Roger Norman and his No. 8 Wide Open Excursions, Crystal Bay Casino Trophy Truck has always finished the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 and#8212; and the 2011 race was no different.
After fighting multiple setbacks, where many would have called the race, Norman and co-drivers Dick Grey and JT Taylor persevered to get to the finish line.
and#8220;I have never not finished a Baja 1000,and#8221; said Norman, owner of the Crystal Bay Casino. and#8220;This one had a lot of challenges, though. If we wouldnand#8217;t have had all of these issues, I know we would have been on the podium.and#8221;
Norman worked down the list of obstacles that the Norman Motorsports team overcame.
and#8220;Five miles out of our main pit we hit a rock that broke the bead lock off the wheel, which lost air pressure, so we had to change a tire and#8230; Then the right front shock shaft broke at the base, which in turn broke the brake line, so we had no brakes,and#8221; Norman said. and#8220;But luckily it didnand#8217;t damage anything else.and#8221;
The Norman Motorsports team came out to put a fresh shock on and saw that the trophy truck had two studs broken on the rear wheel hub. After fixing both, the front shocks lost all nitrogen.
and#8220;I have no idea how, but we were running on springs,and#8221; Norman said. and#8220;We were down to 20 mph at some of the rougher spots.and#8221;
Norman and crew made it to the next pit, where they discovered that the heat exchanger had a giant crack in it and the radiator was almost completely empty. With a simple fix, they were again on their way.
But there was another issue, as Norman explained.
and#8220;We have a tranny cooler up in back by the radiator that doesnand#8217;t get airflow unless we have enough wind, and with the new Vision X roof lights it was getting blocked. So since we didnand#8217;t want to take the lights off in the middle of the desert, and we werenand#8217;t in the contention for the win, we babied it and had to stop a whole bunch of times when it reached 290 degrees to let it cool.and#8221;
At the last pit the team took off the lights, after which they were able to run full race speed to the finish. Norman, Grey and Taylor finished 17th with a time of 20 hours and 8 minutes. They were third overall the previous year.
Norman Motorsports will be in attendance at all the HDRA Off-Road Racing events in 2012, the SCORE Baja 500 and SCORE Baja 1000.
and#8212; This article is courtesy of Bower Motorsports Media.