Cortez Challenge

Dirty Harry

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ISRengine

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Don't know if there any chance that the Cortez Challenge is a preparation for the futur (2016-2017) and a FIA event in the World rally-raid championship.
 

Hog Wild

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NORRA just posted new details for the Cortez Rally:
http://www.norra.com/cortez_rally.php
plus a PDF with even more details:
http://www.norra.com/PDFs/cortez_rally_details1.pdf

Entries open for both events in just a few hours!

For Cortez entries looking to save a few bucks:
- One free room night per entry in Mexicali at our host hotel for the first 25 entries.
- One free room night per entry in Ensenada at our host hotel for the first 15 entries.
- Free fuel at Cortez Rally remote mid-stage gas stops for all bikes.
- $500 savings off combined entry fees if you enter both events.
 

DarrenSkilton

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I am hoping some of you who have asked me so many questions about Dakar and rally raid over the years come out and join us on the Cortez Rally. It will be on terrain that mimics some of what Dakar is like and is where I test for the rally. It is also where I have taken the El Martillo (car 356) and Aldo (car 380) Dakar teams for training. If you are thinking about racing Dakar or simply want to experience some of what makes it unique you should try and be a part of the event.

If anyone has questions about the event post them up or pm me.
 

Petepecas

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This is a great idea! I think it will take off and establish itself in a couple of years time. I don't know how much promo you have done in Mainland Mexico, but it's more of an international Rally aware fan base than the US. I bet you could get a lot of interest...


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DarrenSkilton

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Also, I have two Dakar vehicles that can be rented for this event if anyone is interested. The Jeep Grand Cherokee and a buggy. PM me for details
 

Roodwerks

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I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this event takes off and sticks around for a while. I would love to run it, but it would be a few years off before I can build up a decent car, something to compete in raid and stage rally...

-Jon
 

DarrenSkilton

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I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this event takes off and sticks around for a while. I would love to run it, but it would be a few years off before I can build up a decent car, something to compete in raid and stage rally...

-Jon

Thanks! I hope it does too. There are a few things in the works for the future. There is a good active thread on adv rider with some new info from Scott.
http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1021996&page=18

I will try to get some updates here up as well for the car guys who have questions. Thanks for Dave Sykes becoming the first person to enter the Cortez rally!
 

Roodwerks

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One question that keeps coming to my mind, as someone interested in doing it in a 2wd "car", just how dune are the dunes? Or are they more like sand washes?
-Jon
 

oregoncoast

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Based on these photos posted by Scott on ADVrider, I'd say pretty "Duney"

P1010367q_x1024.jpg


IMG_0283p3_x1024.jpg


BlueSkyDunesP1000586.jpg


IMG_0279o9_x1024.jpg


And Fun!
 

Roodwerks

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Looks easy enough with just about any horse power, as long as you don't HAVE to cross over the top of the drift hill. It's all about momentum and picking the right lines. I just wanted to know if I was going to need 600hp to move a 3000lbs car through it.

-Jon
 

Hog Wild

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Looks easy enough with just about any horse power, as long as you don't HAVE to cross over the top of the drift hill.
There are no mandatory points that force you to go to the TOP of any monster dune. There ARE mandatory points that force you to find your way to the other side of a monster dune, by whatever path you choose. You should still give Darren a call to talk about the dunes parts, just so you're clear what it will take to get through.
 

Hog Wild

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It seems a lot of people get the impression that rally navigation is really hard. It's actually pretty basic stuff. The challenge comes in when you get into race mode and you get your head full of issues and distractions. You tend to make mistakes and turn the wrong way or daydream and miss a turn. Or you miss-read a note in the roadbook. The roadbook looks kind of complicated but a lot of the information is redundant or not particularly important. The mileage and tulip drawing are all that is needed most of the time. Here's my roadbook helper sheet for the Cortez Rally roadbooks:

HowToReadTheRoadbookCortez.gif
 

oregoncoast

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Hogwild,

On The ADVrider page, you mentioned getting some training road books if we were signed up for the Cortez. You also talked about some training road book notes about Dumont Dunes, I just looked that up and see that its near Barstow. Our race car is going to be brought down to that area and kept at a friend's house in anticipation of some desert trips this year. Also, any Mexican race is easier if the car is already a day and a half closer to Mexico!

