2021 Baja 400 Recap
To be honest, I have never felt more confident for a race than I did this years Baja 400. Although we had a few hiccups along the way, I couldn’t have asked for a smoother race day.
After my dad and I simultaneously finished our first sections, we both ran into similar luck. My dad’s prerunner almost lost a wheel due to faulty prepping by another shop and my prerunner blew a head gasket. These situations both happened on the highway within 5 minutes of eachother. Oh Baja, you do have your ways!
After @jennlmorton and @bajaboundmoto saved the day (as they tend to do) we were hooked up with two rental prerunners. In the end we only needed one because @katfab32 could magically tell that a KRX axle nut is the same size as a Volkswagen axle nut.
My dad and I ran our sections throughout the rest of the week flawlessly. @katfab32 and I made great progress in our prerunning tactics for the 1000.
On the last day of prerunning (Friday), @katfab32 and I were running RM 0-40 and around RM 36, our GPS completely went to a black screen. It wouldn’t beep, turn on, or give any feedback whatsoever. I looked at the time remembering that tech was still open until 5 pm. It was 4:35 (or something like that) and we still had to get to the highway and make it to the SCORE compound to get help from PCI. We finally got there around 4:55 and PCI saved our butts. I was so scared that we had lost all of our notes from the last week of prerunning. Thankfully, a cord had just come loose in the dash and the GPS powered right up with PCI’s cord and all of our data was still there. Note to self: always save the data from the GPS onto an external hard drive each night.
The next morning was race day and I was confident but still extremely nervous. We dropped @stacy.clark76 and @deafboy279 off at the start line, topped them off with fuel, and went to RM 230 for the driver change.
My dad got there around 5:30 pm and I hopped in after a seamless fuel stop and no tire changes at all. I hopped on highway 1 and made my way to the first section. Everything felt great but I can’t lie that I was letting my nerves get to me a little bit.
Around RM 250 I was feeling a lot better and was finally getting in my groove and I was ready for the next 150 miles.
One funny thing that happened around RM 265 was that I felt like someone was nerfing me over and over again. It was all in my head but @katfab32 can tell you that we got in a 2 minute long argument over an imaginary car that wasn’t even behind me. But it was all just nerves again.
Fast forward an hour and a half or so, we were by the ocean and the sun was setting. I was starting to get to the end of my first adrenaline dump but in no time flat I got my second wind.
@katfab32 and I made it to our first visual with no issues and we had another truck in our sights on the highway. The sun was almost set and it was time to be fast but also be smart because the rough stuff was all in front of us.
In the next section Kenny and I passed Justin Davis and Chelsea Magness who were down. At the end of this section we had our final fuel pit and traded my shades for my glasses… it explained why it was so dark outside😂🤔. Now for the hard part…
As many know, Acambaro to Ojos was the toughest part of the course. Due to @katfab32 and I amazing prerun schedule, nothing on the course was a surprise other than the dust! It was ridiculously dusty and it never settled or moved because there was no wind. Conveniently, this is the time when my main light bar and amber light kept going out due to a faulty breaker that kept popping at the best time possible (NOT). It was so hard to cut through the dust without the amber and it was especially hard to see in front of me with only the pod lights working. Thankfully (depending on how you look at it), the lights did come back on every now and then but they didn’t stay on long enough to help out a ton.