11 Q&A’s with Dan McMillin

1. How is it WINNING the San Felipe Challenge of Champions, your first SCORE class 1 win?

Winning was awesome, I now know what Charlie Sheen has been talking about all this time!  I want to dedicate the win to two very special people who are no longer with us.  My Aunt Cristian Dickson and Marty Hendrickson.  Two extraordinary people that will be truly missed! It was really special, because for one it was my first big class 1 win and also Chuck Hovey, who started and did the first 100 miles, has never won there before either so it made it even sweeter.   Actually we were not planning on racing it at all.  We had put in a new fresh engine from Danzio, and before racing the 1000 we wanted to test it, so we decided to race it last minute.  Looks like it was a good test after all! McMillin Racing couldn’t of done it without the help and support of all of our crew members, chase support, and all of our friends and family who dedicate time and effort to come to the races and help us out, it really means a lot to not just me, but to our entire family. And also to our sponsors who play a huge role in our success.  McMillin Homes, BFGoodrich Tires, Fox Racing Shox, Baja Designs, and Crane Motorsports!

2. When did you start racing? What was your very first race co-driving and driving?

I’ve been into racing ever since I can remember.  Going down to Baja and watching the San Felipe 250, the 500 and the 1000 have always been a part of my life.  Started racing in 2003 in a Jimco 2/1600 car in at the time the FUD series in Plaster City and it’s grown to what it is today, racing class 1 cars and now Trophy Trucks both in Baja and in the States.

3. Place these in order starting with fastest: you, your brother Luke, cousin Andy, cousin Jessica.

Well me first duh, haha.  On a serious note, we all race different classes so it’s difficult to compare.  I know when I race my 1600 car against Luke, he is a serious competitor and Andy is super fast and smooth in the Trophy Truck so pick your poison!

4. You drove your Dad’s trophy truck for a section at Vegas to Reno, how was that compared to the class 1? Which do you like better?

Driving in the big holes and overall comfortability, the Trophy Truck is hands down the better choice.  The class 1 is a great Baja 500 and 1000 car because it’s nimble, light, fast and dependable.   The biggest thing I had to get used to was being aware of the rear end in the center of the truck.  If I had to pick right now, I’d pick the class 1 car only because I am the most used to it, but I’ll probably be jumping ship soon!  Racing 1600 cars for close to 8 years now has taught me the most though about line choice, reading terrain and traction.

5. When are you going to drive the TT full time so you can kick Andy’s ass?

Next year the plan is to race the Geiser Trophy Truck with my dad Mark in no particular series, just the races we enjoy the most.  So next year is when I plan on trying to kick Andy’s ass! Key word, trying.

6. If you could only do 1 race a year what race would it be? Why?

The Baja 1000 because it’s the Baja 1000.   Every aspect of that race gives me goosebumps.  The racing, the pre running, the people, the food, the logistics, the terrain, the competition, and the list goes on.  If not the Baja 1000, I really like the SNORE RATR races or the BAP races.  Those are a blast!

7. Eva Longoria or Heidi Klum?

Hmmm, this one is tough.  I have to go with Eva, only because I’m not a fan of Project Runway which is also Andy’s favorite show.  Did I say that?

8. How much prerunning do you normally do before a race and what do you prerun in?

Depends on the race but we try to do as much as possible.  Usually I will do my section two to three times, maybe four if we have time.  I pre run in an Alumicraft 4 seater built by John Cooley.

9. How do you get your hair to stay awesome even after having a helmet on all day?

It’s all about the prep.  Shampoo and condition thoroughly and then add a little bit of product to give it that “WOW” factor.  To be honest, I actually have no idea what I’m talking about.

10. Have you ever been scared or worried in a race before? What happened?

2010 Baja 1000, I decided to take my car for swim in a place called Frog Canyon about 30 miles South of Cocos Corner.  Having water come up to the seats is not a good feeling, especially at night in the Baja desert.  Luckily, Troy Harper from the Desert Assassins was there with a 4×4 and was able to pull me out in about 10 minutes.  Car fired right up and we kept going.  And that was the only downtime we had in 1000 miles of racing, go figure!

11. If you could ride along as a fly with 1 person in a race car in ANY motor sport in the world who would it be? In what?

Oh man, I’d say ride with Robby Gordon in the the old Valvoline truck at some race in the 90’s.

Questions by Austin Farner

Regarding question 3. Luke is the fastest out of the pack at K1 even though Jessica never attended when I was there. So who is the fastest? Wait for Luke to get into a Class1 and be amazed.
Nice work Dan!
Awesome Q&A bud.
  • A
    Anahy Mendez
  • September 14, 2011
Awesome guys, and seriously what a good job of Dan and all team McMillin Homes!! CONGRATS
  • J
  • September 14, 2011
Dan, don't pretend like you don't know about the hair...spill it!
  • G
  • September 15, 2011
That was a fun read! I expected nothing less coming from Dan!