Ford Ranger Raptor takes Baja 1000 class win
The Australian-built Ford Ranger Raptor has conquered the 2022 BF Goodrich Score Baja 1000.
Race-prepped locally by former Supercars outfit Kelly Racing, the #773 entry – the sole entry in the Stock Mid-size class – completed the 828.5mi (1332km) event with Australian father-and-son pairing Andy and Danny Brown at the wheel.
Off-Road Racing Supervisor at Ford Performance Brian Novak credited all those involved in the marathon effort.
“I’m just so proud of the Ford Performance Australia team, the Ford Performance North American team, Lovell Racing, Motec, Herrod, Kelly Racing, Method Wheels – there are so many people who were a part of this programme,” Novak said.
“It’s a stock engine, a stock transmission, a stock driveline in this truck. It was just flawless. I couldn’t have asked for a better race. I’m just so proud of everyone who worked on this programme.”
The Browns completed the third and final stint, driving from Race Mile 670 (1078km) all the way to the finish at Ensenada.
“The car is just in ripper shape, it really held up well,” Andy Brown said.
“I am amazed by that car, it’s just a sensational package. They’ve done a brilliant job with it. It just takes anything in its stride. Fantastic.”
This year’s event has been bittersweet for Australians, after Toby Price and Paul Weel’s AWD Mason Trophy Truck burst into flames at Race Mile 170.
After having time to process the incident, Price took to Instagram to share his thoughts.
“Seriously lost for words,” the two-time Dakar Rally winner’s post began.
“The day started out well, Paul and Preston were holding a strong pace doing exactly what was needed. Two early flat tyres but the boys were still up there holding their own.
“The truck is completely destroyed but the boys are safe which is all that matters.
“There is nothing you can say or do to make this situation better, I really wish it was a bad dream, and my stomach stops being in such a knot.
“Everyone worked so hard on this a Paul has had such a s**t run in this sport.
I’m heartbroken for you mate, you really are a great person, and deserve so much better than this.
“Not sure what’s next, it’s going to be some time to think and regroup.”