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1st Baja 1000 Hungarian Racing Team

BajaHungary

Member
Hello from Hungary!

I am very new to off-road rally racing but I want to fulfill my dream and complete the Baja 1000 in Class 11 as the first ever hungarian team. I would appreciate all your advises and tips to achive my goal. Now I preparing my first rally car (Lada 2121 (Niva) 1.6) to race in the hungarian rally raid championhip from next season. After I collected some experience I would like to build a VW Baja Bug and collect some sponsors to race Baja 1000. I already ordered the book 'Baja Bugs and Buggies: How to prepare VW-based cars for off-road fun and racing by Jeff Hibbard' and will read throug the SCORE rulebook for Class 11 soon. Please help me with your experiences to get closer to my dream. For what should I pay attention to? What would be your suggestion regarding the steps I have to make to achive my goal? Thanks in advance! ;)
 

TecateRay

Well-Known Member
I recommend you get in contact with some of the Mexican Class 11 teams. They are true Baja Warriors and would be the best source for you.
 

offroadracer516

Well-Known Member
Hello from Hungary!

I am very new to off-road rally racing but I want to fulfill my dream and complete the Baja 1000 in Class 11 as the first ever hungarian team. I would appreciate all your advises and tips to achive my goal. Now I preparing my first rally car (Lada 2121 (Niva) 1.6) to race in the hungarian rally raid championhip from next season. After I collected some experience I would like to build a VW Baja Bug and collect some sponsors to race Baja 1000. I already ordered the book 'Baja Bugs and Buggies: How to prepare VW-based cars for off-road fun and racing by Jeff Hibbard' and will read throug the SCORE rulebook for Class 11 soon. Please help me with your experiences to get closer to my dream. For what should I pay attention to? What would be your suggestion regarding the steps I have to make to achive my goal? Thanks in advance! ;)
Class 11 Junkies and Class11coalition.com are good sources of info.
 

BajaHungary

Member
Could someone help me with the Class 11 regulations? It says that "Engine must utilize VW series type 1, 1600cc, U.S. Model sedan components and dimensions." So if I buy a VW series type 1, 1600cc model in GERMANY, will it fit? Or what does the 'U.S. Model' exactly mean? Thanks...
 

GBRACER

Well-Known Member
Im thinking a German model will be fine as long as it's 1600 pretty sure they were all the same engine you probably want one built here from a builder that builds for the 1000 they have lot of tricks and secrets.
 

BajaHungary

Member
I just checked the European market of the VW Bugs. It turned out that a car in good shape costs 20-25.000 USD. :S I am now checking the regulations for the other classes. I found Heavy Metal sexy and now I am wondering if it would be a good idea to buy a Jeep Grand Cherokee (ZJ) V8, install a supercharger on it, have the necessary upgrades (eg. suspension) and go for racing? The car itself costs about 3-4.000 USD in Europe. In addition based on my calculations I would have 10-11.000 USD preparation cost.

The other classes I would prefer are JeepSpeed, Class 7 and Stock Full. My only aim is to finish the race!

What do you think?
 
I think you would be far ahead to buy rather than build, rent rather than buy, and to forget about the supercharger.

Class 7 and Stock full are low entry classes because they are both VERY expensive. Plus, no "mini trucks" have been sold in the US for quite a while. Mid sized is the smallest marketed.

I really think renting a ride is the way to go.

Here's a couple:

Pistol Pete

Wide Open Baja | Off-Road Driving Adventure :: 949.635.2292

Good Luck!
 

BajaHungary

Member
My concern is that if I rent a race truck I loose the opportunity to have sponsors (I may not allowed to put the stickers of my sponsors on the truck) and also I don't know the truck, so driving it first time on Baja 1000 would be a great risk. But thank you for your suggestions! ;) Also I think tat building is part of the game and finishing with your own stuff which you have built with your own hands is more prestigious. :)
 

BajaboundMoto

Well-Known Member
My concern is that if I rent a race truck I loose the opportunity to have sponsors (I may not allowed to put the stickers of my sponsors on the truck)
Not true. I know if arranged far enough in advance, and if not competing with a brand sponsoring the rental car, you can have the car in your colors.
Wide Open (Subaru powered a-arm'd buggies, BFG sponsored), Petes BajaLites (little trucks, MAXXIS sponsored), and Horsepower Adventures (custom built UTVs that work incredible, Yokohama sponsored), or even we can rent you a class 10 buggy and support crew (EcoTech, nice, and no tire sponsor ;-)

so driving it first time on Baja 1000 would be a great risk.
All the places that rent also have you drive them in advance. How much you want to drive them in advance all depend$.

I think tat building is part of the game and finishing with your own stuff which you have built with your own hands is more prestigious
As someone involved with this right now, and having missed the 2017 BAP race (February, months ago) for the "new" car debut, and still maybe not ready enough to take the green flag at the December RAGE race.... Don't do it.
We would have been money ahead and racing by now if we had gone about this differently.
And I'm not new, I've done at least 25 B.500's and 26 B.1000's, mostly on 2 wheels, and I live in So. Cal. where it's "simple" to build a race car.
 

