ENSENADA, Baja California, Mexico—Climbing the ladder race-by-race, noted Northern California racer Phil Blurton enjoyed his first season competing full-time in SCORE by winning the SCORE Overall, SCORE UTV overall and Pro UTV FI class point championships in the 2021 SCORE World Desert Championship.
Starting cautiously with a fourth place in class in the season opener, Burton, of Auburn, Calif. and his driving teammate Beau Judge, Rockland, Calif., finished in second place in each of the next two races and culminated their championship campaign by winning their class in the season-ending legendary SCORE Baja 1000 to earn their season crowns.
At the culmination of the 48th season of the World’s Foremost Desert Racing Organization, the top five final overall point leaders were separated by just 27 total points in the final 2021 SCORE Overall point standings.
SCORE point regulations for 2021 had all four races counting for final points toward season point championships. Racers were allowed one substitute driver for the season but the driver/rider of record had to either start or finish the season-ending SCORE Baja 1000.
SCORE points are calculated on a set amount of start points and finish points for each race along with a variable amount for placement points for finishers based on the number of starters within each class.
BLURTON WINS OVERALL, UTV, PRO UTV FI TITLE
Blurton, 35, and Judge, 44, may have been rookies in the 2021 SCORE World Desert Championship, but they have been honing their UTV driving skills competitively for over four years before their big splash in this year’s SCORE series.
Finishing his rookie season in SCORE racing, four-time UTV World Champion Blurton, a second-generation SCORE desert racer, was the driver of record in winning his first SCORE Baja 1000 title and his first overall UTV race win over 62 starters in four UTV classes while winning the Pro UTV FI (Forced Induction) class. He was timed over the formidable 1226.35-mile race course in 26 hours, 58 minutes and 57 seconds in his No. 2944 Can-Am X3. Blurton drove from the start to race-mile 430, Judge drove from race mile 430 to rm 1000 and Blurton got back behind the wheel to drive the final 226 miles.
In the legendary SCORE Baja 1000, Blurton had a victory margin in his class that had 29 starters of just under 41 minutes.
At the finish line of the SCORE Baja 1000, Blurton commented, “It was a pretty flawless SCORE Baja 1000. It was our first one ever so we didn’t know what to expect. There were some bottlenecks; we sat for 20 minutes at one point. Then we cruised along the rest of the day. We pre-ran a bunch and I think that helped. We raced all the whole SCORE series this year to get used to racing in Mexico and it seems like that paid off for us.”
“The course was really fun. When we first pre-ran, it was a lot smoother but it got a lot more beat up by race day. Overall, it was a super fun, but it was an exceptionally challenging race course. A little bit of everything. I could do without all those miles of whoops at the end though. But they definitely kept me awake knowing how close we were to the finish line in La Paz. I’ve waited a long time to race with SCORE. My dad (Phil Blurton Sr) is a former two-time SCORE class champion and I can’t wait until the next SCORE race. SCORE Baja racing is in a league of its own.”
In their championship season, Blurton/Judge finished fourth in their class in the SCORE San Felipe 250 in April, and second in both the SCORE Baja 500 in June and SCORE Baja 400 in September to stay close in the hunt before pulling off their stunning championship victory in the SCORE Baja 1000.
When he’s not racing, Blurton is the founder and operator of No Limit Race Development and Manufacturing based in Loomis, Calif. His company specializes building custom UTV cages and suspension parts.
TOP FIVE IN OVERALL POINTS
Between Blurton in first and MacCachren in fifth, the other final overall top five overall point leaders were Trophy Truck Spec point champion Jason McNeil in second, and Pro UTV FI competitors Austin Weiland and Brandon Schueler. Ironically, Rob MacCachren’s 19-year old son Cayden MacCachren, a SCORE rookie racer, was the second driver for Schueler, finishing one position higher than his famous father in the 2021 SCORE overall point standings.
