The 2012 SCORE Baja 1000 is the 45th running of the famous race, and the 1,100-plus mile journey will begin in Ensenada on the California Baja Peninsula.
It is the grand finale of the desert series presented by SCORE International, and it is sure to once again be the premier, pulse-pounding, unpredictable test of longevity and fortitude in off-road racing. While the race itself kicks off on Thursday, there are plenty of festivities prior to the green light being given to more than 400 competitors.
Here is a closer look at the full schedule of the dash across the California Baja Sur, including the route and the diverse race classes the event has to offer.
When: November 14-17
Start: Ensenada, B.C.
Finish: La Paz, B.C.
Route Length: 1,121.55 miles
Live Stream: Click here
This race has a little bit of everything—from motorcycles to ATVs and big, fast trucks. There is also such a wide variety of stock car classes that it will make your head spin. For a full list of race classes, check out the official SCORE International website's starting position listings.
To get a better sense of the adrenaline fest that is this race, check out some of the SCORE International footage from last year's event while jamming out to some electronica/dubstep tunes.
If that's not enough, check out the trailer to the 2005 documentary film Dust To Glory, written and directed by Dana Brown. It captures the pure rush that racers experience each year.
Despite the dangers the rugged terrain poses and unforeseen traps that lurk on lightly populated areas of the course, it's easy to see why celebrity enthusiasts such as Steve McQueen and Paul Newman (h/t DesertRacing.com)—at age 80!—have competed in the past.
Notable Events Off the Path
A slew of pre-race festivities will take place the day before the race on Wednesday, November 13 at Riviera del Pacifico Cultural Center from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. PT.
After Day 1 of the race, the event will use its massive platform to promote a political panel discussion amongst various members of the Yo Soy 132 Movement. The student-led protest calls for fairness in Mexico's democracy and media.
The global Twittter account of the movement has plugged the event:
— 132Global (@Global132) November 9, 2012
The Boys and Girls Club of Mexico follows the second day of racing with a performance of Alice in Wonderland at the club Circuito Loma Dorada. It begins at 6 p.m. PT, and will serve as a fundraiser for the organization.
A walk across the peninsula known as the Travesia Baja 100 will begin on Friday and run through November 19th. In fact, if you can manage to sit through at least part of this promotional video, it paints a better picture of some of the beautiful scenery the trail has to offer:
Cafe de la Opera will host a concert known as Noche de Trova on Saturday in Colonia Libertad, and it will begin at 7:30 p.m.
Finally, a fundraiser will be held on Sunday by the priests of Tijuana Archdiocese in the hopes to build a new cathedral in the Rio Zone.
(Note: Much of the information—particularly venues and start times—in this section is courtesy of Sandra Dibble of the San Diego Union-Tribune).
Even the top finishers of the race, whether they are riders or drivers, generally take somewhere between 15 and 20 hours to cross the final line in La Paz. It's largely dependent on factors such as conditions, obstacles, rest and other unforeseen turns of fortune that can happen in the blink of an eye on the volatile trek across the peninsula.
Expect another extremely exciting race this year, and be sure to keep a lookout for the results and the unique events that will happen away from the trail.