JDDurfey

Well-Known Member
I just checked the European market of the VW Bugs. It turned out that a car in good shape costs 20-25.000 USD. :S I am now checking the regulations for the other classes. I found Heavy Metal sexy and now I am wondering if it would be a good idea to buy a Jeep Grand Cherokee (ZJ) V8, install a supercharger on it, have the necessary upgrades (eg. suspension) and go for racing? The car itself costs about 3-4.000 USD in Europe. In addition based on my calculations I would have 10-11.000 USD preparation cost.

The other classes I would prefer are JeepSpeed, Class 7 and Stock Full. My only aim is to finish the race!

What do you think?
Jeep Speed is a cool class. Fairly inexpensive, but you don't need a supercharger. The vehicle can't go fast enough to necessitate one. Most Jeep speeds are running the 4.0 liter, and besides, it is a limited class. Small wheel travel and speeds are not high, but from what I see, a ton of fun and great competition. If that is the route your are going to take, I would buy rather than build. There are several for sale right now that would make great race cars.

However, I agree with what BajaBoundMoto has stated. I understand the desire to build your own and "own" it, but the logistics of you shipping to the US or Mexico is huge. What if you put all your time and money into building the car of your dreams, shipping it across the Atlantic and then decide after your first race that you really can't afford to race or you really don't like to. And by the way, building or buying the race car is only the first step. To race the Baja 1000 with a car you need multiple chase vehicles and numerous people to drive them. When you rent a race car you get all that provided for you. The person renting the race car wants to see you cross the finish line just as much as you do. All of the companies that have been mentioned have years of success finishing and winning races in Baja. Is it expensive to rent? Yes, when you look at the price, make sure you are sitting down. But you will spend that much or more trying to do it yourself, that is the reality of it.

Before you begin to feel like the people on this forum are trying to undermine your desire to race the Baja 1000, let me assure you that no one here is trying to do that. Many of the people on this forum have years of experience in Baja and have seen many people come and go with huge dreams and aspirations only to leave them on the wayside because it is such a huge undertaking. I have limited experience with a 4 wheel vehicle, most of my racing in Mexico was on a bike. But I know for the 07 Baja 1000 the Class 1 car I co-drove spent upwards of $30,000 just for that one race, and we were extremely under staffed and under budget. Then the engine blew up and we came home without a finish and our tails between our legs. The owner has not raced a race since and the race car is sitting in Houston TX rotting away as far as I know. I tried for several years while we were racing bikes together to get him to buy a cheaper car to run, but he insisted on going to the Class 1 or TT. I tried to tell him how much it was going to cost, and he found out the hard way. Ran two races with his car, didn't finish either, rolled in the 500 and blown engine in the 1000 and now the car has been sitting for 10 years.

Everyone wants to see you succeed and not fail. So take all the advise here seriously. Good luck in your endeavors.
 
What if you put all your time and money into building the car of your dreams, shipping it across the Atlantic and then learn it cannot pass tech inspection and you can't race?
Another issue. How do you insure against that?
 

BajaHungary

Member
Thank you for sharing your experiences and your best advises with me! Now it seems that I should consider your thoughts. Maybe first I try to prove myself in the hungarian offroad (rally raid) championship and if I have some experience then I should start to organize sponsors and consider desert racing. Thanks again! ;)
 

WALSHMOTORSPORTS

Well-Known Member
Or maybe try to hook up with a team, pack some old sneakers and jeans and fly over and chase/pit with a team to get the idea of it all. You can take a million pics of all the race cars and get some great ideas for a future build. Good luck on your ventures!
 

1wayne

Well-Known Member
I agree with Tim, if you want to race the 1000 for first your race (You are taking on a big challenge) you should rent a car. Wide Open Baja is the way to go. They do everything they can to get you to the finish line. The expense to build a car, prerun, spares, chase vehicles, people to man the pits and chase Etc. is very expensive. What ever you thing your budget is going to be double or triple it.

Just a quick story of a team we helped in the 70's. We were racing the 500 in 77 or 78 I think. We were staying at the RV park in Ensenada. When we found a team for Germany racing a sidehack. My Father being from Germany took them under his wing (RIP Dad). They came over from Germany to race the Baja 500. They shipped their race bike to LA and rode it down to Baja, they entered the race when they got to Ensenada and had no clue what was going on. We helped get through tech, which was big problem but managed to get them through. We asked them about prerunning. They look at us like what is that. Well needless to say they didn't make it very far. They broke before the summit, they broke the springer front end off the bike. We got to them before my Dad came through and loaded them up. We took them with us for the rest of the race. When we finished and got back to the campground and started talking about the day events, they were really in awe of the thing they call Baja. They had no idea it would be so grueling. All the preparation, logistics that go into such a event. Now they had to back to the States, so we brought them home us and housed them for 3 or 4 days while we repaired their bike so the could ride it back to LA and get the bike and themselves back to Germany. O ya in the campground on Saturday their backpacks got stolen with their passports and wallets. Good Times! Viva Baja!
 

johndjmix

Well-Known Member
You won’t find a better company to rent from than Trophylite. Rick does an almost superhuman job for his customers and they do allow you to sticker up the truck however you want.

I highly recommend them.

—John


Sent from my iPhone using race-deZert
 

BajaHungary

Member
Thanks for all your repies! You convinced me to rent a racecar for Baja 1000. :) Now I will begin to work and have some offroad racing experience in Hungary and maybe have some sponsors later. But for sure Baja 1000 is on my bucket list...

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