Top 29 Overall Cars, Trucks and UTVs
(Position, Vehicle No., Driver(s), Vehicle-Engine-builder, Class, Points)
1. 2944 Phil Blurton, Auburn, Calif./Beau Judge, Rockland, Calif., Can-Am X3 (Pro UTV FI), 534
2. 234 Jason McNeil, El Cajon, Calif./Tyler McNeil, Mesa, Ariz./Kyle Dodson, Ramona, Calif./Chad McNeil, El Cajon, Calif., Geiser-Chevy (Trophy Truck Spec), 522
3. 2954 Austin Weiland, El Cajon, Calif., Can-Am X3 (Pro UTV FI), 517
4. 2919 Brandon Schueler, Phoenix/Cayden MacCachren, Las Vegas, Polaris RZR XP4 Turbo (Pro UTV FI), 514
5. 11 Rob MacCachren, Las Vegas/Luke McMillin, Chevy Silverado (Mason) (SCORE Trophy Truck), 507
6. 21 Gustavo ‘Tavo’ Vildosola Jr, Mexicali, Mexico/Ricky Johnson, Trabuco Canyon, Calif., Ford Raptor (Mason) (SCORE Trophy Truck), 494
7. 2989 Wes Miller, Las Vegas/Donny Powers, Morgan Hill, Calif., Polaris RZR XP4Turbo (Pro UTV FI), 492
8. 43 Larry Roeseler, Boulevard, Calif., Toyota Tundra (ID), (SCORE Trophy Truck), 491
9. 200 Jorge Sampietro, Ensenada, Mexico/Santiago Creel, Mexico City, Mexico, Mason-Chevy (Trophy Truck Spec), 485
10. 1046 Ethan Hagle, Somis, Calif./Ben Hagle, Somis, Calif., Alumi Craft-Chevy (Class 10), 482
11. 2970 Francisco Beltran, La Paz, Mexico/Francisco Beltran Jr, La Paz, Mexico/Diego Beltran, La Paz, Mexico, Can-Am X3 XRS (Pro UTV FI), 481
12. 3955 Mike Cafro, Fallbrook, Calif./Jamie Kirkpatrick, Olympia, Wash., Polaris Turbo S (Pro UTV Stock), 480
13. Fred Willert, El Cajon, Calif./Stan Potter, San Marcos, Calif., Alumi Craft-Chevy (Class 10), 479
14. 1016 Hiram Duran, Tecate, Calif./Evan Duran, Tecate, Calif./Eric Duran, Tecate, Calif./Marco Duran, Tecate, Calif., Jimco-Chevy (Class 10), 476
15. Matt Winslow, Clovis, Calif./Todd Winslow, Clovis, Calif., Alumi Craft-Chevy (Class 10), 469
15. Jeff Bader, Las Vegas/Dan Fresh, Dana Point, Calif., Brenthel-Chevy (Trophy Truck Spec), 469
17. 1995 Kaden Wells, Apple Valley, Utah/Travis Wells, 47, Apple Valley, Utah, Polaris RZR XP1000 (Pro UTV NA), 467
18. 1870 Justin Elenburg, Mesa, Ariz./Ernesto Taylor, Mesa, Ariz./Michael York, Gilbert, Ariz./Mike Jeluso, Can-Am X3 (Pro UTV Open), 466
19. 205 Joe DeLucie, Las Vegas, ESM-Chevy (Trophy Truck Spec), 464
19. 2976 Jesus Mendez Jr, Mexicali, Mexico, Can-Am Maverick XRS (Pro UTV FI), 464
21. 100 Cody Parkhouse, Long Beach, Calif./Brian Parkhouse, Long Beach, Calif., Jimco-Chevy (Class 1), 462
21. 37L Rolf Helland, Morris, Ill./Rick D. Johnson, Barstow, Calif., Ford Raptor (Mason), 462
23. 1621 Kevin Sanchez, Ensenada, Mexico/Fernie Padilla, Las Vegas, Alfa-VW (Class 1/2-1600), 461
24. 1600 Eli Yee, Tijuana, Mexico, Kreger-VW (Class 1/2-1600), 457
25. 1062 Roberto Romo, Mexicali, Mexico, Alumi Craft-Chevy (Class 10), 454
25. 758 Armando Duron, Mexicali, Mexico, Ford Ranger (Class 7SX), 454
27. 2929 Jose Lopez, Guadalajara, Mexico, Can-Am X3 (Pro UTV FI), 448
28. 1954 Kristen Matlock, Alpine, Calif., Polaris RZR XP4 1000 (Pro UTV NA), 445
29. 3950 Scott Trafton, Alpine, Calif./Marc Behnke, Polaris RZR, (Pro UTV Stock), 444
Here are the dates for the four-race 2022 SCORE World Desert Championship which will be held exclusively in Baja California, Mexico for the seventh consecutive year:
- 35th SCORE San Felipe 250—
March 29-April 3, San Felipe, Mexico
- BFGoodrich Tires 54th SCORE Baja 500, presented by 4 Wheel Parts—
June 1-5, Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico
- 3rd SCORE Baja 400—
September 13-18, Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico
- BFGoodrich Tires 55th SCORE Baja 1000, presented by 4 Wheel Parts—
November 15-20, Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico