Vortec-Powered Chevy Trailblazer Wins Best in Off-Road Race

18 July 2000

With Two Wins, Trailblazer Ready For Baja 2000
    LAS VEGAS - General Motors' off-road racing Vortec-powered Chevrolet 
TrailBlazer won its second consecutive race at the Best In The Desert Nevada 
2000 on July 14 in Las Vegas.

    After six days and almost 2000 miles through some of Nevada's toughest
terrain, the TrailBlazer (#1481) won the Trick Truck class with an overall
time of 26:28:36.  It beat the next entry by more than 30 minutes and was the
second best overall time out of the 66 truck and car-based entries.

    The TrailBlazer, featuring a durable and efficient Vortec 5.0-liter inline
6-cylinder engine, was driven by four accomplished drivers during the
week-long event that began and ended in Las Vegas.  The Herzog Motorsports
team of Brian Stewart, Mark Miller, Bekki Freeman and Ryan Arciero traded
responsibilities behind the wheel.

    "This new TrailBlazer and Vortec I6 engine were incredible," said Stewart.
"Now that we have two major victories with this truck, we have proven that we
have a winning combination and can compete against any V8 competitor."

    A second TrailBlazer (#1480) co-driven by Larry Ragland and Ricky Johnson
did not complete the event.  While leading the race on the third day, Ricky
Johnson and co-rider Steve Bothwell experienced a high-speed rollover,
damaging the truck beyond immediate repair.  Both Johnson and Bothwell walked
away from the accident.  The damaged truck, with the Vortec I6 engine still
running after the incident, will be repaired and ready for competition at the
Baja 2000.

    The Nevada 2000 was the second of three off-road races GM is competing in
this year with the Vortec-powered TrailBlazer.  The SUV won its debut race at
the Baja 500 in June in Mexico.  Veteran-racer Larry Ragland captured both the
overall four-wheel vehicle win and the Trophy Truck divisional title.  The
race season for the TrailBlazer will culminate at the SCORE Baja 2000 on
November 9-16 in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico.

    The TrailBlazer features a computer-designed carbon-fiber body mounted on
a tube frame chassis.  It is powered by a race specific all-aluminum 5.0-liter
I6 engine featuring dual overhead camshafts and a Hydra-Matic three-speed
automatic transmission.  The Vortec I6 engine produces 600 horsepower at
7500 rpm and 450 lb-ft of torque at 6000 rpm.

    The same Vortec 5.0-liter race engine powered a GMC Envoy, with Larry
Ragland behind the wheel, to a recent overall win at the International Pikes
Peak Hill Climb.

    "The Nevada 2000 race provided a great opportunity for GM to demonstrate
the outstanding capabilities of the Chevy TrailBlazer and its Vortec inline
six-cylinder engine against V8 competitors," said Brian Miller, GM Racing
off-road program manager.  "With two wins under our belt, we are now ready for
the ultimate challenge at the Baja 2000."

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