Monday, June 25, 2012

2012 Mexican 1000 - Day 4 Stage 1.1

Day 4 started early.  Rhonda and I checked the car over as the sun rose (we'd been a bit too exhausted to look it over the day before).  Even though we were tired it was a beautiful morning.


Ned Bacon's "Killer Bee"
It wouldn't get out of the lot until noon because of an electrical gremlin(?).
Even with the delay he'd finish second in class.

For this last stage of the Mexican 1000, Norra would throw a bit of everything at us.  Straight fast gravel roads, horrible whoop dee doos, traffic, towns, highways, straight stretches along the Pacific Ocean, hilly dirt roads, sandy washes and some of the narrowest steepest mountain roads of the race.  Add to this the cars left in thre race were a bit beat up after the previous three days.

The Zuercher/Norton Bronce showing surprising little wear from it's roll onto it's side.
Arwen, Mary and the kids came down to send us on our way.

Stage 4 would be  a 17 miles of transit from the hotel to the start and then140 miles off road from La Paz to San Jose del Cabo.  The cars started to line up and the zebra land cruiser (which had now become “A Land Cruiser”) would be at the back of the pack with the handful of other DNFers. 

Most of the Broncos were at the back too, so it made for good company.  We lined up, started and were immediately stuck in traffic.  It was a Wednesday morning in La Paz  and the 17 miles to the off road starting point was heavy with traffic.

We made our way across town with Brutus and another buggy eventually finding the turn off to the dirt road and the start of the fun part of the race.

The first section was  pretty easy to drive but harder to navigate.  The roads were well used which meant a lot of turn off forks, and small towns to get lost in.  

We learned to go wherever the locals pointed.  This wasn’t the sort of race where there was much misdirection and, being at the end of the pack, I think people were rooting for an underdog.

As we moved along the plant life got larger until it was a literal cactus forest.  I really didn’t want to go off the road.  We hit some sand and gnarley whoop dee door.

I’d gotten the hang of it but it was still annoying.  We were passed by many and passed many along the road.

Eventually we got to the Pacific Ocean.  Long strips along the ocean of beautiful road that would abruptly end in a 90 degree turn.  This is where we lost a bit of time.  On a paved freeway the land cruiser maxes out at around 70mph.  On these straight dirt roads we were consistly doing 60-65mph but most of the other cars were cruising at 80+mph.

We hit the northern edge of Todos Santos and made a hard left up into the hills.  Cutting through a semi deserted development and a totally different environment.  We’d climb through brush until the GPS and some orange ribbon told us to go right and off the road.  A thin trail, that looked like it was made for this race, took us down a steep embankment and onto the highway.

1.2 coming up!  featuring mountain adventures! right here!

No comments:

Post a Comment