If I can convince my wife that she'll actually have fun navigating, the Cortez might be a go for us. The car is getting prepped regardless, so it would be ready.

Thanks for any info.

- OC
 

Hog Wild

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OC, I have several training roadbooks, some out of Dumont Dunes and some out of Pahrump, NV. Normally I charge for them, but for anyone entered in Cortez I'll give you a couple for free. The only problem is the routes are somewhat bike oriented (sometimes pretty rough or aggressive with occasional narrow spots). I'll have to edit a couple in order for you to be able to get through with a car. I'm willing to do that if you're entered in Cortez. Another issue is you'll need a real rally computer (odometer) that's up/down adjustable in tenths and/or hundredths, and a GPS that provides numeric compass headings, preferably a Garmin handheld with microSD card, USB connector, and color screen (required for Cortez). We're working on allowing Lowrance, so that may be an option too. If you need pointers on where to get the right kind of odometer, let me know.
 

oregoncoast

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Hogwild,

I was wondering about the rally computer. We have been using the ARM Rally Computer app on our iPhones and iPads with great success. I was planning on using an iPad with a GPS puck with the ARM rally computer app as our odometer (as we did in the M1k). It is really same principle as any gps rally odometer and is up/down adjustable. We are all about promoting ways for grassroots folks to race and have fun without breaking the bank. We navigated both NORRA M1K's we did in the car with iPads and iPhones just to see if they would work....they did.

But I do understand that you are not wanting any smart devices used as navigation devices because of the risk of using mapping programs and such...so I suppose the Rally Computer App is out? Perhaps, Rally Management Services might set up a rental option for us car guys? Hate to have to bite the bullet on a $400 rally computer I might use once a year.

I understand that people like to say that a couple of hundred here and a couple of hundred there really doesn't mean much when compared with the overall cost of getting a race effort together. But for those of us who already have the vehicle or bike built, and all of the safety equipment already purchased, then all of those little costs really do decide whether we can make it to a race or not. Heck $400 dollars is enough for fuel to get the car from Oregon to Mexico and back, nearly. Keeping costs down where possible is important for us this year. We really enjoyed the M1K for the past four years, but for this year, the Cortez really appeals because it requires much less of a chasing effort and doesn't have the costs, logistics and time consumption associated with doing a successful peninsula run.

For the gps, I have a Garmin Oregon or Montana (both with micro SD, color screens and USB), which I usually use, but was also considering mounting a Lowrance unit into the car - but it sounds like you might prefer we use the Garmin. We do have a Spot tracker.

As we spoke about on ADV, having the option of opening the envelope for the GPS track (and taking the huge time penalty) if we get horribly lost is much more appealing to us "fun" racers than spending the night driving in circles in the desert...lol. I do think that the way you and Darren are going about this makes it an appealing event to both the hardcore rally raid folks, as well as those racers just "in it for the fun and challenge" like us at Outta Sight Racing.

Thanks for helping to fill in all of the blanks.

- OC
 

Hog Wild

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I was wondering about the rally computer. We have been using the ARM Rally Computer app on our iPhones and iPads with great success. I was planning on using an iPad with a GPS puck with the ARM rally computer app as our odometer (as we did in the M1k). It is really same principle as any gps rally odometer and is up/down adjustable. We are all about promoting ways for grassroots folks to race and have fun without breaking the bank. We navigated both NORRA M1K's we did in the car with iPads and iPhones just to see if they would work....they did.

But I do understand that you are not wanting any smart devices used as navigation devices because of the risk of using mapping programs and such...so I suppose the Rally Computer App is out? Perhaps, Rally Management Services might set up a rental option for us car guys? Hate to have to bite the bullet on a $400 rally computer I might use once a year.
Smart phones, iPads, and related smart devices are not allowed to be used in Cortez Rally because it’s too easy to cheat with them. We want everyone to use nav equipment with roughly the same capability so the rally doesn’t become a competition of who can spend the most and have the most capable wiz-bang computer navigation and mapping system. A smart phone in your pocket is fine, as long as it’s only used for an emergency phone call. You just can’t mount it on your dash or anyplace it can be seen while driving/riding. For Mex1K, I think all such devices are allowed.


