Coverage of the pandemic-abbreviated two-race 2020 SCORE World Desert Championship concludes on ESPN2 this Sunday with the premier of multiple airings of the BFGoodrich Tires 53rd annual SCORE Baja 1000, presented by 4 Wheel Parts.
The one-hour special show featuring the Granddaddy of all Desert Races will be broadcast on the World of X Games show on ESPN2 on Sunday (Jan. 3, 2021). It is scheduled to air at 11 p.m. ET (8 p.m. PT), but check local listings to confirm the time in your area.
Host of the World of X Games show for this 2020 SCORE World Desert Championship season-finale is action sports TV announcer/Off-Road Motorsports Hall of Fame inductee/SCORE Trophy Truck champion racer Cameron Steele.
Co-producing the shows with SCORE is award-winning BCII TV of Los Angeles. Bud Brutsman is the executive producer.
53rd SCORE BAJA 1000
Ensenada, “The Off-Road Capital of the World” is a coastal city on the Bahia de Todos Santos area of the Pacific Ocean, 80 miles south of the U.S. border at San Diego.
At the pinnacle of motorsports world as the most iconic, oldest, prestigious, toughest and longest continuously held desert race in the world, this year’s epic BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 1000, presented by 4 Wheel Parts, was held on an extremely rugged loop-race record 898.40-mile race course over the Northern part of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula, starting and finishing on the outskirts of Ensenada. It was the finale of the two-race pandemic-abbreviated two-race 2020 SCORE World Desert Championship.
Starting and finishing under strict BioSecurity health and safety protocols in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico, race-week activities and the Granddaddy of All Desert Races did not allow spectators in the start/finish line area.
Spectators, adhering to the protocols, were allowed to watch the race from around the race course.
When the final checkered flag fell, a total of 185 vehicles left the starting line early Friday morning in the elapsed time race. When the course officially closed at 3:30:28 a.m. PT on Sunday (Nov. 23) there were 111 official finishers for a 60.00 finishing percentage on the extremely challenging course.
The results were made official following complete data tracking review of the devices on each vehicle in the event early on Nov. 23.
BIG BLUE M MACHINE
A third-generation desert racer from San Diego, Luke McMillin, 27, and veteran ‘Mr. Baja’ Roeseler, 63, of Boulevard, Calif. worked through the pack of lead SCORE Trophy Trucks that included his brother Daniel McMillin, brothers Alan and Aaron Ampudia of Mexico and all-time winningest SCORE Trophy Truck driver Rob MacCachren to earn the victory.
McMillin/Roeseler drove their No. 83 McMillin Racing Racer-built Ford F-150 SCORE Trophy Truck to a penalty-free winning time of 19 hours, 10 minutes and 25 seconds with an average speed of 46.86 miles per hour on the bone-bruising course.
Luke’s brother Daniel, who won the 2020 SCORE Baja 500, was among the leaders in the SCORE Baja 1000 but went out of the race over halfway because of mechanical issues. Mexico’s Ampudia brothers, who won last year’s SCORE Baja 1000, slowed enough by a flat tire midway through the grueling race and MacCachren, endured to the end with MacCachren finishing second and the Ampudia brothers sixth in class.
The Luke McMillin/Larry Roeseler tandem also finished third overall and in SCORE Trophy Truck in last year’s SCORE Baja 1000.
With an enduring legacy started by the late family patriarch Corky McMillin, Luke McMillin added to the Big Blue M rich history with his first career victory in the marquee SCORE Trophy Truck division for hi-tech, 950-horsepower unlimited custom trucks.
The Luke McMillin/Larry Roeseler broke up the midway cluster of trucks and gradually got the breathing room needed to earn the hard-earned victory on the brutally rough Baja race course. After penalties were assessed by SCORE adjusting the finishing times of the majority all finishers, McMillin/Roeseler earned a victory margin of 11 minutes, five seconds over the second-place truck. Roeseler, who earned his race-record 14th career SCORE Baja 1000 Overall race victory, started the race and drove to race-mile 430 where Luke McMillin got behind the wheel and powered to the finish line on the Eastern outskirts of Ensenada.
With his victory, McMillin also earned at US$25,000 contingency bonus from long-time SCORE sponsor and race title sponsor BFGoodrich Tires offered to the winner of this year’s race. The victory also marked the 31st overall victory in this race for vehicles equipped with BFGoodrich Tires.
Besides his late grandfather Corky, Luke McMillin’s champion family members include his brother Daniel McMillin, his dad Mark McMillin, his uncle Scott McMillin, and his cousins Andy McMillin and Jessica McMillin. As a family, the McMillins now have earned a race-record 13 overall victories in the SCORE Baja 1000.
