Saturday, February 9, 2008

BITD Parker 425 Photo Jihad!

All Parker photos are now up at

A preview

Steele/Lawrence go 2 for 2 to start 2008

Heidi Steele of the Desert Assassins and her new race partner Tim Lawrence of TLR Performance Fabrication have made it 2 for 2 to kick off 2008. The team brought home the win this week at the Parker 425 Best in the Desert (BITD) race on Saturday just six days after winning the SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge in their Lucas Oil/Yokohama Tire sponsored Ford Ranger pickup. After winning the opening rounds for the two premiere series in desert racing the team has big expectations for 2008.

Steele said, "The truck worked beautifully! The new FOX Shox have made a tremendous difference in the overall performance and TLR has done a great job with the prep. I'm looking forward to an exciting year!" Tim and Heidi traded off the starting driving duties at the first two races and are now looking forward to the SCORE San Felipe 250 which is the first Baja race of 2008 where they will again split time behind the wheel.

Heidi is off to a great year on the race course and in her career. She was nominated by her boss, Vince Cook, Chief Financial Officer/Executive Vice President of AccentCare, Inc. for a prestigious Orange County award to be decided on in March. Consequently, she is now a finalist for the 2008 Human Resources Executive of the Year which will be handed out just three days after her and Tim attempt to go 3 for 3 for ’08 at the San Felipe race. Her husband, Cameron Steele said "She has been able to accomplish a tremendous amount both on and off the track. With 9,000 employees AccentCare was one of Orange County's Fastest Growing Company as recognized by the Orange County Business Journal last year. I'm proud of her accomplishments."

Heidi is also a two term former President of the National Human Resource Association national board whose current board is deciding on the Executive of the year award. She is up against 5 others, both men and women just like on the race track, two of whom are also past presidents of the group.

Next for Heidi is to be a spectator and put the pressure on her husband Cameron at the SNORE Battle at Primm race over Presidents weekend on the State Line of Nevada and California. Cameron races an 800 horse power unlimited truck and was also at the Parker race where a $.65 part cost them a chance at winning. Heidi’s race truck will be pulled down to the frame while getting ready for San Felipe but she does expect to support the SNORE Powderpuff event at the Battle at Primm, maybe she’ll take the wheel of the #16 truck for that specialty event…….

The team would like to thank their sponsors for their continued support; Yokohama Tire, Lucas Oil Products, FOX Shox, American Racing Wheels, Alloy USA, Camburg, Lightforce, AlpineStars, TLR, FiberWerx , National Spring, Bosch Power Tools, UNI, Blue C Communications, Race Day Films, Ogio, VP Race Fuels and JBH

For information or bookings please contact Cameron Steele at

Mexican gangs try to bribe army as drug war flares

By Lizbeth Diaz

TIJUANA, Mexico, Feb 8 (Reuters) - Mexican drug gangs are trying to corrupt the army into siding with them in a turf war near the U.S. border, threatening to blunt President Felipe Calderon's offensive against the cartels.

Military men from generals to foot soldiers say they are being offered up to hundreds of thousands of dollars to turn a blind eye to shipments or call off anti-drugs operations in Baja California state, where there has been a surge of violence this year.

"These groups are coming to us to try to negotiate, to take us over to their side, trying to break us down," Gen. Sergio Aponte, who co-heads the military operation in Baja California, told reporters.

Since the late 1990s, Mexico has convicted at least five army generals for taking drug money, including the man who was once its anti-drugs czar and led the war against the gangs but was later found to be on the payroll of the Juarez Cartel.

Despite that record, Calderon has used the army as the driving force in his effort to destroy the cartels, sending 25,000 troops into action in an unprecedented campaign that began shortly after he took office in late 2006.

More than 2,500 people were killed in drug violence in Mexico in 2007 and at least 250 have died so far this year as cartels smuggling cocaine, marijuana and methamphetamine fight each other for control of routes to the United States.

The military is widely regarded as cleaner and more efficient than Mexico's thousands of local, state and federal police forces.

Senior military personnel have taken over municipal and state police forces in Baja California to root out officers working for the region's main drug cartel, the Arellano Felix gang.

Soldiers in Tijuana, just south of San Diego and one of the busiest border crossings into the United States, say they have rejected bribes but fear drug money will tempt others.

"We are not used to this kind of civilian contact, the army was always such a closed institution and it brings risks in Baja California, where corruption is such a problem," an army captain who declined to be named told Reuters.


Traffickers now offer discreet stacks of cash instead of the drugs, jewels and prostitutes commonly used in the past to bribe police and the army, soldiers say.

Political analysts believe the military is so far largely untainted by corruption but that may not last.

"The only institution in Baja California that's not corrupt is the army, but if it is corrupted, and there is that risk, Calderon's whole security project collapses," said Victor Clark, a drug trade expert at San Diego State University.

"The long-term threat is that the traffickers control senior military officers," he added.

Calderon hopes the army can dampen drug violence as a consortium of smugglers from the Pacific state of Sinaloa, led by Mexico's most wanted man, Joaquin "Shorty" Guzman, wages war against other cartels.

The president faces criticism from rights groups about his use of the army and he is eager to reassure the public that military operations will eventually be phased out.

"Once we have cleansed and strengthened police forces and the state prosecutor's office ... the role of the army will gradually diminish," he said this week.

Wages sometimes as low as a few hundred dollars a month have played a part in pushing many police to the drug trade to supplement their pay.

"We are catching traffickers who have police radios with them, who show all the signs of working on a daily basis with police protection," said an army major who declined to be named. "They sell information, alert the gangs to our operations."

Calderon hiked army wages on taking office to prevent them from going the way of the police, but desertion rates are high and some of those who leave join the drug gangs.

A group of U.S.-trained Mexican special forces soldiers switched sides in the late 1990s to work for the powerful Gulf Cartel and create the gang's ferocious armed wing, the Zetas. (Additional reporting by Robin Emmott in Monterrey; Editing by Kieran Murray)

Moderate Quake Rattles Baja California

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A moderate earthquake rocked Baja California in Mexico, shutting down factories near the U.S. border and leaving about 400,000 people without power, authorities said Saturday. No major damage or injuries were immediately reported.

