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Baja 500: Team Hummer defends SCORE Baja 500 Championship.

The next event on the 2007 Team Hummer racing schedule is the 39th annual Tecate/SCORE "Baja 500", June 1-3 in Ensenada, Mexico. This is the third race of SCORE International’s 2007 Desert Championship Series and last year’s defending Stock-Mini champion, 16-time Baja 500 winner, Rod Hall, will be on hand to defend his 2006 Baja 500 win in the #760 Team Hummer H3 SUV. The veteran Hall notched his first Baja 500 victory in 1970 and teamed with son, Chad and journalists Scott Taylor and Larry Webster to win his 16th Baja 500 last year.

With a record number of entries approaching 525 cars, trucks and motorcycles from 32 states and a dozen foreign countries, this year’s Baja 500 course starts and finishes in Ensenada. It is a very technical and dusty 420 mile loop, with few variations from the 2006 course other than a new 50 mile stretch toward the end of the race which winds through the foothills southeast of Ensenada. With so many vehicles starting the race before us, Team Hummer’s trucks won’t actually leave the starting line until sometime after Noon on Saturday so, most of the race will be run after the sun goes down. Thanks to Hella Lights we have both trucks well equipped with their HID performance lights to help guide us through the dust and darkness of the Baja night.

Rod and Chad Hall will share driving time in the H3 again this year with Rod starting the race behind the wheel. After testing a new rear spring configuration during last month’s ‘Terrible’s Town 250’, which resulted in three separate spring failures, GM engineers have decided to use the same rear spring setup on the H3 that worked well for us at the 2006 ‘Baja 1000’. Rounding out the entry for the team will be 2006 ‘Baja 1000’ Stock-Full champion, Josh Hall, driving solo in the #862 Team Hummer H2 SUV with Sam Cothrun in the second seat. The H2, which has not raced since winning the ‘Parker 425’, in February, performed so well, at that race, that no changes have been made other than to give it a thorough going over in preparation for the Baja 500. Chief Mechanic and Ace fabricator, Sam Cothrun, also modified the light bar, where the six Hella HID’s are mounted, so it would be adjustable from inside the truck during the race, thus allowing him the ability to trim the way the lights are aimed without having to stop the truck during the race.

As part of the year long celebration leading up to the 40th anniversary of the ‘Baja 1000’, team owner Rod Hall will be honored at a banquet on May 31st at Ensenada’s renowned "Horsepower Ranch." In recognition of a lifetime of "Unparalleled Achievement in Baja Racing", Rod will be inducted into the Horsepower Ranch’s, Baja Hall of Fame, a considerable honor in the world of off-road racing. There is little doubt that being honored by a huge crowd of his contemporaries on the eve of one of the biggest races of the year will only increase Hall’s highly competitive nature when he returns to the task at hand and the green flag drops on the 39th annual Tecate/SCORE Baja 500 on Saturday, June 2nd in Ensenada.

2007/05/30 | 13:29 CET | Editor: MR/HS/Rod Hall Racing

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