Celebrating its 36th year as the worlds foremost desert racing sanctioning body, SCORE international officially announced today its five-race schedule for the 2009 SCORE Desert Series.
Making the announcement before an enthusiastic crowd at the annual SCORE Awards Night Saturday in Primm, Nev., SCORE CEO/President Sal Fish announced the schedule as well as revealing that there will be no increase in SCORE race fees and that in another effort to help contain the cost of racing that the season-ending SCORE Baja 1000 will be a loop race again, starting and finishing in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico.
"With everything going on right now with the world economy, SCORE has decided to contain the costs of our entry fees at the level of 2008 as well as staying with a loop race starting and finishing in Ensenada for the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000," said Fish. "We went down the peninsula two straight years (2006, 2007) and historically we have always gone south every third year. We have a wonderful relationship with the government and tourism officials of Baja California Sur and we anticipate running the race down the peninsula again in 2010."
Keeping the same venues and all of the same race weekends for its five open desert races as the past four years, the 2009 SCORE Desert Series will again feature two races in Southern Nevada and three in Mexico.
"We have incredible marketing partners on both sides of the border, the worlds greatest desert racers and the worlds toughest race courses, so we will make only minor changes for the 2009 SCORE season," added Fish. "Our five-race schedule in both the U.S. and Mexico offers tremendous variety for the racers, sponsors, media and fans."
"With necessary restrictions in place for spectators in the U.S. still our attendance continues to rise, but in Mexico, its absolutely unbelievable. Our crowds for the last nine races in Baja California have averaged over 300,000, and SCORE racers are as popular in Baja California as any racing figures in the world."
The SCORE Desert Series, which features 28 Pro and six Sportsman classes for cars, trucks, motorcycle and ATVs, will kick off Jan. 22-25 with the popular 15th Annual SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge in the Southern Nevada resort city of Laughlin on the banks of the Colorado River. The season will conclude Nov. 19-22 with the 42nd Tecate SCORE Baja 1000, the granddaddy of all desert races, in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico.
"The SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge is the most unique and increasingly popular desert race in the U.S. and the legendary Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 is the best known desert race in the world," added Fish, who has been at the head of SCORE since 1974. "These two races provide wonderful ways to start and finish our SCORE racing season."
The 2009 SCORE Desert Series will again start with the most unique and the shortest race of the season and finish with the oldest and most recognized desert race in the world. After starting the season in Laughlin, 90 miles south of Las Vegas, it will conclude with the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000, which will be is always a unique and memorable special race.
Since its debut in 1995, the SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge has helped establish Laughlin as a viable host for special events. Thousands of spectators join nearly 200 racers and their crews in converging on the city each year to watch the best of the best desert racers compete in a unique-format, two-day race that includes a temporary stadium surrounding the start/finish line area and the main pits.
A total of 18 different Pro and two Sportsman classes for cars and trucks are split into fvie groups in Laughlin, each running as part of one of five races of three to eight laps each over the much-abbreviated six-mile course each day. The SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge also includes a pre-race activity that is not part of any other race on the schedulethe $16,000 Laughlin Leap. The Laughlin Leap is held under the lights on Thursday evening of race week at the Laughlin Events Park.
Round 2 and 3 of the 2009 SCORE Desert Series will both be held in Mexico. The 23rd Tecate SCORE San Felipe 250 is set for March 13-15 in San Felipe, Baja California, followed by the 41st anniversary of the vastly popular Tecate SCORE Baja 500, June 5-7, in Ensenada, Baja California.
Round 4 will be the 14th Annual SCORE Terribles Primm 300 which will be held Sept. 11-13 in Primm, Nev., 45 miles south of Las Vegas.
The season-ending 42nd Annual Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 will be held again in Ensenada, Baja California. It will be the 35th time in the history of the granddaddy of all desert races that it will start and the 20th time it will finish in Ensenada.
SCORE International, founded in 1973 by the late Mickey Thompson and headed by Sal Fish since 1974, continues today as the premier sanctioning body in the sport of desert racing. SCORE races feature 18 Pro and three Sportsman classes for cars and trucks in the U.S. with 10 additional Pro and three more Sportsman classes for motorcycles and ATVs competing in the races in Mexico. SCORE races in the U.S. average 200 entries while the average in Mexico, with motorcycle and ATV classes running as well as the cars and trucks is 350.
Current SCORE official annual sponsors are: BFGoodrich Tires-official tire, Sunoco Race Fuels -official fuel supplier, Volkswagen of America-official vehicle, Bilstein-official shock, Instant Mexico Auto Insurance-official Mexican auto insurance, Slime-official tire sealant and Red Bull–official energy drink. Associate sponsors are: Tecate Beer, Coca-Cola of Mexico, Las Vegas Events, Terrible Herbst Inc., Blue C Enthusiast Advertising, American Suzuki, SignPros, P.C.I. Race Radios, McKenzies Performance Products and Advanced Color Graphics.
The SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge is sponsored by the Laughlin Tourism Committee, the Laughlin Visitors Bureau, the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and Las Vegas Events.
The SCORE Terribles Primm 300 is sponsored by Terrible Herbst Inc., Las Vegas Events and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.
Additional associate sponsors for the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 are Fideicomiso Publio para la Promocion Turistica de Ensenada and the State Tourism Department of Baja California.
2009 SCORE Desert Series
Schedule of Events
Jan. 22-25 – 15th SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge – Laughlin, Nevada
March 13-15 – 23rd Tecate SCORE San Felipe 250 – San Felipe, Baja California, Mexico
June 5-7 – 41st Tecate SCORE Baja 500 – Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico
Sept. 11-13 – 14th SCORE Terribles Primm 300 – Primm, Nevada
Nov. 19-22 – 42nd Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 – Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico