Saturday, November 15, 2008

General Grabber & Baja 1000 Racing Takes Notice

LIVE! WEBCAST OF BAJA 1000 2008 CLICK HERE!

UPDATED! After the 2008 Baja 1000

General Tire Unleashes the Fury at 2008 Tecate SCORE Baja 1000
Race Caps Off General Tire’s Return to Off-Road Competition

General Tire capped off its triumphant return to off-road competition with a stellar showing in the 2008 Tecate SCORE Baja 1000. When the dust finally settled on the unbelievably grueling 631-mile desert course, General had scored two class wins, two 2nd place and two 3rd place class finishes.

Marc Burnett, driving his Ford Ranger “Ironman-style” through the entire course, took the win in Class 6 with a time of 27:02:31 (23.35 mph). In Class 9, 1st placewent to Cisco Bio and his co-drivers Jorge Martinez/Pancho Bio/Francisco Guerrero, with a time of 21:51:40 (28.88 mph). In addition, this team took 1st in Class in the same car that won the Baja 1000 in Class 9 in 1998.

The team of Mike Horner, Cory Susag and Ted Hunnicut piloted their General Tire/Synergy Motorsports Toyota Tundra to the 2nd place podium in Class 8, with a time of 24:57:05; and Kent Kroeker and co-driver Rudy Iribe took the General Tire/KORE Dodge Ram 2500 to a 2nd Place podium finish in Stock Full.

Rounding out the 3rd place position Ernie Negrete, Oscar Venagas and Gabriel Diaz-Peralata came in with a time of 20:52:27.

Honorable mentions include Trophy Truck driving of Mike Childress who displayed unbelievable heart to complete this race. Childress holding a 5th place position and closing in on the 3rd place podium spot hit a local man-made hole and flipped the truck end-over-end multiple times now coined “the mikey baja roll” courageously endured a possible broken sternum and a near death experience to fix the motor which took 4 ½ hours to complete and finish the race for General Tire. Mikey concluded the race in 15th position.

“We’re still reeling from such an exciting race, and we’re so proud of all of our teams – they helped show the desert racing community that General Tire is BACK, and we’re here to stay!” said Travis Roffler, General Tire. “This course was one of the toughest, most challenging Baja courses ever, and for these teams to power through all of that to the finish line speaks volumes about their dedication and skill behind the wheel.”

“This is the climax of an amazing SCORE race season for us,” he continued. “When we announced our return to off-road competition, we never imagined we would have the astounding results that our teams have brought home for us, and we want to extend our heartfelt thanks and appreciation to all of our drivers for a job well done!”

All of the teams raced on General Tire’s Grabber™ competition tire or the Grabber AT2 tires. Grabber™ competition is designed with a tough, three-ply Duragen™-reinforced body construction to stand up to the rigors of off-road conditions; the Grabber also features a newly-developed competition-specific tread compound. In addition, the Grabber name and General Tire logo are prominently featured on the sidewall in red and white letters. The Grabber competition tires are designed in size 37x12.50R17 for class 8 and trophy truck/trick truck and 35x12.50R17 for class 1, 6, 7, 7 S, stock mini and ProTruck.

General Tire also has a complete line of Grabber tires for the passenger and light truck market (hitting stores later this year), including the new Grabber DOT-approved off-road tire; the Grabber HTS, which delivers the perfect synergy of comfort, durability and performance; the Grabber UHP, which sets a whole new standard in performance and ride quality for SUVs, light trucks and crossover vehicles; and Grabber AT2, designed for aggressive all-terrain traction in all weather conditions.

General Tire is part of Continental Tire North America, Inc. (www.generaltire.com). CTNA, based in Charlotte, North Carolina, is a company of Germany-based Continental AG.

GENERAL TIRE SUPPORTS OFF-ROAD RACING, BAJA 1000 BIGGEST IN HISTORY

General Tire-Continental Tire North America, Inc. (CTNA) is a tire manufacturer headquartered in Charlotte, NC. CTNA is owned by Germany-based Continental Corporation, a leading supplier of brake systems, chassis components, vehicle electronics, and tires. Continental is the second largest tire manufacturer in Europe and ranks fourth worldwide.

In 2007, at the start of General’s Roffler era, a new ad series was started, “Competition in the tire industry is fierce, so these ads are meant to grab consumers and make them take notice of the revitalized General Tire brand,” said Travis Roffler, General Tire’s Director of Marketing. “They’re a little bit edgy, a little bit fun, and they literally leap off the page. Consumers will definitely know that this is an all-new General Tire.”

Announced earlier this year, General Tire will provide a $170,000 contingency program for this Baja 1000 for teams running on General’s Grabber Tires. This will be the largest contingency for one race in the history of SCORE International. General Tire will be providing free pit support to all General Tire racers running product and decals.

In a recent interview, Roffler discussed the Baja 1000 Pit Support program and the future of General in off-road racing and consumer truck tire sales.

Just days ago at SEMA in Las Vegas, General Tires Travis Roffler proudly announced that the General Grabber will be available for sale in the third quarter of 2009. Building upon the wild success it has attained in only a short amount of time since re-entering off-road competition in 2008, General Tire announced today at SEMA 2008 in Las Vegas that it is bringing its off-road competition technology to the light truck market with the introduction of the new DOT legal General Grabber.

The new off-road addition to the Grabber family, the General Grabber is engineered with rugged good looks and race-proven performance. A tough, three-ply reinforced body construction and a race-proven Duragen tread compound is designed to stand up to the rigors of off-road as well as highway conditions. General Grabber’s optimized tread design and multiple tread edges work to deliver great side bite and lateral traction – especially in off-road conditions.

The General Grabber’s aggressive, self-cleaning tread pattern includes continuous tread blocks and precisely spaced lugs with a high void ratio to actively protect against the threat of tread damage. General’s patented “Strake and Chamfer” technology allows the General Grabber to dig into muddy terrain. Puncture resistant sidewalls and a specially designed rim protection rib have been incorporated to assure the tire can stand up to any terrain.

The General Grabber is designed to perform on the highway and on the streets as well. General has engineered the Grabber with what it calls AMST – Acoustic Modulation Sound Technology – a sound wave suppression technology that works to reduce road tires noise.

“We’ve taken the best elements from our wildly successful Grabber Competition tire and re-engineered it with a balance of off-road capability and on-road manners for today’s light truck market,” said Roffler, director of marketing for General Tire. “This is a true off-road enthusiasts tire – engineered to deliver equally strong on-road and off-road performance.”

Roffler said that the production tire, which will be available for sale in the third quarter of 2009, will be negligibly different than the prototype shown at SEMA. “The tread design will change a little bit [on the production tire],” Roffler said. “The look and feel of it will be very similar to our competition tire.” Travis boldly led Toyo Tires into the off-road racing arena, now General is on the verge of Baja Glory

The General Grabber will be available for sale in the third quarter of 2009,” Roffler said that General plans to offer it in 14 of the most popular light truck sizes, including wheel diameter sizes from 15 inches to 20 inches and tire diameters from 31 inches to 35 inches, thus hitting the most popular fitments in the marketplace.”

The General Grabber from General Tire/CTNA, when available, does not sell direct but rather does business through a reseller network that includes mass retail chains like Sears and Wal-Mart, distributors and retail locations throughout North America. Baja Racing News.com has been informed, the tires will be built in the USA.

General Tire Baja 1000 wrap editorial

http://www.generaltire.com/garage/baja1000.php

http://www.generaltire.com/news/

http://bajasafari.blogspot.com/2008/10/general-tire-announces-baja-100-170k.html

http://bajasafari.blogspot.com/2007/10/baja-racing-news-live-sema-continental.html

http://www.conti-online.com/generator/www/us/en/generaltire/automobile/general/news/logo_gt.html

Baja Racing News.com

Scaroni, Guise and Rasch coverup for Admitted Child Porn Distributor. Kreg Donohoe sentenced to 8 years!

Baja Racing News.com EXCLUSIVE
Gary Newsome, Editor

CLICK HERE FOR Desert Racing Crackheads REAL FRAUDS!

EX-OFF-ROAD RACER OUTRAGE!

""Donahoe claimed to have photos of himself having sexual relations with one of his daughters, though he did not have a daughter then, McLaughlin said. Donahoe then sent pornographic images of another man and a girl.""

CLICK HERE FOR THE PODCAST OF THE STORY


FEBRUARY 26, 2009 DETAILS CONFIRMED!

"The former president of a Corona off-road racing business (Donohoe Racing & Manufacturing) was sentenced to eight years in federal prison for distributing child pornography, a federal prosecutor said Wednesday in a news release.

William Kreag Donahoe, 39, was sentenced Monday by U.S. District Judge Stephen G. Larson in Riverside federal court. Larson also ordered that Donahoe be on supervised release for the rest of his life once he is out of prison.

Donahoe has been in custody since his arrest at his business, Donahoe Racing, on Dec. 3, 2007, according to a Thom Mrozek, spokesman for the U.S. attorney's office in Los Angeles. He pleaded guilty in June.

Donahoe was arrested following an investigation by the Tulare County Sheriff's Department, the Corona Police Department and the FBI, Assistant U.S. Attorney Dorothy R. McLaughlin said in a news release.

