Carlos Bravo – chase, co-driver
My 1st race was when I went to see a Baja International race in San Luis, Mexico in 1993. We started to chase for the Coyotes Class 11 Racing Team until that car was sold. I have not missed a race near my town as a spectator and I always try to help any broken car. We built a Class 11 with the help of my brother Omar 5 yrs. ago, then we built a Class 14 5/1600 Sportsman. Hopefully continue long in this sport as either driver or spectator and co-driver.
Toby Fray – driver, electronics
Toby hails from the foggy shores of San Francisco, where he lives amongst the bits and bobs of his latest mechanical endeavors. He’s spent years tinkering, dismantling, diagnosing and re-imagining anything with an engine. He’s working on the second iteration of his 120lb combat robot and a high precision lighting system. Between his many hobbies and pursuits, Toby studies engineering and may even complete his degree someday. His life is a work in progress.
Jenn Frederick – co-driver, wrencher, comm
Dr. Jenn Frederick (a recent Ph. D graduate) claims to have learned everything she knows (about cars, anyway) from fellow teammate and husband Romy Frederick. A skilled co-driver, she can wrench with the best of them and says “I make these mechanic’s overalls look good.”
Romy Frederick – driver, mechanic
Romy Frederick just earned his Ph.D. in Engine Stuff at U.C. Berkeley. Shanghaied onto the team after answering a Craigslist ad looking for people “who have more money than common sense.” He is one of the few Desert Dingo Racing drivers who haven’t rolled the car. Married to fellow team member Jenn Frederick who is much more interesting to talk to.
Chuck Gianni – chase, emergency services
I have been in the Fire/EMS service for 20+ years. I am also the Medical Coordinator for VORRA (Valley Off Road Racing Association), Reno/Fernley Raceway Fire & Safety, NASCAR Safety Trained and a Lyon Co. SAR Deputy Sheriff. I have a few ASE certs and grew up offroading (4X4 rock crawling) and working on vehicles with my Dad.
Jim Graham – PR, marketing, sponsorship
Jim co-founded Desert Dingo Racing with Skid in November 2006 after watching “Dust to Glory.” Genetically incapable of doing anything mechanical, he compensates by watching NASCAR just for the commercials and thinks the final lap of the 2007 Daytona 500 was the coolest thing ever. Jim handles Desert Dingo PR, marketing, sponsorship and parts degreasing.
Roxanne Graham – logistics support, team cook
Roxanne runs the camp kitchen when we’re racing and handles logistics planning & support. If you’d like to contribute to the Diabetes section of our site, contact Roxanne at email@example.com.
Dennis “Crusty” Lange – driver, lead mechanic
Dennis built his first go-kart at 13. In the ’70s he raced a D Production Austin Healey, winning several SCCA races. He worked as a race car fabricator for five years, building everything from Trans Am cars to Baja racers. When he isn’t wrenching on the car (he’s always wrenching on it), he makes his well-appointed RV the go-to location for team members to hang out.
Khaled Mabrouk – Process Analysis
Khaled is an Operational Engineering Leader for Sustainable Productivity Solutions. He has more than 20 years experience as an operational improvement specialist working with Fortune 500 firms and is applying that expertise to helping the team streamline its car preparation and pit stop processes. He has also worked as a lumberjack and is probably the only person in Santa Cruz County who follows the Detroit Tigers, which apparently is a baseball team.
Gil Medrano – logistics, co-driver
Gil joined us for the first time at the 2013 Baja 1000 and was hooked. He’s been an off road enthusiast for more than 20 years and got a few years of kart racing under his belt. He has the most quads and dirt bikes of anyone on the team. When he’s not wrenching for us, he’s volunteering to help support Vacaville area police, fire and athletics groups.
Robb Pritchard – codriver
Robb is an off road racer and writer. New to VWs, he’s had his share of time wrenching in Europe, campaigning trucks at the Lagoda Trophy three times and holds the the second best ever finish for a Western European. He also finished third in class at King of the Hammers and is the only European to podium at the race.
Brian Wallentine – driver, mechanic
Brian is founder of Wallentine Motorsports in Roseville, California and we maintain the race car at his shop. He has been working in air-cooled VWs longer than most of us have been alive (ok, half of us) and has supported many off road race teams through the Chapala Dusters pit team. Wallentine Motorsports specializes in VW restoration, repair and race prep. Brian also has the coolest Baja Bug ever.
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Mike “Skid” Aquino, team co-founder, driver, mechanic
Skid was an experienced motorcycle rider and racer with a long history of radically modifying various modes of transportation. An artist and builder, he had a penchant for the dangerous and unusual. He raced everything from go karts to flame throwing golf carts. He was a consistent finalist in the world famous Power Tool Drag Races. He was the first person contacted by Graham to race Class 11. Initially reluctant, he watched”Dust to Glory” and the rest is history. Skid lived with Type 2 diabetes and passed away on December 16, 2011.
