Toyota Awards announced

Burgess, Cooley, Noe lead 17 rugged SCORE racer To 2006 Toyota True Grit and Milestone Awards 2006 SCORE Desert Series Point Champions to be honored Saturday At SCORE Awards Night in Primm, Nev. LOS ANGELES--Seventeen of SCORE's toughest...

Burgess, Cooley, Noe lead 17 rugged SCORE racer To 2006 Toyota True Grit and Milestone Awards

2006 SCORE Desert Series Point Champions to be honored Saturday At SCORE Awards Night in Primm, Nev.

LOS ANGELES--Seventeen of SCORE's toughest desert racers survived the 39th Annual Tecate SCORE Baja 1000, Nov. 16-18, to earn 2006 SCORE Toyota Milestone Awards. In addition, three of those racers will split this year's $12,000 SCORE Toyota True Grit Award during the annual SCORE Awards Night on Saturday at the Primm Valley Resort in Primm, Nev.

Toyota is presenting these prestigious awards to the world's toughest desert racers for the 21st consecutive year. The Toyota Milestone awards will be presented to the 17 drivers who finished every required mile of every race in the five-race 2006 SCORE Desert Series, the World's Foremost Desert Racing Series.

The SCORE Awards Night will also honor the five-race 2006 SCORE Desert Series point champions along with the 2006 SCORE Off-Roadsman of the Year award winners.

After five races and 2,104.44 miles over rugged desert terrain in the U.S. and Mexico, 17 racers in seven classes earned 2006 SCORE Toyota Milestone Awards.

"Toyota is proud to honor the world's best desert racing drivers," said Les Unger, national motorsports manager at Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. "For two decades, we have had the privilege of presenting the SCORE Toyota True Grit and Milestone Awards to the toughest racers on the planet."

The $12,000 SCORE Toyota Truce Grit bonus purse will be split among the point champions in the non-factory supported classes of Class 1-2/1600, Class 5, Class 10 and SCORE Lite. With no eligible drivers in Class 5, the point champions in the remaining three classes remain will receive an equal share of the 2006 $12,000 SCORE Toyota True Grit bonus purse.

Veteran desert race Brian Burgess, Riverside, Calif., doggedly pursued the Class 1-2/1600 season point champion, earning it with consistency and perseverance. After starting the season with a ninth in class at the SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge, Burgess and co-driver L.J. Kennedy, Orange, Calif., finished second in the Tecate SCORE San Felipe 250, seventh at the Tecate SCORE Baja 500, finishing the year with a pair of seconds in the SCORE Las Vegas Primm 300 and the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000.

Earning their third straight SCORE Lite season point title and third consecutive SCORE Toyota True Grit Award, the team of Tim Noe and Tom Watson, El Centro, Calif., with two third place finishes before capturing three straight wins to end their championship season.

In Class 10, John Cooley, Santee, Calif. and teammate Chris Harrold, Chula Vista, Calif., also earned a third straight SCORE Toyota True Grit Award despite a runner-up position in the season point standings. Cooley and Harrold consistently covered every mile of the race season with class finishes of a second, followed by three fifth place finishes and a third place in the rugged season finale.

Among the SCORE racers who earned their second SCORE Toyota Milestone Award in 2006 were Bob Shepard (SCORE Trophy-Truck), Alan Pflueger (SCORE Trophy-Truck), brothers Gary and Mark Weyhrich (Class 1), Martin Christensen (Class 1), Sammy Ehrenberg (Class 1-2/1600), along with brothers Donald and Ken Moss (Class 3).

2006 SCORE Toyota Milestone Awards
(17 Racers who completed every required mile (2,104.44 total miles) in the five-race 2006 SCORE Desert Series--*SCORE Toyota True Grit Classes)

SCORE Trophy-Truck
B.J. Baldwin
Bob Shepard
Alan Pflueger

Class 1
Gary Weyhrich
Brian Parkhouse
Martin Christensen
Richard Boyle

Class 1-2/1600*
Brian Burgess
Sammy Ehrenberg
Daniel McMillin
Arturo Velazco

Class 3
Donald Moss

Class 10*
John Cooley

SCORE Lite*
Tim Noe
Stan Potter

Protruck
Gus Vildosola Jr.
Jason Voss

-credit: score

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