The 49th annual Bud Light SCORE Baja 1000 will run on Nov. 16th-20th, 2016. Traditionally, the course alternates between an Ensenada finish and a La Paz finish, but this year like 2015 will only include the northern state of Baja California, with a start and finish in Ensenada.
Events begin on Tuesday, November 15th, with the availability of satellite monitoring equipment and first come chassis inspections. Wednesday is more of the same in Ensenada, as the racers arrive for check in and chassis inspections.
Thursday, November 17th is a busy day for the racers and their crews with meetings and tech inspections that end with mandatory meetings for all the sportsmen and crews that evening.
The actual race will kick off at 6AM on Friday, November 18th, 2015 in Ensenada along the Blvd. Lázaro Cárdenas at 6AM with the motorcycle/ATV classes leading off and a new rider will start every 30 seconds. There is a three and a half hour break before the the bigger vehicles classes begin starts at 11:30AM.
There will be four checkpoints in the approximately 840-mile course that uses a 35 mile stretch to Oso Negros both directions and covers both sides of the peninsula and parallels Highway 1 for nearly half of the race. Looping south back to the Pacific and then crossing over to the other side of the peninsula below Puertocitos. The course then heads back North along the Sea of Cortez, past San Felipe paralleling Highway 5 and up to the junction with Highway 3. The rugged course then parallels Highway 3 traveling west then northwest back into Ojos Negros and the finish line in Ensenada.
The Baja 1000 began in 1967 with many changes over the years but it has always been considered the mother of all desert races. Celebrities in the past like actors James Garner, Steve McQueen and Paul Newman. The race has its own celebrities like Rod Hall, Johnny Campbell (11 wins), Larry Roesseler (17 class wins,13 overall wins) Ron Bishop, Robby Gordon ( NASCAR racer) and Johnny Johnson (retired with 15 class wins). Rod Hall is the only person that has run in all 45 previous races and at age 74 has 22 class wins including one overall win in 1972. This is just a few of the celebrities that have raced in the past with some continuing to race in this year’s Baja 1000.
The Baja 1000 has been the granddaddy of all desert races for years and with the growing popularity it is now a part of the World Championship of Desert racing which will include 2 of 3 SCORE Baja Desert Series races and 3 of the 4 HDRA 2013 races held in the U.S. There are many more awards such as the SCORE Off-Roadsmen of the Year, Toyota Milestone who complete every mile of the entire race season.
To watch the start or the finish of the Baja 1000 in person is truly something to see and there will be live tracking and coverage of the race this year. Many people come out to camp all night out along the race course at specific turns where the action is. Whether you can do that or not you can always follow the race action via the web. For more information on the coverage and tracking or just to see more details of the race go to www.score-international.com.