I understand that people like to say that a couple of hundred here and a couple of hundred there really doesn't mean much when compared with the overall cost of getting a race effort together. But for those of us who already have the vehicle or bike built, and all of the safety equipment already purchased, then all of those little costs really do decide whether we can make it to a race or not. Heck $400 dollars is enough for fuel to get the car from Oregon to Mexico and back, nearly. Keeping costs down where possible is important for us this year. We really enjoyed the M1K for the past four years, but for this year, the Cortez really appeals because it requires much less of a chasing effort and doesn't have the costs, logistics and time consumption associated with doing a successful peninsula run.
I think NORRA is considering eliminating the monthly bump-up in entry fee. We’ve asked them to do that for Cortez, and we’ll see if they do it for Mex1K also. So there’s a potential cost savings for those who have not yet entered.

Regarding the odometer/rally computer, there are a couple of options. Dave at Rally Management Services (RMS) carries a whole line of nav equipment. It’s mostly bike oriented, but the rally computer/odometer type devices will work on cars as well. I’ll ask him to come here and comment on his devices and what might work for different people. He’ll be racing Cortez Rally himself, and supporting other riders through Mex1K, so he’ll be available at the events to help anyone who needs it.

For the gps, I have a Garmin Oregon or Montana (both with micro SD, color screens and USB), which I usually use, but was also considering mounting a Lowrance unit into the car - but it sounds like you might prefer we use the Garmin. We do have a Spot tracker.
Cortez Rally requires you to bring your own SPOT or inReach tracker. We also require you to have a GPS which meets our requirements. Any Garmin handheld (except Monterra) that has a microSD slot, a USB interface, and a color screen should be fine. Other Garmin models that have the above features MIGHT be ok, but check with me first to be sure. We are working on a way to allow Lowrance units. Keep an eye on this thread for news on that effort.

Be aware a large GPS screen will be of little value over a small screen unit since you will not see any course track, roads, highways, or any other normal map features. All maps and related data will be cleared prior to the start of the race. The GPS screen will only show your compass heading (if you choose to display that), and an indicator when you reach a required waypoint. Other than that, the screen will be blank! You could display speed, mileage, time or other such numbers, but they will be of little or no use for this rally.

There are several reasons we require you to have a GPS:
1) We use the internal recorded track to verify you followed the course and reached each required waypoint.
2) You need a device to show you digital compass headings, for those sections of the course where there is no road. Some of the RMS nav equipment displays compass headings as well.
3) The course includes many WPMs (Waypoint Masked – a concept used in Dakar), which are similar to SCORE VCPs. These are points you MUST pass through to avoid time penalties. We are implementing a unique approach that enables the GPS to show you when you have or have not reached each of these points. Only by observing an indication on your GPS screen will you know you have reached the WPM.
4) We will provide you with a GPS chip in a sealed envelope. The chip will contain a rough track of the course, surrounding highways, important waypoints such as the bivouac and key course points, and other items to help you get un-lost or help you bail out to the nearest escape road in case of emergency. If you use the GPS chip, you will receive a stiff time penalty, but at least it’s there in case you REALLY need it. A paper map will also be sealed in the envelope. The GPS chip and paper map are key for those who are worried they may get lost and miss half of the race finding their way back to civilization. We want you all to have fun and be challenged, not spend hours of frustrated time lost in the desert.

As we spoke about on ADV, having the option of opening the envelope for the GPS track (and taking the huge time penalty) if we get horribly lost is much more appealing to us "fun" racers than spending the night driving in circles in the desert...lol. I do think that the way you and Darren are going about this makes it an appealing event to both the hardcore rally raid folks, as well as those racers just "in it for the fun and challenge" like us at Outta Sight Racing.
Thanks, we aim to deliver a unique and challenging off-road experience with a ton of fun mixed in!
 
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