take it easy, don’t fuck this up.
(Photo by mrazekan)

Now, up ahead, is the famous ‘Red Bull’ jump. I remember everyone saying, “Just hit it wide-open in top gear, it’s super smooth.” Nah, I’m going to slow jump this thing, it’s a long race, don’t wad it up on this, be smart. Burrrrrrrrrp third to fouth – burrrrrrp, OK I can see it all now, a little faster, a little faster, this is just about right, should be enough air so as to not look like a pussy. (I know nothing about the suspension on this bike, it felt a bit soft and the front tire was squishy, I was getting a feel for the bike.) Up into the air, tuck into a race position, this is definitely a picture moment. “Russ, you’re a pussy, you should have hit this thing WOT in fifth. Hit the gas and land the jump, the first of many concrete crossroads was approaching, good it’s all closed to traffic… It was at this time, that mild mannered ‘Clark Kent’ took off his glasses, and developed a silly grimace across his face, fuck this, I’m in the Baja 1000 let’s rock-n-roll, I clinched down on my mouth guard and I whacked the throttle to the stop and hit fifth gear. I’m flying through the wash 60, 70, 80 – mile per hour, first sweeping turn coming up, back off a little, bang down a gear, wide-open throttle braaaaaaaaaaaaap! I saw some local’s ahead in a dark sweeper and backed off a bit until I could see through it and then cranked it through the corner. Hit the top of the hill and turned onto the streets again, braaaaaaaap, braaaaaaaaap braaaaaaaaaaap, 80mph down the street, start slowing for the next 90-degee right up the road and out of town. 70, 80, 85, don’t cook the Bib Mousse, Russ, it’s a long race… I hit the dirt at the top of the hill, I’d already passed two riders and could see the next dusty producer ahead. “Russ, if you are passing people you are wrong”, slow down – aah they’re Ironmen, they are pacing themselves, I’m only going 150, time to make time… I’m not out-riding myself, I’m in full control… Zoom, some guy goes flying past me, see I’m not alone, nor am I the fastest, I must be doing OK, I’ll see that guy off the road ahead… Turn by turn, hill by hill – up and down, the racecourse was flying by under the wheels, the bike was awesome, the suspension so far was soaking up everything in the trail with aplomb, the front tire was sticking every corner, the back was sliding around most with ease, and the steering damper was about perfect. The seat though was a bit of a pain, I hold on to bikes with my knees, and the seat was sticking my pant leg and knee brace keeping me from forward and backward movement. Oh well, only 125 or so miles to go… I passed about six-riders and was passed by about four, then things started to settle down and we were all going about the same pace. Up the hills past thousands of spectators lining the trails and roads, many just happy to have a front row seat, others excited and waving their arms. The more enthusiastic they were the slower I slowed down. There was usually something to watch out for; bigger jumps, debris in the road, buried rocks, or something else under a light layer of dusty sand. I remember someone throwing something at me, but they missed. I remember coming up to one dirt crossroad and seeing a lot of debris marking the trail and I thought they were trying to corral me into a bad spot, so I took what I thought was the right trail, it was the wrong way, and they let me know it by waving me back to the course. I rode cross-country back down the hill, through the backside of the spectators dodging their coolers of beer and umbrellas and their feet, then got back on course. Many things had not changed; although the course markers were all but gone, you just had to follow the lines of people; it wasn’t too hard, even if you are skeptical at times. The biggest hazard I found to be completely different was near a Ranch House that was atop a small creek bed. During pre-running it was dry. You came through a twisty S-turn dropped down into the creek then climbed up the other bank and made a hard right turn. Today, it was full of water, the hose still running. Bastards, well, that wasn’t enough. I always wheelie across water and that was a good thing, because under the water was a big hole. The back tire slammed down into it, bringing the front down in the water and I got splashed by a wall of muddy brown water. The bike carried over the creek and I began climbing the far side. I wanted so badly to roost the spectators outside the corner, but the dirt was so tacky that I ended up honking a great wheelie and drove through it hard. (I was hoping that when Dean came back through here, he wouldn’t have any problems – apparently not)

After getting past most of the people the course began to meander through the countryside. I was thinking where is that turn I’m suppose to remember? There is a slower rider ahead, catch up to the dust, wait for a place to pass, okay, here’s a place speed up through the dust, get right behind and wack the throttle, (that horn would have been a good idea, why didn’t it get installed, ). No one, I repeat, no one ever looked behind them, and then when you caught someone they looked like a rabbit that was about to get run over. I ran out of space on this attempt and had to drop back into the dust again. Another chance coming up, down the hill, around a corner and up the hill,,, whew, I made it around this guy, but I’m hauling ass, over the hill and down, OH SHIT! That’s the corner I was looking for – hard on the brakes, sliding, sliding, front wheel locked up rear tire skidding, I stop just as the front tire breaks the edge. The guy I just passed squeezes by the inside and dusts me, one good yank and the bike is facing the right direction. On the power again, building speed, the next time I won’t be so nice.

