When the 2010 Baja 1000 map was released and plotted, TEAM LOCOS MOCOS was contacted by Baja Pits and dispatched to the most remote location on the course for a full service pit, El Cuarenta at race mile 615 on the pacific side. South of San Ignacio and near the small fishing town of El Datil, the course zig zagged between the mountains in the rough. During the weeks prior to the race, those that preran this section saw the hard packed soil trail transform into patches of deep silt beds. Entering the pit for race day it was clear to this crew that we were going to need dedicated recovery vehicles strapped and ready to pull drivers from the pools of waist deep silt before and after our pit location. Lamont & Fodor raised the bar this year with what a 96-02 4Runner is capable of towing. Just ask Damen & Casey Jefferies & BJ Baldwin!
We split into 4 groups this year due to departure schedules for the crew and Patio opted to fly into Loreto so he could hold down the TOTAL CHAOS fort. Boofay & Short bus rounded a few heads to assist SCORE-International officialal at the finish line. Baja Jones managed to squeeze in a Baja peninsula prerun with Bethel, Pauliana, Val, Mikey-Mike & BVZ, The Texicans, Neighbor Tim, Papa John, Raptor Billy and the new guys Baton Rouge, Photom the Mexicalli boys Weto and Alex and Flat Matt. All the tires and fuel were to be delivered to a fish packing plant in Constitution for pick up. The tire truck was 20 hours late (no surprise) so the whole crew bivouacked at the fish house instead of a beach as planned. I am glad I missed that camp site location. Bummer you dropped your pillow on the ground BVZ! The group only managed 850 miles of race course as multiple trailer & tow vehicle repairs were required. The Pre-Runners ran almost trouble free with the exception of a few unscheduled trail departures off the race course at high speed. We’ll blame those on the dust! One incident was a blown turn just south of El Crucero that sent the Bronco guillotining through a 10″ diameter Cardon Cactus. The roof was popped back out and 2 smashed driving lights had to be disconnected, and off they went. The tow vehicle, LMC trailer, Paulie’s Walker Evans Ram-charger and the Big Strokey Bronco all completed the entire trip without replacing any of the 16 GoodYear tires on the ground. The last leg into the pit had sections in worse condition than race course and the way overloaded pit trailer had to stop in San Juanico and have the front axle straightened and a truss welded to it. A severed brake line and blown air bag line on the tow vehicle slowed the final slog to Rancho Cuarenta. The crew arrived tired and hungry at the pit, tents popped up and all were snoring by midnight. ———– Carnage report: steering ram issues, torn out radius arm mount
BCG 1 rallied Radar, Cortez, Presidente, Baja Bro, Sniper, Shemp & picked up a straggling Wally and the Beaver to take on a 9 day prerun trip. With a theme of beaches, food and fun on their agenda, they burned the Baja wick and traveled to San Quinten for the night. Day two started with Lobster omelets at Mamma Espinoza’s and then hit the northern section of the Seven Sisters. They ran the Pacific coast Dust to Glory beach run to Santa Inez. As dusk settled they continued south and then east to Bahia de Los Angeles for dinner and rest. Day 3 ran southbound to Bone Beach for more shell and soul searching, then off to Visciano junction! Sunday was a break from the dirt with an extended stay at Coyote Beach on Bahia Conception with newlyweds Steve and Cindy Ransom of the Chase Racing crew. As the shadows grew longer they were again southbound to Loreto where they joined the Baja Jones crew at Feli’s shop where they were fixing the rear trailing arm on the pit trailer. The lure of Loreto squashed any dirt day 4 and the crew spent Tuesday exploring the shops and restaurants of the charming seaside town. Wednesday it was time to head to the pit so the group saddled up for the run over the mountains. A night run north from to San Juanico put the group into Rancho El Cuarenta. More pit trailer repairs were necessary. They made a night run into the pit trying to dodge all the silt beds. ———– Carnage report: 3 flat tires, 11 busted bead lock bolts, 1 rear tail light assembly
BCG 7’s 9pm flight into San Diego airport left him, Wes, Chaos & Frosted Flake to run from San Felipe to Chivado in 26 hours with a 2 hour power nap at Gonzaga Bay, a code red at Coco’s Corner & 3 Pemex fuel stops. We proceeded down the race course through the car wash and into the Bay of LA. We met up with the Alabama crew and Posey needed some distributor repairs in town. We motored on into the Baja night for a Punta Chivado destination. The Fodor family met our crew on Tuesday where we took a few days to hang out at the beach house and catch some yellow tail and snorkel at casa de Fodor. We saddled up Thursday AM and headed over the mountains to the pit location with Patio on board. We sent Poncho a Mulege local to pick him up from the airport. He was really pissed at first, but we had to extend our Baja adventure to him somehow. No goats or chickens were in the taxi and he met a local band’s drummer. He really was glad to be in Mexico. On behalf of the entire Locos Mocos team, “THANK YOU” Fodor family for extending your casa throughout the entire week to this crazy crew as a destination spot to regroup, relax and shower up. ———– Carnage report: 1 busted motor mount, 1 lost V8 cylinder