The investigation started earlier in 2007 when an undercover Tulare County sheriff's detective contacted Donahoe in an Internet chat room, prosecutors said.

Donahoe claimed to have photos of himself having sexual relations with one of his daughters, though he did not have a daughter then, McLaughlin said. Donahoe then sent pornographic images of another man and a girl.

A search warrant served at the business turned up a computer with images of child pornography and evidence that Donahoe traded images of child pornography with individuals around the world, McLaughlin said."



February 22, 2009 UPDATE!
Reportedly, Kreg Donohoe was sentenced to 8 years, yesterday.
Scaroni, Guise and Rasch continue covering up?

Reactions: Ramsey El Wardani, "
Child Pornography. I considered Kreg a friend, as did many of us in the Off-road community. I feel sorrow for Kreg." Says volumes about Ramsey and many in the crackhead community.


REACTIONS LOADING>>>


Updated 11-27-08
Child Porn Cover-up perps Scaroni, Guise and Rasch want your kids, in their races. Would you want your kids anywhere near them? See story HERE

The guy they covered up for, will be sentenced in December for CHILD PORN DISTRIBUTION!

Ryan Marselis of SDHQ has refused to answer any questions. Like, what reports went to the local authorities? What did law enforcement do?


11-27-08 UPDATED
This story has received no replies and NO DENIALS from Scaroni, Guise, Rasch and Marselis since its publication.

The most updated story:

The Final play in the Donohoe Racing drama is playing out. Sentencing will be in December.

Ryan Marselis of SDHQ has said publicly that Donohoe has said he is guilty of the distribution of child porn charges and will be sentenced in September. So much for the off-road community backing up 'one of its own'.

Ryan asked some time ago, "Is it deception or perhaps did they not know the whole story and did not want to spit out that they did not have all the facts?" Interesting how Ryan was first to coverup the guilt and first to report the guilty plea. More than coincidence.

Ryan said on July 9,(of Kreg Donohoe), "Plead guilty to 1 count of (child porn) distribution. Sentencing will be Sept. 15th". (Now December)

Now that the story is proven true, the deception upon the off-road community is complete. The company lied, the owners lied and people with business interests, lied and covered up the facts. And apologized for a distributor of child porn company when it turned into Icon.

What role did Ryan Marselis play, while he was covering for a distributor of child porn. What about the purchase of the broken company and in the formation of Icon since the distribution of porn charges went public?

Ryan Marselis and SDHQ were the chief apologists of Donohoe when all the lies about "rehab" came out. Ryan also said, "Realize Donahoe Racing was not up for sale, a percentage was... And well, well before that they were looking for investors to help with their growth... So 6 weeks ago were not where the problems started.... If they deflected or did not answer do you think it could have been because they did not have the whole story and did not want to post any "maybes","perhaps" or "I'm not sure but it could be becuase the neighbor of my best friend slept with the worker at....." Maybe it was embarrassing for them to admit that their boss/friend/mentor was just admitted into "rehab" (because that is what they were told)... Or did you ever think that the employees were not permitted to say anything about "rehab" or any other aspect of the goings on at their place of employment. A confidentiality agreement is pretty common these day, as is keeping your mouth shut when a owner of the company you work for tells you to. But really there are a dozen different views of the Donahoe / ICON / Kreg / Old employees / New employees and only time will tell what will happen...". Yes, time has told the real story.

Ryan went on further, "And yes forget that I was (talking publicly) answering peoples questions when I had spare time even before Marty was (talking publicly) talking about how Fabtech is the answer and that Mr. Superduty and his Donahoe stuff is too west coast....".

Today, Ryans company, SDHQ located in Arizona, far from the California Federal court, features the parts and even a 10% discount, from the remnants of Donahoes porn distribution, since dismembered, racing outfit and off-road company, now called Icon. They even have a "donahoe racing" logo featured as a link to the Icon products and tout, "SDHQ is the largest distributor" of the stuff.

Does this story simply boil down to product sales, money and the cover-up of porn charges, now proven true? Baja Racing News has been informed of more damaging details related to these original reports. Baja Racing News reports:

What is going on at SDHQ? The story of the "Parker Pervert".

Dave Shaw reported, "This weekend while at the Bluewater Grand Prix, My pit crew noticed a guy walking up and down the pits snapping pics of women in bathing suits and very young girls who apeared to be hardly old enough to drive. I waited and watched to see for myself and sure enough, he was holding a small camera down by his side and would snap pics while walking by the girls all along pit row! He came by our EZ up and snapped a cou[ple of pics of my 5 month pregnant wife while holding my son and some of my partners 8 month pregnant wife. I had had enough. I sat and waited for him to come back, this time I had my camera ready. As soon as I saw him comming I approched him and started snapping away while asking him what the hell he was doing. He knew right away because he instantly tried to hide his camera and said "I wasnt taking any pictures". "I saw him Hangin in the SDHQ EZ up, and with the shirt I was pretty sure he was with them." An employee of SDHQ!

Ryan Marselis, owner of SDHQ admitted, "As the owner of SDHQ Offroad I am appalled by what (was publicly alleged). The person in (question) has been a great employee of mine for a couple of years with no issues. We are starting our own internal investigation and if need be will turn any info we find over to the authorities. Myself, my family and my company will not stand for anything of this nature..."

Matt Scaroni noticed, "that guy has a striking resemblence to the owner former aftermarket suspension company that was recently bought out."

Klaus Rasch commented, "Wow. (These comments) turn out to be one of my all time favorites. (we) reach out to the offroad racing community and help find a potential sexual offender. Then the Parker local guys get the local authorities involved".

Ryan admitted, "he is one of my bolt on mechanics and has not had many race experiences with the team. He had a good eight hours of down time to walk the pit area and water line, so I'm sure he made plenty of laps and people noticed him (either because of his camera or his long pants). It was his first time to Parker and I can tell by his pics and movie clips on his camera he probably came across as a tourist who didn't know to bring shorts to Parker." He continued to admit, "I spoke with the employee tue morning and asked to see his camera. At that point he did not know of any of the going ons, he assumed I just wanted to see the race pictures since I had not made it out to the race. It was then taken out of the race trailer (all of the gear was not unloaded yet) and handed over to me".

Ryan Marselis, What reports went to the local authorities? What did law enforcement do?

Gary Newsome
Editor
Baja Racing News.com

The Original Story from January:

The official release is finally out:

Icon Vehicle Dynamics Rises from the Ashes of Donahoe Racing

A team of investors has purchased the collateral properties of Donahoe Racing and renamed the company Icon Vehicle Dynamics.
Aside from the name change, key personnel will remain relatively unchanged; Dylan Evans, who has been with the company for six years, continues as chief engineer, Mike Crosby, also with the company for six years, will handle all sales and marketing, Jon Kantola is operations manager while Roy Dehban, president of ProAm Racing Products and a company investor, will come on board as vice president.
“We really have people in place who know how to run a business,” Crosby says. “With the proper people in place and the financial backing that Icon Vehicle Dynamics has now, we can focus on continuing to make quality products for our customers.”
In addition to offering a full complement of suspension applications, Icon Vehicle Dynamics will honor all warranties purchased under the Donahoe brand, according to Crosby.
“Having received significant support from family, advisors, distributors, vendors, and the off-road community, the team recognizes that demand remains for the performance product designed by Evans,” Crosby said in a press release. “In regards to any changes, our distribution, marketing and discount channels remain the same.”
He also says Icon Vehicle Dynamics intends to pull in the talented team of employees to continue producing the same highly-engineered and award-winning aftermarket suspension systems.
“[The employees] have the skills, knowledge, and experience necessary to make the operation successful,” says Evans. “Everyone is enthusiastic about supporting our customers with a high quality product and excellent service, from a position of solid financial backing.”
Icon Vehicle Dynamics will be based at 1580 Commerce Street Corona, Ca 92880. Phone numbers and personnel emails have changed. The company’s direct line is 951-272-ICON and fax is 951-727-4IVD. Go to IconVehicleDynamics.com for more information or contact Mike Crosby directly at mcrosby@iconvehicledynamics.com

###

FROM: Ryan Marselis, SDHQ

"Yes it does suck for Marty's money investor and Marty that the B U S I N E S S deal did not go through.
Yes B U S I N E S S deals fall through everyday.
Yes normally a final contract is signed before you can assume it is a done deal.
Yes the smart business thing to do would be to be in constant contact with either the principals lawyer or the principal. In this Case that would be Paige D O N A H O E.
Yes that is correct, I would not waste all my time and energy talking business with the group of Donahoe Racing employees that were out of a job and hold no financial ties to Donahoe Racing.
Yes I would spend some time talking with them as a friend but I would not count on them being to go between.
Yes there were many parties that showed interest M O N T H S before Martys investor or Marty became involved.
Yes the employees at the now gone Doanhoe Racing did not find out for quite awhile about Kregs legal problem. They were kept in the dark for as long as possible. It was to a bomb dropped on them.
Yes it is very laughable that people think that ICON is going overseas, the investor is overseas, or that product will be produced overseas.Yes it does kinda sounds like when you spend time, sometimes hours or even days, with a perspective customer and they then decide to go else where.
Yes the final business decision was made by the owners of Donahoe Racing (not the employees or ex employees but rather K R E G & P A I G E D O N A H O E) and they felt that it was in their best interest and the best interests of their ex employees To make the B U S I N E S S decision they did.
Yes SDHQ Offroad will still be a distributor of the ICON line of products.
Yes SDHQ Offroad will handle all warranty related issues from Donahoe product even if it was not originally sold by us."

