Tecate, CA. 7:15am
40 bikes and huge support heading South...
Follow the Rip @ RipToTheTip.com!
Wow! 40 bikes on a group ride that far.
Does not sound like that much fun to me...sounds more like drama x 40 ...
Hope the dust stays down for them.
I don't see any KTM's in the picture, but my money is on an Orange bike breaking first.
I agree if the 2010 baja 1000 and 2011 san felipe 250 KTM efforts are any indication
If rumors are true....
If rumors are true....
It appears they are true. Just a terribly sad day.
OX passed away early this afternoon after a tumble in the whoops north of Diablo lake bed. We are respectful to OX's immediate family and closest friends. Allow the time to let these folks mourn properly. Johnny C and Cameron are very close to OX and they are extremely disrought with grief.
Please pray for and keep OX's closeSt friends and family in your thoughts.
No further details at this time. Many tributes will follow.
My heart and prayers to family and friends of Ox, a sad day indeed.
Incredibly sad.. RIP.
Rip, very Sad...condolences to his Family
The world of off road mourns the loss of rising star Jeff “OX” Kargola. OX passed away this afternoon riding in Baja with the Monster Energy Rip To the Tip. A two-time, repeat champion of the San Felipe 250 Kargola, along with team mate Colton Udall, leads the SCORE series points championship after round one for the bikes.
According to early reports, Kargola may have died from internal injuries and while it’s far to soon to speculate, it is possible that multiple broken ribs may have caused a punctured lung after a high speed tumble in the whoops.
This is extremely sobering and saddening news for a handful of Ox’s closest friends and all of the “Rip Brothers” who were accompanying him on an 8-day adventure from the US border to Cabo San Lucas. OX had built a solid career in the world of FMX and performed on tour with the traveling FMX stunt show “Nuclear Cowboys”. He was also climbing the ranks of short course truck racing on the Lucas Oil Off Road Series. Ox was also an accomplished surfer noted for his prowess in big waves including huge Waimea Bay in Hawaii.
Cameron Steele, one of Kargola’s closest friends and more of a father figure to him, mentored OX and has been an integral part of helping his career blossom into what it is today.
Steele, the co-founder and official ringleader of the Monster Energy Rip To the Tip, addressed the Rip Brothers at the El Cortez Hotel in San Felipe this afternoon. In a somber announcement, Steele explained that despite the incredible teamwork of the Rip crew in stabilizing OX, he had passed around noon shortly after he arrived by helicopter to the hospital in San Felipe.
In the emotional yet stoic address, Steele said “He was like a son to me and he loved you all like brothers.”
Later as the sun had set, an impromptu memorial was staged for the entire Rip crew to pay tribute to our fallen brother. His bike was placed on a stand under bright lights and surrounded in a circle of his brothers and our bikes. Many of his closest friends approached the bike and paid tribute with stories and memories of OX. Baja legend Johnny Campbell eulogized his brother, “Jeff was an extraordinary athlete. He never ceased to amaze me with his multiple talents. Whether it was off road moto racing, truck racing, big wave surfing or FMX, he excelled with incredible style. We are all very sad and mourning the loss of our brother. God speed my friend!”
So sad, my thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends.
Johnny Campbell takes over as trail boss today, led the Rip from SF to BOLA. Great job JC.
Johnny Discusses the Continuation of the Rip
RIP Ox.... horrible to hear of this happening... You will be missed...
RIP to the Tip -- RIP now reverts back to its' original meaning: Rest In Peace.
Safety and well wishes for the remainder of the Journey..
Hey, if you guys want memorial stickers/ decals made, you can contact my buddy. He does decals for fire departments however he is a dirt rider as well. Just an idea. His website is coderdecals.com his name is Nick.
Sad day for all the baja friends. RIP
At sunset tonight. Props to BD, Lobster, Baja Nomad, Trey, Amazing Ricardo for laying out an incredible section today, some things almost none of us have seen. I won't give it away but it was RAD.
Great photos and recap coming eventually.
In advance, we'd like to wish all the BAJA bros on TT a happy DRINKO de MAYO
In Honor Of “OX”: 2011 Rip To The Tip
There can be a great irony in the sudden loss of life and many hidden messages in a tragic death. For nearly 40 riders known as the 2011 Rip Brothers, this past week proved to be filled with irony and symbolism as the Rip Bros and their exceptional support crew rolled their dirt bikes into the heart of Cabo San Lucas on Cinco de Mayo to celebrate the life of our fallen brother, Jeff “Ox” Kargola.