As I continued to run down the racecourse the riders that got passed were falling farther behind, and the ones that passed me continued into the distance. There were about four of us, who would trade positions at pit stops, but otherwise were still battling for position 30-hours later in the race (311X - Alpine Sands, 14X, and 204X – only 204X was in class the others were ahead of us). As I neared the end of the first technical section and turned onto the farm roads, it was whip the horses’ ass time. I was hoping to have a tube tire for this part, but suffice to say, the Bib Mousse was going to have to do. The sustained speeds were not that high, or that long, but it was enough of a straight sand/gravel road between hard 90-degree intersections that you could just pin it and shift gears. I think it hit 92mph once or twice for a long while, but was more comfortable in the mid eighties. This was flying, and quite literally flying off the peaks in the road to the delight of the few local fans that came out this far. In the small section of short bursts and then a hard turn, I came upon a rider that missed a turn and pile-drive’d a fence with its associated wood or concrete posts. He was down and out, but two other riders were there attending to him. (I understand one of those riders’ was Airborne Andy ) They waved me to continue and there wasn’t much more that could be done. Medical people would be there shortly. I heard from Andy later on, that another motorcycle missed the turn while they were there and piled into the back of the downed rider’s bike, adding to the calamity. A few quads missed some of these turns as well, so it paid to slow down and not ride in the dust ahead. After turning the corner at RM40 the road was concrete and straight for quite some distance leading back to the beginning of the first days pre-ride. I came around the corner and a guy on another CRF450 had just pitted, the drag race was on. Both of us pinned it, it was a close race but he won to the dirt, and then I won the competition through the first couple turns back in the dirt. Now I was back on some familiar trails, the one with the jump – hard right turn was just ahead, no problem. (For the team, we rode this at about 35mph – today I was going closer to 60mph) I arrived at the tree section RM50 and then started looking for the first JCR Pit. I didn’t want to blow past it, so I began slowing a little. Climbing up through “El Meurto” was straight forward, no problems. I wasn’t racing the course, I was looking for my pit. I got to the top of the hill, and there they were. Pull in, shift to neutral and slide back. Need anything? Nope! They placed a towel between me and the dry-break and slammed the fuel bottle down – 20-seconds later it was done. I think I still had some tear-offs and vision was good. Suck on my camelback, drop it into gear and go again. This is a long winding section of service road and speeds ranged from 30 to 85 miles per hour. I passed one, maybe two riders through here, and had a helicopter flying next to me for about one-minute. There were still the occasional spectators and the process of elimination continued until clear of them. Next was the ‘Pine Forest’, this was completely torn up from the first days of pre-running, the berms were bigger, softer, and more tree limbs and rocks had been knocked into the course or dug up from beneath the sand. I was very comfortable with this section it was just bang through the sandy berms, cross dry creek beds of course gravel and hold a solid line through the hard pack sections. I caught up to another rider near where Deano had crashed but dispatched him fairly quickly once he realized there was a faster rider on his ass. Again, no one looks over their shoulder. [I did, and if someone came up on me, I’d pull right and wave them passed, hey I’m not as fast as you are, go for it.] While banging through these rocky sections, big fixed ones and loose ones, the VHoldR Video cam stuck on the headlight flew off. The lanyard kept it attached but it’s banging the crap out of it and the headlight. I slow up a bit and slam it back in the cradle (3M snap-lock tape), it did it again, a short time later and I almost crashed trying to get it back on the bike – fecking thing, In and out of the pine forest, up onto the plateaus, through the silt beds, on and on and on, just cranking out the miles as fast as I could. Where was the next pit? RM90 or RM95 shit, I can’t remember, no worries, I’ll see it ‘Big Red HONDA’ letters. As I started to see Baja Pits and Mag 7 pits, I knew I was close. I’d used a lot of gas since the last one, digging the sand berms. I still felt 100% and had only been out less than three hours, so I thought the DVR would still be recording. Another gas and go pit stop, mang, I like these. Down the hill, through the sand canyon and out into the area that caused Springer so much trouble the first night. Oh yeah, first night – I was racing this section having not seen it during the day, so a few turns crept up on me faster than I could react. The deep sand roads we did at 25mph, I was now going down at 50 and 60mph I blew a few of them but so did everyone else based on the tire tracks that swung around the cactus and trees and bushes. The VHoldR camera came loose again, but this time the mount had broken, it was now sliding off the rail. I almost crashed again trying to recover it before it detonated or broke the headlight. I figured out what had happened and shoved it between the headlight and the fork tubes, it stayed there the rest of the way. When I exited the plateaus of Manzanita and scrub brush, I was on the road to La Rumarosa, hauling ass again, 70, 80, 90mph I arrived at Highway 2 and cranked a hard right. I either completely forgot the rules; or was paying more attention to the cars entering the highway from cross streets and businesses. One did, and I found myself over the centerline and whacking the throttle. Oh shit, I look down at the IMO – 72mph, ooops. It was only for a brief second and I backed it down to 60mph for the duration of the highway. (That was such a rest break; I just drank water the whole way – the seat was comfortable .) Jumping off the highway but still on pavement, I whacked it again before hitting the dirt at RM120. The place we camped and the top of the grade.

OK, Russ, time to back it down a lot! You’ve come 120-miles don’t fuck this up you are almost there.
__________________
Russ

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. (Albert Einstein)
PacWestGS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2008, 05:19 PM   #17
PacWestGS OP
Life Is The Adventure!
 
PacWestGS's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: A Worldly Traveller
Oddometer: 10,866
The Race - (Part Two)

I started down the mountain, in a comfortable zone, and at about 25mph, which was slower than I pre-ran it at, but I also crashed in one section of rocks. I didn’t want to do that again. There were a couple of high-pucker moments even though I felt in control. I passed a guy and I was passed by a guy, then we settled out the pace. About where I crashed (maybe not, but) the back tire hit a kicker that swung the rear out and towards the cliff, I kept the front pointed down the trail and bashed through the rocks. I yelled aloud at the mountain, and said, “Fuck you, you are not going to beat me, this time, I own you.” “I will conquer you this time.” Switchback after switchback, baby head field after another, I got to the bottom of this motherfecker of all mountain roads just about the time I caught up to another rider. I tried unsuccessfully to get past him, but everywhere I had a chance he would step it up. Finally, we passed the abandoned house with the open well and I hammered it past him. The road flattened out now and was fast hard pack. I was flying again, 70-75mph. I forgot a few things about this road, and when I was following Danno, it wasn’t all that bad. (Hell, I didn’t think I’d ever see this again until we changed the race order.) There was this one slight down hill section, and was side-to-side baby heads scattered about, I saw it, slammed the brakes, scrubbed off maybe 10-15mph and picked the best line through it. Then I lifted the front wheel and held on. The back tire nailed one towards the bottom and I thought for sure that was it – that had to have blown the rear tire. I look down at the tire – it’s round, I look again, it’s holding air, I looked again a minute later and it was still holding air, so back on the throttle and through the wash. There were a few of these sections but none that caused me to pucker like that one did.

RM130 ahead, under the bridge, and into the sand wash, around the corner and over the concrete revetment, why are those guys waving at me, that’s a different kind of wave, look again over my shoulder, wait that’s some dude in brown Hi-Vis ‘Stich sitting on a VStrom – it’s Austin! I turned around and came up to him. “Take this f*cking camera off the bike before I break it anymore than it has been.” With a squeeze of the lanyard, he pops it off. Damn, that thing was annoying.

He says, “Jesus Christ, you are here already; I just got here on the highway… I spent a few minutes looking for Uncle Rick’s Pit but haven’t found it.” I said, yeah I was looking for it too, but hadn’t seen it yet. Can’t miss it big ‘Frosty the Snowman’. I said I’ve got to go, good luck. With that, I spun around on the concrete and dropped back down into the wash.

