It’s 8am and I am in a pre-runner chase truck heading across the Otay-Mesa Mexico border crossing just south of San Diego. In front of me is the Auto-Fab racing Ford on a trailer. We are headed south to Ensenada for the 2016 NORRA Mexican 1000. I have Baja tacos on my mind. We soon hit El Trailero, a very popular Baja taco stand just outside of Ensenada. We all consume some of Baja’s best tacos and get back on the road. Next stop is the immigration office in Ensenada. Here we get visa’s that the government will require for travel into Baja Sur. The visa can be obtained for a nominal $23 charge. After that it’s off to tech and contingency.
There are dozens of awesome looking vintage vehicles here. Everything from Ford Broncos to a fully built Chevy Nova, and old school beam cars are here. These vehicles raced Baja in the 70’s and 80’s. This is what the NORRA Mexican 1000 is all about. A 4-day Rally down the Baja Peninsula ending with a huge celebration in Cabo San Lucas.
The race vehicles pay tribute to the early days of Baja racing. After an afternoon of bench racing with familiar faces and looking at endless vintage eye candy I get settled into the hotel and meet up with another race team that I will be traveling south with. We head over to the drivers meeting. Then it’s dinner and off to bed. Our call time is 5:30am. The race truck will head over to staging at 6am. We need to get on the road to our first pit stop in Santo Tomas. As the race starts, legend Walker Evan is first off the line. He is driving a more modern Alumicraft Class 1. Evans is entered in the Evolution Modern Machines class.
There are 7 classes in the NORRA Mexican 1000. We are entered in the Trophy Lite class. The pit stop goes smoothly in Santo Tomas and we move on. Our next pit will be in San Quintin. We stop along the way for tacos and hear a radio call the truck is nearby us. That means we have to get moving to the pit stop location. They are moving faster than we are and there is plenty of traffic on the highway. We make it with 5 minutes to spare. I am tasked with dumping fuel into the truck. We discover a hose has come lose from the third member. We scramble to get tools and replenish the lost gear oil into the third member. We then send the truck on its way and move on. I fuel the truck again at the next stop. As we get closer to Bay of LA we get information the truck is on its side in a corner in the silt. As minutes tick by we finally get radio communication. Another team has helped get the truck back on its wheels and moving. We roll into Bay of LA at 8pm. It has been a long day and everyone is tired. Day one’s total course mileage from Ensenada to Bay of LA is 456 miles. Stay tuned to FourWheeler.com for more coverage.