Last Update:
Donahoe Racing & Off Road Sales is gone.

ICON Vehicle Dynamics has popped up in its place.

From the donahoeracing.com site:
"General Mission: Icon Vehicle Dynamics is a mid-sized off-road-racing-based manufacturing firm specializing in aftermarket suspension components for full-size trucks and off-road suspension development. The Company’s business is customer-driven, technology-influenced, engineering-oriented and focuses on world-class manufacturing processes and techniques. We strive to be the best (as determined by our customers) marketers, designers, manufacturers and wholesalers of aftermarket suspension components by providing the highest quality product to our customers than any of our competitors and by attracting and retaining competent employees dedicated to working by our values and reaching our goals and objectives."

No denials to any of Baja Racing News.com reporting have been received. But, from the bullshit department, various message board owners & posters continue to try to cover-up the facts of this story. They promote falsehoods and protect those who would prey on consumers and the underaged.

Why? Maybe they have computers filled with questionable content. Or, victims of their inferior off-road equipment and business practices. Maybe it's just a so-cal offroad thing.

Marty Garza of Truck Toyz Performance spills the beans!
Witness from the inside:

"As many of you must have noticed, I have been very cautious to not comment on the scandal that has surrounded Donahoe Racing over the last couple of months. I supported the company since its inception and over the years have spent incalculable hours promoting their product. It could be argued that much of the success of this product was due in no small part to a select few dealers like myself who shared this loyalty. Over the last six months the ability for DR to keep up with demand increasingly suffered. Never the less our support for the company never waned even when this had a significant adverse affect on our income. This situation continued to worsen until product ceased to flow completely around October 2007. At this point due to concern for the company I offered to prepay for product in order to assist DR though their cash flow issue. As a result of this and after some discussion I was presented with a proposal to purchase 50% ownership of the company. Due to the amount of money involved I carefully considered my options which boiled down to A: Allow everyone at the company to lose their jobs and let the company go into bankruptcy, or B: Take a sizable risk and invest heavily into a company which had clearly been mismanaged and was in considerable debt. After careful consideration I reached the conclusion that I simply could not allow the company to go quietly into the night. I consulted with a close friend and together we decided to invest in the salvation of the company and its personnel.Negotiations commenced to establish where the company truly stood financially. It was during these negotiations that Kreg Donahoe went “missing”. Shortly after this the staff at DR contacted me and informed me that Kreg was dealing with “personal issues” and that they would be acting on his behalf. Understanding the financial strain which he must have been under I chose not to ask any questions regarding his personal situation. Negotiations continued for another couple of weeks all the while under pressure and urgency to close the deal. Over time as more information was obtained serious concern arose over the management of the company. As such and with the urging of the personnel we eventually came to the conclusion that an outright purchase of the company would be the most beneficial alternative for all parties involved. Negotiations in this regard went on for another few weeks as undisclosed financial issues continued to surface which supported the conclusion that the only real value of the company was the brand name and the personnel involved. As we finally approached an agreement ‘the bomb’ was dropped. Facts surrounding Kregs “personal issue” were finally revealed to us just days prior to them surfacing on the internet. Up until this point we had been kept completely in the dark about the issue even though these facts were known to the personnel who were doing the negotiations on his behalf. Shock would be a considerable understatement regarding our reaction. Nevertheless once we got past the initial disgust with the entire situation, we began to consider the ramifications for the innocent victims some of which we considered friends and whose lives were being toppled in the wake. Kreg’s wife was half way through her second pregnancy and the employees who had spent years building the company were going to be displaced without pay already owed to them. We somehow felt obligated to do whatever was in our power to take care of these individuals.A new directive was taken to both distance ourselves from the DR brand while at the same time continuing the employment of the personnel. It was a delicate situation. How could we salvage the heart and soul of the company without benefitting or being connected in any way with the ownership? We intrusted a few friends with some of this information to consider their perspective of the situation. Fortunately everyone was very encouraging and I am sincerely grateful to them for both their support and their discretion with the information. So with a new direction preparations were made to structure the new company which included an offer of a percentage of the ownership to key personnel. Others were asked to submit salary requests which were ultimately not only met but exceeded, along with generous signing bonuses to allow them to make ends meet while the deal was completed. A name was chosen, articles of incorporation were filed, and a course of action was being structured. As a sign of good will we decided that in order to fulfill the prior obligation to the public we would honor the lifetime warranty offered by DR.

By this point I had personally invested two and a half months of sleepless nights including flights to and from New York to structure this deal and insure that all parties involved were entirely happy. It was a real roller coaster ride but last week a verbal agreement was finally reached and our attorney wrote up the sales and employment contracts which were to be closed within days. Monday morning 1/21/08 I received a call from the ownership stating that an offer was made by another party and that they had decided to take it. Just like that. No counter offers. No explanation other than they felt that our deal had progressed too slowly. Never mind that nearly 2 months were wasted due to the fact that crucial information had been withheld from us, that we had been clearly deceived, that in the middle of all of this one of the parties had chosen to take a week long vacation overseas, and that we were meticulously structuring the deal to live up to our word to take care of our friends. To state that I am disgusted again would be an understatement. We were completely betrayed by the very people we were trying to help. As it turns out my “friends” had been working both sides of the table to maximize their own personal gain at the expense of the company as a whole. Like the saying goes, with friends like these who needs enemies? Where the new party stepped in at the last minute simply because he saw an opportunity to capitalize on the situation, we started this project with the best of intentions. It is quite unfortunate that our loyalty, honor, and concern for fellow man was repaid with deceit, treachery and greed.I apologize for the long post but I felt that I owned my friends and customers an honest explanation.

The facts as I have presented stand. Initial discussions began in mid Nov. and negotiation began in earnest on 11/26/07 (documentation available upon request). Throughout the dialog it was repeatedly emphasized that I was the last and only hope for salvaging the company. At that point prevention of bankruptcy was the primary objective. A disjointed maze of financial documentation was navigated and inconsistencies abound. Try as we may to speed the process along we were consistently hindered by inaccurate information. On 12/17/07 the recommendation of a total buy-out was made on behalf of the DR staff. This required a total reassessing of the groundwork laid up to this point. On 12/21/07 a Letter of Intent to purchase the assets of Donahoe Racing was submitted to provide Paige and the employees with some consolation during the holidays and assure them that there was a light at the end of the long dark tunnel they found themselves in. Work continued through the Christmas holiday. On 12/27/07 personal information was requested from the ownership in order to complete our due diligence and develop a binding contract. This information was provided late in the day and social security numbers later that evening. Early the next morning (12/28/07) I received an urgent call from the staff. The time had come to drop the bomb. Of course we would have discovered this for ourselves within hours once the required background checks had begun. Despite the apparent deception, we placed ourselves in their position and chose not to hold this against them. Instead of turning our backs, we chose to focus on salvaging the lives of these individuals despite the severely tainted company to which they were linked. Unfortunately it was not until all (most) of the cards were laid on the table that it became painfully clear that fending off a bankruptcy was not realistic. A new plan of action once again commenced on 01/02/08 and a meeting was scheduled for the principals to meet in NY on 1/6/08. During this meeting the primary point of contention was percentage ownership. During these negotiations I offered to gift a percentage of my ownership to a key staff member who I considered a friend and who I truly wanted to be comfortable with the new structure. This was made in lieu of a very generous profit share offer. As a result of some disagreement on this issue, and the fact that this individual was leaving on a week long vacation the next day, very little if anything was accomplished during this meeting other than the selection of a name. However after his departure I chose to reschedule my flight and remain in NY for an extra day to continue chipping away at the seemingly overwhelming task at hand. A meeting with our attorney on 1/8/08 established a framework and work began on articles of incorporation.

With the main contact man overseas all that could be done was to discuss employment proposals for key staff which were negotiated and quickly agreed upon. Then on Sat. 1/12/08 I was notified of a second party who was interested in scooping up the assets. On Mon. 1/14/08 my partner and I agreed on an offer and this was communicated to the temporary contact person on Tue. 1/15/08. This was then relayed to the ownership which was then somewhat modified and accepted though the contact person on Wed. 1/16/08. It was my understanding that the second party had already made an offer sometime in the interim however this was inferior to that of ours. I then attempted to contact the ownership directly on 1/17/08 but my call was not returned until 1/18/08. The verbal offer was then made directly and was amicably accepted pending approval by the partner. I was to be notified of the final decision on Sat. 01/19/08. Our attorney was notified and immediately assembled the Purchasing Agreement. By late in the day on Sun. 01/20/08 I had not yet received a response so I chose to attempt to contact each of the principals to request an update. Only one chose to accept my call and was allegedly unaware of the status. I was advised that he would attempt to contact the ownership and have them return my call. This call was finally returned on the morning of 01/21/08 when I was notified of the acceptance of the second parties offer. Immediately following this conversation I woke the primary contact who was already aware of the decision and was seemingly surprised by my reaction. So here we find ourselves today.I defy anyone when presented with these (verifiable and documented) facts to question the speed and tenacity of our action. Keep in mind that all of this was done while attempting to manage our own extraordinarily busy lives. Yes, there is clearly something missing here. What is missing from this “one sided story” is the positioning which was occurring on the other side of the table. Somewhere in this story there are heroes as well as villains. Unfortunately there are also innocent bystanders. But can someone truly claim innocence if they simply stood by and allowed injustice to occur before their eyes. The ownership alleges to have made the decision based on the information provided to them. Who stood to benefit from an allegedly inferior deal? Who sold out the soul and arguably the future of the company for personal gain? That is a question which remains to be answered."

