McMillin’s Flat Tire Gives Menzies the Win in Baja 400

·2 min read
Photo credit: Art Eugenio/Red Bull
Photo credit: Art Eugenio/Red Bull
  • Bryce Menzies won his second SCORE Baja 400 in a row with a victory last weekend over second-place finisher Luke McMillin.

  • Both drivers had flats and both lost the FWD portion of the 4WD powertrains.

  • The race was the third round of the four-race SCORE desert racing championship, with the Baja 1000 next on Nov. 15-20.

Sometimes it just comes down to luck—sometimes it’s a flat tire. In last weekend’s SCORE Baja 400 Presented by VP Racing Fuels, it was both.

Race leader Luke McMillin's Chevy 1500 was about two and a half minutes ahead of challenger Bryce Menzies' Ford Raptor in the 400, when number-one qualifier McMillin got a flat tire 70 miles into the race. That was exactly what number-two qualifier Menzies needed.

“We got him while he was changing (the) flat, and then from there we just held him behind us with about a two and half minute gap,” said Menzies.

Menzies also had a flat, but his co-driver changed it in just 50 seconds, “…which is unheard of,” he said. A flat tire wasn’t the only challenge Menzies faced in the Baja desert race. “We lost our four-wheel drive at race mile 210. It tested my skills. I had to learn how to drive a four-wheel drive, then I had to re-learn to drive it with two-wheel drive.”

There is some discussion among front-running teams in SCORE’s showcase Trophy Truck class about whether four-wheel drive or two-wheel drive is better. Results are mixed, but Menzies showed he could win with either driveline configuration.

And just to show it was a fair fight, second-place McMillin also lost FWD just before he got the flat tire. “So then we had a truck that was pushing, not pulling, so we earned a flat due to that,” McMillin said.

Third place went to another McMillin, Luke’s brother Dan, who finished six minutes behind Luke.

Motorcycles did not compete in this round of the four-race SCORE championship, but they will be there for the final event of the 2022 season, the BFGoodrich Tires 55th SCORE Baja 1000 Presented by 4 Wheel Parts, scheduled for November 15-20.