Banging through the medium sized sand whoops at 50 to 65 while trying to lift the front over and through the bigger ones, I started to get some serious large muscle cramps in my legs. They had started coming down the mountain, holding the bike so hard with my legs, but I was almost done, deep breaths, keep breathing, just keep banging away. As I neared RM135 I saw a big ‘Frosty the Snowman’ and was so happy the cramps went away. I pull into the North ADVrider Pit, and yell out, “Where the hell is Uncle Rick!” laughing my ass off. Rick F. comes over with a big ass grin on his face, and says “Russ, it’s damn good to meet your acquaintance, how are you doing, can we do anything for you.”
(Photos by Triumph406)






Nope, I’m almost done, 15-miles to go… They hand me an ice cold bottle of water, which I gulped down and got a freezer burn, we talked, Ron (Mr. Heuro) checked the bike out and looked that the rear rim, and some others offered more water and a goggle cleaning. I will never forget this meeting, it was like an oasis in the desert and it was. We talked briefly about other things, and then I said, I’ve got a race to complete. With that, I was off again, to bang through some more whoops, hammer the power-line road, go through Check Point #1 and carve some more sand berms. I arrived at what I thought was the rider change area (RM147), but no one that I recognized was there, it was under the second underpass of Highway 2. I circled back off the course looking for blue trucks. Neither was there, and since I just met Austin on a bike and he’s just gotten there, I figured I might be early. I really, really, really had to pee, now. I had, had to pee since starting the race, and the cold water from Rick cemented that idea. Arrrgh! I stop under the bridge and relieve myself, and then I dug out the radio and called Springer. “SBR 1, Rider 1”, SBR 1 over, “Yeah, I’m here, where are you?” Where are you, is everything OK? “At the bridge… yeah, everything is fine.” Keep going we are at the pit, RM150 just a few more miles… “OK, I’m on my way…see you in a few minutes.” Bang through some more whoops, and hammer it up the hill to the “Super Pit”, turn the corner and began looking for the HONDA sign in a sea of thousands of people, hundred of trucks and lots of activity. Towards the end of the pit area, Springer comes running out waving. I go sliding into the pit dismounting, and hand the bike off to the pit guys and Danno.

It’s all in one piece that I’m aware of, and running great. The bike is awesome! I thought I blew the rear tire out on a couple rocks, but it seems to be holding air. Wow, what a hoot, I’m ready to go another 150-miles… Springer is like, fecking eh dude, we just got here a few minutes ago, you’ve been hauling some serious ass… What’s the time, (ask the pit crew aaaaah, he got in at 11:55). Springer’s head is spinning, 07:21 to 11:55 ummm, that’s 4-hours and 35-minutes, Jesus fecking Christ dude, did you take a break or just haul ass. I just hauled ass, two 20-second pits, and I visited with Rick for a few minutes, that was all… The mountain slowed me down a lot; I didn’t want to crash again, no crashes, no problems, just go…

(Average over the whole distance was 33.30-mph, but the mountain really sucked me down. It would be nice to know what it was before La Rumarosa, but who’s counting. The Pro’s are fecking nutz to have a 50-mph average over the course, but it would be nice to know what they had at this point.)

I drank some fluids, and got my helmet off, then went to check my DVR. I pulled it out of the backpack, and to my surprise, it’s still blinking. Wow, it lasted the entire time – this is going to be epic! I hit stop, and go to playback, nothing there, what the f*ck, wait why is the battery full? Ahh, shit, it’s been on pause since the beginning, f*cking new toys, oh well, I have the memories and right now, that is enough. I’ll just have to come back. (The two best parts of this whole trip are a complete wash, I wonder if there is a reason for that.)

After that, we looked for my truck, it wasn’t there yet. I got hooked up with the ‘COPS’ race team and they drove me back (West) to where I told Tim to find me, or where I thought he might go first (RM145). He was pulling out just as we got there (after getting better directions), and all was right in the world. Except that as Tim pulled back off the road, and stopped, it was enough to dislodge my bike in the back of the pickup and have it fall over. Bike is fine; aluminum ramp isn’t so new anymore, it got crushed with the empty gas cans. Whaa. After that, I went back to the Honda Pits, and waited a few hours for the bike and Danno to make it down to the next rider change. While doing that I watched and took pictures of the Side-Cars and Trophy Trucks as they came into or through the ‘Super Pit’. Gawd damn, are those trucks are fast, I was saying I’m glad I’m done, :WINGS Where else can you stand mere feet away from an 800Hp vehicle at 120-mph and watch them go by… that was awesome. The whole thing was awesome!!!







I hope you liked the almost whole accounting and if you don’t feel as if you have been close enough to the action, there is always next years Baja 1000…

Next is the Finish and Post Race Activities. Almost done…
__________________
Russ

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. (Albert Einstein)
PacWestGS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2008, 05:23 PM   #18
PacWestGS OP
Life Is The Adventure!
 
PacWestGS's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: A Worldly Traveller
Oddometer: 10,866
Ace Nilson's Race Report SF-Loop (Copied)

The opportunity to ride in the 2008 Baja 1000 came my way by a chance encounter on ADVRider. I responded to a post / request for a first alternate rider for a team that was going to Baja. After some lengthy conversations by phone, I had struck a deal with Marc Springer who was the captain of this team. I was now an “official” member of Team Snortn’ Boar Racing. www.snortnboarracing.com I worked with Marc over the next couple of months helping to secure the necessary sponsors and parts necessary to make this trip happen.
Richard at House of Horsepower took care of our suspension needs with a custom progressive spring that would work for all of our riders and super plush valving that would soak up the rocks and chop we would encount
Richard also hooked us up with 2 Baja Designs 8" HID lights that would prove industructable during the race.
Erion racing would help us out with 8 sets of Dunlop rubber that would keep the bikes fresh for pre-running and a couple of fresh sets for the race.
Cyclops would help us out with lights for the event. I had a chance to run these lights in the 24 hours of Starvation ridge just a couple of weeksThe Sunday before I was supposed to leave, I got a call from Marc Springer. He left me a message telling me to get my butt down there as I was going to be riding. Marc had a pretty good get off while pre-running and busted up some ribs and wouldn’t be able to ride. While I was excited for the opportunity to ride, I was bummed for Marc as I knew what he had invested in this effort and I knew how badly he wanted to see this through. I would talk to him more about it when I got there.
After packing until 02:30 on Tuesday 11/18/08, I was able to grab an hour of sleep before being rudely awakened by my alarm clock. My flight left Redmond at 05:45 Tuesday and I was on my way to race the 41st running of the Tecate Score Baja 1000.