The quake that struck around 11:15 p.m. Friday had a preliminary magnitude of 5.4, said Jessica Sigala, a geophysicist with the U.S. Geological Survey in Golden, Co. It was centered 16 miles southeast of the border town of Mexicali and about 100 miles east of Tijuana.

"It has been felt pretty widely in Southern California, southwestern Arizona and probably northern Mexico," Sigala said.

It was followed by at least 15 aftershocks, including four with preliminary magnitudes of 3.8, 3.6, 3.5 and 3.0.

The quake left about 400,000 people without electricity and 1.2 million without cellular telephone service, said Fire Capt. Rene Rosado, director of civil defense in Mexicali.

About 80,000 workers were evacuated or were unable to enter factories for Sony Corp., Honeywell International Inc. and other major corporations that typically run 24 hours a day until the buildings could be checked for damage, he said.

Two bridges showed 2- to 3-inch cracks and were closed until engineers could determine they were safe, he said.

The Baja peninsula is a geologically active region. In 2006, a magnitude-5.4 temblor struck the Mexicali area, but there were no injuries or damage.

source: AP Google

Thursday, February 7, 2008


Parker, Arizona - February 2, 2008: Best in the Desert Racing Association’s Blue Water Resort
& Casino ‘Parker 425’ got underway for Team HUMMER shortly before 9:00 AM on Saturday, Feb.
2nd. 295 Cars and trucks left the starting line in Downtown Parker and by the end of the day only 137
would finish, which will give you some idea how demanding it was to run multiple loops around this 138
mile-long stretch of Arizona desert. Class 8100 (Josh) was scheduled to drive three laps around the course,
while Class 4100 (Chad) and Class 3100 (Rod) only had to go around twice. The race got off to a shaky
start, with problems dogging two of the Team HUMMER race trucks on the first lap of the event. About
105 miles into the race, Josh Hall, in the #8111 H2 SUT suffered a broken, driver’s side tie rod end, a part
that rarely fails. It took about 15 minutes to replace the tie rod assembly with our on-board spare only to
have the passenger side tie rod end fail in a similar way about 20 miles further on. There was no apparent
reason for either of these failures and the replacement tie rods lasted for the duration of the event, leading
us to conclude that we would need to take a closer look at the broken units after the race. Meanwhile, the
tie rod repairs had put the #8111 Team HUMMER H2 about 30 minutes off the pace but it was still early
and the truck was running well, once again.
Rod Hall got off to a good start in the #3111 Team HUMMER H3 SUV and was enjoying a
comfortable lead until shortly before race-mile 40 when the center bolt on the rear passenger side spring
pack sheared off, forcing the H3 to stop at Pit #2 (RM 54) where Jeff Buffmeyer and Dave Williams were
waiting to make the repair. The fix was labor intensive, requiring almost two hours to complete, before the
#3111 H3 was back in the race. Rod stopped at the end of the first lap, almost two hours behind the leader
and Mike Winkel took over behind the wheel. Winkel ran a trouble-free final lap and brought the #3111
Team HUMMER H3 SUV in for a second place finish shortly before 8:00 PM.
Chad Hall ran both laps, in the #4111 Team HUMMER H3 Alpha SUV, with Thad Stump in the
navigator’s seat. Chad had no troubles on the course but the new Alpha still needs some fine tuning to the
running gear and suspension before we can realize the truck’s full potential. Marc Stein in the #4102 Ford
Expedition had a flawless race and beat us to the finish by 27 minutes. The H3 Alpha came away with a
second place finish which is not a bad start to the BitD season. We’ll take it back to the proving grounds,
where Matt Laramie and his team will do some testing and work on bringing the Alpha up a notch in
preparation for our next race.
Josh Hall had moved the #8111 H2 into second place at race-mile 32, on the third and final lap, just 12
miles behind the #8106 Ford, driven by Larry Tunnell, Jr. of Parker, Arizona. The H2 had run perfectly
since the tie rod problems on the opening lap and was gradually reeling in the class leading Ford, coming
within a mile of him when he passed through Pit #4 (RM 104). Unfortunately the H2 had worn out all the
linings on the brake pads half way into lap three and although the H2 was faster on the graded sections of
the course, he could not keep up in the rough terrain, where the use of brakes are critical. Equally unfortunate
was the fact that the final 30 miles of the course was very technical (rough) terrain, so Josh had to
slow it down and settle for our third 2nd place finish on the day. The good news was that this was the first
finish for the H2 and it was a solid one, coming in just 23 minutes off the class win. We’ll analyze the brake
pads back at the shop and come up with a more durable solution in time for our next race which is the
SCORE ‘San Felipe 250, March 14-15 in San Felipe, BC, Mexico.
- grt

Laughlin Photo Jihad!

All LDC photos are now posted. See them all at Durka Durka Photo

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Team G and R Parker 425 Race Report

The BITD Parker 425 is well known for being a rough and tumble off-road race. Offering some of the most challenging conditions in the United States, including rocky sand washes, high speed graded roads and the famous "Parker Python", an infield of tight sandy twists and turns as well as jumps and rough whoop sections. The course consists of three 141.5 mile loops starting on the pavement in downtown Parker, AZ immediately rocketing out to the famous Shea Rd. spectator area and out into the brutal Arizona desert.

The normally silt laden racecourse was recently soaked with several days of rain making the conditions relatively dust free but softer than normal. Number 38 Garron Cadiente, managed to qualify second. Running his new Toyo tires, Cadiente rocketed off the line just after sun up. Ron Whitton who was starting further back in the field had his work cut out for him, as traffic would prove to be a major factor in this race. Ron thundered off the line in his number 39 Geiser built Trick Truck. Finishing 2nd in overall points for the 2007 Best In The Desert Series, Ron Whitton was eager to begin the race and start picking through the massive field of 89 combined trick trucks and Class 1 cars. The forthcoming race would prove to be a long and treacherous day.