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Desert Dingos Emeritus
Rosh Edwards – driver, logistics
A professional carpenter and amateur motorcycle mechanic, Rosh enjoys the problem solving and improvising class 11 requires. Originally from Peoria, IL, he is a long time California convert and is just mad that he didn’t get into desert racing sooner. Slightly competitive by nature, he remains convinced that the DDR Team will win the Baja 1000.
Paul Hartl – driver, Canadian
Born in Czechoslovakia, Paul rally raced the worst car ever built (the East German Trabant). Now a resident of Toronto, he campaigns a 1999 VW Golf in the Canadian Rally Championship. Paul also races in Ontario’s ice racing series, where, under the duress of harsh Canadian winters, he developed his love for desert racing. He achieved a lifetime dream of racing the Baja 1000, going off the line at the 2011 race as a driver for Garayzar Racing.
Stuart Mangrum – chase, prankster
A southern California native, Stuart’s first car was an air-cooled VW, and his first trip out of the country was to Mexico. The Baja Peninsula is one of his favorite places, and he has an abiding love for the people and cultures of Mexico. A veteran of the USAF and survivor of several dot-com bubbles, he currently works as education director for Burning Man Project.
Fiamma Giger – mechanic, graphic designer, chase
The elusive Fiamma is native to the California coastline, whose habitat ranges from mountain tops to desert washes, and who appears to have been cranking on dirty cars since a very young age. Common sighting locales/activities include: offroad riding motorcycles in the deserts of Nevada, building kit cars in Arizona, pre-running various offroading races, spectating rock-crawling events near the Bay Area, or welding in her driveway.
Scott Anderson, driver, mechanic
Scott is a freelance mechanical engineer, prototype machinist and fabricator. Primarily employed in the design of medical devices, motorcycles have been a lifelong hobby. He’s built two bikes of his own design and maintains a stable of about 10 others. He can’t be left unsupervised with anything mechanical, lest he take it apart and put it back together. 40 years of wrenching, 30 years racing dirt bikes and 20 years racing GP road race machines have addled his mind sufficiently for the Baja event to look appealing.
Carrie Molho, co-driver, mechanic
Former rat brain surgeon turned metal artist enjoys riding (and maintaining) street and dirt bikes, breaking / building / repairing / customizing random things, playing with squirrels and hanging out in the desert. Certified wilderness first aid responder and burn barrel expert. Co-owner and racer of first place winner in the 2003 Shipyard Power Tool drag races with Scott-A (yes, Virginia, that was a belt sander). Six years experience as pit crew chief for Hell Kitty racing team (2 wheelers). Appointed exhaust and steering tender for the Desert Dingos, and general wrench monkey.
Charlie Reynolds, driver, mechanic
Charlie grew up in a world of mini bikes, dirt bikes and go kart. He became addicted to Class 11 racing when he and his brother modified a stock 1967 VW bug and raced in M.O.R.E (Mojave Off-Road Racing Enthusiast). A certified Eagle Scout, he is trained in wilderness survival, navigation and first aid. We hope we never need to call upon his “wilderness survival skills.”
Bob “Bus Boy” Russell, driver, mechanic, team sommelier
Bus Boy Bob has owned many VW’s, including three Rabbits, a ’69 Bug, a ’73 Super Beetle, a ’69 Bus, an ’82 Vanagon Camper, a ’91 GTI and a ’77 Westy. Fine dining waiter for 20 years but should have been VW mechanic! 20-year semi-pro bicycle racer and mechanic. “I can fix your VW or bicycle and answer any questions you have about the wine.”
Max “Mad Max” Davis, graphic designer
Max is a sports and outdoor enthusiast as well as a motorhead. Max has operated the Max Davis Company for 19 years. A one-man design firm, he has designed for Nike, San Francisco 49ers, San Jose Sharks, San Jose Clash as well as many Harley-Davidson dealerships. He has 5 motorcycles, a 47 Merc, 7 bicycles and a passion for travel. His father lives with Type 2 diabetes.
Shawn Kovach-Long, driver, paint & body work
Shawn earned a private pilot’s license at 17. An experienced wrencher, he once owned the fastest car on the team, a stunning blue Corvette, which he claimed he used to practice in preparation for the Baja 1000. “Anyone can drive a car on a drag strip or go fast and turn left. But it takes a special talent to pilot a rocketing stock VW across the Mexican desert at speeds approaching 30 mph.”
Seth “Blue Cross” Schrenzel, driver, chase, medic, logistician
Seth is a San Franciscan specializing in event and trip logistics and a 12-year emergency room nurse. A long-time Burning Man staffer, Seth has been responsible for the logistics of several departments at Burning Man. His Ford F-150 is “Chase One.” He can legally diagnose you if you say “It hurts when I do this.”
A.J. “Ice” Jennings, chase vehicle, videographer, communications nerd
A software engineer by trade, A.J. was shanghaied into Desert Dingo Racing by good friend Seth “Blue Cross” Schrenzel after watching “Dust to Glory.” A.J. drove Chase 2 at the 2008 Baja 1000 and served as team videographer. He fabricated a custom chase, equipment transport and communications vehicle for the team nicknamed “AWACS” and honed his racing skills on the xBox. Also, his name really is “A.J.”