I landed in LA around 09:15 where my buddy Brian picked me up and transported me to San Diego. Aaron and Jerry (SBR support / chase team #5) met us down town where we proceeded to put the hurt on a good meal at the Yard House. Shortly after eating some grub we began working our first challenge…. Aaron had rented a car for the trip, but we found out that the company (Alamo) he rented it from didn’t allow their vehicles to travel down to Mexico. Complicating the problem was the fact that he had rented the car in Mesa Arizona so he could pick up his Dad. After a couple of hours we sorted it out and ended up with a Ford Explorer from Avis.
We arrived in Ensenada around 7pm and proceeded to the Super-Wal-Mart for rations. The place was a zoo! There was at least twice the number of occupants that would have been allowed by U.S. fire code. We witnessed a bushel of corn being snatched up in about a 5 minute time period that would have lasted for days in the states. At one point we were unable to locate any bananas as they were apparently sold out. As we were walking toward the check out, I saw what appeared to be a large crate brought out and customers were carrying away fresh bananas by the handfuls. I asked Aaron to go grab a couple and he said he would take care of it. He returned looking dejected and somewhat blitzed. I asked where the bananas were and he just shook his head and said he didn’t stand a chance. Shortly after that I saw a couple of 12 y/o kids walk by with bananas but he had nothing.
After loading up on groceries, we proceeded to try and find the house in LaBufadora. It was reported that it was approximately 20 miles south of Ensenada. Thank god for GPS, as we would not have found it without it. We arrived at the house and found everyone munching on home made pizza that was cooked in a brick oven on the patio. Yummm! We were just a tad late to the party but the leftovers were more than enough to hit the spot. We rolled to the house and got our stuff settled and pretty quickly called it a night. [/font]
[FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']Wednesday started out with some maintenance on the bikes. They had several Honda 450X’s that had been rode hard during the previous week pre-running. Deano graciously donated his bike to me to put some miles on and get comfortable on the thumper. Russ, Dean, and I all loaded up and drove to Ensenada to pre-run the start and the ensuing 50 miles that followed. For the most part it was pretty easy riding with lots of logging type and two track roads. I quickly found out that you had to stay on your toes as sharp turns and drop offs really had no warning signs or guard rails. I over cooked one corner and promptly found myself negotiating the wrong side of a cliff. Fortunately, the path was pretty well worn from other bikes doing the same and I was able to turn the bike around at the bottom and hill climb back up the embankment. Russ was to start the race for the team and Dean was scheduled to finish. They would be riding the same parts of the course but in separate directions.
Soon the pre-ride for this day was over and we were on our way back. We dropped Russ at his hotel where he was staying with his wife and kids. Dean and I would continue to ride back via the slab to LaBufadora. We stopped at Danny’s for made from scratch burritos and drinks and talked about the day of riding and what we had learned. We needed taller gearing! The bikes were set up with 13/51 gearing that we topping out at around 70 mph. This was definitely not enough for the type of terrain that we were to cover.
Back at the ranch, I was talking with Marc and the other support / chase crews trying to figure out a way to get out to San Felipe to pre-run my section of the course. I was supposed to ride the San Felipe loop from MM 270 – MM 410. I had ridden some of the course in the spring, but not the first 60 – 70 miles, so I wanted to ride it before race day. George and Whitney volunteered to get up early and transport me and a bike for an early morning pre-run. We went to bed around 11pm and woke up around 3:30am to begin our trek. It was extremely foggy out so our travel was slow. We were going just over 5 MPH at one point on the highway. We arrived at the Honda pit 6 / 9 and set up camp next to the Yokohama semi. George brought his KTM 530 along to pre-run with me. Whitney was to drive the truck to San Felipe where we would meet for lunch at Rice and Beans on the water front. I was really glad to have the chance to pre-run as there were several sections that had 90 degree turns and or drop offs that would not have been visible during the night. The terrain varied from tight technical sections to wide open roads and washes. Being familiar with this section would likely save my life in the next 30 hours. We began pre-running around 08:30 and arrived in San Felipe at about 11:15am. Just under 3 hours to pre-run 60 miles at a steady trail pace. We stopped several times to take mental notes and or check out alternate lines. We grabbed some food and left for Ensenada where we were supposed to meet up with the rest of the team to put the bike through tech inspection. I also needed to complete registration, get my wristband, and have my helmet inspected.
The St. Nicholas Hotel was a zoo. Seems everyone had the same idea as me and waited until the last minute to complete their registration paperwork. I got in the express line and waited 2 hours before making my way to the front of the line. I saw a lot of familiar / famous faces and chatted with some of the other racers. Everyone is treated equally here and they really don’t care if you are Robby Gordon or anyone else for that matter, everyone has to complete the same paperwork and pass the same tech inspection.
After completing the registration process we walked to tech inspection which is where the party / street party was happening. My helmet passed without issue and I was officially ready to ride. There were thousands of people roaming the streets and partaking of the festivities. Many vendors were set up selling all kinds of products and gear. I found myself talking with the owner of Acerbis and soon had a new set of 2009 gear (Pants, Gloves, and Jersey) for $60!!!!! There were many deals to be had. Some of the support crew chose to support the local bars so I ended up driving George’s truck back to the house by myself and hitting the hay in preparation for race day. No consumption of anything but water for this guy before race day.

