Continued from part 2 No. 16x Allan Donaldson (5th Place): The whole thing was just mentally tough. I've been riding for about 25 years and this is my first time in the Baja 1000. [What got you started?] The movie (Dust to Glory). No. 18x...
Continued from part 2
No. 16x Allan Donaldson (5th Place): The whole thing was just mentally tough. I've been riding for about 25 years and this is my first time in the Baja 1000.
[What got you started?] The movie (Dust to Glory).
No. 18x Anna Cody (20th Place, solo rider): I have been through a battle. I made it! I've been riding since 6:30 yesterday morning. I stopped about 20 minutes at a pit to refuel and hydrate and go on. It was tough -- the toughest SCORE race I've ever done.
It's such an awesome feeling. I just said a little prayer to my former teammate that we did it and I wish she could be here with me. I've always wanted to solo it to La Paz. Note: Has become the first woman to ride solo on a motorcycle in the Baja 1000.
No. 151x Charles Schnell(1st Place)
Co-driver, Nancy Emde: Racing is part of our family tradition and I've always wanted to race the Baja 1000. I did the last section from Punta Conejo to here. It was pretty rough. It's nice that it's over. It's been a long hot day. Everything went according to plan. Unbelievable.
I have three grown children; three daughters and a son. There were a lot of things going on out there and we had a lot of fans. The biggest challenge was probably the sand washes that had the big washouts in them. It's hard to go fast when they have a lot of those. I'm glad it's over. It's been a long night and a long morning. But I'm ready for next year!
No. 300x Gerardo Rojas (1st Place)
No. 307x Ron Wilson (2nd Place): We're just happy to finish today! We kind of got buried in the back of the pack. One of our partners did a little damage to the back of the bike about half-way. So we got pushed back to about 13th. I don't know what happened. We're the non-crashers of the two.
To break up the ride, there were four of us and we just basically split it in quarters. I did about the last 300 or so, Tim did about 300, the two guys in front of us did a little bit less. Scott Meyers started. Then he gave it to Steve Garnett. I think both of them are seeing double right now!
I actually got to ride through some water which was nice for a change. It was fun. It was definitely a fun course for sure. It was challenging which is good. Good, good, good!
No. 400x Jeff Kaplan (1st Place): It went really well out there. We got the bike in great shape. We were sixth overall and just passed a few guys. Then we caught up to the third team but couldn't quite get through their dust. So we just hung tight and I think we beat them on time because just finished two minutes behind them. The bike was incredible. It didn't miss a beat all day. No problems. I tipped over right before the finish in the dust, but very slowly, though. Everything else was smooth.
[How did you break up the ride?] Up north, I can't tell you. From San Ignacio, it was Randy Morales and Jeff Cheats and myself. The starter was Lou Frankel. He just rode 70 miles and I'm guessing he passed a lot of people because we stated about 50th and we got to 4th overall. My guess is Louie passed a ton of people. So they did all the work in the north end. It went well. Those guys did a good job. We didn't have to do much but hold it...pick off a few more. This is one of the roughest 1000s. It's like the old days, like the '70s. It's similar to what we used to run before the runs were real fast and easy. This is what it used to be like. I've never seen this much water down here. It made it nice. It made it fun. We earned it this time!
No. 500x Jim O'Neal (1st Place)
Co-driver, Bobby Hanson: I was just telling my partner, Andy, that we had a real bad day yesterday but a real good day today. So when the sun came back up, everything seemed to work out. I think we got the class win! We're real happy even though we had rough times last night. I bent a rotor and took us way behind. But at Pit 14, they put a new wheel on it and everyone picked back up and now we're here.
On Thursday, we missed the rider change, so he had to do the real rocky section from La Barista toward Loreto which he wasn't supposed to do. That was supposed to be part of my section so we had a few frantic cell phone conversations to work that out. So bobby hadn't ridden that section yet and didn't even know where we were going to do our exchange, so he had to track the rider down and practically drag him off the bike to let him know. We lost about 40 minutes in the whole thing but it worked out. Basically that extra section was the only part that wasn't pre-run.
Co-driver, Greene: No matter how much you plan, things change. And you have to be able to move with those changes to make something like this happen. If you can't adjust to it, then that's where you have a problem. Because everybody has problems somewhere in races. The team pulled together and adjusted to the problems and made it work.
At night, it's just a matter of getting through it. Everything looks basically the same anyway. The only problem is nothing looks familiar so you don't know how far you've gone or how far you've got to go. If I could do it without GPS on the bike, you just keep going until you get to your finish. The problem I had was I was stranded because my truck was someplace else so I had to hitchhike to Santa Rita. That's where I ended up finding my truck again. It was a fun night, a tough night.
No. 601x Donald Lewis (1st Place): I'll tell you, it was an amazing event. I enjoyed every minute. I've been down here pre-running. I ran my section five times. I think we did a great job preparing for this. It was just a wonderful experience. There were eight of us that rode. I thought there would be an injury or two, but there wasn't. All of us just made it through.