Marty Garza
Truck Toyz Performance

End Update.



Previous Update:
Kreg still sits in jail and many in the off-road community are trying to cover up for the charges against him. Just another off road racing icon wasted. Real scumbags covering up facts of lawbreakers for their own gain. Financial or otherwise. Scaroni and Klaus have not denied the facts reported in this story. How many others in the off road racing community have been protected by the likes of them?

If you have a story send the tip to safari2002@cox.net so we can expose it!

It's also been reported that the employees of Donohoe have not received paychecks since November to keep the company afloat.

Previous Update:
Dylan Evans today reinforced in a brief conversation with Baja Racing News.com, that the company doors are open to help customers with products and services.
The company restructure has been going on for some time and Donahoe Racing product line are the same.

The Original Story


Desert racings big mouths begin the coverup of charges against one of their own. Steve Scaroni of the newly formed Trophy Lite Racing Series calls for the end of public exposure of the Kreag Donahoe child porn charges. Suddenly the scam ridden, potty mouthed, malcontents of desert racing entertainments electronic community, get very quiet about child porn charges against one the desert racing industry’s company presidents.

Frank Alioto supports the company, despite charges against Kreag Donahoe were posted online this week, that could threaten its viability to operate. Many questions raised by ex-employees even included labor law charges.

Rumors turned into verified charges against Kreag Donahoe this week, when several ex-employees, burned by not getting paid for two weeks of unpaid labor, began releasing charges of tax problems, child porn charges in court documents and claims that the associated off road equipment and racing company were being driven out of business.

Dylan Evans, one of the defendants company reps responded to the business closure claims, “we have NOT closed the doors!” He continued, “We are however going through a restructure. Myself and the rest of the dedicated staff are committed to bringing the off-road community the best products we can! Creating top of the line suspension products is what I do, regardless of anodizing color or location! Expect to see quality products, new products and features, and support of our existing product in the future”. Mike Crosby, National Sales Manager, also responded, “I too would like to thank the entire TTORA family for all of it's support over the years. The employees will continue to offer the best products and the best customer service in the industry. As we go through the re-structure please contact myself or Jeremy Johnson if you need anything at all. All of us are looking forward to a great 2008 and have plans for some very exciting new products so please stay tuned”.

These company reps were responding to the release of this court document:
http://209.85.173.104/search?q=cache:WZrNQUR9Z-AJ:www.cacd.uscourts.gov/cacd/MasterCal.nsf/17c28a028ce48ceb882570540053b738/2a8abbb959748932882573b1000df6a0/%24FILE/12-17_SGL_1st%2520AMENDED%2520CALENDAR_wpd.pdf+william+kreag+donahoe&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=2&gl=us

Others have responded to the exposures. “Gloves aside, this information is coming from an ex-employee. Most ex-employees I know don't like their last boss”. He continued, "I hope this doesn't put the company under, but if it does go chances are that the company will go under.”

Frank Alioto at first tried denial to coverup the charges, then pleaded for the life of the company, “I do not think that this is Kreg Donahoe”. He continued, “Dylan and the others at [Donahoe(Racing.com)] are working towards keeping the company alive. It may have a different name but the key people that made the products successful will still be there. Please do not kill the company until they have had a chance”. How stupid are you Frank? Your attempt at denial, now, has been completely shot down. Nice try at covering up for your pedo-friends!

Andrew of Radflo Suspension Technology commented, “I dunno, seems too coincidental that someone gets busted for kiddy porn and the company under the same name goes under at the same time---I could be wrong, but if so, its one heck of a coincidence..”

“I also used to work for Donahoe. I have collaborated with other employees of the company and I hate to say it but all the evidence and information that I have gathered today says yes, it is Kreg, or Kreag. From what I have heard today the companys racing team has closed their doors. As much as I want this not to be true. I’m still trying to get all of the facts!”

Chris Lockridge confirmed, “The racing part of the company is closed for good! The race trucks are being sent out. The FJ is going to KC, and the super duty is going to leaper their machinest. I feel bad for all the former workers. I was just told they are out their last 2 pay checks. I have just talked to all the employee's and they have confirmed they are done for. I dont know why people are trying to back Kreg up, the shocks aren’t that good.”

On a post to coverup the Kreag Donahoe child pornography issue, Steve Scaroni of SMD Motorsports, the Trophy Lite Racing Series organizer and manufacturer stated, “‘Board’ Staff..I am respectfully requesting you shut this thread down and any future threads..on this subject..Kreg no matter what has been a positive for our sport..He has a great wife and kids.. out of repect for all the good things Kreg and Family have done for sport lets shut this down.. now..what ever the issue and reason the rumor mongers & those that love to kick people when they are down.... can get there kicks from other sources..The S of SMD, Steve Scaroni.” Listed on the web post was, “please e-mail me at one of these address's as I do not check my messages very often..steve@smdmotorsports.com, smdmotorsports@gmail.com, Office: 760 352-3080, Nextel ID: 122*13077*1".

The discussion was stopped after Steves demand and continued sponsorship and close relationship with Rasch and Guise.

The desert racing community tries to protect Kreag Donahoe, despite public charges of child pornography, insiders disclosures of tax problems, not paying employees and a company trying to survive the storm of charges and counter-charges. All of this protection simply put, “no matter what”, for what “they have done for (the) sport? Very interesting treatment. Obviously Steve, Frank, Curtis and Klaus, they aren’t photos of YOUR CHILDREN.

Gary Newsome
Baja Racing News.com

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Baja Racing News.com Baja 1000 Dark Horse!

CLICK HERE FOR LIVE! WEBCAST BAJA 1000 2008



Baja Racing News.com Selects Zorro Team Francisco Cervantes of Ensenada, Baja California Mexico!

This Baja 1000 2008 is special. 1000 kilometers of pure Baja Mexico Off-Road Racing, perfect for Zorro Francisco, who knows this route very well. Being in Ensenada, his team are experts in knowing the course, the conditions and the big competition.

What happened on the Devils Dry Lake?

What really happened during the Baja 1000 2006 on the Devils Dry Lake!

A great story about off-road racing in Baja Mexico, what REALLY happens down here. Rory Ward has not denied the facts in this story. In fact, he has promoted the story.

"I think Rory Ward and his crew took my stuff", said Jim Mihal. In an interview shortly after the incident. "He (Rory) was building a Class 1 at the time and the sawzalled work, looked too good to be, 'by chance'".

In another interview a year after the incident Rory said, "yeah, the Collins Motorsports Team doesn't respect me anymore over this incident".

Sal Fish called Jim Mihal to "tap down talk about what happened", considering it involved Rory Ward and the Collins Motorsports crew that was on site at the time of crash and they talked the dazed co-driver to walk away from the equipment. Left the hulk worth over $45 K out on the desert floor as the sun disappeared behind Devil Spirit Mountain, deep in Baja, Mexico. And into the night...

Another report: From 'Harleys Dad':

"
I remember seeing the car when I went past it in my class 11 car, their were a few people around it when I fully lit it up with my lights, and remember commenting to my co driver that I hope nobody died in it because so many things looked to be off the car. I thought it shed the parts, later I herd some body used a saws all.

This same kind of thing happend to a class 11 racer in the Baja 500 in 1976, they broke in the pine forest, hitched a ride, leaving the car, and when they went back to get the car it was a shell. Engine-trans-lights, about 8 Cibi oscars, the seats, shocks, all 5 tires and wheels and all most any thing else you could think of. They did not cut things, just unbolted everything next to the trail. The only thing left was the front beam and windows. True story!!, I saw the shell when they were crossing the border. As far as this situation, I dont know any of the people involved, but after heiring what happend to the car, which was a wile after the race was done, I often wonder If we came across the car when they were cutting parts off, at the time I thought it was all crash damage(ouch) with people there recovering the car."

Editorial Comments:

This piece was one of our first works that we had some of our own people call and interview the combatants. I use 'combatant' on purpose. At the time of the interviews, Jim Mihal was very upset, "I just spent three years of my life on that race car, and in one accident, it was gone!". Ward wasn't upset until he found out what Mihal was saying, then our story was published, the stuff hit the fan. Sal Fish of SCORE was calling Mihal on damage control and Ward went sideways hearing about Mihals accusations.

Ward was very defensive about every part of the story. First, that he and his crew had positioned the 'debris' in such a way, that several race cars had hit it. Second, he was proud of the medical assistance he had provided on site, after the crash. Third, he thought it was a good idea to remove the co-driver from the scene, even though Mihal faulted him for this very pro-active move.

