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Courtesy of Craig Thompson

Team SRT had two teams of riders participating in the Baja 1000.

After four grueling days of racing, the Baja 1000 came to a close with Rob MacCachren leading the field in his Ford Trophy Truck. With a time of 17 hours and 12 minutes, he placed more than 20 minutes ahead of the second place racer. He won the race for the 2nd year in a row. McCachren showed he is just as dominant as he was a year ago.

Father of Macie Thompson, ‘19, Craig Thompson is an FC alum and now owns a local off-road store. He had several riders participating in the biggest off road race of the year.

“My family and I watched the race from home,” Macie said. “We tracked them with their transponders. We got updates everyday on how the teams practices went and how they had done in the races.”

Thompson has been involved with motor sports for years now and enjoys what he does.

“Ultimately, my inspiration came from my love of dirtbikes,” Thompson said. “After rock climbing, I got into motorsports and started competing in Professional Rock Crawling with my brother–in-law. I went on a Trail-Gear trail run with Matt on my dad’s 1983 Suzuki SP 250 Enduro bike and loved it.”

“But I ultimately found my love of dirtbikes when a buddy from church invited me to go on a night ride up in the hills close to Fresno,” Thompson continued. “I started thinking about making dirtbike parts to try and sell and eventually it happened and the SRT brand was created.  My passion was what got SRT started and pushed me to the point where I am today. SRT was started 5 years ago.”

Thompson loves the Baja 1000, but more so enjoys what leads up to the race, such as the preparation and prerunning.

“There are many aspects to the Baja 1000 that you don’t realize unless you actually race it,” Thompson said. “Pre-running is a major, and probably, the most important part. Pre-running usually takes place a week to 10 days before the race. It is where you ride your section of the race and learn everything that you can about it.”

Thompson loves the unpredictability of the course, how it can change within minutes.

“The Baja 1000 is a part of the SCORE International Race Series,” Thompson says. “Team SRT had 2 bike teams, Pro Moto Unlimited (top Pro class) and Pro Moto 40 (40+ riders), compete in the SCORE Series. We have been preparing since the last Baja 1000.”

Courtesy of Craig Thompson

Owner of SRT Craig Thompson participated for a portion of the race.

Thompson also really enjoys the crazy atmosphere that goes on before and during the race.

“We start early and end late,” Thompson said. “Usually, meals are when we can fit it in.  Taco stands are quick and easy.  Basically repeat same thing every pre-run day. People everywhere – a big party.  Music blaring, sponsor booths, companies giving away hats, shirts, all kinds of stuff.  It can take hours to all day for vehicles to make it thru tech, but they are right there in the crowds. Racers handing out stickers, shirts, umbrellas, poster, etc. This is fun, but can also be tiring!”

Both of SRT’s teams finished the race with the 37x team finishing in 33rd led by Kevin Murphy, and Thompson’s team finishing 60th overall.

Thompson’s rider, Jeff Vogt has been prepping and getting ready for the Baja 1000 since early last year. His preparation has included a lot of running as well as weight training to ensure that he can be able to stay on his bike for 5-6 hours.

“It’s been hard to fit training into my schedule,” Jeff Vogt. “Usually, I would run and weight-train after a long day of teaching and coaching.  I’m thankful that my wife and kids were supportive and allowed me to be “busy” so much over the past year.  I loved the bike prep, gear prep, and all the logistical planning it takes to make a Baja race successful.”

The Baja 1000 race was 840 miles long. All the riders on the team rode about 200 miles and were on their motorcycle for 5-6 hours at a time. 

This author can be reached at email Dawson Triplitt.

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