After finishing third and fourth in the 2017 running of the NORRA 1000, the Rothsport Racing team brought their pair of off-road 964s to Ensenada again for the start of the 2018 running. After a few, um, let’s call them ‘learning opportunities’ in last year’s race, the team came back this year even stronger. Both the Desert Flyer and the Red Sled have been updated and modified further for racing action, including an even taller ride height, a cut down front bumper and front trunk floor for better approach angle, as well as more power. Last year, Jeff Zwart shared duties with Cameron Healy in the Desert Flyer, but for 2018, while Zwart was busy at Luft5, Eric Healy jumped in for navigator duties. The Red Sled was again driven by Rothsport head Jeff Gamroth, this time joined by Tim Ralston.
The Healy pair drove a perfect race in the Vintage Stock Production Cars category, keeping their Porsche out of trouble, not racking up penalties, and on the right path. They brought their #65 car home at the end of the multi-day 1000 mile race in just 27 hours and 5 minutes, only slightly slower than some unlimited category racers. The time was good enough for first in class, and 83rd overall. Mark Post’s overall-winning Ford F150 is essentially an all-out trophy truck, and managed to finish the course nearly 10 hours faster. Making Cameron’s feat all the more incredible,
Jeff Gamroth ran into some serious trouble with his 911, hitting a few obstacles along the way, and finishing second in class, more than 20 combined hours after Healy finished. Gamroth managed to finish about 50 minutes ahead of Lawrence Higbee, the third placed VSPC class car, and placed 134th overall.
Cameron Healy at the @norra1000 showing how it’s done in a vintage Porsche!!! A gentlemen to say the least and a man that I have come to greatly admire. Thank you for great experiences and one heck of a race that brings us all together to as a community!!! #rhysmillenracing #sabotracing #desert #desertracing #norra1000 #porsche #chasingdust #tillwemeetagain
This was an incredible effort for Rothsport Racing in Mexico, and marks the first time in history a Porsche has ever won at a 1000 mile desert race (this includes Baja). Granted, the Porsche that won is nearly thirty years old at this point, but it’s another feather in the cap of Porsche’s trophy earning history. The team deserve a pat on the back, if you ask me.