While Luke McMillin earned his first SCORE Baja 1000 overall, his father Mark has five as does his cousin Andy and his uncle Scott has two overalls in this storied race.
Joining Luke McMillin on the podium were four-time overall SCORE Baja 1000 winner/Off-Road Hall of Famer Rob MacCachren, 55, of Las Vegas who has over 300 career desert, short-course and stadium race victories in second place and champion racer Bryce Menzies, 33, Las Vegas and Andy McMillin, 33, San Diego, a five-time SCORE Baja 1000 overall champion who is Luke’s cousin.
MacCachren and his additional driver Josh Daniel, Vista, Calif., finished in a time of 19:21:30 in the No. 11 MacCachren Motorsports Geiser-built Ford F-150 with an average speed of 46.41mph. Menzies and McMillin finished third in the No. 7 Menzies Motorsports Mason-built Ford Raptor in a time of 19:42:40 while averaging 45.58mph.
SLR M/C SAGA CONTINUES
Continuing their winning ways individually and as a team, Mark Samuels, 31, Yucca Valley, Calif. and his teammates Justin Morgan, 30, El Cajon, Calif. and Justin Jones, 29, Murrieta, Calif. who won their 10th consecutive overall motorcycle title in a SCORE race on their No. 1x Slam Life Racing Honda CRF450X.
Winning their 10th straight race as a team in the SCORE World Desert Championship, the super team finished the grueling course in a time of 20:50:30 with an average speed of 43.11 miles per hour.
Morgan won the SCORE Baja 1000 last year with other teammates as both Samuels and Jones were sidelined with injuries.
Morgan has 14 straight SCORE race wins over the last four years. Individually this was the fifth SCORE Baja 1000 overall victory for Samuels and fourth overall for both Morgan for Jones.
Samuels started the race and quickly switched to Justin Morgan. Justin Morgan rode to race mile 124. Justin Jones rode from race mile 124 to race mile to 303. Samuels rode again from race mile 303 to race mile to 604. Morgan from rode race mile 604 to the finish.
The victory also earned Honda motorcycles its race-record 30th overall motorcycle victory in the SCORE Baja 1000.
Coming off of a three-year sabbatical from SCORE Baja racing, Guatemala’s Francisco Arredondo, the 2017 SCORE Overall Motorcycle and Pro Moto Unlimited season point champion, moved to a four-wheel class and gave Honda its first overall UTV title over 44 starters in four classes while winning the Pro UTV NA (Naturally Aspirated) class.
Earning his sixth career class win in the SCORE Baja 1000, Arredondo, 43, teamed with veteran SCORE champion Cisco Bio, Spring Valley, Calif. who earned his fifth career class win in this race, to drive the No. 1945 Bremen/Chris Haines Honda Talon to a 27th overall four-wheel vehicle finish in his first four-wheel vehicle race in SCORE.
Honda also picked up another class win as second-generation desert race Eliott Watson, 20, of El Centro, Calif., captured the win in the Pro UTV Unlimited class in his No. 1893 Honda Talon 1000R.
2021 SCORE SKED
Here are the dates for the four-race 2021 SCORE World Desert Championship which will be held in Baja California, Mexico for the sixth consecutive year:
- 34th SCORE San Felipe 250, presented by Ford—
April 14-18, San Felipe, Mexico
- BFGoodrich Tires 53rd SCORE Baja 500, presented by 4 Wheel Parts—
June 9-13, Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico
- 2nd SCORE Baja 400, presented by VP Racing Fuels—
September 14-19, Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico
- BFGoodrich Tires 54th SCORE Baja 1000, presented by 4 Wheel Parts—
November 15-20, Ensenada, Baja California to La Paz, Baja California Sur, Mexico
Official SCORE Sponsors: BFGoodrich Tires-Official Tire and Race Title Sponsor, Monster Energy-Official Energy Drink, 4 Wheel Parts-Official Off-Road Retailer and Race Presenting Partner, Ford-Official Truck and SUV, King Shocks-Official Shock Absorber, Polaris RZR-Official UTV, RACELINE Wheels-Official Wheel, VP Racing Fuels-Official Fuel, Wide Open Excursions-Official Arrive and Drive Company, Crystal Bay Casino-Official Casino.
SCORE Official Partners: PCI Race Radios, The Satellite Phone Store, Instant Mexico Auto Insurance, Lucerna Hotel.
Additional SCORE Associate Partners: Baja California Secretary of Sustainable Economy Tourism, XXIII Ensenada Municipal Government, XXIII Mexicali Municipal Government, Mexicali and San Felipe COTUCO, Cruz Roja Mexicana.
For more information regarding SCORE, visit the official website of the SCORE World Desert Championship at www.SCOREInternational.com.