ProRally: Oregon Trail: Metalmarks Rally Team summary

Second in Group 5 for Havas/Kean at Oregon Trail Rally HILLSBORO, Oregon A mechanical problem nearly kept the Metalmarks Rally Team of Chris Havas and Dave Kean out of the SCCA Oregon Trail ProRally before the start, but a last minute repair ...

Second in Group 5 for Havas/Kean at Oregon Trail Rally

HILLSBORO, Oregon A mechanical problem nearly kept the Metalmarks Rally Team of Chris Havas and Dave Kean out of the SCCA Oregon Trail ProRally before the start, but a last minute repair allowed them to make it all the way to the finish. The pair brought their 2001 Volkswagen Golf home second in the Group 5 category, and 9th overall.

"The water pump failed on the practice stage before the rally," explained driver Chris Havas. "It took awhile to locate the problem because it was a new part. We were able to locate a replacement and installed it prior to the first stages on Friday night. From then on the car ran great."

Though there were no particular issues with the car mechanically, a large rock nearly ended their weekend. "We hit a large rock with the right front on the second stage on Saturday," said Havas. "I knew right away that we had lost the tire, but we ran the rest of the stage on the flat. There was some body damage from the flapping tread, but nothing too serious. Unfortunately it cost us nearly two minutes in time."

The Vermont-based team eventually finished two minutes and 18 seconds behind the Group 5 winners, Doug Shepherd and Pete Gladysz in a factory-backed Dodge SRT-4. "We did beat Doug on a few stages," continued Havas, "but the time lost with the flat put him too far ahead to catch without risking our finish. Rim of the World is in just a couple of weeks, and we'll be pushing each other, probably once again into the top 10." Some modifications to the turbocharged VW since last season have made the car even more competitive. A higher-volume turbo from Bob Legere has added more horsepower. New sponsor Griffin Radiators provided a much larger radiator which seems to have eliminated an overheating problem that bothered the team last year. The car also spent time on the dyno at XX Tuning in Connecticut to wring optimum power out of the engine

Oregon Trail is the second event in the Sports Car Club of America ProRally Championship presented by Hot Wheels. It is based out of Hillsboro, and runs on closed mountain roads between Portland and the Pacific coast.

This is the first year that Mattel's Hot Wheels has backed the SCCA ProRally series, which is in its 32nd season. Look for special edition Hot Wheels rally car replicas to be introduced in the next few months.

Metalmarks Rally Team is based out of Burlington, Vermont. Their rally car is a 2001 Volkswagen Golf with a 1.8-liter turbocharged VW engine.

-www.metalmarks.com-

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Series SCCA