2022 is beginning to end, which means we are getting ever closer to the release of the next-generation Ford Ranger and Ranger Raptor in North America. But the truck is already making significant strides on the continent as a race-prepped but stock and street-legal, next-gen Ranger Raptor finished the SCORE-International Baja 1000. The Baja 1000 is one of the world’s most challenging and most prestigious off-road races, and the Ranger Raptor finished in first place in stock midsize class before driving back to its home base in Riverside, California.
Ford Ranger Raptor Baja 1000 Race Truck: Details
Ford Australia designed the Ranger Raptor and did the initial development before signing off and shipping the truck to the States for all of the Ford Performance partners could pool their resources into the build. A low-carbon biofuel from Shell powered the nearly-flawless run at the grueling desert test. Which was fed seamlessly into the next-gen truck’s stock powertrain as it traversed hundreds of miles of desert terrain with only basic maintenance and system checks alongside the refuel stops.
The fact that the truck completed the Baja 1000 and won in its class on biofuel with the stock Ford Performance powertrain is impressive. The race team, managed by Baja legend Curt Leduc, saw incredible stints at the hands of the four driver/co-driver pairings of Brad and Byam Lovell (Lovell Racing), Jason Hutter and Paul Blangstead (Fire Guys Racing), Loren Healy and Eric Davis (Fun-Haver Off-Road), with ARB’s Andy and Danny Brown anchoring the race.
The Ranger Raptor race truck finished the race without any significant incidents or repairs. It took the checkered flag in such good condition that the Ford performance team decided to drive the vehicle back to its base following the event rather than tow it. By driving the midsize truck back, they paid tribute to the 2017 Baja 1000 effort with a stock F-150 Raptor, which also drove home following the legendary off-road racing test. Additionally, the Ranger Raptor drove to Mexico from California before the event. We’re certainly stoked for this legendary truck to finally make its way onto our roads.