January 24, 2012: In today’s new age of off-road competition that has promoters fighting over an economy-strained group of racers, the National Off-Road Racing Association (NORRA) is taking a different course in preparations for it’s upcoming Mexican 1000 Rally – it’s working hard to make the entire event for its customers (race teams), crews and sponsors a world-class experience.
Already gaining a reputation for bringing fun and a shared sense of adventure back to Baja off-road racing, the one-of-a-kind, once-a-year rally spotlights vintage off-road vehicles, motorcycles and ATVs, as well as rally cars, a limited number of modern desert racecars and classes for prerunner-type trucks and buggies. This year’s NORRA Mexican 1000 is scheduled for April 28- May 2, 2012, with event registration open since New Year’s Day.
While the promotional group led by event co-founder Mike Pearlman is finalizing an impressive variety of new event enhancements and corporate partnerships, NORRA has added a fourth day of timed competition that will route competitors from the historic coastal town of La Paz down to a yet-to-be disclosed finishing location beachside in San Jose Los Cabos. Once they arrive, competitors will immediately enjoy a massive poolside finisher’s party and awards ceremony. The extra day will allow rally participants more high-speed off-road driving with unparalleled views of Mexico’s scenic Baja Sur region.
“We understand that organizing or participating in a 1,000-mile adventure like this is a commitment of time and resources for everyone involved,” explained Pearlman. “Our objective for 2012 is to make an already great event ‘over the top’ in terms of taking care of our driver’s and their teams — especially in the areas of safety and hospitality. From the time Mexican 1000 participants arrive in Mexicali to their departure in San Jose del Cabo, we want them to enjoy a truly unique and first-class experience. It’s about adding tons of value and building an off-road gathering unlike any other in the world.”
According to Pearlman, other event upgrades are also in the works including faster, more sophisticated timing and scoring systems, a better radio communications relay network and more emphasis on media coverage and PR efforts. While details are still being finalized, NORRA also has plans to create a hospitality atmosphere at many of the Rally’s locations and overnight stops that “create the social camaraderie that is the heart of the Mexican 1000.”
Dubbed the “Happiest Race on Earth,” the unique off-road rally was co-created by promoter Mike Pearlman in 2010. The one-of-a-kind, once-a-year, three-day rally includes vintage off-road vehicles and motorcycles, rally cars, a limited number of modern desert racecars and classes for prerunner trucks and buggies. Pearlman’s late father Ed and others established the first running of the NORRA Mexican 1000 off-road rally in November of 1967, which eventually became internationally recognized and evolved into the Baja 1000 in the mid-1970s.
Registration is now open to automobiles and motorcycles that meet basic safety standards as outlined the new NORRA rulebook (currently available at the www.mexican1000.website. Although the spotlight will remain squarely on vintage machinery, NORRA has added several new categories for modern and vintage rally cars as well as some for modern desert racing machinery, 4x4s, dune buggies, and ATVs and motorcycles of all types and ages. Each day of the rally consists of special stages (unlimited speed timed stages in the dirt) linked together by controlled speed liaison / transit sections (highway).