On only second attempt
Tyre giant Toyo were reaching for the victory champagne yet again after yesterday's convincing victory in the Baja 1000 Off Road Race. Nascar ace Robby Gordon drove the Chevy CK1500 whilst Toyo Open Country M/T tyres provided the traction.
was made all the sweeter by the fact that it was only Toyo's second ever entry into the gruelling race. With this win, Toyo have broken a 21 year strangle-hold another tyre maker had held on the event.
Gordon drove the first 725 miles of the race, putting himself into a commanding lead before handing over to team-mate Andy McMillan to complete the final leg of this ultimate off-road challenge. Veteran map-man Andy Grider will also partner Gordon for the forthcoming Dakar race in January. Whilst this is Robby's third Baja victory, it was all new for McMillan.
Sticking with another winning formula, Gordon will naturally be competing on Toyo rubber for Dakar's arduous desert challenge, although his chosen steed will be the specially prepared Hummer H3 that served him so well last year. So, can he repeat the winning formula there?
“I certainly hope so!” smiled Gordon. “I've been driving with Toyo since the Baja last year. The improvements they have made to the tyre spec and performance even in that short time have been nothing short of incredible. Together we've had three major off-road victories in 12 months, The Baja, The Parker 400 and Terribles Cup. Pretty good going for a ‘showroom' tyre, wouldn't you say?”
Whilst Gordon is obviously modest of his own achievements, Toyo's technical analysis of the post-race 37x13.
50R17 Open Country tyres proved them to be operating well within their design parameters, despite triple-figure speeds, battling with enormous rocks and frequent departures from terra firma! For these reasons - as well as incredible puncture resistance, Gordon will run the same tyre spec in January. His parting shot perhaps best explains why.
“Some drivers have lucky charms, others - superstitious routines prior to a race - Me? I seem to have lucky tyres!' he laughed. ‘But seriously, if it ain't broke - don't fix it. Not having to worry about my tyres will save me a serious headache on the Dakar.”
Wise words, and whilst Gordon's talent can't be bottled and bought, his tyres can!