Matlock takes overall ATV title at Baja 500
For the third consecutive year Matlock Racing topped the field at the grueling Baja 500. The team covered the rough and boulder strewn course with a time of 10:24:35 for an average speed of 42.15 mph.
This race also marks the eighth consecutive time the Matlock Racing team recorded the fastest Overall time in a SCORE event.
The Honda TRX700XX with Wayne Matlock aboard started the race in the number 2 position just 30 seconds behind the quad. Matlock took the start and made the pass on the quad early in the race to take the lead.
Through the dust in Ojos Negros Matlock held the lead with the of Javier Robles and of Josh Edwards in hot pursuit. A fueling issue at the ¬first pit held up Matlock which allowed the and quads to make the pass. During the pit, fuel was inadvertently dumped on Matlock and the quad flooding out the motor and killing the battery on the quad. Matlock would have to push start the quad and make multiple stops to pour water on his fuel covered skin, losing valuable time in the process. The quad had gained three minutes before Matlock was able to hand the quad to Josh Caster at race mile 74.
Caster was in hot pursuit of the two quads, who now had a comfortable lead this early in the race. Before reaching check point #1 located at race mile 84, Caster was able to overtake the quad and quickly move into the second place position. He would continue to chase the quad over the rocky and dangerous summit without any communications with the chase crews due to the remote area of the course. Once reaching the dry lake bed of Laguna Salada he was back in contact with the chase crews who noti¬fied him that he was four minutes behind the lead quad. Caster turned up the pace for his last 25 miles into the rocky whoops of Borrego and was able to gain two and a half minutes on the lead quad before handing off to Matlock.
Matlock would take the quad in Borrego at race mile 196. Once back on the quad he was able to chase down the quad thru the deep sandy whoops on his way up San Matias Pass and before making the turn towards the Famous Mike’s Sky Ranch he could see the dust of the lead quad. Once spotting the dust, Matlock pushed even harder and was ready to make the pass for the lead just as the next fuel stop would come into view. This would allow the lead quad to pull away as it headed towards the coast. Just down the road from the fuel stop Matlock would hand the quad to Wes Miller.
Miller knew the lead quad was just seconds ahead of him and knew if he pushed hard enough he could make the pass before reaching the silty and rocky hills along the coast. Before reaching the coast Miller was nipping at the quad’s heels and made the pass for the lead. Once in the lead Miller stayed on the gas to gain as much of a lead as possible knowing anything can happen in Baja. During Caster’s last few miles in Borrego the communication radio bolted to the race quad broke off due to the rough course. Because of this Miller had no communication with his chase crews along his ride up the coast and was unsure of how far behind the next quad was. Miller would continue to push hard not knowing where any of the competition was and would hand the quad to Matlock in Ojos Negros at race mile 402 with a 45 minute lead on the next quad.
Matlock made the fi¬nal ride to the fi¬nish located back in Ensenada. He took his time on the last few miles into town crossing the deep and muddy water crossings and also being very careful not to hit any of the booby traps built by the local spectators. Once crossing the ¬finish line it was a full 50 minutes before the team of Javier Robles would enter Ensenada after having some mechanical issues.
Not only did the Matlock Racing Team fi¬nish a full 50 minutes ahead of the next quad but they also passed a total of 65 motorcycles that started ahead of them. Only five motorcycles were able to outrun the Honda TRX700XX of Matlock Racing! This ¬finish was good enough for the Class 25 Pro ATV win as well as the Overall ATV win.
The Matlock Racing Team would like to thank all of the chase crews and sponsors for their help. Without them these wins would not be possible and the team is very appreciative of all the support!
Matlock Racing would like to thank all their sponsors – Vey’s Powersports, PRM-ATV.com, Rich Morel Racing Motors, Precision Concepts, Houser Racing, Maxxis, Elka, JCR Honda, Big Gun Exhaust, KZ Trailers, Fly Racing, Renthal, IMS-Roll, Pro Honda Oil and Chemicals, IMS, DWT,OMF, Tire Balls, Quadtech, Streamline, Precision Racing Products, Baja Designs, Scott Goggles, Motion Pro, UNI Filters, DID Chains, Division Four
For more information on Matlock Racing please visit – http://www.matlockracing-honda.com/.