More than anything else, Mihal felt that one action and giving the co-driver beers in camp (why, if he was really injured?) made Ward culpable of the thousands of dollars of damage on his race car. The missing parts and the stories Ward tells to this day, of the bad support plan Mihal had wadded together for this 2006, Baja 1000 run to La Paz.

Mihal reportedly did not have a chase crew in communication near San Felipe. Ward contends, the captain of the team, Mihal, was all the way in San Ignacio, waiting for the first driver to bring it in. Without keeping in close contact with a chase crew that, was supposed to be in San Felipe. Ward later contended that Mihal crew only found out about the crash after Wards crew radioed out the incident. And even then, didn't immediately respond.

It would be hours later, that Mihals chase team met up with the co-driver, in San Felipe...

Gary

UPDATED November 12, 2008






Check out the photos. 1. The #105 in Ensenada. 2. On the Baja 1000 course, 2006. 3. The vaunted "Devils Dry Lake", El Diablo Dry Lake just outside San Felipe, Baja Mexico. (Notice the drag marks to the West of the hulk that claimed the #105). 4. The #105 on the dry lake. 5. The hulk that claimed the #105 and caused other racers damage.

TT WROTE THIS:
The course went SW between two (2) burned-out cars. The wind would have been east-to-west (the typical direction for the dry lake at that time of day). Moving further and further to the east, to escape to RH-moving dust clouds, would have put #105 on a interception course … as evidenced by that collision.
RORY WARD OF 'RACERS ONLY', who was working with Collins Motorsports, WROTE THIS:
– "One of the guys from our crew, Ed Crawford of Collins Motorsports, moved the “whatever it is”. Rory Ward AKA "Wardy"" —
TT WROTE THIS
pulled the hulk off to the west side of the marked/GPSed trail.
“They” say that Todd Wyllie, #85 hit it, then so did Quinn in #76! Followed by #105.


Why did they move the obstruction? Did they move the obstruction onto more of the course exposure without GPS?

Clearly, after they touched - moved the obstruction, they DID NOT mark the obstruction. They also placed the obstruction in a place where three racers hit it, which they admit to. No matter how well they think they moved this hulk, three racers struck it, with one having severe medical injuries and ultimately, thousands of dollars of loss.

What happened?
Downsouth it was reported that a "1" car hit a spectator vehicle on the dry lake and it burst into flames and all pax in spectator car were killed. I said: "Possibly one of the the junkers past Jose's Tienda?"Or the truck with the quad in back that rolled on the P'citos road, which was reported as the truck hitting a race quad. SMD crews fanned out along side the road to find the rider (who was IN the truck ... originally. He was ejected and DOA)

Instead, the #105, at full speed, 120 MPH plus plus was behind a slower vehicle and was passing on the right, when Andres Ruffo, the driver until San Ignacio, struck the unmarked obstruction and rolled the rig.


Direct report from the team: "Thanks for all the concern, during my last converstations with Andres and Betim on the weekend, they are both still shook up. Andres was diagnosed with a severe concussion and a soft tissue leg injury. Betim, the co-driver, did not recieve any professional medical attention as he stated he was fine. Priority one when a crash takes place is to secure your driver and co-driver. In our case, the driver was air lifted by our rented chopper and the co-driver and photographer stayed with the car, as the co-driver was shook up but not injured.Priority 2 is to remove the wreckage from the course to safeguard the other participants, which is precisely what was done by our guys and with the help of Rory Ward and their crew. Thank You Rory Ward. Priority 3 is to secure the car until it is retrieved.These are important issues to discuss with your team prior to the race at your team meeting. Sometimes the things we take for granted are not 100% understood throughout the whole team...and it is really important everyone is there for the same reason and that they work together to accomplish the mission.


Notice I mentioned "opportunists" took the parts. The parts are very very specific and the class 1 group is pretty small. I can't see using the parts on a pre-runner...they would stand out big time, especially the shocks, unless a buggy, and even that crowd is very small. The radio and Motec dash have serial numbers, the radiator uses wiggens clamps at really odd angles and mounts very different, integrated fans...a few of the wheels were steel stamped. The 35 spline axle is for a certain length and not that common, directional too...if they use it in the wrong direction...he he he. The new Pro-Am hub was modified...a 2" hole in the cap with an aluminum plug retained by o-rings. Not too many 35x13.5x15 TOYO's out there yet...these should stick out big time too. The six 90 mm Hella Zenon lights are not available in the USA...a German part, and the waterjet bracketry was made and designed in house...not available in stores near you. The floor jack was a blue harbor freight unit with an aluminum slider-pan on the bottom, the handle had a welded boss on it to help remove the tires...very custom with lightening holes etc. About the only thing worth anything to someone else is the GPS, the electrical panel with circuit breakers and switches, pumpers, tow straps, etc. The other parts can easily be identified and Will surface. These opportunists don't even know what they have, and when they start asking questions, those in the know will know where the parts came from. Mexicans, Americans, chasers or organized crime...it is dangerous racing knowing that these type of people have the capacity to do this. The dollars they stole would feed a family for several years in Baja, or feed a tweeker some junk for 6 months. Be sure that this type of thing will continue to happen, and happen more frequently. Consider carrying some means to protect yourselves in your race cars...who knows what the co-driver and photographer would have been faced with after night fell? A CO2 cartridge connected to a inconspicious pipe/jack handle with some rock salt might not be a bad idea to carry...next time the race car will be prepared...trust. Go down kicking, don't ever lay down or walk away.
The car was pillaged at the crash site. As for staying with the car...that is the $45,000.00 question. I don't think we were predestined to have this happen, I do believe that whoever stripped the car was there to do so. The way the parts were sawzalled off tells me that these have done this before...or at least planned to do this. I figure it was at least 2 guys, probably 3. There must be someone that saw a truck cart off 6x 35" tires from El Diablo dry lake bed, or in San Felipe, Mexicali, or ???...must have been at least one full size truck, maybe 2 involved.

This report from a Trophy Truck driver after the race, "We passed by roughly 45 minutes to one hour after the crash, there were many people in the area of the 105 after the crash, many"".

UPDATE: This issue became so important that Sal Fish of SCORE himself, called Jim Mihal about the "incident". About the public story.

Another teams report, by Terry L.:

""Baja 1000, 2006. On the 9th of November I head to Baja Mexico to race in what has been called "the world's most dangerous point to point motorsports race"...

In the early morning hours of November 15th, Mike Quade and I will strap ourselves into our Jimco Class 10 desert race car and begin the 1,047 mile journey from Ensenada to La Paz, Baja Mexico. After 378 miles, we will hand the car off to Jay Manning and Roberto Zavala to race the nighttime portion of the race. After another 400 miles, I'll crawl back in and finish the last 270 or miles. We should finish the race in about 20 hours or so...nonstop. The average speed works out because in addition to doing 145mph is the open desert, there are points where you are only doing 10 or 15mph negotiating heavy terrain in the mountains.

I'm nervous, excited and confident all at once...I haven't done anything this exciting since jumping out of airplanes in the military, and haven't done any desert racing since my high school motocross racing days (almost 20 years ago). Hopefully my physical preparation will be enough...I've been drinking tons of tequila and smoking cheap Mexican cigarettes to prepare. Anyhow...should be fun. In that nervous laughter "I almost died doing that" sort of fun way.

Well, it was epic...

From meeting Roberto Zavala in LA to getting into a traffic accident in Santee within the first 5 minutes of driving with Jay until the vehicle recovery 700 miles in the middle of the Baja desert....it was EPIC.

We did very well considering two competitors were killed during the race, one airlifted to a hospital and only 20% of the starting field finished.

The pre-race was as much of a whirlwind as the race itself...our team consisted of myself, Jay Manning, Roberto Zavala, Mike Quade and our "Pit Bitch": Blaine Cooner, as well as our trusty chase driver "Carlos"...don't ask me his last name...we struggled with the Espanola-English thing for a week...great friend, great guy, but I usually had zero idea what he was saying.

Ensenada was the starting point for the 1,041 mile race...also the point where we had our car inspected, participated in "contingency" and drank ourselves silly! Contingency is a portion of the festivities where all the racers (around 400) push their vehicles down the main thoroughfare in Ensenada for the spectators to see, touch, get autographs (a big hit with the kids), pick up knicknacks,etc....picture Mardis Gras in Mexico for about 8 hours. Its main purpose is for sponsors to get their stickers or decals on the race vehicles with a promise of cash or product awards if the racer finishes in one of the top spots. Its end result is a bunch of drunken racers, scantily clad endorsement models and about 20 million dollars of race cars mixed in with every street type and tourist within 100 miles...it's a true experience and a blast!

After contingency, everyone headed home (back to Eddie Fisher's garage in Bufadora) to finish prepping the cars and get ready for the race in the morning. It was at this point that I realized there was no getting out of it...not that I wanted to, but just a realization of the inevitable adrenaline surge I was going to get within 12 hours.

The next morning, Jay, Roberto, Carlos and Cooner headed out at 430am to meet us at our first driver change in the Bahia de Los Angeles (Bay of LA) about 10 hours drive time on the highway. Mike and I slept for another few hours until the butterflies in my stomach couldn't take it any longer and forced me up. I had about 4 cigarettes, 4 cups of DECAF coffee ( I don't need to explain the ramifications of having to make a potty stop while screaming at 120mph across the desert...it just don't happen.) and a double serving of oatmeal to get started. We strapped in around 9 am, fired the beast up and headed into town. We actually had to drive the race car down the highway about 15 miles to Ensenada...good place to warm it up and get in the zone.