Cadiente managed to stay out in the front right until he ran into the first of many mechanical issues. Garron was on the tail of Todd Wylie, the first trick truck off the line, but was suddenly stopped at race mile 60 by a flat tire. He was stopped again at race mile 100 due to a bent drive shaft after which Cadiente managed to limp into the next pit. Shortly after, Cadiente began moving again but was stopped after losing a fuel pump, which was followed by throttle position sensor failure that held Cadiente at half speed until the next pit. The challenges would continue as Cadiente began to lose engine power only to discover a broken header. Out of contention for the overall finish Cadiente even stopped to tow in his immobilized partner, Ron Whitton before he managed to cross the line 7:55:27 putting him 9th overall and 7th in trick trucks.

"It was a tough day, but we managed to finish. Stuff broke that I have never had any problems with, it was strange. That's off-road racing, if it was easy to win it wouldn't mean anything," stated the worn but not defeated Cadiente.

Ron Whitton started off strong passing over 17 vehicles within the first eighty miles. Whitton also had bad luck when he went wide on a corner at race mile 100 smacking his rear end into a rock, damaging his trick truck beyond repair. " I made a mistake, it's that simple. The truck was running great, we had no problems up until that point. I came down a canyon and took the corner about a foot wide and smacked a rock. It killed my rear end, drive shaft ant tranny! I had spares for everything but the rear end. Anywhere else on the course and it might have been no big deal, but that's how it goes. You can't make mistakes," stated the disappointed Whitton.

G&R racing's next race will be the SCORE San Felipe 250 where Garron Cadiente is the defending overall champion.

On behalf of the entire team I would like to thank each and every one of our Dirt Squad newsletter members for taking an interest in G&R Racing. Enjoy the content and feel free to send me your comments.

Hasta Luego

Brian Godfrey
Team Manager
2008 BITD Parker 425 Results
Positiion Truck # / Name Time
40-Jerry Whelchel 7:15:35
11-Dale Dondel 7:25:51
56-Larry Roeseler 7:43:14
57-Scott Kincaid 7:45:29
66-Josh Baldwin 7:45:51
77-Robby Gordon 7:48:18
38-Garron Cadiente 7:55:27
26-Chris Robinson 7:55:46
97-BJ Baldwin 8:22:11
41-Rick D Johnson 8:59:33
39-Ron Whitton

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Pala Raceway-a 240-Acre Motocross and Off-Road Facility-Begins DevelopmentPala Raceway-a 240-Acre Motocross and Off-Road Facility-Begins Development

Pala Raceway–a 240-Acre Motocross and Off-Road Facility–Begins Development

--Opening Scheduled For 2008--

(PALA, Calif.) – Jan. 31, 2008 – MX Motopark Industries Inc., in association with the Pala Band of Mission Indians, today announced the development of Pala Raceway, a 240-acre motocross and off-road racing facility in Pala, CA, 30 miles north of San Diego. With more than five years of planning, engineering and biological studies, Pala Raceway has received all of the necessary permits and federal approvals for construction to commence.

“Pala Raceway is being developed as a modern motocross raceway, and the construction process will include a variety of components to ensure a successful long-term relationship with our neighbors and with the environment,” said Ryan Ouellette, president of MX Motopark Industries Inc. “Our goal is to build the sport from the bottom up by providing the best possible venue for participants to ride, race, and relax with their friends and families.”

“By using current technology we have developed an infrastructure of irrigation, sound fencing, lighting, and telecommunications to provide a comprehensive base for racing events and for the ease of future park expansions,” said Kirk Chandler, vice president and architectural designer of MX Motopark Industries Inc. In addition, Chandler said, Pala Raceway is screening more than 400,000 cubic yards of soil to remove rocks and debris to provide park visitors with the best possible soil conditions on the tracks when the gates open to the public in 2008. Construction will take up to 6 months, and an opening date will be announced as construction nears completion.

Page 2—Pala Raceway

Pala Raceway will feature 12 separate professionally designed and prepped tracks, including: Main Motocross, Vet Motocross, Grand Prix Motocross, Amateur Supercross, 80cc-150cc Motocross, 50cc-65cc Mini, Adult Mini, Stadium Side x Side/UTV, Quad, Mini Quad, Professional Supercross and Super Moto tracks. In addition, the raceway will include more than 300 campsites, a clubhouse, a restaurant, a three-acre fishing pond, a BMX race track, and a bike wash for all park visitors.

Pala Raceway will be open for practice seven days a week and will offer night riding on the Amateur Supercross track and Stadium SidexSide tracks. A racing program is in development and an events schedule will be announced.

Pala Raceway is located on Highway 76, approximately seven miles east of Interstate 15, and one and one-half miles east of the Pala Casino Resort Spa. The raceway is closed to the public during the construction process; public tours will be established at a later date. Please direct all inquiries to 1-888-PALA-MX1 and visit for more information. Construction updates are also available by signing up on the web site for the Pala Raceway newsletter.

Neither the Pala Band of Mission Indians Administration offices nor the Pala Casino Resort Spa will be answering any inquiries on the raceway’s development, and all questions may be directed to MX Motopark Industries Inc.

“We are grateful and extend our appreciation to the Pala Band of Mission Indians, their General Council, Business Council, Chairman Robert Smith, Vice Chairman Leroy Miranda, Lenore Volturno from Pala EPA and the entire administrative staff for all of their efforts during the past years in developing a world-class racing facility in San Diego County,” said Ouellette.

Page 3—Pala Raceway

About MX Motopark Industries Inc.

MX Motopark Industries Inc. is a private company comprised of a group of investors with a passion for motocross and off-road racing. The company’s focus is on developing raceway facilities worldwide, and includes an in-house team of architects, designers, engineers and contractors who are well-versed in raceway design, construction and management. MX Motopark Industries Inc. is focused on building raceways and riding areas that are environmentally sensitive and fit within the context of their surroundings by being good neighbors and being proactive with design and engineering.

