If you know Bill Caswell then you know that his primary goal in life is to inject himself into the middle of whatever big automotive event is currently happening; and make sure that not only he, but everyone around him, is having a great time. If you don’t know him, then you should figure out a way to make it happen. Bill has become known for mixing in a race or two between his busy schedule of having the time of his life. What Bill really is, besides being a genuinely great person and even greater friend, is a modern day “Man of Automotive Leisure”.
Spanning the globe in search of the next great race party and those that would be ensnared by his sticky web of “lets just party and have fun”. And he’s getting really good at it, as evidenced by his recent forced early departure from the Metropolitan Hotel in Vegas during this year’s SEMA show. How insane must the party be if it gets you thrown out of a hotel in VEGAS? The entire city is a wasteland of drunkeness and debauchery, and somehow Caswell took it just a bit too far? That, my friends, is talent.
The Bill Caswell story started in Mexico a couple years ago and the WRC event there, and this week Bill is returning to the country where it all began as he makes his second attempt at the Baja 1000 in his BMW buggy. The buggy that bagan life in the Miller Welding booth at the 201o version of the SEMA show, has been sitting idle for the past year, collecting dust and a little bit of rust; waiting for the day Bill would dust her off and take her back to Mexico.
And in typical Caswell fashion, the make-ready madness is beginning just hours before the vehicle is due at Tech Inspection in Ensenada. Can you imagine how well Bill would do if he actually spent time getting ready for an event before dragging himself to the starting line? Neither can we…and that’s the way we prefer it. Regardless of his readiness, Bill, and those that take on the challenge of racing with him, will always be the people having more fun than anyone.
Since I can’t be there to partake in the party that will be the 2011 Baja 1000, Bill and I will be talking via text message for the next several days. And what comes from these text messages will be posted here for your joyful edification on a daily basis. So give a firm tug on your seat belt and put both hands on the wheel…
ML@S: Nice Work. You having fun or just stressed?
Bill: Fun! F**k it. This is just me and my friends, a car and the Baja 1000. Only stress is when to start drinking tonight and stop working. Haha!
ML@S: Did you get the car started?
Bill: The car drove on the trailer. I bet with my revised stock rack we can go the whole race. We got this really sweet complete steering linkage from Vorshlag that is saving us!!!
ML@S: I saw you talking about that yesterday. How did you get it in so fast!
Bill: They over-nighted it from Texas! I called another place for parts and when I told them my last name they were like the infamous Bill Caswell? And they split shipping with me. Vorshlag is owned by tree fair out of Dallas and is known for LS motors in BMWs. Like v8 e36. Good guys. They run the $2000 grassroots challenge and stuff like that. They were at the track that day I saw you getting your car ready for Pikes Peak. Black e30.
ML@S: Are you in Mexico now or just about to head down?
Bill: Leaving Thursday morning.
ML@S: Did you get a co-driver?
Bill: Photographer friend that came to WRC Mexico. He bought a rally car but hadn’t raced it yet. This will be his first race. We are shooting tons of video and having fun cranking tunes. Taking cool pics tonight and will send. So close to race and no garage. We’re not unloading the car till Tech. Just working on it on the trailer. To much of a pain to load it again.
ML@S: Good! How ready is the car?
Bill: Haven’t touched it but keep finding problems and ordering parts. Racing is almost more logistics and back up plans than driving. Or at least till you get to the start line it’s all that counts. And cash. This would be way easier to just take over to SRD in Vista and write a check. I did get my lucky oil from Valvoline so I’m sort of set.
I found out shortly after this conversation that Pikes Peak Time Attack Champion, Brianne Corn, is heading down to crew for Bill and may even get a turn in either the Passenger or Drivers seat, depending on how it all goes. Brianne is flying down on Thursday and then driving home to Texas as soon as the race is over. Should be quite a trip.
Updates will be coming up as Bill and I have a chance to text. Likely, there will be more from tonight’s activities and keep your fingers crossed for photos.