After assembling my gear for the next day I hit the hay around 11pm. Tossing and turning with trophy trucks racing through my head morning was upon us way too soon. It was now 8am on race day and suddenly I had a lump in my throat… did the bike make it to the start line on time, did it start and was Russ out on course without any problems? Were the other riders at their locations? I decided I could only worry about myself and make sure that I was ready to ride when the bike showed up. Aaron, Jerry and I left out for our rendezvous at the Honda pit 6 / 9. We arrived at around 1pm just in time to see Johnny Cambell pulling out in his box van. His team had already completed 410 miles of the course while our team was still waiting to begin the San Felipe loop which began at MM 270. Wow… those guys are fast…. But now it’s our turn. We had hired the same pit crew that Johnny C. had. JCR pit support. Our best guess is that our rider would be due into pit 6 around 3pm. This would leave me just under two hours to complete the 140 mile loop that I was preparing to do before the sunset. I was hoping he would come it just a tad ahead of schedule so I geared up and got ready to ride. The bike was prepped with a Baja Designs 8” HID light and we had planned on also using two Cyclops MR16 helmet lights for when the sunset…. But the lights were no where to be found. To make a long story short, they were left behind on the kitchen table where they were charging. Doh!!! There wasn’t enough time to go back for them so I immediately began asking everyone I could find if they had brought an extra set of helmet lights. Eventually I met Jeff Kapland (600X). He did have an extra set of lights and didn’t hesitate to lend them to me for my portion of the race. He simply asked that we return them to him after the race was over and if for some reason we didn’t meet up to call his cell phone, get his address and ship them to him. A true class act and the same guy who helped guide Mouse McCoy to the finish in 2006 (Dust to Glory). The replacement night rider system was no where close to having the power of the Cyclops lights but it did help illuminate the shadows in the corners and technical sections. We got my helmet fitted with the new light and then the waiting began. 3:30, 4, 4:30… where the heck was he??? We worried something had gone bad with the bike… all the worst thoughts creep into your mind. I was standing in the Honda Pit rider area (Basically the on-deck circle for riders waiting to go out) talking with another rider when the crowd went nuts as the first trophy truck came screaming through the pit area at around 60 mph. Admittedly it was impressive, but neither myself nor the other rider waiting were smiling. GREAT!!!!!!!! We were supposed to be out of this pit and on the trail over an hour ago. Now we are going to have these guys breathing down our shorts and that didn’t seem like fun at all. Finally, Deano shows up at 16:40 and the crew went to work on maintaining the bike. I think we might have got the “B” team because we had to ask for everything to be done. We asked for a rear tire change but they basically refused as it wasn’t mounted on a rim and suggested that it was fine and we should just get going. They basically told us that they were going to be closing the pits within a couple of hours and we needed to get going. What they didn’t hear was that the team was busy hacking into the wiring to make an alternate helmet light work just incase I had two failures and needed a back up and this ended up taking around 10 minutes anyway so it would have actually been a good time. Sounded like a good idea to me but I was ready to ride and had been itching to do so for over two hours!!!!!!!! Finally the bike was ready to go. I got it off the stand and mounted. Still pissed about not getting a new tire on the bike I roosted out of the Honda pit on a mission. There were two guys (locals) that were standing right where I was pointed and were occupying my path to re-enter the course. I upshifted to second and dropped the hammer. They quickly saw me coming but couldn’t agree which way they should run and literally ran into each other, bounced off each other then dove out of the way. I clutched it and lofted the front end as I went between them and from that point on it was GAME ON! I quickly had to adjust my mindset as our goal was to finish and although it looked kool and got me the crowd fired up, that attitude wouldn’t likely get us to the finish. Everyone I had talked to prior to departing for Baja told me to ride at 75-80% if I wanted to finish. So I promptly pinned it to the lock and held on. I had two quads and a bike in my sights and passing them quickly was key to a safe passage. The trail was just wide enough for a quad so any passing had to be done in the open desert off trail which made things interesting right of the bat but I got it done and settled in to a fast trail pace. The first 6 miles or so were all whoops. I was already feeling it and started to wonder off trail in search of some single track cheater lines when the trail opened up into some fast road sections. By this time the sun had set and it was completely dark. My Baja Design SolTech light was working good and the new gearing on the race bike was letting me stretch its legs. At one point I saw 94mph on the tour tech. The most difficult pass that I made came just before entering the dry lake bed when I approached a quad that had his head down and was charging hard. I was gaining on him but not very fast and I was pushing it hard and fighting through the dust. As I got closer the gravel and spray coming off of the quad was doing a great job sand blasting my face. I got close enough for him to see my light and he rolled off the gas and took a glance back to see what was coming and that allowed me to close the gap quickly and motor on past. As soon as I was clear I moved over and his light quickly disappeared. Nice! The course then moved off of the road I had pre-run and onto the dry lake bed. This was originally not going to be included and wasn’t part of the course when I pre ran the previous day. This was bad on one hand because I didn’t know what was out there and I was pretty quickly out running my lights…. But it was good on the other hand because it hadn’t been chewed up by weeks of pre-running so it was fairly smooth. I settled in to a good pace slightly off the lock in 5th gear when I hit the first silt bed. It was everything I could do to keep from going over the bars as it felt like someone threw out a big boat anchor. I downshifted and pinned it in 4th and managed to get back on the seat a bit and was through it just as quickly as I got into it. I backed it down a bit and made it to the wash. Just as I entered the wash I saw big lights and a loud trophy truck approaching from behind. I acknowledged the truck with a hand wave and pulled to the right as soon as I found a spot…. Then I sat and waited for the dust to settle. With no wind, it took a while before I could get back on the gas and then it seemed like it was hit and miss… clear air for a while then a pocket of fog (dust). Eventually I got back up to speed and was having a pretty good time. This wash is 4th and 5th gear stuff and flows pretty well. About that time I saw the lights of what would turn out to be another trophy truck. I didn’t even have time to think, but just pinned it. I didn’t want to go through that again and felt like I could go fast enough to keep him behind me. I tried to make as much dust as I possibly could and put my head down. The faster I went, the less light I saw bouncing off the trees and the canyon wall. I knew in the back of my mind that if I went down, I would likely be used for traction as this guy was chewing my dust and I was pretty sure he wasn’t liking it. This battle went on for several miles until the wash split. I went right, he went to the left and we drag raced to the next intersection where he took the lead. I putted along the shoulder until the dust cleared and I could pick up the pace.
Another mile or two up the wash the dust cleared and I found both trucks sitting on the side of the road where one of them had a problem and the other had stopped to help. Back on the gas again whoo hoo!
I could tell I was getting close to San Felipe as there were more and more campfires burning and more fans lining the roads. The more cheers and flash photography that I saw the harder I twisted the throttle. For the most part the locals were out there to watch the race and have some fun but I had been warned that when you see a large crowd, back it down as there is likely something there that is going to cause you to crash or at the very least get some big air. The first big group I approached I could see a rise in the landscape but couldn’t see the other side. I panic stopped and got it slowed down to a high rev in second gear when I hit the jump they had built on top of the rise. It kicked me up in the air a bit but nothing scary or dangerous. The next large group of spectators I approached was a carbon copy of the first so I just rolled on the throttle and caught some big air. (If someone has pictures of that area I’d love to see them) As I came into the next pit row it was difficult to find the #8 Honda pit. I thought at one point that I may have passed it and turned down a road to get away from the light and see if I couldn’t pick it out from a different perspective. I think the locals thought I had gone loco and started chasing me to let me know I had gone off course… No time to explain so I just asked where the Honda pit was and they pointed me back on course. I thought I had missed it and was concerned about running out of fuel but then I found it and rolled in for fuel. Honda pit #8 was probably the best staffed and most helpful of the 3 Honda pits I had visited to that point. The gas man actually knew what he was doing with the quick fill tank, someone grabbed my goggles and cleaned them, I had a water bottle with a long straw handed to me, my air filter was changed and I was ready to go within about 90 seconds…. Then came a guy running at me from the trail up ahead…waving his arms to keep them from sending me off. He was coming to warn me of a booby trap that was just up the trail that had claimed the rider just ahead of me. I was at the entrance to Zoo Road and it looked like a battle field. He warned me that they had stacked logs and covered them with dirt….. then he warned me of the trophy truck that was approaching from the rear. The truck roared by and I sat waiting for the dust to settle. Soon I was on my way and sure enough, about 250 yards down the trail I found the previously described obstacle… three logs, two logs and one stacked on top. It looked like the trophy truck knocked most of the dirt off of it so it was easy to see and clear without incident. Had I not known that it was there, that might have been a different story. Down zoo road and through the “dump” and I was off to the much anticipated 40 miles of whoops. I had been here in the spring and forgot just how deep and painful this whoop section was. I spent the first few miles trying to pound through them but they are not evenly spaced, too far apart to skim and just flat kick your butt! Soon I was looking for alternate lines and luckily I was finding some. I battled with one other bike during this time so other that being totally exhausting it was uneventful. I only had a couple of close calls when my rear tire tried to pass my front but other than that it went smoothly. Soon I was approaching Honda Pit #9 and was glad to see the lights and the crowd. Again it was difficult to find the Honda Pit with all the people standing in and around the pits, but eventually I got there and got the bike up on the stand. I couldn’t believe all the spectators that had gathered. The place was crazy.
The crew went to work on gassing the bike and changing a rear tire. We were the only team that had requested a new tire be changed that didn’t provide it already assembled on a spare rim. Jonny Campbell stated that this was fine, but I got the impression that he forgot to tell the guys working the pit. While the Honda guys went to work on that, I got Danno on the bike and helped to adjust the bars to his liking, someone put another air filter in and then we waited on the tire change. It didn’t look like it was going good, but I sat back and waited. Finally they were ready to seat the bead…. Doh wait a minute, someone had turned off the air compressor and rolled up the lines…. Waisted a couple more minutes. Then when they finally got it pumped up, it had a leak (pinched tube) and they were going to have to put a new tube in. I finally couldn’t take it any more and jumped in to help. As I was tucking the tube it felt really thin. I asked if this was a stock tube and the mechanic said yes. WTF!? Without thinking or saying anything, I ripped it out and asked why he wasn’t putting a heavy duty tube in??? No response, so I took the H.D. tube out of my fanny pack and put it in. Marc helped with the tire irons and we got the tire mounted and the bead set. Once the pressure was set, it was back on the bike and Danno was off. I was not impressed with the hired help at PIT #6 / #9. I had done my part. The bike was still in one piece and 3 hours 21 minutes after I started we were still in the race and everything was on track to finish ahead of our self projected 24 hour mark and well within the 31 hour time limit. My average MPH for the San Felipe loop was approximately 43 MPH. Aaron and Jerry were standing by and ready to head for to the next rider exchange point at the turn off for Mikes Sky Ranch. Deano’s first stent on the bike really took it’s toll on him and the boyz were questioning if I could ride again. I was feeling good and thought that physically I was definitely capable of doing another 75 – 100 miles but I had not pre-run this section so I told them only if he absolutely couldn’t ride. The support crew stuffed Deano with lots of food and energy drinks to get him pumped up and ready to ride. Maybe a bit less partying the night before (Maybe even the week before
) the freekin BAJA 1000 would be a good idea!!! The refueling worked and soon Danno was there handing off to Deano and he was off and running and we were taking part in the mad dash back to Ensenada. As soon as I have some of the pics that Aaron took I will post.
Next installment… Ace gets tossed in the pokie for an illegal u-turn