About Pala Band of Mission Indians

The Pala Band of Mission Indians consists of 867 members with 600 living on the

reservation along the Palomar Mountain range. The reservation is located along 5,000 square miles of California’s desert and is approximately 30 miles northeast of San Diego on Interstate 15. Pala Casino, an 185,000 square foot, $115 million casino, entertainment and dining complex owned by the Pala Band of Mission Indians, opened in April 2001.



Ryan Ouellette:

Kirk Chandler:

Phone: 888-PALA-MX1

Las Vegas teammates Dean, Richardson first & third In Overall 2008 SCORE Desert Series point standings

February 5, 2008

Ronco leads SCORE Trophy-Truck
Las Vegas teammates Dean, Richardson first & third
In Overall 2008 SCORE Desert Series point standings

Drawing for start positions for March’s 22nd Tecate SCORE San Felipe 250 to be held on Feb. 15

LOS ANGELES—Following his impressive season-opening victory at the recent 14th SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge, Las Vegas’ veteran desert racer Pat Dean leads the overall and unlimited Class 1 point standings in the 2008 SCORE Desert Series while his teammate B.J. Richardson is third in overall points and second in Class 1.
Racing for the Las Vegas Dissemination Company team in near-identical Chevy-powered Bunderson open-wheel desert race cars that are prepped by Valley Performance, Dean has 62 points while Richardson has 53.
Dean, who owns Patrick’s Signs of Las Vegas, and Richardson, a Las Vegas businessman with interests both in real estate and casinos, have been teammates for several years with their vehicles prepped by Valley Performance, which is owned by Pat’s father Butch Dean and is the oldest full-service off-road shop in Southern Nevada.
“We used a borrowed vehicle after I sold my old Class 1 car three weeks before the Laughlin race and the loaner was only a V6 which makes our win and start of the 2008 SCORE Desert Series even more impressive,” said Dean, a veteran second-generation SCORE desert racer with numerous podium finishes in his SCORE racing career. “B.J. and I and our race cars have become almost like twins and to start the season with a 1-2 finish in Class 1 is better than we have ever started as a team before.”
Round 2 of the 2008 SCORE Desert Series will be the 22nd Annual Tecate SCORE San Felipe 250, to be held March 14-15, in San Felipe, Baja California, Mexico. The computerized drawing, by class, for the race, will be held Feb. 15 at the SCORE International headquarters in Los Angeles.
Second overall and leading the SCORE Trophy-Truck points after his Laughlin win is Rich Ronco. Another veteran desert racer, Ronco, Peoria, Ariz., is new to the marquee SCORE Trophy-Truck racing division and has 59 points in his No. 45 Tatum Motorsports Chevy Silverado.
With SCORE points based both on number of starters and placing position within each class, Class 1 had 27 starters in Laughlin while SCORE Trophy-Truck had 24. Class 1 has five drivers in the top 10 of SCORE Overall points while SCORE Trophy-Truck has three.
Las Vegas’ B.J. Baldwin, the 2006 SCORE Trophy-Truck season point champion, is fourth in overall points and second in his class with 53 points in his No. 97 Baldwin Motorsports Chevy Silverado.
Steve Barry, Jamul, Calif., is fifth overall and third in Class 1 with 52 points in a Jimco-Chevy.
Class 1-2/1600 point leader Cory Boyer, Bakersfield, Calif., leads the second-five in overall points at sixth with 51 in a Lothringer-VW.
Tied for seventh overall with 49 points each are: Damen Jefferies, Apple Valley, Calif., who is third in SCORE Trophy-Truck in his Chevy Silverado and Chuck Dempsey, Oak Hills, Calif., who is fourth in Class 1 in a HMS-Chevy.
Enrique Zazueta Jr., La Paz, Mexico, leads Class 5/1600 in a VW Baja Bug and is ninth overall with 48 points while 10th overall and fifth in Class 1 with 47 points is Dale Lenk, Costa Mesa, Calif., in a Penhall-Chevy.
The 2008 SCORE Desert Series also includes the chase for the $20,000 Volkswagen Point Leader Bonus and the run for the Toyota Milestone Awards.
Current SCORE official annual sponsors are: BFGoodrich Tires-official tire, Sunoco Race Fuels/Bryant Petroleum-official fuel supplier, Bilstein-official shock, Volkswagen-official vehicle, Instant Mexico Auto Insurance-official Mexican auto insurance, Slime-official tire sealant, Red Bull--official energy drink and Bosch Power Tools-official power tool. Associate sponsors are: Tecate Beer, Coca-Cola of Mexico, Las Vegas Events, Terrible Herbst Inc., Blue C Enthusiast Advertising, Kartek Off-Road, American Suzuki, SignPros, P.C.I. Race Radios, McKenzie’s Performance Products and Advanced Color Graphics.
For more information regarding the series, contact SCORE at its Los Angeles headquarters 818.225.8402 or visit the official website of the SCORE Desert Series at

2008 SCORE Desert Series
Point Leaders
(Five-race point series in U.S. and Mexico. Through SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge. Remaining point races: 22nd Tecate SCORE San Felipe 250, March 14-15-San Felipe, Mexico; 40th Tecate SCORE Baja 500, May 30-June -Ensenada, Mexico; 13th SCORE Terrible’s Primm 300, Sept. 5-6-Primm, Nev.; 41st Tecate SCORE Baja 1000-Ensenada, Mexico)

