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

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TALKING DIRT A Piece Of BaJa By Dan Sanchez Editor, SCORE Journal When researching for this month’s 50th Anniversary story, we decided to focus on the many iconic awards SCORE has created over the years. The great part about these stories is my conversations with former SCORE owner Sal Fish and his stories that always leave me amazed. After finding out some interesting facts on some of SCORE’s most iconic awards, it was obvious that the attention to these awards was two-fold. The first is that there weren’t always huge money purses for winners so Sal wanted to five racers some really cool awards to somehow make up for it. For the most part, racers who received the statue of Aztec warrior Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma, still have them as a prized possession. It was the same for the Valvoline-sponsored Ironman and the Mexican Eagle statues made from ironwood. There were still the typical plaques, silver cups, and six-foot-tall plastic and marble trophies handed out, but throughout SCORE’s history, the most memorable were the hand-crafted ones made in Mexico from materials unique to Baja California. As the editor of the SCORE Journal, I have been fortunate to receive several of the Off-Roadsman trophies over the years, and although they are very important to me, I had never really understood the meaning of the rocks on them. I had simply thought they represented a piece of Baja. When I approached the subject with Sal, he told me the story of how he gathered them from the beaches of Arienda. He explained that during high and low tides, the rocks get polished and that he would head out there and hand-pick them specifically for these trophies. After hearing that, those trophies on my shelf now have a greater meaning to me, as they also represent a long tradition and history that is not so easily earned. Ironically, through all this, SCORE has recently partnered wtih Lasernut metal Fabrication, to manufacturer the next generation of SCORE Tophies to be introduced for the 2024 Season. I had the opportunity to meet and speak to the owner Cody Wagner, who is an avid off-roader and racer. When touring his amazing facility, I asked if he had any ideas about the design of the new awards and he told me he had not met with SCORE staff to discuss them yet. I told him about my conversations with Sal and he hoped any new awards they create would continue to be something racers would appreciate. While we most likely won’t see any beautifully carved eagles or statues of Aztec leaders and warriors, I am sure that whatever comes next will be a continuation of a long and creative history that is SCORE off-road racing.

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