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March 2010 RPM - Off Road News

Posted in News on March 1, 2010
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Photographers: Brenda Priddy & Co.

Hummer Takes Baja
In a fierce showing on the Mexican peninsula, Team Hummer, lead by legendary racer Rod Hall, drove both of their H3 race vehicles to first place finishes in the 672.85-mile 42nd running of the Baja 1000. The V8-powered #860 H3 Alpha, driven by Chad Hall, captured the Stock Full class victory, while the I-5-powered #761 H3, piloted by Rod Hall with driving partners Mike Winkel and Emily Miller, took the checkered flags in the Stock Mini class.

Chad Hall ran a nearly perfect race and finished in 22:48:40, averaging 29.50 mph, while battling the Mopar Dodge Ram nearly the entire way until the Ram suffered a broken front axle 30 miles from the finish. The victory marked the third consecutive Baja 1000 in which the H3 Alpha was the first stock-class vehicle to finish the race and marked Chad's eighth Baja 1000 class win.

After a broken steering rack seal took #761 out of the race at mile 40, the Rod Hall team rallied back from a nearly 100-mile deficit and passed the race-leading Toyota 4Runner, driven by Ivan "Ironman" Stewart, 30 miles from the finish to post a winning time of 28:53:30.

One of the Halls-Rod, Josh, or Chad-has been the driver of record on a class-winning team in the SCORE Baja 1000 for nine straight years, and 13 times in the 16-year history of the stock racing classes. Rod Hall holds the record for Baja 1000 class wins, now at 21, and is the only racer to have competed in all 42 Baja 1000s. The Halls continue to be the winningest family in the history of the race.

2011 Chevy Silverado HD Captured!
What you see here is a showroom-ready 2011 Silverado 3500. While it doesn't look much different than the outgoing model, rest assured this truck is new under the skin. With a reportedly redesigned chassis and powertrain options, including the highly upgraded 6.6L Duramax LML with over 700 lb-ft of torque, our expectation is that GM's new heavy-duty trucks will be highly competitive. They will likely continue on as the only HD truck to have an independent front suspension.

BFG Earns Number 23
BFGoodrich Tires, the official tire of the SCORE Desert Racing Series, won the overall four-wheel victory at the 42nd Annual SCORE Baja 1000 and claimed eight of the 10 overall spots. Earning his second overall four-wheel Baja 1000 victory, 22-year-old BFGoodrich Tires driver Andy McMillin, along with his father Scott McMillin, completed the 672.85-mile loop that began in Ensenada in the time of 14 hours, 19 minutes, 50 seconds, logging an average speed of 46.95 miles per hour. The victory signified Scott McMillin's third class win and first overall crown. BFGoodrich has won the overall four-wheel title at the SCORE Baja 1000 23 times over the last 24 years. Only 185 of the 328 starters completed the race.

The following is a complete list of BFGoodrich Tires/2009 SCORE Baja 1000 class winners: SCORE Trophy Truck Andy McMillin/Scott McMillin

Class 1: Jerry Penhall/Dan Martin

Class 3: Darren Skilton/Jon Krellwitz/Clive Skilton

Class 5: Kevin Carr/Perry McNeil

Class 7: Dan Chamlee/Tom Chamlee

Stock Full: Chad Hall/Rod Hall

Stock Mini: Rod Hall/Emily Miller/Mike Winkel

Baja Challenge: Nick Baldwin/Brian Nix/MattCruson/Nick Johnson/Tom Cook

6.4L Hemi Confirmed
A 6.4L version of Chrysler's popular Hemi V-8 has been confirmed. Although we haven't been able to confirm which model year (our guess is 2012), the more powerful 6.4L Hemi is slated for the Ram Heavy Duty pickups. Buyers can expect approximately 450 horspower from the new engine.

Quick Hits
Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn says that the Titan will continue on with a next-generation 1/2-ton successor.

Ford says the next-generation global Ranger will not be coming to America. However, the door has been left open for a sub-F-150 pickup.

The next-generation Infiniti QX is thought to be based on the excellent overseas Nissan Patrol platform.

2010 Hummer H3 Begins Production
After months of waiting due to the sale of the brand, Hummer has restarted production of the H3 and H3T models. The 2010 model will include E85 flex fuel capability on the 5.3L V-8, and will have three new color choices. Pricing has increased slightly, with the H3T now starting at $30,915 and the H3 at $33,390.

Land Use Notes
SEMA Opposes Efforts To Ban Wheeling In Much Of Utah

More than one-sixth of the state of Utah would be off-limits to any form of motorized recreation if Congress approves H.R. 1925, "America's Red Rock Wilderness Act of 2009." SEMA submitted testimony to the House Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests, and Public Lands in opposition to the bill to designate 9.4 million acres of land in Utah as "wilderness," a label which bans mechanized activities, including off-roading, snowmobiling, and mountain biking.

The issue is of keen interest to off-roaders and the SEMA-member companies that market off-road equipment. Most of the 146 co-sponsors of the legislation represent areas east of the Rockies. At a recent House Subcommittee hearing, opposition to the bill was voiced from local residents and lawmakers representing the state. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Director Robert Abbey cautioned that current off-highway vehicle areas would be closed also raised concerns.

The BLM manages all of the land subject to closure. Director Abbey also noted that the agency had not yet completed mapping or an analysis of each area to be designated as wilderness, which would allow the BLM to make informed recommendations on wilderness designations. SEMA will continue to monitor Congressional action on this legislation. Read SEMA comments on Red Rock Wilderness Act.

The SAN Creates "Guide to Land Use Policies & Off-Road Recreation" Free and unfettered access to public lands is vitally important to many U.S citizens, not the least of which are Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) enthusiasts. This hobby represents a growing trend and leads to more people actively using and appreciating our public lands each year. Land use policies developed in Washington, D.C., and elsewhere have a dramatic impact on the availability of public land for hobbyist use, so it is important to be a knowledgeable and active enthusiast. Because these laws and regulations are massively complex, the SAN has created a Guide to Land Use Policies & Off-Road Recreation to help you decode the Washington lingo.

The Guide provides several key tools that will help you build a solid foundation of land use knowledge. It includes a broad overview of such topics as the key federal agencies managing public lands; major laws and regulations, such as the Endangered Species and Wilderness Acts, that affect access to public lands; private organizations who are active in the conservation of natural lands while supporting the hobby; and SAN position statements, which act as a guidepost for legislative and regulatory advocacy.

The SAN has taken the action of submitting comments in opposition to many bills, but participation by invested hobbyists and businesses may be necessary to secure access to these areas in the future for all tax-paying hobbyists. The Guide to Land Use Policies & Off-Road Recreation is another means of protecting access to these lands by putting the information necessary to understand the issues and the players at your fingertips. Educating yourself and using that knowledge to take action by writing your legislators and passing the information on to your friends is the key to creating a win for your hobby and passion. The guide can be found at

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