The Desert Assassins, Metal Mulisha crew of riders and support team began their annual pilgrimage down the length of the Baja Peninsula as they have for the past 6 years. On day 2 of the 8-day ride, tragedy struck the Rip Brothers when Jeff was suddenly taken from us. News of Ox’s passing spread instantly throughout the world and the harsh reality of our own mortality cast a heavy cloud over the Rip as Cameron “PAB” Steele and a handful of Jeff’s closest bros decided leave the Rip to return home with Jeff to mourn with their close-knit Metal Mulisha extended family. Jeff would have wanted all of his bros to continue onward but the stinging pain and numbing grief was too much for some of those closest to him to bear on the trail. So they stuck together as a family would and returned home while the Rip continued south.
For the remaining Rip Bros, we looked to our new trail boss, 11-Time Baja 1000 Champion Johnny Campbell to guide us onward on day 3 and beyond. The legendary Campbell took the reins and led the rip southbound toward the Bay of Los Angeles on the gulf side through some of the most pristine single track many of us had seen. We started off in a literal sandstorm as the winds kicked up from the east with 45 MPH gusts. One anonymous Rip Bro said he looked up at the sky all day and saw nothing but Jeff’s smiling face filing the panorama. Further along this day’s recovery route which connected Gonzaga Bay with Coco’s Corner and Chapala dry Lakebed, Campbell, Lobster, and Baja Nomad Jesse Beck chanced upon another living Baja legend, noted trailblazer Bill Nichols. This was a real treat for the Rip Bros as Nichols is highly regarded as the father of many of central Baja’s most coveted trails. As the Rip needed to continue, it was important for the remaining bros to pull it together for Jeff and our absent brothers. Roosting the dry lakebed and popping wheelies for the TV camera crews helped the bros get back in the game before we set our sights to the east toward BOLA.
At that night’s dinner, the original OG, Mark “Big Daddy” Steele gave a touching tribute to Jeff by reflecting that his passing had an especially hard-hitting effect on him but that he knew Jeff would want it no other way than for the bros to keep going. We missed Cameron, Hagy, Cropley, Peebles, Ritchie and Trigger hoped they would somehow make it back onto the trail further down the Baja.
The open space of the majestic Baja peninsula can be as healing and therapeutic as it is wild and unforgiving. For those of us who know the Baja, it’s the common thread that binds us as a community of off road lovers who show respect and gratitude to the locals of Mexico. The amount of collective Baja savvy on this group is unheralded and those with special knowledge shared freely. Thus, noted cameraman and cinematographer Kevin Ward pulled a special treat out of his hat for the Rip Bros on Day 4 from Bay of LA toward San Ignacio. Breaking off the 2010 Baja 1000 for a special “Green Door” route led the bros through some washes and tight double track toward the junction for Rancho Escondido and Punta San Francisquito. It was a detour that was not planned but turned out to be an epic one. Further on down the route, the Rip Bros convened at the old Mission in the heart of San Ignacio and were welcomed by throngs of locals who quickly spread word that Baja Legend Johnny Campbell was in town. The “True Champion” spent time with locals signing stickers and t-shirts while the Bros posted up on the steps of the church. Meanwhile, back at Rice and Beans, Ricardo and his crew were putting together an epic meal of fried seafood, steak and chicken with all the usual trimmings. In the Rip-Bivouac, riders and crew took care of bike service for the next day.
About the Rip-Bivouac and exceptional support crew:
Not unlike the world famous Dakar Rally, the Rip To the Tip features a military-style makeshift encampment which is set up flawlessly at the end of each riding day. The support and chase crew were lead by 15-year Baja racer Brian “Scrambler” Busby, who had the daunting task of moving the entire support and chase fleet down the Baja Peninsula. This undertaking would not go unnoticed, as this feat could not have been more of a logistical challenge. Nevertheless, at the end of each day, 40’ trailers flanked each other with bright floodlights to illuminate the Rip-ouac. The caliber of the service and chase team are second to none, not just with immense Baja and tech savvy, but with enthusiasm and service with a smile. It’s important to note here that many such Baja tour companies and organized rides include a support and service crew, but on the Rip a special pride and honor among the Rip Brotherhood sets these folks far apart from any other such crew. We can’t emphasize this enough as each gas and lunch stop was also set up meticulously to spec with every possible amenity one could conjure up.
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