__________________
Russ

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. (Albert Einstein)
PacWestGS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2008, 05:24 PM   #19
PacWestGS OP
Life Is The Adventure!
 
PacWestGS's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: A Worldly Traveller
Oddometer: 10,866
Space for other "race report" if/when needed.
__________________
Russ

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. (Albert Einstein)
PacWestGS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2008, 05:26 PM   #20
PacWestGS OP
Life Is The Adventure!
 
PacWestGS's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: A Worldly Traveller
Oddometer: 10,866
Space #2 for "race report" if/wehn needed.
__________________
Russ

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. (Albert Einstein)
PacWestGS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2008, 05:26 PM   #21
PacWestGS OP
Life Is The Adventure!
 
PacWestGS's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: A Worldly Traveller
Oddometer: 10,866
Space #3 for "race report" if/when needed.
__________________
Russ

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. (Albert Einstein)
PacWestGS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2008, 05:29 PM   #22
PacWestGS OP
Life Is The Adventure!
 
PacWestGS's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: A Worldly Traveller
Oddometer: 10,866
Talking Post Race Activities and Finish Line Celebration!

After Race activities and Finish line celebrations: Before leaving Laguna Salada (RM150) I stopped and bought two-more hot dogs, damn they were good. While standing there eating, a bunch of guys on Dual/Sports made the corner from the highway. I said to myself, “I’ll bet those are ADVriders”, and sure enough the second bike from the end was a BMW G650XCH belonging to GB007. To bad, they didn’t see me, but I’m sure they were focused on seeing the trucks and buggies sweeping the turn onto pit row.


and a Side-Car or two:



After leaving RM150 to return to Ensenada, I got back around 7:00 PM, and had dinner with my wife. Then I began to hang out on the computer watching the little bubbles move around the racecourse and follow the commentary from the gang. As I watched the bubble for 202X end up on Highway 5, I said, “I wonder happed there?” Something had happened, it wasn’t over the bike was back on course again, did Deano have a tire issue, I’d tried to rationalize what was going on, (magnetic field ) the bike was still moving at this time and on course. Even if Deano got lost and rode the road to a pit for repairs, it was not a huge infraction and gained no advantage. IIRC the rules stated you can transport or use the road for no more than 60-miles during the race. The bike now under the controls of Ace and he was down in the San Felipe wash (RM320 to RM330) battling with a TT, that was cool. We were close to estimated time and I was very happy. My wife and I went out for dinner and I gorged on Mexican food, then I returned to watch the race live on my computer. I tried to call Springer or anyone else, but the phone lines were still overworked and I couldn’t get through. I was going to drive down to RM500 and see if I could help Dean and team with anything, but I evaluated the weather and the time it would take and thought better of it – I’d been up 19-hours at this point. Later, I walked down to the finish line; this was about 10:30 PM and hung around watching the finishers come in.

The first Trophy Truck came in with Tim Norman and Larry Roeseler (#8), followed by the Baldwin racing team and the celebrations began in earnest.

Someone somewhere mentioned this – the Baja is all about the trucks, so this was the whole nine yards, with NBC and SCORE. The Champagne flowed and the party began (even though a bike had won the overall by 11-minutes – hours ago ).

