BAJA 1000 2020 (Or fat old gringo goes glamping in the desert)

jmon

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Thurday 11/19
Time to load up and head out!!!!IMG_7656.JPGIMG_7657.JPGIMG_7659.JPGIMG_7670.JPG

Our pit is actually the closest one to Ensenada, just a hair under 100KM. At the last full peninsula race, Pit 6 was 750 miles from Ensenada, probably would be two days on these roads.
Legend has it that Honda used this abandoned building to test motorcycles back in the 70's, hence the nickname "the motorcycle shop"
31.7159157, -115.9499005 GPS.
Probably took 75 minutes to navigate the 15 miles or so to clear Ensenada, what a shit show. Finally on the open road, Rt 3, which is a Major highway lol. Interesting how the top of these two hills have all the boulders on them. Couple vids of climbing the mountains.
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Took just a hair under 4 hours but we finally landed. Even got the truck parked without getting stuck!
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jmon

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Thursday 11/18 continued....
So here we are, beautiful downtown wherever. We're fortunate? that we have the big old concrete porch, usually they set up pits on a wide spot in the road.
Luxury accomodations......yep we got them, one of the perks is the CDL's get the truck, so I'm in the penthouse!
The facilities? Well I'll just let them speak for themselves-
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But hey we brought a new toilet seat.
Got a heater and for $50 the locals brought us about 2 cords of old wood in a Ford Ranger LOL.
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Rest of the crew wasn't crossing until 9 am, so probably won't see them until late afternoon.
 

Oxbow

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Thursday 11/18 continued....
So here we are, beautiful downtown wherever. We're fortunate? that we have the big old concrete porch, usually they set up pits on a wide spot in the road.
Luxury accomodations......yep we got them, one of the perks is the CDL's get the truck, so I'm in the penthouse!
The facilities? Well I'll just let them speak for themselves-
View attachment 78995View attachment 78996
But hey we brought a new toilet seat.
Got a heater and for $50 the locals brought us about 2 cords of old wood in a Ford Ranger LOL.
View attachment 78997


Rest of the crew wasn't crossing until 9 am, so probably won't see them until late afternoon.
A two holer even!
 

AK7

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Company I used to work for hauled alot of Oshkosh stuff. They wanted 10 trucks to haul 3 of these trucks and all the support stuff to the race.
But their insurance company nixed the deal.

Would've been cool...
 

jmon

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More Thursday-----
So most of the volunteers aren't here yet, and while the race starts tomorrow morning, we won't see any vehicles until after midnight Friday. Just going to set up the fuel area as the suppliers are supposed to deliver it this afternoon.
There's 185 teams starting and we have 90 some signed up for service of some kind. We won't fuel the Trophy Trucks (the top level) as they use either towers or pressurized tanks that do 100 gallons in 36 seconds!
We have seven different types of fuel and 4 different fuel jug nozzles. I'm supposed to be in charge of making sure that the right fuel and amount ends up in the right vehicle via the right fuel jug. Piece of
cake.
Here's our delivery drivers...."Placards? We don't need no stinkin placards"
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I didn't get a picture of the truck who brought the plastic barrels, but I know where all the old U-Haul trucks end up, damn old F-650!
All ready for something to happen...
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The plan is to finish setting everything up in the morning and wait.
In the meantime:24194.jpeg20201119_182929.jpg


Thanks for watching, have to go to work for a week, I'll try to finish this tome next week!
 

jmon

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Friday 11/19 Raceday!!!

All the volunteers showed up last night, lot's of TNT(tequila and Tecate), so everybody was moving a bit slow. Set up the pits, we won't see any vehicles until after midnight, so it was a long day.
The motorcycles/quads started at 4am, leaving the Start every 30 seconds. Trucks and cars started at 10am, again every 30 seconds.
All set up....what's amazing is all the people that showed up in the middle of nowhere, they were lined up and down the road!
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We even set up a "fab shop". Good news, there is hope for the future-the two guys who put this together are in their middle twenties, pretty impressive for what they had to work with. Look what I made with these old pallets LOL.
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So the rules from the mothership in France were to check everyone's temp every morning, wear a mask when around "outsiders", everything we ate or drank we had to bring in from the states and one person was to handle, prep and serve food. We were lucky that our nurse also doubled as our cook and did a hell of a job.
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Now it's just a matter of waiting.....
 

Electric Chicken

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jmon

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Saturday continued.....
Pretty much just hang out and wait. We're in radio contact with the pit before us so we know what
cars are headed our way. It helped because we could have that car's fuel pumped into jugs. There's also
an overall command center where teams can radio in if they lose communications with their driver.
To fuel you have to lift jug, then tilt it slowly so it doesn't slosh out the vent. The ones to the far left are perfect with the metal vent extension. My 2 cents....they should all have to use the jugs with the red heads.
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Ice cream truck in the middle of nowhere...even played the same bad music!
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Just getting done fueling a Spec Trophy Truck. Basically the same as the unlimited trucks, but have to run a sealed [email protected] and Turbo 400 transmission. Blue mat is for spills.


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Couple more trucks
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jmon

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Saturday continued
A lot of sitting and waiting. Out of the 90 teams we were supposed to service, I think we did 51. All the rest were DNF's. Got to use our fancy fab area....replaced cv boot, welded a shock mount. These guys have their whole race on youtube! Jordan Pierce
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Night came and it got a little busier, most of them pushing for an official finish
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Ford's factory Bronco effort, there must have been 50 of their crew waiting for them. Then they all left in new Raptor pickups SMH.
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TT sponsored by the hotel we were staying at. Way off the pace and their GPS was screwing up.
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At about 11:30pm they radioed on the Sat phone (so old it looked like they used it in MASH), send all the volunteers back to the hotel as they all had Sunday afternoon/evening flights out of San Diego. They go in caravans, safety in numbers is the thinking.
 

jmon

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Sunday 1:00 am
We get the call to pack it up, if they haven't made it to us yet, they're not going to get an official finish within 40 hrs of the start. We had already started breaking stuff down, a couple of teams came and got their fuel as their driver was still on track.
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Got everything packed and ready to go by 2, only have to get turned around in the desert and back on the pavement. Back in Estero Beach by 5am, one warm beer and bed.
9am
Pit Exchange....Where everybody comes to get their stuff back. Start cleaning and pressue washing. KIMG0741.JPG Lots of bleary eyes and people stumbling around.
W9 that the guy put an ISX in. Lives in SD so has to pass CARB. What a clean install, said he passed their inspection!
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Nap and a shower. 4pm they had a Thanksgiving party for all of the people that were still there.
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Made it to almost 9, might have pissed people off, more on that later. Good Night
 

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