Once we got to Ensenada we got in line and waited. Because we were in Class 10, we had about 80 vehicles starting in front of us...40 trophy trucks and 40 Class 1 cars, not including all the motorcycles and 4 wheelers that started at 630am...

The race starts the fastest vehicles first to keep the passing down to a minimum. While passing and "nerfing" are part of the fun and challenge, it's dangerous enough without having to lap 40 or so cars in the process...

Anyhow...after signing a few last autographs, and yes I will admit I felt a little bit like a rock star, Mike and I strapped in and rolled to our 5th starting position at the start line.

It was here that I started to realize the whole thing was taking on a very dreamlike quality:

I'm sitting in a $150,000.00 race car, strapped in as tight as can be....helmet on, engine screaming behind me, doing my last bit of GPS data verification when Mike says over the intercom "hey, Sal's here"...I look up and it's Sal Fish, the director of SCORE International and the guy who has been running the Baja 1000 since 1973. Now I've seen Sal in movies, books, documentaries...but here he is, leaning in through the front of the car shaking my hand...I faintly hear "good luck guys!" and then he's gone. Mike says "are you ready?"...I think I mumbled something like "yes" and then we moved into the starting position. 10 or 12 leather clad "Tecate Girls" were on both sides of the car (these are the Mexican equivalent to the "Budweiser Girls") with one of them holding a green flag...she signals "five seconds" and then we were off.

Now, the Baja 1000 has long been billed as the "the world's most dangerous race"...of course this is subjective; there's no doubt that it is the longest non-stop point to point race in the world. The danger comes from a myriad of places, crashing, going off cliffs, fuel fires...you name it, but the most dangerous thing I saw was within the first 2 miles. It seems every single person within 100 miles is standing within two feet of the car as we were racing 100 mph down the road. I've seen all this in videos, but you really can't understand the ludacrisy of it until you are there...I could have sworn we were going to hit at least a dozen people. I'm not sure if they are thrill seeking or just want to be that close to a racing vehicle...but it is insane.

Somehow, Mike avoided killing several families on the main road and we dropped into the first section of dirt. SCORE had set up several grandstands on both sides of the first dirt section and built two large dirt "jumps" in a row for the racers to get airborne over. This is solely for the fans...there was really no other purpose; wait I take that back...it was also a whole lot of fun! Mike and I had scouted the jumps the day before and he told me he was going to "take it easy" over them...sure. Sure Mike. If "taking it easy" means gunning it to 80 mph and launching us 15 feet in the air in front of 20,000 screaming people...then that is exactly what he did.

Once we got over the jumps, the real meat and potatoes of the race hit...

OK, so meat and potatoes….what I mean is dirt and rocks…

Once we got outside of Ensenada proper things started getting weird…we had people cheering us on, people hucking rocks at us, people flipping us off, women flashing us…it was unreal.

The desert is a strange place to begin with, so when you add in 400 racers, $20 million dollars worth of cars and twice that in support vehicles and logistics, mix in 500,000 Mexicans and spectators, add just a splash of alcohol…wait, make that "drench in alcohol", and you have the strangest party and motorsports event on the planet. How strange?

OK, we are in the middle of the desert, probably 100 miles from the nearest village, and we come around a corner to find two topless blondes cheering us on with beers in hand. It went by pretty fast, but I'm positive they were tailgating; I caught a glimpse of a couple of guys standing by a barbeque grilling something. In the middle of the desert. With their girlfriends topless and rooting the racers on. Did I mention we were in the MIDDLE of a desert? Mike says over the intercom as we pass them doing about 80 "now that's why we race!!"

Not strange enough?

Fast forward 150 miles to Bahia de Los Angeles…we are working our way up the side of this mountain and I see two people up ahead standing on a rock, probably 15 feet above us. It's a guy and a girl, and she is wearing nothing but a bikini bottom. Her long blonde hair is covering her breasts and as we go by she turns around and shakes her ass at us. Great, right? No. When she turned around and shook her thang at us, I noticed a little "junk" poking out the back. By "junk" I mean a penis and some nuts. Yeah. So Mike misses that part and as we go by he says "Yeah baby, shake it! Shake it!" At this point, as his navigator, co-pilot and fellow man, I feel the need to find out how hot he thought she was. T: "yeah, she's pretty hot huh?" M: "oh yeah, man, she was shaking it good!" T:"yeah, dude, I guess you didn't notice the balls and pecker hanging out the back huh?" M: "What!!??" T:"yeah, you homo, you probably did see it!" M:"no I didn't!!" T:"sure you did, you pillow biter!" M:"hey, up yours!!!"

I was laughing so hard I could barely breathe…it got quiet after awhile and Mike just let's this long "EEEEEEWWWWWWWWWW!!" out …I started laughing again; he obviously was obsessing over the whole incident. Classic.

So back to the race…

It was physically the toughest thing I have done in awhile. Take 2 to 3 foot bumps and make them constant for 40 miles. Now drive over them at 80 mph. The car is built to take that sort of stuff in stride…it's actually not that bad of a ride, but there are sections where we where getting whipped around and shaken so hard I LITERALLY thought my guts were going to come out of me…I'm not sure which end, but they were in a serious wash cycle. Our high speeds were between 80 and 120 mph, and the technical stuff we hit at about 15 – 20 mph. It all works out to about an overall speed of 50 – 60 mph for the winning vehicles.

We hit Laguna Diablo, which is a dry lake bed in between two mountain ranges. It's about 60 miles across and completely flat, so everybody just goes flat out. We were screaming along at about 120 with about 20 feet of visibility…there was a car somewhere in front of us kicking up dust. That's the thing about The Baja…if you aren't in the lead, you usually are eating dust and silt for 1000 miles. So this is a part that I found so surreal:

We are zipping along at 120 with no forward visibility and I hear this roar out my side…I look over and it's a Trophy Truck passing us doing about 165 mph….just raging. I look above him and it's his chase helicopter...flying above him at about 40 feet. This is the stuff I've seen in dozens of videos and books, the thing I've dreamed about since I was a kid. And here I am right in the thick of it. The hair was standing up on my arms and I had the biggest grin imaginable on my face…my face hurt I was smiling so hard. Just incredible.

So 10 or 15 minutes later we roll over something big and hard, Mike let's off the gas and turns to the right pretty quickly. We still can't see in front of us, but we pass by the NAPA sponsored Pro-Truck in pieces…it look like it had hit a brick wall at 150 and was burning pretty good. We passed it doing about 100, so we couldn't see much. Mike told me to call "The Weatherman" on the radio and tell him what we had seen and at what race mile it was. I switched the frequency over to the Weatherman and hear him already coordinating LifeFlight and requesting emergency traffic only on the channel. He's pretty vital, and in this case, probably saved the NAPA driver's life. Turns out he was in pretty bad shape, but lived through it. From the look of the truck, it's a miracle that he lived at all. The other miracle is that Mike had the intuition to turn our car at just the right time to keep us from slamming into the wreckage at 120 mph. The race definitely took on a more serious tone for me at that point. It went from being a great joy ride to being a very serious endeavor that could very well kill us both if we didn't keep our head in the game. That doesn't mean my grin went away…in fact, I'm still wearing it!""


Gary Newsome
Baja Racing News.com

Photo & Content Credit: Tony T.

CABO 1000 Rip To The Tip Announced for 2009


Cabo San Lucas, Mexico-

Today, it was announced that the CABO 1000 is scheduled for October 16-19, 2009. The CABO 1000 is a pre-run race for the Baja 1000 2009.

The CABO 1000 will follow exactly the same course as the scheduled Baja 1000 for 2009 to La Paz. The CABO 1000 will run the same course from the border of Baja Norte and Baja Sur, about halfway down the longest peninsula in the world. To, the turnoff to La Paz, the destination and finish line for the Baja 1000 2009, racing the following month, November.

But, The CABO 1000 will continue to Cabo San Lucas, the Resort Capital of the World! Known locally as the Baja Sur 1000, teams can register and fans can sign-up, starting today.

Sign Ups and more information is available at CABO 1000.com

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Shot in Baja Mexico! Releases November 14 USA


Another Bond Film Shot in Baja Mexico! this one is out Friday, November 14 in theatres throughout the United States.

Baja Racing News.com Movie Review: Worth the price of admission. Yes, the shots were in Baja Mexico and they say in the film its Bolivia, the rest of the film is well done.

For anybody who can't be in Mexico for the Baja 1000, this film is a great time killer. Lots of bullets and action. Like the Baja 1000 this year!


It's Daniel Craig's second outing as 007, following the laudable Casino Royale. He's will be joined by old hand Judi Dench as M, plus new Bond Girls Olga Kurylenko and Gemma Arterton as Bond girls, playing the "mysterious" Camille and MI6 Agent Fields, respectively. Also on board is Mathieu Amarilic, who'll take the role of villain Dominic Greene. As said previously, Quantum of Solace will follow on from Casino Royale, with 007 "picking up the pieces after being double-crossed by Treasury agent Vesper Lynd".


