SCORE Journal

SCORE Journal Issue - DECEMBER 2017

SCORE Journal - The Official Publication of SCORE Off-Road Racing

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Page 34 of 132

APDALY LOPEZ WINS THE 50TH Talent and Perseverance Pays Off For Apdaly and Juan Carlos Lopez to win the 50th BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 1000 Overall By Dan Sanchez Photos by Get Some Photo For anyone who has raced the SCORE Baja 1000 before, the one thing that remains consistent is that Baja has an unyielding knack for turning good odds into complete failure. Nevertheless, there’s always a victor for which everything falls into place, and who emerges from the dust as the overall winner. For the 50th BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 1000 it was Carlos Apdaly Lopez who crossed the finish line in the fastest time, and won the overall race. Lopez has been a dominant force in SCORE along with the RPM Off-Road racing team. He started the season with a third-place finish during the SCORE San Felipe 250. He followed that with a fifth-place finish at the SCORE Baja 500. With a second place finish during the Tijuana Desert Challenge, Lopez was only 12 points behind team owner Justin Matney, who led the points race heading into the 50th BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 1000. Although the team was assured of a class championship, this win for Lopez caps off another victorious season for the 22-year old Mexican racer who is at the pinnacle of his career. Lopez is now the second Mexican national to win the SCORE Baja 1000; Gustavo Vildosola and Gustavo Vildosola Jr. won it in 2010. Yet the victory is nonetheless the highlight of this young racer’s career. While the race itself was difficult for some of Lopez’ top competition, it all seemed to fall into place for him and the RPM Off-Road racing team. “Going into this race we felt confident,” said RPM Off-Road team owner Justin Matney. “Our four truck team spent the time pre-running and prepping to be ready to win this race. Apdaly and the RPM Off-Road (rally) truck has been a serious contender since we had Geiser build it a few years ago.” For Lopez, the win is extra special as he got to share it with his dad Juan C. Lopez, who co-drove the number 1 Trophy Truck, and has been Apdaly’s mentor and part of his support team for many years. “Everything went as planned,” said Apdaly Lopez. “This win was significant because I always dreamed of winning the race, but winning it with my dad was even more amazing.” Finishing first at the 50th BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 1000 also gave Lopez and the RPM Off-Road team a third straight SCORE Trophy Truck championship. “This year our objective was to win the race and in that way win the championship for the third time in a row,” said Lopez. “We had three driver changes during the race I passed the truck to my dad at RM555 and once he reached RM990, he passed it back to me again to finish the race.” For the RPM Off-Road Racing Team, the other three vehicles in the race included the number 4 Trophy Truck of Justin Matney, who finished in 11 place. The number 9 Trophy Truck of Armin Schwarz with Lalo Laguna finished 17th. Clyde Stacey in the Trophy Truck Legends class unfortunately posted a DNF. That didn’t put a damper the excitement of the overall win for the team, however. “Team RPM Off-Road has accomplished an excellent 2017 and with a bang by winning the 50th BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 1000, and a third overall consecutive championship,” said Stacey.

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