Yes, I am Your Crew Chief and Yes, I am a Woman

The Running of the SCORE Baja 1000, the Longest Continuous Off-Road Race in the World.

Teresa Bacal

--

Photo Courtesy of JTGrey Racing

I never imagined I would be involved in racing in any form, let alone managing a team for one of the most punishing off-road races in the world. When all the pieces fell into place and I had the opportunity to be the Crew Chief for the Lexus LX570 Off-Road Race Team, I did not hesitate to take on the challenge. It was one of the most intense, stressful and gratifying roles I have ever undertaken in my career.

The Race

The SCORE Baja 1000 is a grueling 1000 mile (approx.) off-road race that takes place annually down in Baja, Mexico in November. The loop race begins and ends in Ensenada, except every third year when the race is a point-to-point race down to La Paz. There can be 50 different vehicle classes racing from motorcycles, to UTVs, limited class, production class and Trophy Trucks. All these classes mean there may be over 300 vehicles racing, at the same time, in their perspective classes for that illusive Baja 1000 win. They do not close the 1000 mile course so this race is considered one of the most dangerous races in the world. The racers, who can garner speeds of up to 140 miles an hour through the desert, have to contend with broken down competitors on the course, on coming local traffic, spectators running across the road and booby traps created by the locals. The drivers race through the night, down the coast, through heavy fog, powdered silt beds, narrow single track mountain passes and washed out sections of the course. Sadly, there are racers, support crew or spectators who get severely injured or lose their life every year during this race. This race is not for the faint of heart.

The Team — Lexus

Running an off-road race team is challenging enough but when you are a woman and it is a factory sponsored team, you better know your s**t. The credentials I brought to the table were over 15 years of working in the automotive industry, meticulous planning skills and a previous relationship with Lexus. The Lexus Off-Road Race Team began racing in 2009 with an experienced crew chief and professional driver Joe Bacal, was Driver of Record. At that time, I oversaw all the…

--

--

Teresa Bacal

Always looking for ways to Live Better | Addicted to Travel | Serial Entrepreneur | Outdoor Enthusiast | Event Consultant | www.JTGrey.com |