Top 15 Overall Cars and Trucks
(Position, Drivers, Vehicle-Engine, Class, Points)
1. Pat Dean, Las Vegas, Bunderson-Chevy (Class 1), 62
2. Rich Ronco, Peoria, Ariz., Chevy Silverado (SCORE Trophy-Truck), 59
3. B.J. Richardson, Las Vegas, Bunderson-Chevy (Class 1), 56
4. B.J. Baldwin, Las Vegas, Chevy Silverado (SCORE Trophy-Truck), 53
5. Steve Barry, Jamul, Calif., Jimco-Chevy (Class 1), 52
6. Cory Boyer/Rick Boyer, Bakersfield, Calif., Lothringer-VW (Class 1-2/1600), 51
7. Damen Jefferies, Apple Valley, Calif., Chevy Silverado (SCORE Trophy-Truck), 49
7. Chuck Dempsey, Oak Hills, Calif./Mark Levrett, Sparks, Nev., HMS-Chevy (Class 1), 49
9. Enrique Zazueta Jr./Enrique Zazueta Sr., La Paz, Mexico, VW Baja Bug (Class 5/1600), 48
10. Dale Lenk/Brett Lenk, Costa Mesa, Calif., Penhall-Chevy (Class 1), 47
11. Bobby Baldwin, Las Vegas, Chevy Silverado (SCORE Trophy-Truck), 46
11. Rick St. John, Encinitas, Calif./Adam Pfankuch, Carlsbad, Calif., Duvell-VW (SCORE Lite), 46
11. James Scott, Hemet, Calif., RPS-Chevy (Class 1), 46
14. Chris Harrold, Chula Vista, Calif., AlumiCraft-Honda (Class 10), 45
14. Hiram Duran, Chula Vista, Calif., Amplified-VW (Class 1-2/1600, 45
14. Eric Chase, San Diego/Stuart Chase, Burbank, Calif., Penhall-Chevy (CLASS 1), 45

2008 SCORE Desert Series
Class Point Leaders
(With Class wins in parenthesis)
Pro Cars and Trucks
SCORE TROPHY-TRUCK—1. Rich Ronco, Peoria, Ariz., Chevy Silverado (1), 59; 2. B.J. Baldwin, Las Vegas, Chevy Silverado (1), 53; 3. Damen Jefferies, Apple Valley, Calif., Chevy Silverado, 49; 4. Bobby Baldwin, Las Vegas, Chevy Silverado, 46; 5. Robbie Pierce, Santee, Calif., Chevy Silverado, 44; 6. Mark Post, Laguna Beach, Calif./Rob MacCachren, Las Vegas, Ford F-150, 28; 7. Travis Coyne, El Centro, Calif., Ford F-150, 27; 8. Bill McBeath, Las Vegas, Chevy Silverado, 26; 9. Todd Wyllie, New River, Ariz., Chevy C1500, 25; 10. Josh Baldwin, Newport Beach, Calif., Ford F-150, 24.
CLASS 1—1. Pat Dean, Las Vegas, Bunderson-Chevy (1), 62; 2. B.J. Richardson, Las Vegas, Bunderson-Chevy, 56; 3. Steve Barry, Jamul, Calif., Jimco-Chevy, 52; 4. Chuck Dempsey, Oak Hills, Calif./Mark Levrett, Sparks, Nev., HMS-Chevy, 49; 5. Dale Lenk/Brett Lenk, Costa Mesa, Calif., Penhall-Chevy, 47; 6. James Scott, Hemet, Calif., RPS-Chevy, 46; 7. Eric Chase, San Diego/Stuart Chase, Burbank, Calif., Penhall-Chevy, 45; 8. Brian Parkhouse, Bell Gardens, Calif./Tom Ridings, Los Alamitos, Calif., Jimco-Chevy, 29; 9. Jeff Farris, Kerman, Calif., HMS-Chevy, 28; 10. Brian Hudson, Westminster, Calif., Jimco-Chevy, 27.
CLASS 1-2/1600—1. Cory Boyer/Rick Boyer, Bakersfield, Calif., Lothringer-VW (1), 51; 2. Hiram Duran, Chula Vista, Calif., Amplified-VW, 45; 3. Adam Pfankuch, Carlsbad, Calif., Mirage-VW, 41; 4. Dave Caspino, Woodland Hills, Calif., Lothringer-VW, 38; 5. Cody Robinson, El Centro, Calif./Roberto Romo, Mexicali, Mexico, Curry-VW, 36.
CLASS 3—1. Donald Moss, Sacramento, Calif., Ford Bronco (1), 40.
CLASS 5—1. Kevin Carr, San Diego, VW Baja Bug (1), 40.
CLASS 5/1600—1. Enrique Zazueta Jr./Enrique Zazueta Sr., La Paz, Mexico, VW Baja Bug (1), 48; 2. Marcos Nunez/Norberto Rivera, Ensenada, Mexico, VW Baja Bug, 42.
CLASS 7—1. Dan Chamlee, Summerland, Calif., Ford Ranger, 25.
CLASS 7SX—1. Heidi Steele, San Clemente, Calif./Tim Lawrence, Santee, Calif., Ford Ranger (1) 25.
CLASS 8—1. Todd Wyllie, New River, Ariz., Chevy C1500, 25.
CLASS 10—1. Chris Harrold, Chula Vista, Calif., AlumiCraft-Honda (1), 45; 2. David Rodriguez/Sergio Rodriguez, Santa Fe., N.M., Kreger-VW, 24; 3. Mike Lawrence, Brea, Calif./Chris Lawrence, Los Alamitos, Calif., Lothringer-VW, 20, 4. Robert McBeath, Las Vegas, Jimco-Honda, 17.
SCORE LITE—1. Rick St. John, Encinitas, Calif./Adam Pfankuch, Carlsbad, Calif., Duvell-VW (1), 46; 2. Tom Watson, El Centro, Calif./Rob MacCachren, Las Vegas, Prill-VW, 40; 3. David Callaway, Menifee, Calif./Scott Mapes, Riverside, Calif., Dunrite-VW, 36; 4. Steve Mamer, Holtville, Calif., Raceco-VW, 33; 5. Hector Garcia Jr., Chino, Calif., BajaMotorsports-VW, 31.
CLASS 11—1. Ramon Fernandez, Ensenada, Mexico, VW Sedan (1), 40; 2. Todd Lucero, Anaheim Hills, Calif./Richard Nicols Jr., Placentia, Calif., VW Sedan, 34.
STOCK FULL—1. Chad Hall, Reno, Nev., Hummer H3 Alpha (1), 40; 2. John Griffin, Mission Viejo, Calif./Jeremy Spirkoff, El Cajon, Calif., Ford F-350, 34.
STOCK MINI—1. Rod Hall, Reno, Nev., Hummer H3 (1), 40; 2. Steve Kovach, Tempe, Ariz./Chip Carr, Gilbert, Ariz., Ford Ranger, 34.
PROTRUCK—1. Jason Voss/Rich Voss, Cupertino, Calif., Ford F-150 (1), 40.