BOND in BAJA MEXICO

Spectacular mid-air gunfights and aerial views over the wild desert landscapes and sparkling Sea of Cortés, Baja California was the other Latin American setting for the film. Most of the scenes were allegedly shot (from the air) around the small costal town called San Felipe, Baja California Mexico, located around 2 hours from Mexicali, with sweeping views of the surrounding sierras and Sea of Cortés .

He's will be joined by old hand Judi Dench as M, plus newbie's Olga Kurylenko and Gemma Arterton as Bond girls, playing the "mysterious" Camille and MI6 Agent Fields, respectively. Also on board is Mathieu Amarilic, who'll take the role of villain Dominic Greene.

As said previously, Quantum of Solace will follow on from Casino Royale, with 007 "picking up the pieces after being double-crossed by Treasury agent Vesper Lynd".

The title is taken from one of a collection of short stories published by 007 creator Ian Fleming in 1960. The new film, which will see Daniel Craig reprise his role as the iconic British agent, will also feature Ukrainian actress Olga Kurylenko. Shooting started in San Felipe on January 26, 2008, Baja, Mexico.

Things got under way on January 25, 2008 about 10:30 AM, as all 3 planes took off one behind the other the Aerostar was first off then the Marchetti Follow by the DC-3 what a breath taking site with mountains in the background and some white clouds hanging out it was a nice site for sure. It was a rap about 4:30 PM day one.

The normal day off Sunday came at just the right time as is was not possible to shoot with all the rain we had Sunday, so it was just great and the workers did not miss a beat.

Details of Daniel Craig's second outing as 007 were revealed at the production's first press conference, held earlier this year at Pinewood Studios in the south of England. "Quantum of Solace" sees 007 out for revenge on a mission that takes him to Austria, Italy and South America. Filming for the latter location will take place in Panama and 7 other places including the desert near San Felipe, Baja California, Mexico.
Baja Racing News.com EXCLUSIVE!



Kent Kroeker goes off on Andy McMillin over Baja




UPDATED!

Kent Kroeker, an American vet and Baja racer has gone off on Andy McMillin of McMillin Racing, based in San Diego county. San Diego is right next to Tijuana, Mexico on the USA-Mexico border. Here's the special message Kent sent:

"Yeah, things are just too dangerous right now. Baja is just so different from how it was 25 years ago. I just did 400 pre-run miles on a dirt bike last weekend and had to dodge bullets and banditos the whole time. It was terrible. Andy, you should be ashamed for being such a big, fat friggin' pussie. Right now there are thousands and thousands of kids from your generation, VOLUNTARILY SERVING their country in Afganistan and Iraq and you can't even bear the thought of the Baja 1000. You've never even done anything really dangerous and you cower at the thought of people still going to Mex to race. Now that's laughable."

CLICK HERE FOR THE VIDEO

We'll closely follow and report here, the reaction of Baja racers to the major call-out of McMillin Racing, not racing in Baja Mexico this year. Baja Racing News.com

Monday, November 10, 2008

Racers insurance hammered - Steve Poizner launches investigation of Baja racing shooting incident! Notorious Baja 1000 Racer Shooting EXPOSED!


CLICK HERE TO GET THE EXPOSED STORY OF THE SHOT BAJA 1000 RACER CLICK HERE


Readers Note: Yes, the moto rider shot in Baja pre-running for the Baja 1000, to be on in a couple days did survive. Barely. [CLICK HERE Baja Racing News.com will Webcast LIVE! the Baja 1000 starting on November 18, from Ensenada Baja, Mexico CLICK HERE]

We are treating this situation as it should be, a serious emergency medical evac, started bad.

Baja Racers comment on Baja Racing News.com continuing coverage: "THIS WHOLE STORY IS EPIC". Yes, an Epic Baja Racing story!

Baja Racing News.com continues to follow the aftermath of the biggest story in off-road racing right now. What the hell happened to that American moto guy pre-running in Baja Mexico? How and why did it happen?

We are digging up old background pieces of the puzzle and will keep you updated on the fresh stuff. Including reporting on the California licensed Mexican insurance brokers that were fined and suspended for selling void Mexican insurance policies. Yes, if you are a heavy Baja visitor, you probably went to Mexico thinking you had coverage and didn't!

Two companies based in San Diego, selling Mexican insurance policies sold worthless paper to customers long enough to merit fines and suspensions from the Department of Insurance.

November 10, 8:45 PM UPDATED

The bigger coverup

From a Marketing company selling off-road racing products, "you guys put up those photos with all the blood?"

Three years ago, almost to the day, Baja Safari wanted to hire the same marketing company that later would make the "blood" comment. SCORE knew Baja Safari had alot of insider information and did everything it could to try to keep the company out of its sphere of influence. Including telling other companies not to work with the skilled, insider company.

The Baja racer shooting, exposed the weak support system that racers hoped will get them home in a bad situation. The world-wide exposure showed the width & depth of the crime situation in Baja Mexico and lack of full-time services available to the entire racing community. Instant claimed the services were full-time, but, obviously are not.

The two glaring exposures everyone in Mexican off-road racing have been actively covering up, for over a year. Some, for years.

The failed emergency call is not the first time Instants program failed, just the first time it failed and its been made so public. Thanks to the internet, the Associated Press and for sure, Cameron Steele's phone call to the Desert Bull. In the old days, none of this would have happened and the easy little cover-up would be complete

The shooting victims friends/family were "members", made the call and no one answered four calls, four times! The company sold by Instant, under license by the state, for medical evacs, failed. That's all they do and they failed.

Licensed by the State of California Department of Insurance. These are services, partially supported by the "racers insurance fees", every racer pays, every team, every race.

The reaction from the off-road community to the shooting of a fellow racer has been interesting. Most people want to cover it up and forget about it. That is, of course, after they learn the lesson of the incident and keep it to themselves. Or brag about the details over drinks, to friends.

The SCORE Insurance Fees

"Your race entry fees cover some insurance. There is a $3M policy in place if you hurt or kill an American spectator or non-registered participant and a $100K policy if you hurt or kill a Mexican national. (Injuries with locals are typically resolved in 30 days for about $3-6K). SCORE thinks California case law had already proven that sponsors could not be successfully sued. The SCORE provided insurance also provides $25K supplemental health/injury insurance for banded participants such as drivers & co-drivers. It does not provide for ANY health insurance for racers or anyone else. The American policy is really designed to cover what is not covered by your existing coverage. For example, my personal insurance only covers 80% of a helicopter ride. That 20% would be picked up by SCORE, which could be several thousand dollars. The big gap is that registered/banded participants ARE not covered. Everyone signs a release of liability. The greatest liability risk not addressed are team drivers & co-drivers. For example, if a teams co-driver is injured- they can sue the team owner or SCORE or attempt to sue the sponsor and there is NO coverage from SCORE, that covers team owners. Team owners should try to have some coverage if it were not too expensive to protect team members and their families."

"Normally the SCORE insurance is viewed as secondary coverage. You submit any claims to your primary insurance company and the SCORE insurance will cover what is not paid by your provider (20%, etc). However, if you do not have primary insurance, 1) you should probably not be racing in Mexico but you can submit your bills through the SCORE coverage. Be advised that if you are injured in Mexico and are taken to the hospital you will need to come up with $250.00 at the hospital prior to being released. That is the hospital policy. You can pay with cash, credit card or wire transfer/western union from the states. Be sure to carry a copy of your passport, insurance card, identification card and some form of payment with you in your fanny pack. The $250.00 is usually above the emergency room co-payment here in the states. Typically it is $50. in the US depending on your insurance. Make sure to keep your paperwork because you can submit the paid bill to your insurance company for reimbursement of the amount above the reasonable and customary charges.
If you are unfortunate enough to be injured and transported to the hospital in Ensenada, which by the way is a stage 4 trauma center and has excellent doctors and staff, there should be an American Liaison there to help you understand the paperwork, procedures and help get you in contact with family, team members. Instant Mexico Auto Insurance is the official insurer of SCORE in Mexico."


The racers insurance fee charged by SCORE buys two things. Coverage in the United States for service and service in Mexico. It protects SCORE against the racers if there's a blowup. Like, if this shooting victim had died and the family sued SCORE. An insurance fee is paid by racers to cover the needs of the sanctioning body in handling extraordinary issues, like dead cows that had been hit by racers. This is Baja racing!

That's why SCORE is very big on asking if one is a 'participant' or 'pre-running' or merely 'a non-race incident'. These terms are catchwords for who is responsible for damages, medical service provision and mostly whether SCORE has to worry about the people invloved. Or paying the medical bills.

The official insurance company, then also gets a ton of business for being called a 'sponsor', the same one that gets the insurance fee. They get a lions share of chasers, racers followers, fans and other Mexico travellers from the SCORE publicity.

One chaser, a well-known, experienced racer, was chasing at a Baja race a few years ago. He was chasing, and insured by Instant, when he was forced off the road, almost totalled the truck. A very expensive truck, purpose built for Baja racing and chasing.

At the time, Baja Safari was the official club of Instant and the racer had purchased a membership to Baja Safari, in conjuction with his annual insurance policy. After calls to Instant, SCORE and Sal Fish weren't solving the racers insurance claim problems, he contacted Baja Safari. The club services rep was not surprised the claim wasn't being handled professionally.

