BY DAVID FLORES
SCORE International has revealed the final route for the 56th Baja 1000 Off-Road race, which will cross Santa Rita, Ciudad Constitution, San Javier, San Ignacio and Vizcaino after leaving on November 16 from La Paz to Ensenada in Northern Baja. This is the first year that the race starts in our state’s capital city, to commemorate the 56th anniversary of “the mother of all races.”
The Race Day is Thursday, November 16, leaving from La Paz. The race distance is 1310.94 miles with a time limit of 50 hours. Motos and Quads leave at 1 a.m. (yes, no typo here), with Trucks and Buggies following at 9 a.m. (The departure location was yet to be advised when we wrote this.)
All surviving vehicles will be arriving in Ensenada, Northern Baja, between Wednesday, November 15 and Saturday, November 18, at which time the results will be posted and the 50th Baja 1000 Awards Celebration will begin.
The Baja 1000 is an annual Mexican off-road motorsport race held on the Baja California Peninsula. It is one of the most prestigious off-road races in the world, having attracted competitors from six continents.
The first official race started in Tijuana, Baja California, on October 31, 1967, and was named the NORRA National Off-Road Race Association) Mexican 1000 Rally. The course length that year was 849 miles (1,366 km) and ended in La Paz, with the overall winning time of 27 hours 38 minutes (27:38) set by Vic Wilson and Ted Mangels while driving a Meyers Manx buggy.
Among the celebrities that drove the race were actor Paul Newman who raced the Baja 1000 in 1969, and then returned to Baja in 2004 to become the oldest competitor to ever compete in the Baja 1000, just ahead of his 80th birthday. Other actors that did the race were Steve McQueen and Chuck Norris.