The fog was thick, and the streets were slippery. I had fears that anyone on two-wheels would come back into town, after racing 659-miles through the desert and lose it on the first pavement turn. I was hoping Dean would not be that guy. I was also hoping that the fog was knocking down the dust. After taking some pictures of the first few trucks and buggies and some bikes and quads that finished I walked back to hotel. And began following the race again on-line. About midnight Deano, made it over the mountains and handed the bike off to Dean. The race was on, and I started to really believe that with a little more luck, the bike wouldn’t blow up, the tires would last until the end and Dean would get through the difficult beach and silt sections. I knew it was foggy all along the coast, but I had no idea the visibility was near zero. I was hoping that Dean had a few pairs of goggles and lots of tear-offs. He was flat hauling ass and made it around to Santo Tomas in just about an hour longer than we had done it during the day. However, I knew the hard parts were just ahead. If anything could go wrong, it would be in the off-camber rocky silt beds (between RM557 and RM565) that was a bitch during the day. It was slow going and the time was creeping along. I was glued to my computer until he made it past this. Then I began to relax just a little. It was now about 03:00 in the morning and I had been awake for 24-hours. I lied down and fell asleep for an hour and twenty-minutes, the alarm went off and I checked the computer. Perfect, he’s almost to RM590, he’s through Check Point #6 and on the way home. Fecking eh, we are almost there, even if we need to find him, we have so much time left. We were now at our optimal time to finish, but we were looking good to finish the first Baja 1000 of our lives. I continued to watch the bubbles move around and when Dean got to the last 30-miles, I prepared my camera and put on a team-jacket to walk back to the finish line – stopping to buy a cold six-pack of Dos XXs for Dean and me (and any others that needed one). I found the team mostly there and anxiously waiting the arrival of Dean. I said, he’ll be here in about 45-minutes to an hour, and they looked at me as if I was a fortuneteller. I explained that I had been up all night watching the race on my computer, and that he was about 25-miles out and it was all downhill. The anxiety level was building with every passing minute when my time calculation went a little long.

Then finally at 05:50 (22:29.42 after the green flag dropped) Dean came rounding the last turn, rode up to the ‘Checkered Flag’

and stopped. (The emotions were more powerful than any sleep deprivation we all were feeling; it was almost overwhelming in a sense of relief and accomplishment. I cannot describe it, it was just the biggest thing of my life at the moment.) The scorer checked the purple arm-band on the left fork tube and then the team surrounded Dean pushing him up the hill.

Sal Fish was still here, (he must sleep when he can between the last racer departing and the first racer returning because he is there to meet and see every single person leave and return, even the one’s that finish but are after the time limit – what a man, 41-years! In addition, I know he flies around the course during the day too. Big kudos Sal! ) The celebration started and after a few moments for Dean to get off the bike, (a bike he’d now been riding for close to six-hours),



he kissed his wife

and I handed him a cold frosty one. That was the way we did it everyday for two-weeks; ride hard, ride long, and then chase the dust down with a cold frosty beer. At 6-O’clock in the morning after 27plus – long hours, it was time to celebrate!

We spent at least 30-minutes in the finishers circle, taking photographs and patting each other on the back.

We almost forgot what comes with finishing the Baja 1000, but Dean hadn’t. He walked over to the scorers table and picked up the five finisher pins, and came back to the group. When he handed me mine, I just looked at it. I didn’t even know we got this… (Sorry Honda new hat)
(Photo by Cyborg)

I was blown away and overwhelmed again. I ripped it out of the plastic and stuck it in my hat, very proud to have been a part of something bigger than me. After a while it was time to go, Springer’s truck was parked somewhere, and the bike was here. It had to be taken somewhere, and none of us could think of anyone more deserving. It was Mexico after all and drinking and riding on no sleep was to be expected.

Springer mounted the bike, fired it up and tried to do a burnout – he just shot forward, then gained his direction and sped down the staging area to the end. There, a ‘tech inspection’ area confirmed the purple tag and engine serial number. Then they were all off to Casa De Boar. I went back to the hotel room with Austin and Noah

and Austin collapses on the ground at his bike.

it was time to get some much-needed sleep. There was supposed to be a big party that night out in La Bufadora.

Later in the morning (about 9:00 AM) my friends wives (plural) came knocking on the door, Russ, we don’t know where our husbands are, can you help us locate them? SCORE is not very helpful because their trackers haven’t worked since the they left. I spent the next couple-hours asking people on the internet to find something, and walked over to SCORE Operations. My phone range while I was there and one of them had just crossed the finish line. 270X V. Smith had completed the Baja 1000 as an Ironman 27+ hours after starting. He was babbling something about 263X M. Lucke breaking around RM330 and being out of the race. (You’ve heard the story earlier, so I won’t go back into it.) With the information we got from him, I contacted SCORE on the radio in my truck and they were working with the ‘Weatherman’ to find out if was still with “Baldwin Racing”. Before we got word from SCORE, the gals were sitting in my truck monitoring the radio while I slept, my wife see’s Mark unloading his bike at the back of the hotel and runs out to tell his wife. I was really hoping I wouldn’t have to drive to San Felipe to recover him, so a big tanks to Baldwin Racing for bringing home a great friend.

Ahhhh, good news, now SLEEP!

Later, we all drove out to La Bufadora, walked down to the ‘Blow Hole’

and then went up to the house for the party. The party had never stopped from the morning and everyone was passed out… (We had passed Judy on the way up and got the word, and an invite to their house to show my friends, before leaving again.) Mike was asleep in a chair, but we were told to wake him up.)

Let’s go get some food, and call it a day, everyone was tired…

I came back the next day, and retrieved all the other equipment, camping gear, and bike stuff from Casa De Boar that I’d brought down. Said my ‘Goodbyes’ and left Casa De Boar, finally it was over; I’m going to miss Mexico and the Baja 1000 experience. But what a way to be leaving!!!
__________________
Russ

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. (Albert Einstein)

PacWestGS screwed with this post 12-09-2008 at 05:42 PM
PacWestGS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2008, 05:31 PM   #23
PacWestGS OP
Life Is The Adventure!
 
PacWestGS's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: A Worldly Traveller
Oddometer: 10,866
Awards Ceremony at San Nicholas Hotel

It wouldn't be right to miss the last event of the race, I was there too.

The big picture: (Poolside at the St. Nick)


Closer:


The "Ironman" awards:


Vern Smith, giving a big thanks to the organizers: (Sal Fish)


One celebrates the other asks why... (Vern is pointing to say it was all his idea)


There was a better time, just a day before:


The "Unofficial" posting of our class (Sportsman Under)


I have one more installment, then I'm done.
__________________
Russ

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. (Albert Einstein)
PacWestGS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2008, 05:32 PM   #24
PacWestGS OP
Life Is The Adventure!
 
