Paul Weel and Toby Price team up for BITD campaign, Baja Trophy Truck
A pair of Australians will cross the Pacific Ocean to take on the North American deserts later this year. On Monday, Toby Price and Paul Weill announced that they will organize three major events in the desert of the continent: the Best in the desertit is From Vegas to Reno from August 10 to 13, SCORE Internationalit is Baja 400 on September 13/14, and the mythical Baja 1000 from November 15 to 20. The effort, under the Team Australia name, will see them compete in the Trophy Truck class at Weel’s Geiser brothers a truck.
“Very happy to be able to announce that I will be riding with Paul Weel for Team Australia at Baja 400, Vegas at Reno and Baja 1000 this year,” Price displayed on social media. “Weely put a lot of work into putting this program together so I can’t wait to get out there to show everyone what Aussies can do…”
Price is one of the biggest names in Australian off-road racing, winning the Dakar Rally‘s Bikes in 2016 and 2019 and the Finke Desert Race Seven times. He is the only one to have won the general classification of the latter in the Motorcycles and Cars divisions. For his achievements, he was awarded the Order of Australia in 2021.
While Price has mostly been on dirt his whole life, Weel is a long-time veteran of pavement racing having competed in the supercar championship from 1998 to 2008, although he enjoyed success in the Australian Off-Road Stadium Championship before moving on to Supercars. Serious injuries in a practice crash leading up to the 2008 Bathurst 1000 ended his racing career and he focused on his family business for the next decade.
In 2020, Weel made his return to racing in the Boost mobile super trucks (the Australian counterpart of super stadium trucks) as well as desert races in Australia and America like the Australian Off-Road Motorsport Championship and Best in the Desert. Weel acquired his trophy truck from Price for his rally raid adventures. He overcame mechanical problems to finish tenth in class in his Mint 400 debut, while his first Finke start earned him a twelfth-place finish.
Price and Weel crossed paths in SST when they faced each other at the Darwin and Townsville rounds in 2021. The three-race weekend at Townsville saw Price win the first before Weel won the next two, and they finished 1–2 in races #1 and #2.
Although Weel has never raced Vegas to Reno or SCORE, Price has dabbled in the latter since 2012. He served as a Trophy Truck co-driver for jesse jones and Bryce Menzies in various SCORE events like the San Felipe 250 and the Baja 1000. In 2019 he teamed up with another Dakar star Nasser Al-Attiyah for the Baja 1000, where they rode Jones’ truck to a second-place finish overall. Price entered the 2021 1000 in a Trophy Truck Spec for Thunderstruck Motorsports, but did not finish.