Kendall Norman, Quinn Cody and Johnny Campbell of the JCR Honda Team have won the motorcycle class at the 2010 SCORE Tecate Baja 1000 with an unofficial time of 19:20.52. This is the 14th consecutive and 21st overall motorcycle victory for Honda and fourth win in a row for Norman.
“The fog was really thick for about 100 miles – it was as bad as I’ve seen it. It really tested me and what I had,” said JCR Honda’s Kendall Norman. “It took everything I could to keep the bike moving and keep my goggles clean and just keep going. I can’t say enough for my teammate Quinn, he did an amazing job. It was flawless. It has been a very long year, waking up every day thinking of this race. We finally made it and made all my dreams come true this year. We pretty much had a flawless day. Quinn got a rear flat tire and other than that we really didn’t have a problem all day long. That was our strategy: Ride within ourselves, where we are not going to make mistakes. You really can’t screw up in this race. You’ve got to have this perfect race. Man, this is the toughest single day of desert racing in the world and to win five? I can’t even fathom it.”
I know we are a motorcycle site but without a doubt, the biggest news from this race is the overll win by the Red Bull backed Vildosola Racing Trophy Truck team. For the first time in the 43-year history of the Baja 1000, a Mexican national team has claimed the overall victory. Red Bull Racing’s Tavo and Gus Vildosola finished 2-minutes ahead of the overall runner-up JCR Honda squad at the end of the grueling 1060 mile race from Ensenada to
2010 SCORE Baja 1000 Overall Winner: Red Bull Racing Gus Vildosola. MotoUSA readers may recall the Vildosola race team actually gave aid to our Baja team in 2006 when we struggled to make the finish in our maiden race. Nice work guys!
La Paz. Meanwhile NASCAR racer and SCORE Baja racing regular Robby Gordon had another good showing finishing third overall with a time of 19:22.
“This race means a lot to me and my family,” explained Gus Vildosola jr. “Every time we go out and race, I say we have the privilege of representing Mexico because we’re the only Mexican SCORE Trophy-Truck team. It’s obviously an honor to finally be able to win a race for them and for all of our fans who have been supporting us for all these years. And it is especially great for my dad, as well. He bought this SCORE Trophy-Truck eight years with the dream to win a Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 overall and today we were able to fulfill that dream.
“Everybody knows this is not a one-person sport – it’s a team sport and we’ve got over 180 people down here supporting us. It just all fit together perfectly, I think. It’s such a special day for Mexico with the bicentennial of the (Mexican) revolution and the centennial of Mexican independence, so everything just kind of fell into place and we’re very happy about it. It’s just perfect. We started second off the line and we were basically going to see what Roger’s (Norman, the first starter) pace was and what his plan was for the day and then go from there. Roger had a pretty aggressive pace off the line and we just decided to sit back and pressure him. Roger got a flat a little south of San Felipe and we were able to get around him there and really never looked back. We were able to set our own pace and not be pressured by anyone else. We knew this was a peninsula run and you weren’t going to win it in 500 miles – it was 1,061 (miles). We executed it perfectly and obviously we also had a little bit of luck on our side this race.”
The trophy trucks obviously had the advantage on the fast and less technically challenging course laid out by SCORE this year as five of the top six finishers were trophy trucks. The bikes have unofficially finished with four of the top ten positions. Louie Franco’s Class 40 team were the second bike through, seventh overall, with a time of 21:54.47, followed by new Class 30 champion and MotorcycleUSA.com supported Francisco ‘Pancho’ Septien in eighth place overall on the Honda CRF450X with a time of 22:12.03.
Pancho Septien (shown at the 2010 Baja 500) and his team finished 3rd in the bike class in the 2010 Baja 1000. Septien will be the 2010 Class 30 champion.
Things looked promising for the star-packed Bonanza-Plumbing KTM team of David Pearson, Steve Hengeveld and Mike Childress. The team was battling the 1x Honda for the overall lead in the early stages until the KTM 530 XCW’s engine let go at the 200-mile mark. They weren’t the only top team to have troubles. The JCR 8x Team of Colton Udall, Tim Weigand and Justin Imhoff only had to finish second in order to claim the coveted 1x plate from their teammates. Unfortunately, a big crash outside Loreto left Imhoff knocked out with a broken arm. It was a tough, rocky section so by the time emergency vehicles made it to the scene, the team was out of contention.