PacWestGS's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: A Worldly Traveller
Oddometer: 10,866
Laugh The End. (of my writing parts)

The long drive home, and Thanksgiving with family and friends: Well, this won’t take long. I spent an extra ‘rest day’ in Ensenada just the wife, kid and me, went sightseeing,

wine tasting and bought some wine. Tried to drive out to the China Beach ‘Lighthouse’ west of Santo Tomas, but after 15-miles of washboard

my wife said turn the ‘F-ing’ truck around, I can’t take this. Returned to Ensenada, had dinner, bought some discounted Baja 1000 shirts, and went to bed. On Tuesday checked out -

and headed for Riverside.

The border was the same, slightly faster.


Then we had a most wonderful Thanksgiving ‘Turkey Dinner’ with my brother and his family.

The kid still had allergies, so we decided to hit the road early the next morning before ‘rush-hour’ and holiday traffic (04:40 departed). Best route was North I-15 (avoiding L.A.); traffic was so light on Highway 395 that I just stayed there all the way north to Oregon.

Drove through 80-miles of snow from Bishop to the Nevada State Line,

got into a ‘road rage’ incident with some crack-head bitch, ended up calling the State Police, in Reno. Drove on into Southern Oregon at dusk,

and up Hwy 97 to 58 and over to Eugene (I-5). Fog was pea-soup, but I was determined to make it home without stopping. Stopping with a 20-month old and a truck full of goodies just for a few hours wasn’t in the cards. My wife was still taking narcotics so she didn’t drive… 21-hours later at 01:10 on Thanksgiving Day, we arrived at home. Unloaded the absorbable stuff, and backed the truck up to the garage. Damn, it was cold (30-degrees) – let’s go back to Mexico. SLEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEP!


Thanks for taking the time to enjoy my (our) journey to the Baja 1000! It’s been a pleasure recounting it. I hope to recount it many times in my life, whether I get back there or not. It was worth everything it cost!
I’d also like to take a moment and thank some people that made it special:

Mr. Fisherman – for your tireless all night updates during the race. For posting pictures of the SPOT tracker during pre-running and all the support, you gave us.
PackMule – for doing what you do, RallyRadio and guidance.
RickF – for becoming a friend, and providing your knowledge.
Mr. Heuro – for your knowledge and support.
Triumph406 – for taking race memories that captured a special moment, thanks.
Ironmtnracing – for your direct radio support and race knowledge.
AKJeff – for your direct support of the entire effort, couldn’t have done it without you, a “BIG” thanks. "Just top it off"
Hank Kimble – I appreciate the help you provided.
NWBoarder – (and George) for your direct support.
Ratty2Austin – for your direct support and photographic abilities.
NoahDL88 – for the same, glad you made it down.
BajaBoundMoto – Tim thanks for the advice and help. (I stood next the Chris P. at the finish line for a few minutes, listening to him and another guy talk, what an ego – do they make helmets large enough?) Also, congratulations on your teams finish again this year what an accomplishment.

Jimmy, Gerry, Adam, Mike, Judy, Lisa, Brandy, Roni (tigger18) and anyone else I can’t remember at the moment. Without your support, we could not have done this: A big hug and huge thanks.

To all the ADVriders’ that supported, visited the web pages, or bought our SBR T-Shirts. Again, without your donations and support it would have been a lot more difficult to do this. Thanks.

Sal Fish, for keeping the greatest, toughest race going and going and going! Thanks for letting us participate!

Mark Lucke, and Vern Smith, (Both old friends that Ironman’d it) Mark, this all started because of you, and I’m just one of many people who wished you would have been there at the finish line on your bike. We’ve known each other too long, and rode too many miles together over the years to know that equipment doesn’t fail. It’s a shity thing but you did race the Baja 1000 and spent a week riding in Mexico, that’s something to be thankful for, no matter the outcome. Thanks for asking me three-years ago! It rates right up there with one of the best things I’ve ever done in my life. I owe you!

Last but not the least – my teammates: Marc, Dean A., Dean S., Daniel, and Ace, without you guys this would not have been possible, thanks for letting me be a part of it.

Now, back to my normal life, the race is over this year… memories to last a lifetime! I have a ton of pictures and video to remind me when I get older… wait I’m already gonna turn 46 at the end of this month, what a life!!!

Feck, video, I’ve got hours and hours of video to edit, cut add soundtrack and get it out there, for you all to enjoy…

That’s it for me, I really hope you all have enjoyed the journey, what a ride!



My current 'screensaver' (Austin is holding out on the 'Red Bull' jump pictures...

__________________
Russ

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. (Albert Einstein)
PacWestGS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2008, 06:20 PM   #25
header
Chris
 
header's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2007
Location: Salt Lake City
Oddometer: 1,730
Dude! Keep up the amazing report! Its fantastic.
__________________


KTM 530exc
525exc refresh
header is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2008, 07:03 PM   #26
PacWestGS OP
Life Is The Adventure!
 
PacWestGS's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: A Worldly Traveller
Oddometer: 10,866
Just wanted to say (show) that Mike and Judy's house is the one halfway up (or down) the side of bluff (horizon). As seen from La Bufadora. Very nice place, terrific view!

__________________
Russ

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. (Albert Einstein)
PacWestGS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2008, 08:23 PM   #27
header
Chris
 
header's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2007
Location: Salt Lake City
Oddometer: 1,730
hahaha, i just realized that now you are probably going to be bored when you go riding, since you just raced in one of the most demanding and exciting places in the northern hemisphere very little is going to compare.

and thanks for such a great read!
__________________


KTM 530exc
525exc refresh
header is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2008, 08:40 PM   #28
PacWestGS OP
Life Is The Adventure!
 
PacWestGS's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: A Worldly Traveller
Oddometer: 10,866
Bored - riding - never...

I got home and rode my (other) bike to work.

Thanks for reading about our trip, I felt safer in the desert than Seattle traffic!
__________________
Russ

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. (Albert Einstein)
PacWestGS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2008, 05:41 AM   #29
header
Chris
 
header's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2007
Location: Salt Lake City
Oddometer: 1,730
I would have to agree. Off road you are in controll, haha not in traffic.

Eventually I WILL do the baja. Hopefully my experience would be as fun as yours.

BTW, what bike are you riding? Did you do any performance modifications to it, and is it geared higher?
__________________


KTM 530exc
525exc refresh
header is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2008, 12:42 PM   #30
WNCSte
n00b - yep
 
WNCSte's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2007
Location: Western NC
Oddometer: 121
Man I love Baja reports. Thanks!
__________________
Exposure to risk is an inescapable part of life.
- Max Burns
WNCSte is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 01:08 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014