Tuthill Porsche on Surfing Safari: Baja in a 911

by John Glynn on February 7, 2013

Tuthill Porsche will bring its Safari-winning Porsche 911 to the Baja-based Mexican 1000-mile rally, from April 27 to May 1, 2013. Applications are open for drivers to share and enjoy the event.

Safari Rally Porsche Tuthill Race4Change 3

NORRA is America’s National Off Road Racing Association. In 2010, NORRA started a 1000-mile stage rally event run over four days, through the beautiful Baja peninsula. The rally gave historic off-road trucks, cars buggies and bikes a competitive racing platform, and entrants flocked to the event.

Tuthills’ first taste of Baja came in 2010, when Richard drove the much straighter Baja Rally with Steven Funk of Race4Change. He’s been keen to return ever since, and see this as the perfect event.

Ferdinand Porsche Safari 2011 Travis Pastrana 39

“The Mexican 1000 is the real deal: a competitive rally that, in the right car, would certainly give Porsche 911 rally fans a thrilling taste of wild North America. Our Waldegard Safari-winning 911 is perhaps the best known historic Porsche rally car around at the minute, so it’s going to be brilliant to run it in Mexico.

“Current thinking is to split the rally up into days and divide the driving between team members. We’ll see how many of our North American friends get in touch to come do this with us, and then make our plan of attack.”

Ferdinand Porsche Safari 2011 Travis Pastrana 31

Tuthill’s Blood Orange beast is a left hand-drive 1973 Porsche 911, with 300 horsepower and state of the art preparation. It was driven by Björn Waldegård (above with son Mathias) to the first-ever Porsche win on Kenya’s epic Safari Rally. It’s a full-build Safari car to the best-of-best recipe, and an absolute dream to drive.

“If Porsche had given me this in the 1970s, I could have won every Safari,” Björn told me when he tested Tuthill’s ultimate “Safari Evolution” 911, following the 2010 Rally of Morocco. Björn drove the car Michèle Mouton enjoyed on that incredible race: see testing video below. American rally star, Travis Pastrana, also fell in love with Tuthill’s Porsches when he drove the Safari last time out, setting a handful of fastest stage times over three days in Kenya.

Ferdinand Porsche Safari 2011 Travis Pastrana 66

The Porsche Works has no air-cooled connection to Baja, but Porsche engines have powered successful Baja buggies. Although the Mexican 1000 is a much bigger challenge for a rallified 911, the race simultaneously takes off-road racing back to its roots of camarerie, hot rodding and fun! It’s full of excitement, fast drivers, incredible scenery and world-class adventure.

Tuthills have a great team of people, and Richard says he’s treating it like an end-of-term party after three months in Sweden on Below Zero Ice Driving. Want to be part of this and drive some miles in a proper Porsche rally car? Email richard@francistuthill.co.uk, and tell him we sent you!

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