Saturday, March 17, 2007

San Felipe SCORE races gone forever?

Baja Racing EXCLUSIVE!
Gary Newsome

December 10, 2007

From the Press Release, "SCORE-Fish announced that after a last days switch last year because of political reasons beyond SCORE’s control, the popular SCORE ‘Spring Break’ race will return after a one-year absence to San Felipe, Baja California, Mexico. The 22nd Tecate SCORE San Felipe 250 will be held March 14-15 in the quaint Sea of Cortez fishing village."

Baja Racing response: "political reasons byond SCORE's control". Just read on in this article and judge for yourself.

December 8 Update:

Reports out of the awards banquet in Primm say that SCORE is going to San Felipe in 2008. Obviously, with all the crime issues in Baja Norte, SCORE is desperate to go back to San Felipe.

OK Sal, time to pay up for all those broken promises in San Felipe!

The one hotel that refuses to repay the racers for deposits?

The Marina Hotel. Not the entire town like Sal was quoted as bashing. SCORE B-S Proven! As a matter of fact, racers who have not received their deposits back, have not pressed their US agent for their money back! Oh well, its Baja, Right!?

Baja Racing will report!

Baja Racing

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

San Felipe Hosed by SCORE

By: Gary Newsome

Sal Fish of SCORE claimed today, "alot of racers have not received a refund from the cancelled San Felipe race in March. San Felipe has alot of problems".With that statement, SCORE is signalling its position against ANY SCORE racing in the San Felipe area. Firmly placing blame of the San Felipe community, SCORE is attempting to blackball an entire Mexican community. To say that hotels and motels not refunding deposits is the reason San Felipe is BAD, to not race there, is BS. Thats right, I'm calling this BS.Even if totally true, such a non-issue stopping SCORE?! And, Sal Fish, Mr. Offroad racing in Mexico saying this is stopping the races in Flippy....BS. Wierd thing too, he didn't even mention the EJIDO! Wow!Rumors of a three-year racing deal for the Baja 250 in Ensenada, tend to confirm the thinking that SCORE is setting up the storyline to avoid ANY deals with San Felipe in the near future. He also mentioned the upcoming elections in Baja California.Too bad. San Felipe doesn't deserve this railroading. The desert racing teams & fans don't deserve forced use of Ensenada year-round.

Original Story:

Some are saying the SCORE San Felipe races are gone forever. The story from San Felipe today is that the Baja 1000 for 2007, running from Tijuana to Cabo San Lucas will not include any of San Felipe. This report is indicative that SCORE will never run in San Felipe again. The hurt feelings of the San Felipe officials and SCORE will not be repaired easily. If you include a the ongoing land dispute and the reluctance of SCORE to pay any type of 'land user fees', preclude any breakthrough in the near future.





With regard to the position adopted by the Ejido Assembly **(t.n.) on February 25, 2007, whereby said organization refused passage through common land to participants of the San Felipe 250 Race, the Ejido Commissioner states the following:

First.- As in all previous years, the authorities, organizers and other parties interested in conducting the San Felipe race again left negotiations with Ejido representatives to the last place in their agenda.

Second.- Following the 2006 race, the company “Score” along with authorities and other organizers agreed to meet two weeks after that event in order to negotiate terms for the race’s 2007 edition. No such meeting took place.

Third.- In a meeting held at the municipal offices in January this year, Sal Fish and his legal representative, Lic. Oscar Ramos; the Municipal Deputy for San Felipe, Joaquín Sahagun Delgado; the Deputy Coordinator Ing. Benjamín Castillo; Lic. Rubén de la Peña, Managing Director of “Cotuco” in San Felipe; Jesús Olmos, Manager of “Épocas de Oro Ranch”; Lic. Roberto Ledon Perezchica, Canaco Delegate for San Felipe; the Tourist Sector’s Rafael Navarro; Dr. Javier Ayala, President of the Matomi Ejido Commission; Isaac Rodríguez, Commissioner of the Delicias Ejido; the Ejido Plan Nacional Agrario’s President, Treasurer and Secretary, respectively Ing. Samuel González Lares, Aurelio Torres Flores and Arturo González Martínez, were joined by representatives of the ejido in question. The Commissioner for the Ejido Plan Nacional Agrario resolved for those who participate in the organization of the event to draw up a written agreement, whereby one of the organizing parties is designated to assume full responsibility, since not one of the groups represented at the meeting could admit to holding said commitment at the time.

Fourth.-The original agreement had been that the Ejido would receive the total sum of the "land fee" (++) which brokers pay in order to obtain authorization to hold events such as this race, an agreement which Mr. Sal Fish made public. The San Felipe 250 race traditionally has over 350 competitors, where the money to be collected in land fees exceeds $21,000 US. Approximately $10,000 US were paid to the Ejido in last year’s event, an amount that is insufficient to cover road damage caused by the race. In terms of the land fee that is payable to Ejido tenants under Mexican law for an activity of this kind, the complete sum has never been received by them, despite the fact that on this specific occasion a direct commitment was made by Mr. Sal Fish, who, with funds from the Municipal Deputy and Canaco, was only able to provide the Ejdo Assembly with $8,000 US. To date, the reasons that led Mr. Sal Fish to breach the agreement are unbeknown to this office as they are to the respective Ejido tenants.

Fifth.- In view of the above, the ensuing reaction by Ejido tenants should be seen as a result of the illogical and inappropriate offer made by the Municipal Deputy of San Felipe in conjunction with Canaco representatives. No blame can therefore be placed on Ejido members for faults committed by the event’s organizers, the latter’s equivocal proposal, the unrest their attitude provoked among the Ejido community and the disappointment these organizers evidently brought to local business.

San Felipe, Baja California, February 26, 2007



President of the Ejido Commission

Ejido Plan Nacional Agrario

(National Agricultural Plan of Mexico)

* Translator’s note: “Ejido” is the name given to ‘common land’ in Spanish, hence translation of title - “Ejido Plan Nacional Agrario”; ** Common Land Tenants’ Assembly.

++ Editor's note: Each entrant in the Baja 250 race is required to pay a "land fee" of $75 US to be used to repair damage caused as a result of the running of this race across public and private lands.

Even though SCORE has collected such fees for years, payments from SCORE to local officials in Baja Mexico have been called into question by the local Ensenada papers, reporting on the situation. Stay tuned...

Photos of the land dispute banners in San Felipe March 15, 2007.