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Baja 500: Lucas Baja Racing approaches the SCORE Baja 500.

The Castrol Team will run in the 39th Annual Tecate SCORE Baja 500, on June 1-3 in Ensenada, Mexico, looking to build off the team's success in the Terrible's Town 250. The Lucas Baja Racing Team ran in third place well past the halfway point in the Terrible's Town 250, proving that they can compete with the best trucks and drivers in the sport. Continued progress is expected in the team's third race of the season.

"We showed what our team is capable of in the last race, now we get the chance to continue our improvement at one of the most prestigious events in off-road racing," said driver Chris Lucas. Lucas will once again be joined by co-driver Eric Place, while the other half of the driving duties will be handled by Rick Johnson and his co-driver Brian Sallee. Place pointed out that the key to succeeding in the SCORE Baja 500 is surviving the treacherous terrain. "On a scale of one-to-ten of difficulty, the terrain in this race is about a twelve," said Place. "We need to keep the truck together and keep it moving in the right direction to have a successful run."

The diversity of the course is part of what makes this 500 mile race such a challenge. "One minute you can be driving through a village trying to avoid animals in the road, the next you can be on the beach driving along the coast," Johnson said. "The race includes mountains, ranches, highways and pretty much anything else imaginable."

The course for this legendary race is changed every year, another reason that showing caution is essential for the Castrol Team. "You have to show patience and stay smooth," said Johnson. "Whoever can stay out of trouble is going to have a good race." The truck is well prepared for the tough terrain. After every race the crew goes through an extensive repair and preparation process. "It is remarkable how much hard work our crew puts into getting the truck ready for a race," said Lucas. "It is like driving a brand new truck every time we get into it."

The truck will go through a technical inspection on June 1 and the green flag will be dropped for the race the following day at 6 a.m. for the ATV and motorcylcle classes, with the car and trucks getting their start at approximately 10 a.m. The SCORE Baja 500 is the second oldest desert race in the world and has already guaranteed over 500 entries in this year's race., the largest amount ever in the history of the SCORE desert racing organization.

"Ensenada is a different experience than any other place," commented Johnson. "The SCORE Baja 500 and 1000 mean a lot to the people and the culture in the area. You have to be there to understand how truly amazing it is."

2007/05/29 | 23:48 CET | Editor: MR/HS/Lucas Baja Racing

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