The Lamont & K-Train crew saw the sun rise and set 5 days in a row making it to La Paz then north back to the pit with Mamma’s Boy, Bobby Hill & Hula Hoop. They never require any sleep on these trips so they added a bonus prerun from Lapaz to Cabo on dirt just for the hell of it! Quoted from Lamont, “We rallied the course this year harder than ever. My Chaos 4Runner rolled almost 300k miles and a 10 year old TC suspension system owned the Baja and it’s silt beds! A 4000 mile adventure, with nearly 700 of it in the dirt. We had NO issues, we surfed Scorpion Bay, viewed several missions, ate at 23 taco stands pulled 19 race vehicles from the silt including BJ Baldwin and Armon Schwortz. Huge thanks to ORW, TOTAL CHAOS, our families, plus Team LOCOS MOCOS for making these adventures possible. We can’t wait till the next one!!!” ——- Carnage report: 2 busted head lamps, 1 tire plugged & a lost AC
Two lone soldier Locos-Mocos/TOTAL CHAOS trucks with Boofay & Short Bus, and “Oddball” (no matter who is in the truck it will always be an oddball, unless it’s 3-ball) had Cliffy, Stingray and Mr Clean signed up to play SCORE officials. They logged over 3000 miles with 600+ of race course. Only 1 flat (a BFG) and a broken coil spring on the QE2 (“Oddball’s-Queen Mary Sequoia) but that was on I5FWY on the way home. We met up with all LMC crew except BCG7, TC and Fodor. We spent some time at Casa de Fodor (thanks, that place is awesome), spent the night at Case de Baja Bros, the Yurts in San Iggy and the “dive” motel in Loreto. They sawbeach time almost every day but since we had a tight schedule we kept the “code reds” to a minimum. The group delivered 7 boxes of canned food and a large bag of toys to several ranches down the peninsula. They stayed our final night in a fellow racers motel in the wine country just 10 minutes from Ensenada, set a waypoint for this place, it’s new, clean but the heaters are $5 per night.
After having all our fun race day was finally here! The first race bikes blazed through at dusk and we all knew the pit would rock all night and into the early evening the next day. As the first trophy truck blazed through the silt bed and we watched the hard pack transform in front of our eyes into deep powder pools, we could only imagine what the race course into the pit was beginning to look like for these bikes & cars. Each vehicle passing through the silt bed went deeper and deeper into the abyss……….then we had our first casualty of silt bed war….…BJ Baldwin. Lamont immediately wheeled his 4Runner into position and proceeded to tug him out, along with 18 other silt bed victims that drowned in front of our eyes. Meanwhile, the Fodor 4Runner remounted truck #700 onto all 4 wheels after parking the truck on its driver side door while trying to avoid a silt pool before our pit and then he proceeded with Mamma’s Boy & Chaos up course to recover TT#22 that had a blown motor 4 miles from the pit. This recovery took from 2am till 5am plus 15 locals & their stock Ford Ranger to get the trophy truck up a silt hill before the pit. These local ranchers came fully prepared to assist any racer up that hill and through the cattle crossing!
The fueler’s were pinned all night long filling dump cans & dry breaks. Baja Bro, Shemp & Sniper were on top of it. Pauliana & BCG 1 manned the communications radios & logged vehicle #’s & times. Patio, Val & the Texicans manned the hot pit dumping fuel and performing adjustments with assistance from several other sets of hands. Bethel & Neighbor Tim hunkered down in the kitchen and got the “hot pepper stew” simmering to keep the team energized throughout the night. Fodor manned the coffee pot & Mikey-Mike nestled up in a chair on the burning hillside with a handheld to call entering bikes, cars & trucks race numbers. Locos Mocos was fully staffed and ready to support the 63 bikes 85 vehicles who were signed up for Baja Pits services. Lamont & Fodor ran recovery straps off their 4Runners with help from several of the crew members rendering service to racers stuck in the silt or that rolled over before and after the pit location.
Baja Pits #12 continued into the late afternoon assisting race bikes, cars & trucks arriving at a steady pace. The crew assisted racers who required welding, tire changes , scheduled fuel stops, extractions and all other necessary repairs. Baja Jones, Mikey-Mike and the Texans as well as neighbor Tim, Baton Rouge, Photom, Weto, Alex and Flat Matt manned the pit till the very last Baja Pit’s supported racer made it through. They even unpacked the welder off the trailer in order to keep a 12 car going despite the sleep deprivation. It was no surprise the LOCOS MOCOS Team was dispatched to this remote pit location. No other major support team with this amount of equipment could get their tools, fuel or vehicle to this spot. Another Baja 1000 peninsula run has concluded and we all survived the Baja and have crazy stories to tell about the adventure. You know its worth it if the Texican’s are willing to log 5000 miles.
Our crew extends their prayers to Justin Imhoff and hopes for a speedy recovery from the Honda B rider that went down.
Photo credits: Tom Kimmell, TOTAL CHAOS, Locos Mocos crew