Doha, Qatar: Dakar champion Nasser Saleh Al Attiyah combined with Dakar moto champ Toby Price to steer the #76 trophy truck to a second-place podium finish in the Baja 1000, the biggest North American off-road race on Sunday.
The event was win by Ampudia brothers Alan and Aaron.
Muddy, rocky Baja roads and hours of driving at night was a new challenge for Qatar’s Al Attiyah and co-driver Mathieu Baumel – not to mention he only had about 30 kilometres of seat time in a trophy truck. But the Qatari Dakar champ proved up to the challenging as he and race partner Toby Price with co-driver Dustin Hellstrom chased down all but two other trophy trucks after starting from the back of the pack.
“It’s totally different from what we’re used to. We had a lot to learn from this type of terrain and style of racing, but we enjoyed it a lot and learned a lot – and I am really impressed with this truck. I am sure next year we can come have a good fight with the top drivers,” Al Attiyah said.
“We’d really like to thank Jesse Jones for giving us a chance to drive this amazing machine – we’re really impressed with it. It’s completely different from what we use in the Dakar Rally, but we learned a lot and enjoyed it a lot!”
The Baja 1000 is much different than rally-raid – rather than a multi-day race, it’s a one-shot, no-stop battle – meaning one truck does the whole race, but drivers swap to stay fast, and stay safe.