LAWLESS AND SHARKEY WIN RALLY TENNESSEE - THE SECOND ROUND OF THE UNITED STATES RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP
Thomas Lawless, the 2005 United States Rally Champion, with Irish codriver Brian Sharkey in a Mitsubishi Evo IX won tarmac Rally Tennessee, the second round of the United States Rally Championship. Daniel O'Brien and Brendan McCabe in a Subaru Impreza STi took second and Martin Donnelly with Stephen Duffy in Mitsubishi Evo IX were third. Enda McCormack with Bernard Farrell in another Mitsubishi Evo IX rounded up the Irish-American brigade.
David Alan with Ben Slocum in their handsome, black Subaru Impreza WRX won the Production All-Wheel-Drive Cup classification and placed fifth overall. Only 16 seconds behind was a new team of William Petrow and Jeremy Neyhart in Subaru Impreza WRX. Petrow, with a different co-driver, Vincent Nguyen, won the Production Cup classification at the previous round -- Rally New York USA. Scott Wilburn and Aaron Crescenti, who were battling engine issues in their Subaru Impreza WRX throughout the rally, were third.
Brad Morris and Doug Nagy in a Two-Wheel-Drive Mitsubishi Lancer won the Two-Wheel-Drive category, Dan Brosnan and Shane McCann, winners of Two-Wheel-Drive category at Rally New York USA, in a Nissan Sentra took second, and Andrew Frick and Ryan Scott in a Ford Focus placed third. Robert Maunz with Mark Sackett won the Two-Wheel-Drive Production Cup classification.
After Rally Tennessee, the Championship will continue with five gravel rounds -- Idaho Rally International, Rally West Virginia, Gorman Ridge Rally (California), Prescott Rally (Arizona) and the final round -- International Rally New York. Most rounds of the Championship allow for reconnaissance of the rally course and pacenoting.
The United States Rally Championship, now in its fifth season, is taking bold steps to make national competition more affordable and accessible to a larger number of rally teams. This is the third season of the new Championship structure that minimizes or, for many teams, eliminates the need for repeated cross-country travel during the Championship season by providing competition on each side of the country. The final round of the Championship at the end of the yearcounts both in theAtlantic Divisionand the Pacific Division and together with the results from all previous rounds decides the top spotsin the Championship. The highest-scoring six teams from the USRC Pacific Division are eligible for the coveted cash travel subsidies totaling $12,000 to attend the final round in New York.