2008 SCORE Desert Series
Race-by-Race Class Winners

14th SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge
Laughlin, Nevada • Jan. 26-27, 2008
Total Starters: 141 Total Finishers: 41
Cars & Trucks
SCORE TROPHY-TRUCK—Rich Ronco, Peoria, Ariz., Chevy Silverado
CLASS 1—Pat Dean, Las Vegas, Bunderson-Chevy
CLASS 1-2/1600—Cory Boyer, Bakersfield, Calif., Lothringer-VW
CLASS 3—Donald Moss, Sacramento, Calif., Ford Bronco
CLASS 5—Kevin Carr, San Diego, VW Baja Bug
CLASS 5/1600—Enrique Zazueta Jr., La Paz, Mexico, VW Baja Bug
CLASS 7—No Finishers
CLASS 7S—No Starters
CLASS 7SX—Heidi Steele, San Clemente, Calif., Ford Ranger
CLASS 8—No Finishers
CLASS 9—No Starters
CLASS 10—Chris Harrold, Chula Vista, Calif., AlumiCraft-Honda
SCORE LITE—Rick St. John, Encinitas, Calif./Adam Pfankuch, Carlsbad, Calif. Duvell-VW
CLASS 11—Ramon Fernandez, Ensenada, Mexico, VW Sedan
STOCK FULL—Chad Hall, Reno, Nev, Hummer H3 Alpha
STOCK MINI—Rod Hall, Reno, Nev., Hummer H3
PROTRUCK—Jason Voss, Cupertino, Calif., Ford F-150
CLASS 17—No Starters

Parker 425 Car 1131

Once again i was fortunate enough to be asked by the burgins (red and Susie) to assist in the driving of their score-lite, or class 1100 at the b.i.t.d "parker 425", red started and ran

The first lap, had really good luck getting by the front runners, and getting out front, staying out of trouble, co-driver Kenny said everything went smooth, passed a lot of cars in the rough stuff

, The new fat engine really ran well, different than the collotype-4, you shift at 6500 rpm and got to keep it there to go forward, not used to that...(my ears are still ringing!!!!!!!), as red was coming

Into the "python" with a front flat, he ran out of fuel?..........luckily there was a team close by and splashed 2 gallons to help get us thru the 9 mile sand trap and that only cost us about 5 min.

Standard scene in the pits, change tire, add fuel, driver change...get out of town as fast as we can, ...lots of talent in parker in class 1100. Cant give up an inch, they will take it from you,

Ran clean, no mistakes, had to do a little bumping and shoving to keep the pace but nothing to out of hand, as we dropped into mineral wash the alternator light came on, we quickly pulled over

And assessed the situation, .........the belt was still on!!!!!!!!!! Good and bad, .we were close enough to muster in on battery power if needed to, but after 5 min light went out, gps unit was grounding

Out and finally quit, light went out and we wicked it back to race speed, probably loosing only 5-6min. or so, ...took final fuel and headed back out on lap three, kept a blistering pace, not to many issues

Usual slower classes to get around, out in the wash to grahams well a small bottle neck that we had to wait for, but got that worked out and steamed ahead, again loosing a few min. there also,

Clean run to midway, not getting the top end speed we would like to have had, we knew 1120 1120 Rodney Smithwas coming, he clearly had mph on us bad, they caught us passed midway, said hello in the usual

racing manner, and we kept them in sight as we dropped off the c.a.p. Into the rough stuff, we kept pace and closed the gap to about 10 seconds trying to real them back in, we both battled lots of

Traffic as we headed to the goat trail, as we went thru the old Shea pits, and dropped into Osborne, we were plagued with a sticky throttle cable for about 1 mile or so, most likely the rock shower

of abc we were unable to avoid from the pro-truck back in Osborne, probably added 100 lbs to the car, never the less, we un-wedged the un-welcome demon, only to break a front right lower trailing

arm off the car, @#%&*#^%$.............7 miles or so to go, had no choice but to idle in on first gear, she was a toughy to turn, .......took some doing to keep it on course, but better to get 2nd than DNF that

close to the finish, congrats to 1120 1120 Rodney Smith they ran hard all day, and never gave up, that’s what this sport is all about.

Volkswagen of America, SCORE International’s official vehicle, announces Massive $100,000 cash contingency program for 2008 SCORE Desert Series

February 4, 2008

Volkswagen of America, SCORE International’s official vehicle, announces

Massive $100,000 cash contingency program for 2008 SCORE Desert Series

Includes $20,000 year-end bonus for VW-powered vehicle with the most season points

LOS ANGELES—SCORE International announced today that Volkswagen of America, Inc., the official vehicle of the world’s foremost desert racing organization, has posted a massive $100,000 cash contingency program for the 2008 SCORE Desert Series.

In the second year of a special marketing partnership with SCORE International that showcases the exotic VW Touareg, the new VW Contingency program offers cash to the top three finishers in VW-powered cars in eight Pro classes, plus a $20,000 year-end bonus to the VW-powered vehicle with the most points in the series as well as a $5,000 bonus to the highest finishing VW-powered vehicle in both the 2008 Tecate SCORE Baja 500 and the 2008 SCORE Baja 1000 desert races.

“This special Volkswagen cash contingency program is huge for SCORE and huge for our sport,” said Sal Fish, SCORE CEO/President since shortly after it was founded in 1973. “We have been honored to have VW has our SCORE official vehicle since June and this commitment to our SCORE desert racers is unprecedented and a very special bonus for all the dedicated grassroots competitors who have long known how desert-worthy those amazing Volkswagen vehicles are in our sport.”

