weather icon Clear

Desert ‘Ironman’: Harvey tackles tough roads in motorcycle races

Boulder City resident Chuck Harvey has his eyes on the prize — first place in his class at the 2021 Baja 1000 in Mexico.

The Baja 1000 is a 1,000-mile off-road desert race in Ensenada, Mexico, on the Baja California Peninsula.

The race takes motorcycles and other off-highway vehicles through the desert, traveling for miles from checkpoint to checkpoint and can take days to complete.

Harvey has been participating in it since 1976 and racing the Baja series for about 10 years.

“You’re racing off the main highway on dirt roads and old ranch roads that are pretty rough,” he said. “There are big pockets of silt that can be dangerous. It can be a real challenge.”

Harvey said he participates in numerous races like this throughout the year and each one has a singular purpose.

“All the racing I do is preparing for the Baja 1000,” he said.

Harvey said he loves the food, the people and the views of the ocean during the annual five-day event.

“The locals just love it,” he said. “They celebrate the Baja 1000 like the Superbowl and New Year’s Eve rolled into one.”

Harvey and his racing team participate in the Pro Moto Ironman class of the race. It is for single-rider motorcycles with 200cc engines. Throughout the five-day race, the drivers race from one point to the next. The team members can trade off driving different legs of the race.

Harvey said the race is very difficult and approximately 20-25 percent of the entrants don’t finish.

“Just getting through it is an accomplishment,” he said.

Harvey said he and his team have come in second and third place at past races but have never won their class. He said he is hoping they do that this year and one way they are preparing is by participating in different challenging desert races.

On Saturday, June 26, Harvey and his son, Tyler, came in first in their class and second overall at the Motorcycle Racing Association of Nevada’s Desert Series.

At the recent NORRA Mexican 1000 Rally, Harvey came in second in the motorcycle class.

“I won it but was credited overall with second because I missed a virtual checkpoint,” he said.

Despite the difficulties and issues that come with races, Harvey said he still enjoys it a lot.

“It’s a challenge, and it’s a lot of fun,” he said. “I actually like the part that’s rough and kind of miserable. … It’s kind of tranquil being out there alone even though it’s a race.”

SCORE International Off-Road Racing organizes the Baja 1000, which will take place Nov. 15-20.

Contact reporter Celia Shortt Goodyear at cgoodyear@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow her on Twitter @csgoodyear.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
BCHS graduate plans to compete nationally

Seasoned triathlete and 2021 Boulder City High School graduate Ethan Porter will compete in the 2021 Zone3 Junior Nationals at Voice of America Park later this month.

High school fishers find success at world finals

Boulder City was well represented at the 2021 12th annual High School Fishing World Finals and National Championship held June 30-July 3 on Lake Hartwell in Anderson, South Carolina, sending four high school fishermen from the Boulder City Bass Club.

More scenery, less crowds: Summer ‘grand’ time to visit canyon’s North Rim

If you are planning a visit to Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona — and most people do have that visit on their bucket lists — you might consider aiming at the North Rim instead of the better-known South Rim. This area of the park, accessed via the Arizona Strip, gets only about 10 percent the number of visitors who crowd the South Rim.

Tufa give Mono Lake its unique look

Mono Lake is located just east of the Sierra Nevada Range by the small town of Lee Vining, California, the eastern gateway to Yosemite National Park. Seeing it is a uniquely Western experience and summer is the time to see it.

Four volleyball standouts named to all-state team

Fresh off their first 3A state championship in school history, four Boulder City High School boys volleyball players were named to the 3A all-state team and six were named all-region performers.

Softball star Baker signs with St. Ambrose

Brooke Baker, a senior softball star at Boulder City High School, is moving on to the collegiate level, committing to NAIA program St. Ambrose University in Davenport, Iowa.

Grothe vies for spot on Olympic swim team

Zane Grothe, a 2010 Boulder City High School graduate, remains in the running to be on the U.S. Olympic swimming team.

Eagles sweep top postseason awards

Fresh off their 3A regional championship, five Boulder City High School baseball players were named to the all-region team and eight were named all-league performers.

Full return of sports planned

After more then a year of chaos due to the COVID-19 pandemic, life could be getting back to normal for high school athletes.