Reports of claims problems has plagued Instant and the many problems overflowed for the club to hear about and require responses. Even a well known moderator of an internet site was damaged by bad claims services by Instant and he put them up on the site, hanging the company out to dry. But, still not getting help. He went on to call out the company, very publicly.

One of the superior services Baja Safari offered at the time, was a universal Mexican telephone service, that members could walk up to any 'pay phone' in Baja Mexico and simply dial the clubs special number, with no money or card. The call went to the clubs offices, 7/24/365. This was before the widespread cel phone systems explosion.

Some calls that came in were Instant customers with accidents, claims needs and questions. Because the Mexican insurance company that Instant represented, Instant is a 'brokerage', didn't have an '800' number that worked in Baja Mexico! Baja Safari often got the first calls for service from Instants customers.

This racers claim problems ultimately went to the Department of Insurance. Department investigators went to the racers place of business to interview him about the matter. Investigators, with badges and guns.

The bottom line to the racers claim problem was Instant delayed, SCORE ignored and only until the Department of Insurance got involved did any of the money problems get addressed. Finally, the claim payment did come in, only after Instant was not returning calls for months and the payment was for the smallest amount possible. Not making the racer whole or happy.

Another of the exposed issues was that any repairs done by the Mexican Insurance company had to be done in Mexico. Often the difference in the settlement values came down to 'Mexican vs. American repair and currency values'. Just another way the 'insurance' was actually a ruse, configured to always short the customer and "ensure" the broker made money.

The same broker who decides whether, you as a racer, gets air-evaced now, or you get to stay in a Mexican medical clinic and ground ambulanced out. Instant makes the decisions. Not you, not the medical services, Instant decides, the guys who MAY ultimately pay the bills. Didn't know that did you?

That's why you hear so many drama plots on the radio when 'incidents' are being discussed. Thanks to the weatherman channel for enabling the public to be witnesses to so many "family vs. medical provision" confrontations are made public.

Baja Safari determined after the Department investigations and the racers experiences, that any Mexican repair requirements established in the Mexican auto insurance policies, the questions about medical care provisions, precluded any fairness to the customers/racers. So, if you're down there with policies that require Mexican labor values, you're going to get screwed if you have a claim. Why carry an insurance policy if it really doesn't cover your interests?

By the way, the big teams don't use these insurance services. They use larger, more comprehensive policies that REALLY cover their interests. For small teams, chasers and the general public, there are more customer sensitive policies and companies. These organizations, have determined they want to do the customer a good turn, they want to be good business people and stay in business.

We have used sources inside Baja Safari, our parent company, because no other company was as close to the security net, insurance system racers count on every day in Mexico than Baja Safari. They even introduced some of the players in this story to each other.


The failed emergency call

The reason why Baja racing is so great for the fans? Everyone is so selfish, they ignore obvious risks, act like they are the only ones that matter and cause some of the best carnage in motorsports.

Do racers deserve full time services when they are not willing to pay for them? When they don't have the interest to form a racers association? And they don't stand up for themselves in these situations? Screw the racers.

Put simply, no matter what happens in the following months and years having to do with this shooting, the failed emergency evac calls and the Department of Insurance, YOU probably won't ever hear about how it all pans out.

Why? California is an insurance controlled state. In the Department of Insurance, there is no insurance company fraud. Only fraud against insurance companies. We told you we don't pull punches here. The Fraud Division of the Department of Insurance goes after ONLY fraud against insurance companies. Gives you the warm and fuzzies, right?

They assist consumers. At least they say they do. How about this, we'll tell you how we really feel about the State of California Department of Insurance. Just ask the recent fire victims of southern California.

Baja racers, you're on your own.

Gary Newsome
Baja Racing News.com
EXCLUSIVE STORY

Update: AP misreports the facts of the Baja racer Baja 1000 pre-runner shooting. From the story
: "Oscar Ramos, a lawyer helping Martz, said the San Diego-area man was probably shot mistakenly by a hunter. He believes this was a completely unfortunate accident," Ramos said. This attempted and failed cover-story is directly from Oscar Ramos. But, even more importantly is what's not reported. Sr. Ramos is THE SCORE representative in Mexico. SCORE is the official sanctioning body of the race, the Baja 1000, that the victim was pre-running their race course. During the legally registered prerun time.

Sr. Ramos IS THE ATTORNEY FOR SCORE IN MEXICO. He is not just, "a attorney helping".
He is the highest ranked SCORE official in Mexico. With ALL of the equal responsibilities. Assisting in this situation is his responsibility. The reports in the public domain about the required legal depositions, by the victim and witness, point to serious questions that only racers can answer. Like, if I can't trust anyone in the chain of responsibility of safety and security at Baja races, what am I doing in Mexico?



Baja Safari Mexico Club official club for many years

Scurrilous Details of how Baja racers have been treated for years by the American brokerage, representing the Mexican insurance company of the sanctioning body. Racers come out of the wood work in droves complaining about non-existent customer service, no claim service, damages and now charges of the medical emergency phone not answered!

The personal assistant of the owner of Instant once called the owner of Baja Safari, requesting help in obtaining an "Amigo de Baja" award for her boss. She said, "Mr. Andreoli would like one, can you help him to get one", in her broken English. Baja Safari had won an
"Amigo de Baja" award from the Baja California Mexico government, two years prior. They knew about the award because the owner of Baja Safari was not going to be in town (he was on an island in the middle of the Sea of Cortez) and he had sent the owner of Instant to fetch the award for him, at its presentation in Tijuana.

Ten years ago in 1998, Baja Safari was awarded the "Amigo de Baja" award, by the Baja California Mexico government for services provided to the state by Baja Safari Mexico Club and its associated tour services. That year, Baja Safari had completed a re-tooling of cultural travel for the state. Today, cultural tours are a mainstay in Mexico.

Lamenting not having an Amigo award, the personal assistant of Mr. Andreoli made the call requesting help. Instant and Baja Safari worked together for over five years. Starting with the original founder and owner of Instant, Mr. Andreoli, Sr. In fact, Baja Safari arranged the very first WORKING sat phones for the founders son, Hal Andreoli and SCORE President, Sal Fish. The first operational sat phones they had ever used.

Baja Safari had arranged communications, internet promotional services and other race oriented services for Instant for many years. One report Baja Safari originated for Instant developed into a long standing deal between SCORE and Ivor at Corporate Helicopters.



THE ORIGINAL BLOCKBUSTER STORY CONTINUES!


November 7, 2008 UPDATE
Baja pre-running racing shooting victim identified.
Steve Martz makes the Sports page!
Not for being an off-road moto racer or getting shot in Baja, but because he's got family in a real sport, Football. Here's the story printed in the San Francisco paper:

"
Along with crafting a game plan for Monday night's game against the Arizona Cardinals, 49ers offensive coordinator Mike Martz was also concerned with the condition of his nephew, Steve Martz, an off-road motorcycle racer who was shot in the chest while in Baja California a week ago.

Steve Martz, 38, of Ramona (San Diego County) was riding near the town of Valle de Trinidad, about 100 miles south of Tijuana, last Saturday when he was shot once in what was apparently a random attack. He was flown by helicopter to Tijuana where he had surgery and was later transported to a hospital in San Diego.

He is reported to be recovering after having his spleen removed.

"He's a lot better," Mike Martz said of his nephew. "He's out of critical care now. He wouldn't have made it if they didn't do the helicopter. He lost three pints of blood. They did a great job in the hospital there in Tijuana, wonderful job. It was a scary moment for all of us."

Steve Martz finished fifth in the 2007 Score Baja 1000 race in the open motorcycle class. He was riding the course in advance of the Nov. 19-23 event but was not registered as a participant in this year's race.

Fellow riders Dan Walsh and Aaron Cooper, with Martz at the time, got him to safety after he was shot from a distance of 75 feet. They drove him from the course to a paved road some miles away and helped arrange a medevac helicopter.

"I think that area down there is a dangerous area, even though they were on the course," the 49ers' coordinator said. "He (the assailant) didn't hesitate when he shot him."

Mike Martz, 57, was asked if his nephew ever took him for a ride in one of his off-road vehicles.

"In my body? Are you kidding?" he said. "I look like a sack of doorknobs anyway. First of all, I wouldn't fit in that thing. I'd try to get out of that thing, but the seat would still be attached to me." ###


Coverage Continues...

State of California Department of Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner and now future Gubernatorial candidate in 2010, wants to get to the bottom of the Baja racer shooting! A representative of Commissioner Steve Poizner said today, "Mr. Poizner is concerned about the image of Mexican insurance and related products, sold under license of the State of California by brokers, being valid or worthless paper". "We know about the problems with racers because we previously investigated some issues, we know the companies in question".

Instant Mexico Auto Insurance of San Ysidro, California, SCOREs Official Mexico Insurance broker was reached for comment this morning, "No comment, no comment, no comment", was yelled to our reporter by Jeff Andreoli, of Instant. Andreoli lost his cool, yelling over the phone, then hanging up.

Poizners representative went further, "the shooting and all its ramifications will be investigated by the Commissioners office". Mr. Poizners website at http://www.stevepoizner.com/

Baja Racing News.com