The 2008 SCORE Desert Series started Jan. 26-27 with the 14th Annual SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge in Laughlin, Nev.

Round 2 of the 2008 SCORE Desert Series will be the 22nd Tecate SCORE San Felipe 250 (March 14-15). Returning to San Felipe, Baja California, Mexico, after being held last year in Ensenada, the race will feature 28 Pro and 6 Sportsman classes for cars, trucks, motorcycles and ATVs. It is the first of three races produced annually by SCORE in Mexico.

“This Volkswagen contingency program is a natural extension of our marketing partnership with SCORE and we are very, very happy to reward our loyal VW desert racers with these significant cash bonuses,” said Clark Campbell, Volkswagen of America Motorsport Manager. “Volkswagen is committed to SCORE desert racing and to the finest desert racers in the world and this new contingency program will reward our Volkswagen racers for their competitive spirit. It should be another exciting year for VW’s in SCORE.”

SCORE currently has three Pro classes open exclusively to VW Baja Bugs, Beetles, Rabbits (Class 5, Class 5/1600) and VW Sedans (Class 11). Three additional classes (Class 1-2/1600, SCORE Lite and Class 9) are required to have VW powerplants exclusively in open-wheel desert race cars and the unlimited Class 1 and Class 10 car classes have the option of using a VW motor.

In addition to the special year-end bonus and the bonuses at the 40th Tecate SCORE Baja 500 (May 30-June 1) and the 41st Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 (Nov. 19-22), the cash prizes available each race, per class, are $1,000 for first, $500 for second and $250 for third.

VW of America is also currently building a Volkswagen Race Touareg 2 Turbo-Diesel to compete in the featured SCORE Trophy-Truck division for 800-horsepower, high-tech, unlimited production trucks. The VW SCORE Trophy-Truck is scheduled to debut in November’s SCORE Baja 1000.

Volkswagen was the first official vehicle that SCORE ever had. During SCORE’s first three years (1973-1975), the unique VW Thing was marketed through SCORE International.

Current SCORE official sponsors are: BFGoodrich Tires-official tire, Sunoco Race Fuels/Bryant Petroleum-official fuel supplier, Bilstein-official shock, Volkswagen-official vehicle, Instant Mexico Auto Insurance-official Mexican auto insurance, Slime-official tire sealant, Red Bull--official energy drink and Bosch Power Tools-official power tool. Associate sponsors are: Tecate Beer, Coca-Cola of Mexico, Las Vegas Events, Terrible Herbst Inc., Blue C Enthusiast Advertising, Kartek Off-Road, American Suzuki, SignPros, P.C.I. Race Radios, McKenzie’s Performance Products and Advanced Color Graphics.

Founded in 1973 and led since 1974 by Sal Fish, SCORE International, based in Los Angeles, is the world’s leading desert racing sanctioning body and race producer. SCORE annually producing the six-race SCORE Desert Series with three events each in the Southwestern United States and Baja California, Mexico.

For more information, contact SCORE at its Los Angeles headquarters 818.225.8402 or visit the official website of the SCORE Desert Series at

Founded in 1955, Volkswagen of America, Inc. is headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan. It is a subsidiary of Volkswagen AG, headquartered in Wolfsburg, Germany. Volkswagen is one of the world’s largest producers of passenger cars and Europe’s largest automaker. Volkswagen sells the Rabbit, New Beetle, New Beetle convertible, GTI, Jetta, GLI, Passat, Passat wagon, Eos, and Touareg through approximately 600 independent U.S. dealers. Visit Volkswagen of America online at


Well we arrived in Parker, Thursday afternoon, thinking that we had everything under control.

Then Friday came. What a difference a day makes. We started out having a calm day adding the necessary contingency decals to the vehicle. We then towed the race vehicle over to the contingency line and waited. Starting and stopping several times as the line slowly crept forward, we noticed that the vehicle cranked a little excessive on each start up. Then as we rounded the bend to the down hill portion of entry into contingency the vehicle started to run very rough and started to back fire. I was floored and a little stumped. It started and ran a few more times like this until suddenly it became a crank no start issue. I checked the fuel pressure gauge and it read 20 psi. This is a little low so thought it might be a clogged fuel filter. It was fairly new but took it apart nonetheless. We proceeded to remove the fuel filter and it looked brand new. So we reinstalled the filter. Now we had a reading of no fuel pressure. We are doing this all the time while trying to roll the vehicle forward. So we push the 4000lb pig all the way to Jeepspeed tech. We roll the jeep onto the scales at Rubicon Express and it weight in at 4061lbs.

I turned around to check on my crew only to find that one of them was down and was suffering from a pulled muscle in his leg. It seemed more serious at the time cause he didn’t look all that well. So a big thanks goes out to the Jeepspeed tech guys and Mrs. Nissley from Nissley Racing for the first aid.

From there we diagnosed that the fuel pump was not working. We bought the car from another racer and have not been faced with this issue before so we where not sure if the vehicle was equipped with two fuel pumps or not. We dissembled the fuel cell and found, after 40 minutes of hard work that there was indeed another fuel pump there. We proceeded to switch things over and fired the truck up. AWESOME! Where back and ready to travel through tech. We string our way through contingency and finally reach tech. Everything goes well through tech and we all climb onto the jeep to head back to the trailer and to get some dinner. We no more than reach the outer drive of the Blue Water Casino and the Jeeps second fuel pump craps out. Now we are frustrated. We flag down a ranger that is with a protruck team and he obliges us with a tow to our trailer. After loading onto the trailer we head over to AutoZone for a little research and development on fuel pumps. After about an hour of pulling the pump and trying to match numbers we found 2 fuel pumps that they had in stock that would work for our application. We bought those and started to get to work replacing them when a girl shouted to us that the guys down at Bad Attitude Boats had an open shop. So we packed up out stuff and drove down the street. When we arrived I have remembered helping Ron a few years back with and emergency order for BFG tires. He welcomed us into his shop and provided us with anything we needed to get the pumps replaced. We finished installing the new pumps in the car about ten o’clock, thanked Ron for his hospitality and headed to the gas station for some fuel for the race and then back to the pits. If you have a boat in Parker or

