Ojibwe Forests ProRally: CPD Racing again in top ten. BEMIDJI, Minnesota Doug Havir and Scott Putnam took their CPD Racing Subaru WRX to its best finish ever at the Sports Car Club of America's Ojibwe Forests ProRally, 7th overall and 5th in...
Ojibwe Forests ProRally: CPD Racing again in top ten.
BEMIDJI, Minnesota Doug Havir and Scott Putnam took their CPD Racing Subaru WRX to its best finish ever at the Sports Car Club of America's Ojibwe Forests ProRally, 7th overall and 5th in Open Class. Havir began competing in Performance rallies only a year ago, when he drove a Production GT class Subaru WRX in the two ClubRallys associated with the Ojibwe Forests rally. Their previous top results were at Rim of the World in California and at the Main Forest Rally earlier this season, finishing ninth in both events. Havir has now moved up to Seed 2, a feat usually accomplished only after several years of rally competition.
"We were quite surprised to be running in the top ten after the first four stages," said Havir. "But the roads at Ojibwe really suit my driving style and the way our Subaru was set up. We had some advantage by starting tenth on the road because the early cars quickly churned up the sandy road surface. Cars farther back in the pack had to wade through several inches of soft sand in the corners. It was tough getting traction, but it was obviously working for us as the car and the Pirelli rally tires kept us on the road and getting good stage times."
"Ojibwe Forests is one of the favorites on the rally circuit," said co-driver Putnam. "The roads are generally forgiving, and there is a rhythm to driving them that is quite enjoyable. On the other hand, there are some jumps and corners that will catch a driver if he isn't constantly paying attention. One lapse of concentration can put the car off the road. Many front runners landed hard after jumps, damaging their suspensions or wheels, often putting them out of the rally. We were prepared for the big jump on Saturday at the Spectator Area and landed just right. Those who didn't do it just right, did not finish."
Ojibwe Forests ProRally was only CPD Racing's sixth start in a ProRally. They ran a few SCCA ClubRallies last year, their first season in the sport. Havir and Putnam finished 11th at the Oregon Trail ProRally in April, which moved them up into the next Seed group, Seed 3. A few weeks later at the Rim of the World ProRally in California, they were 9th overall, a feat they repeated at the Maine Forest Rally in July. SCCA ranks drivers on their ability, from Seed 8 (beginner) to Seed 0 (most experienced) based on how well they finish in the overall results. As a result of his finish at Ojibwe, Havir is now ranked as a Seed 2 driver.
The metallic yellow CPD Racing Subaru has become quite a hit with rally fans. It is the first car that Prodrive has built for an independent team in the SCCA ProRally Championship. The CPD Subaru is the subject of much scrutiny and close up photography at every ProRally. Prodrive also builds and maintains the Subaru World Rally Team Impreza WRX's, as well as the cars for Subaru Rally Team USA.
The team considers Ojibwe Forests as their "home" event as it is only about 150 miles from their base in the Minneapolis area. The CPD Racing #88 car was used on posters and promotional materials for the Ojibwe rally. The CPD Racing Subaru WRX was on display during Rallyfest at Bloomington Subaru (in Bloomington, Minnesota), one of the team's sponsors, a few days before the rally. Nearly a thousand rally fans from around the Minneapolis / St. Paul area attended Rallyfest to see over 20 rally cars up close and to meet the rally teams. Rallyfest was organized by Scott Putnam, who is the Fleet Sales Manager at Bloomington Subaru.