No major problems at all. We did it. We cleaned the clock. We're the first class 60 team ever to do it. I loved every bit of it. It was just terrific. I wouldn't miss it for the world. Honest to God, we're proving that you can redefine what is possible. You're life is not over when you're sixty. We're the first ever Class 60 team. It was a terrific experience.
No. 7a Danny Prather (1st Place): That was an awesome course! Man, those rocks were gnarly! It was a good time. I just looked back and saw that I had a truck behind me. We just barely beat them...good times!! It was a perfect race. We changed a couple of rear tires to keep them fresh. All the guys did what they need, we came here to win.
Mike Cafro started and took it to Ojos; He gave it to Dana Skreech in Puertecitos; Mike Cafro got back on and took it to Bahia de Los Angeles; Levi Marana took it to San Ignacio; Mark Speath to north of Loreto; I took it Loreto down to Ciudad Insurgentes; Levi got back on to, rode to Santa Rita and I took it from Santa Rita home, back to the finish line.
I knew that the next team was coming. I kept looking back. He was getting close for about the last 30 miles. I could feel him. There's a fast stretches and I knew he'd be coming in soon. I'm surprised he didn't catch me earlier. But I'm glad he didn't, man. I hate getting passed by those guys.
I've never won a Baja 1000 and this is by far the best one to win. Going down to La Paz is just awesome. I can't even explain it. Everybody had some issues, but we were spared this one and we pulled it off. It feels good, man. It's a sweet win, a great win! I'm hoping we win some money!
No. 4a Jeff Hancock (2nd Place)
Co-driver, Larry Hancock: It was pretty fun. We had a tight battle for probably the first 500 or 600 miles and we broke an A-arm. Luckily we were close enough to a road we got an A-arm and a front shock in, put that back on but we lost about an hour or an hour and a half. You know, other than that, no major problems all day.
Jeff Hancock started. Kyle Pethens ran through San Felipe. Jeff got back on and ran down to Bahia de Los Angeles. I got on, then Kyle got on. I brought it in the last 100 miles. It was great fun. The logistics is probably the most challenging part, just getting the trucks coming down. When you're on a bike, you just ride as fast as you can. That's all you know how to do. But, you know just getting the stuff where it needs to be. Just having a team that can get that stuff really helps.
No. 211x Carlos Gonzalez (1st Place): Another vehicle cut in front of us. He broke my concentration a little because I'm not used to having a car catch up to me. And it's something that scared me a lot. That gave me a little extra pressure along the way. All the people of La Paz, especially kids, were cheering me on and it made me forget that I was tired.
No. 236x Paul Crandell (2nd Place): Everybody rode their part of the course. It was a total team effort. Everybody did their 100 or 200 mile sections. It was unbelievable. I actually like riding better at night now. I hadn't ridden at night until next. Now, riding at night goes a lot faster.
No. 250x Colie Potter (14th Place, solo rider): I hit a bunch of rocks but it ran great all day. The bike ran perfect. I had to pull way down deep here at the end, but its fun. I love to ride motorcycles. I only took gas breaks and stopped for food. I didn't sleep or anything. I took like four 15 minute breaks.
I think my time was pretty good. The new section up by San Ignacio -- I haven't done that part before. I never pre-ran it. There was a little bit of people in the water, a little bit of carnage. But I actually got around it okay. But on the silt, the sand was all chewed up and it was silt everywhere. There were a lot of buggies and Trophy-Trucks stuck. So you kind of had to pick your way through the weeds. But it wasn't bad.
I really liked seeing Javier, that canyon out of Loreto. It's a beautiful view, especially at sunrise. It was good. Gonzaga Bay is nice. This city is nice. Nobody got hurt and my goal was achieved. I've never raced on a team. It's just satisfaction for me. A lot of people don't know what it's like unless they actually do it. I really have to pull down deep. It's a lot of mental work. Not as much physical. I mean you have to know how to ride, but in the wee hours, it's all mental.
238x Alastair Hilson (17th Place, solo rider): I feel trashed! The whole thing was the best part of it. The course, the pre-running. Sal does such a good job. After a couple of beers, I might do it again. I'm trashed!
The Mexicans are the most supportive people. It's great! They keep you going. I didn't have any problems. It was a good, except the silt and rocks. It was brutal, especially the last 300 miles of silt. I don't know what would feel better -- to win or just to finish. It's two different people. One's doing it for time the other's doing it for satisfaction.
No. 54a Craig Christy (1st Place)
Co-driver, Jessica McCreary: It was great! It was awesome. I've been down here every single week for the last few months to train. We've been down each other's throats and now it paid off. For me, seeing the sunrise was really nice. That was the best part. I think it really helped coming over the hill and seeing all the girls light up, realizing that I'm a girl. I'm like 'YEAH!'. That was cool.
The most challenging part was having to go to the bathroom. I really hated stopping. Everything was challenging. They're always tough. Actually, they were really nice in this race. This is my first time coming in within the time limit! Each of our riders did about 250 miles.