PRE- Shaffer Motorsports Paint & Graphics
OAKLAND, CA FEBRUARY 1, 2011 - Shaffer-Motorsports racing team will join Class 10 for the Best In The Desert series, the SNORE Mint 400 and the SCORE Baja 1000 in 2011. Torchmate number 1066 Driver of Record Mike Shaffer boasts 3 Baja 1000 wins, 3 SCORE Championships and one BITD Championship in Class 1700. “We are really excited to move into Class 10 this year and be competitive. This car is really fast, and it will be fun to race,” said Mike Shaffer.
“BFGoodrich was actually a huge supporter of us moving to Class 10,” said Shaffer who will run 33×10.5 Baja TA tires. We are also excited to have Rigid Industries on the team with solid and continued support from Torchmate, PSC Steering, RuffStuff Specialties, Shaffer’s Offroad and Pirate4x4. The team will be composed of Mike Shaffer of Shaffer Offroad with co-driver Orlando “Bondo” Giannecchini of Any Seven Offroad. Driver Shawn Twitchell and son Ian Twitchell co-driving will split most race efforts. On the bigger races, including BITD Vegas to Reno and the SCORE Baja 1000, Daniel Aeberli will fly in from Switzerland to be a third driver with co-driver Berne Strom. Continue reading
Pirate4x4′s video resume of the Baja 1000 of 2010
I landed in San Diego after having been up for over 24 hours, to find out Charlene, Lil Rich and Mustard Dog will be picking me up, Shaffer’s working on a missing 2nd gear.
The next morning, after a fair warning of recurring political incorrectness during this trip, we head off to Mexico. There I rediscovered Mexico time, it’s been a long time since I was in Baja, and should not have been a surprise that everything took way more time than planed.
Pre-running amounted to two sections maybe a little over a third of what I had to drive. In hind sight, it did not matter so much. To keep track of 300 miles of course is impossible, unless you spend a month at it (n’est-ce pas, Lance). In addition, pre-running with anything but a specially prepped pre-runner gives a false impression of greater course difficulty. It did give me a very good appreciation of what kind of terrain we would be racing on.
The adrenaline started pumping even before we drove up to the staging area, it took my all to keep calm. Once the line started moving, it moved, we almost found ourselves scrambling to be ready. As desertfabmotorsports posted [on pirate4x4]” The start and the first 11 miles were crazy, people everywhere… “ I had a tough time keeping focused with the suicidal photographers bolting out for a last second (of their life) picture… . I finally started relaxing once we hit the dirt, As I did so, I started remembering a lot of the course from Torchmate 2009 Baja clips (thanks Torchmate and YouTube!), and more important I started listening to Berne calling out the course. Berne was instrumental in getting my head back into racing, mostly by yelling “ get-it… get-it!…” . Continue reading
We’ve won three Baja 1000’s in a row and we were going for our fourth. We spent countless hours on logistics and preparing the car for this race. We thought everything was 100% ready as we headed South for Ensenada, Mexico the Saturday before the race (Boy were we wrong). Our schedule was, for myself and Steve, to pre-run our section on Sunday and Monday in the Shaffer’s offroad JK. Monday night we all met up for the Pirate party at Mike’s Sky Ranch. Then Lance used the JK to pre-run what he hadn’t ran in his dodge.
Wednesday we had to get our annual cage inspection. Once that was out of the way we deiced to try and play with the ignition timing a little bit. The car had a really bad flat spot off idle and we were hoping to get rid of it. So we advanced the timing and ran the car up the wash to see if it ran better. We immediately noticed that the transfer case was making a strange noise. We brought the car back to our hotel and after diagnosing it we decided that we needed to install a new transfer case. The spare transfer case we had was by no means in good shape. Jeff Knoll made a few phone calls and found that Dustin Webster had the exact t-case we needed and it would be brought to us in the morning. In the mean time, we pulled the transfer case out the vehicle and tore down the spare case and built 1 good unit out of the 2. We finished about 3am Thursday morning. Dallas showed up with the spare from Dustin. We ran the car through tech and contingency, and passed with flying colors. After tech was over we wanted to run the car to make sure the transfer case was good to go, and that we weren’t getting any pinging from advancing the timing. Everything seemed to be great!
Race day rolls around and we get the car lined up for our approximate 12p start time, we were to start second out of a class of three. Typically the first 30 miles is very very dusty, so our plan was simple; run at a safe pace and take NO risks. The last thing we need to do is crash the car in the first 20-30 miles. At 12:06p we leave the starting line and I immediately notice the car seemed to be running really good. At RM3 we make a right hand turn onto a long high speed concrete road. The jeep quickly climbs to about 70mph, Continue reading