Race Day! WOW what a line of cars and sitting there waiting to take off was little bit of a drag. Off road racing is alive and well in Parker, AZ. We started off twelfth off the line. We made a steady pace through the first couple miles. We were heading towards the drop off at mile three and my co-driver said jeep coming up fast. Within second Mike Schaffer gave me a nurf the send me off to the left and out of his way. I was a little concerned with how that affected my rear end, but on later inspection appeared to have been a clean hit and no damage was noted. We raced several vehicles and jeepspeeds through the next30 miles or so. We then came through mile 36 and onto 37 as we came through the close rollers and hit the big one at the end we launch ed the vehicle high into the air and came down on the pass side front wheel. I thought we where going over again but the vehicle righted itself and landed on all four tires, but sitting sideways on the course. We started the vehicle and tried to get unstuck but it was buried to the axles. Then along came a BITD assistance truck and strapped us up and out of the wash and onto the Bouse Rd. Surveying the damage it appeared that the track bar took the brunt of the load from the hit and bent it pretty severely. The pass side front tire did not fair well either and had been pushed off the rim. Just then a local gentleman named Pete, came over and ask how he could help. I said can you build me a new track bar? He replied pull it off and I will take it over to my shop and fix it for ya. Well Hell ya! We took the track bar off and took a couple of measurements and off he went. Within twenty minutes if not less he was back with a remodeled track bar and a remounted tire. We thanked him for his handy work and reinstalled the parts on 1722 Gspeed racing truck.

From some kind of advise from the BLM Ranger we drove down to the first wash and entered back in and onto the racecourse. We continued to race all the way around and back to main with no further incident. Well except the trick trucks passing us and shattering our lenses on the HID’s we where running.

We entered into the Parker Python, main pit area, and proceeded to rev the every loving life out of the engine to get through the course. It was so tore up and sandy that we could barely make it through to our pits. Finally we entered the Hostyl Motor sports pit and my brother ran over to Kevin Davis and borrowed and new track bar. Thank you Kevin. The Hostyl team installed the new track bar and topped off our fuel and away we went on to lap two. We cruise the course and battle the changing terrain. The course looked completely different from the first time we had been there, it was much much rougher. As the sun sank into the west we turned on the Hid Dominator by Lazerstar lights we run and raced into the night. The lights are awesome and reasonable in price. They are highly recommended. Not only does Lazerstar sponsor us but Larry Rosselors class seven runs them as well. About mile 69 I noticed that there seemed to be some sort of electrical fire happening right in front of my dash so I hit the brakes to stop and realized that we had no brakes. So we slowed to a stop and pulled off the course. We opened the hood to find that the brake fluid spilled out and onto the wiring for the brake master and started it on fire. We pulled the connector and cut the wire and set it to the side. Then we checked under the car and found that the pass side front brake line had been pinched. So we cut the hard line and pinched off the end and hammered it closed.

That did the job we now had brake again. Back onto the course and motored up to midway for a final splash of gas and off to the finish. We raced as hard as we could through the rocks and rough of those last miles. Somewhere along the way thought the drivers side rear tire had started to loose air. We where getting close to the finish and could taste one of our second finishes ever. After what we endured this weekend we needed it. Then we rounded and corner in a sand wash and the truck fishtailed and I corrected and we careened off the course and onto a sandy burm. We tried to push the truck off the burm and noticed that the driver’s side tire had come off the wheel. We where checking this out when we noticed some from under the truck. Suddenly flames erupted from under the vehicle. We grabbed the fire extinguishers and sprayed them wildly under the vehicle trying to stop the vehicle from burning. From out of the darkness came a buggy. Not sure who they where but they volunteered their extinguishers and left us. Thank God for those guys because their extinguishers where enough to stop the burn. After surveying the underside of the vehicle and making sure all the fire was out we installed a new tire on the rear and started tried to start the vehicle. The engine would just crank and crank, no spark. It appeared that the fire melted all the wires on the under side of the vehicle. We tried to figure out a way to rig ignition to get the engine running but could not think of anyway to do so. With that our Parker 425 ended. Eight miles from the finish. We called iritrack and announced that we where out of the race. We waited by our campfire till 1:30 am for a tow out. PCI Bob showed up in his wrangler and gathered us up and towed us out to Shea road where our chase truck and trailer where waiting.

Although the result was a disappointing DNF, we are excited to have gotten as far as we did and besides the shortcoming we experienced the truck held together fabulously. We look forward to Primm and much more Jeepspeed racing.

Special thanks go out to:

Gspeed Racing would like to thank everyone who helped us at Parker this year.

To name a few first of all would be our crew Gary Zempich and his daughter’s boyfriend, Matt Szymanski my brother and co-driver and the Hosytl Motor sports crew for Bryan Dodge.

The Jeepspeed tech crew for helping my team member that over exerted himself pushing the heep thought contingency. Their support and medical assistance was awesome.

The parts guys at AutoZone for their patience with us as we asked them to search different part numbers for the two fuel pumps that failed going through contingency.

BAD ATTITUDE BOATS, for the use of their shop and power, while we replaced the two fuel pumps in our car till 10:00 at night. Thanks Ron.

The Voss Protruck team member for towing our jeepspeed out of contingency.

Thanks to The Best in the Desert assistance truck, which yanked us off the course, at mile 37 after the endo.

Pete the local that took our bead blown tire and bent track bar to his shop just up the road from where we were broken down and re-bent our track bar and reseated the tire and brought them back to us repair! HE ROCKS! If we could find out more about him we would send him something.

Banning Racing –for welding our frame at the steering box back together at midway.

The Weatherman for pulling us off the course at 2 AM after our car caught fire and left us disabled 8 miles from the finish. DAMMIT!

Iritrack for letting BITD know we were out and where we were.

If I miss anyone else sorry but thanks

Gspeed Racing

Greg Szymanski

602 763 7914