A fine group of wankers – this is the motley crew that will be relay-racing the motorcycle in the 2017 Baja 1000
Andy Vela is a retired IT Professional and motorcycle riding fanatic. Now working part-time as a Motorcycle Escort and dabbling in Film and Television as an Actor. He has explored much of North, Central, and South America by motorcycle, from the Yukon to the Amazon, from the Rockies to the Andes. He has ridden thru 21 countries including multiple trips across the US (once almost entirely in the dirt), trips to the Arctic Circle, the Darien Gap, and Tierra del Fuego over the routes like the Haul Road, Dempster Highway, Canon Del Pato, Death Road, the Carretera Austral, and the Trans-America Trail. Also a 5x competitor racing motorcycles in the Baja 1000 and the Mexican NORRA 1000 taking first in class on a team in 2015. Author of “Excuse Me, Which Way is the Baja 1000” and “Alaska by Motorcycle - are you sure you know what you are doing”
Barrie Riddoch grew up in the Mojave Desert and motorcycles were just part of living in the dirt. He learned how to ride at 9, crashed shortly after that, and has been off and on for years. While he is confident in his riding skills, the transition from pavement to dirt will be “interesting”.
Fly’n Brian Bartlow, motorcycle racer and entrepreneur, hails out of Kelseyville, a small town in Northern California. Brian works as a Paramedic in Mendocino County two days a week, and on the weekends races both on the road and dirt. Brian has been racing motorcycles for 25 years, attaining countless wins andclose to thirty motorcycle championships in road racing, Supermoto and Flat Track. In 2013 Brian founded Feel Like A Pro Dirt, a dirt bike school and rental company. Feel Like A Pro Dirt offers riders – both novice and professional alike – a place to train and learn to be better riders. Located on his ranch in Northern California, Feel Like A Pro Dirt is fully contained, has 20 different track configurations, and offers access to camping. There is also a 2,500 sq. ft. shop which houses the Kawasaki KLX 140s which are used for the training camps and local races.
Jared Apperson is the founder of the team, and has been riding motorcycles since the age of 9. Racing in the Baja 1000 has been a bucket-list item since he was a kid. He is a retired flight paramedic, and worked in EMS for over 18 years. Having witnessed the down-hill slide of many of his co-workers due to PTSD, he decided it was time to take action, and help provide support for those in the community that dedicate their lives to taking care of others.
Mike Glover, Co-Owner of FieldCraft Survival in Northern California is a former Special Forces combat-disabled veteran and avid motorcycle adventure rider. Mike started his love for motorcycle adventure in the Army as a Sniper/Reconnaissance operator where off road mobility including ATVs, side by sides and motorcycles were the platform of choice in rugged and desolate terrain. Mike has taken that passion for motorcycles from the mountains of the Hindu Kush Afghanistan and is bringing it to the Baja 1000 where he believes in giving back to both veterans and those in the first responder community who are dealing with PTSD.
Mike Wegener, was born and raised in northern CA with a motorcycle riding family. He started riding when he was 4 and haven’t stopped since. He started racing hare scrambles at 18, but found his true racing love in the desert riding the Virginia City GP. The highlight of his racing creerer is a 3rd place finish in his class and top 10 overall in Virginia City. "I am truly excited for the next step in the Baja for a great cause!".