The Baja 1000 race in Mexico, remains one of the largest, and most competitive single stage off-road races in the world. With a variety of classes from full custom, professional racing vehicles, to almost stock amateur vehicles.
One thing most if not all of them have in common, is the need for one or a number of chase vehicles. These chase vehicles are required to carry the support crew, spares, fuel, spare drivers, mechanics and any other possible crew or requirements to the various pits and stops so that they are close by should the main race vehicle need anything.
Building a Baja Chase vehicle, one of the first things to consider, is what is going to be carried in or on it. If only crew, mechanics and drivers, then a SUV would suffice, but if spares, fuel, tools and other gear are to be carried also, then a truck would be the only option.
Not only having a truck, but firstly installing a service bed on it, will allow the carriage and organization of a lot more spares, tools and parts than a regular truck bed will allow. Labeling each compartment and tool also helps to save a tremendous amount of time.
Driving and spot lights is the next consideration, as you will be driving in the desert, with mostly zero other lights around at night, decent lighting allowing greater visibility to avoid obstacles and find routes will be very helpful.
Not only driving and spot lights, but work lights around the truck, to provide lighting for visibility at night when working on vehicles or parts and repairs, are crucial.
Using proper ratchet-straps to tie down, all, but especially heavy spares and parts prevents the loss of them, but also the danger to your self and others should these parts become airborne or keep traveling when you brake or turn.
Decent off-road tires are an important part of maintaining control and grip when traveling on dirt at speeds.
The suspension setup needs to provide both added load carrying capacity, and performance, to ensure you can carry the added weight of all the extra tools and spares, but also do so at speed, whilst maintaining control of the vehicle, and without everything bashing and rattling loose.