- Ridgeline Baja Race Truck opens 2017 season with a podium result
- Racing version of current 2017 Honda Ridgeline
Feb 6, 2017 - PARKER, Arizona -- The Honda Ridgeline Baja Race Truck opened the 2017 off-road racing season with a strong performance Saturday in the southwestern Arizona desert, leading and finishing third in the "7200" class at the Parker 425.
The season-opening round of the Best In The Desert series, the Parker 425 features a rugged course with wide-ranging conditions, from sand washes and rough rock sections to wide-open rally roads.
The tough conditions traditionally result in a high attrition rate among competitors, but the Ridgeline Race Truck proved up to the challenge, leading the 7200 category early in the contest prior to a stop to repair a drivetrain issue, then recovering to finish third in class.
"We started fourth and quickly made it to the front of our class. Unfortunately, we suffered a drive shaft failure that set us back," said team owner/driver Jeff Proctor. "We continued to battle and make up lost time, even though the course was undeniably rough. Overall, the truck ran strongly all day, and we have a podium finish to build upon going into our next race, the March 4 Mint 400 in Las Vegas.
"Our program continues to get stronger and we are looking forward to enhancing our results from last season. Our goal is to add to our SCORE series wins [at the Baja 1000 and Baja 500 in 2015-16) with a victory in the Best In The Desert series. I especially want to thank the entire crew for all its hard work and commitment to the success of the Honda Racing Ridgeline program."
Powered by a twin-turbocharged V6 produced by Honda Performance Development, the Ridgeline Baja Race Truck features a body designed by Honda R&D Americas' Los Angeles Design Studio, with inspiration taken from the current Honda Ridgeline, which was also designed and developed by Honda R&D North Americas. Key design cues drawn from the 2017 Honda Ridgeline can be seen in the front fascia, hood, roof, bed and side profile.
Making approximately 550 horsepower, HPD's 3.5-liter HR35TT engine uses the same block, cylinder heads and crankshaft as the production V6 engine that powers the all-new Ridgeline. Additional, custom elements of the powertrain include an HPD-designed intake plenum and custom Engine Control Unit programming.