ProRally: Rim of the World preview

SCCA ProRally Championship - Rim of the World Palmdale, CA A record field of 59 Performance Rally cars from North America and abroad are entered in the 18th running of the Rim of the World SCCA ProRally Championship event. The two-day ...

SCCA ProRally Championship - Rim of the World

Palmdale, CA A record field of 59 Performance Rally cars from North America and abroad are entered in the 18th running of the Rim of the World SCCA ProRally Championship event. The two-day international rally will be held in the Angeles National Forest, on narrow fire control trails that follow the mountain peaks along the San Andreas Fault. The Rally, which starts tomorrow, is sanctioned by the Sports Car Club of America, Inc., and is internationally listed by the FIA.

Selected late entries, news (driver/co-driver):

* Rim of the World is known as a true grinder of men and machines, and last years running was no exception - with a mere 15 Pro cars running at the finish out of over 50 starters. This year's event is likely to be no different. Finding the right pace, and not taking chances, is what finishing well - or just finishing, is all about at 'The Rim.'

* 1999 SCCA Production Class and 2000 SCCA/FIA Gr N Champion Karl Scheible with co-driver Brian Maxwell; FIA Group N 2002 Subaru Impreza WRX - Karl has had a well-paced season thus far, barring his unfortunate mechanical DNF at Cherokee Trails in March. This event marks the world competition debut of the 'new body' Subaru WRX in Gr. N trim, and should be quite the proving ground of the cars mettle. Karl did well here last year, taking the overall win, and marking the first time a Gr N car won overall at an SCCA ProRally Championship event.

* 2000 Overall Driver and Co-Driver Champions Paul Choiniere and Jeff Becker; SCCA Open Class 2000 Hyundai Tiburon - while leading the MFG championship, Choiniere and Becker haven't had a commanding year thus far. Their convincing overall win at the season-opening Sno*Drift failed to set the stage for the season, Choiniere was sidelined at Cherokee with a persistent ear infection, and mechanical woes set them far back in the field at Oregon. Nevertheless, Rim has traditionally been a good event for Hyundai, and these champions' years of experience at this event is the teams trump card - except for Scheible's limited, but successful history, none of the MFG championship teams has any background at Rim at all.

* 2001 Oregon Trail overall winner Mark Lovell, with Steve Turvey - Lovell has shown smooth pace all season, finishing on the podium at Sno*Drift and taking a hard-earned win at Oregon Trail. Now driving a brand-new World Rally based Open class Impreza WRX, Lovell will have a significant horsepower and handling leap forward compared to the Gr N based car that he drove in the first 3 events of the season.

* If Subaru's story is one of smooth persistence, and Hyundai's story is one of gritty determination, then Mitsubishi's story is a combination of both - and more. With two independents earning all of the company's championship points thus far, Rhys Millen's works backed championship bid has been under whelming, with two DNFs for two rallys entered. Still, the new Zealander has shown good pace while running, and cant be factored out. Championship points leader Seamus Burke is clearly the Mitsubishi driver to watch, and is the only driver to stand on the podium at all three SCCA ProRally events in 2001. His drive at Oregon Trail was a sight to behold, and his determination is evidenced by the sheer number of cars he has gone through thus far: Burke starts Rim in his third different Evo in 4 events. Also high on Mitsubishi's favorites list is Richard Tuthill, the young British sensation that snagged his first US win at his US debut at Cherokee Trails, and stood on the podium at Oregon Trail as well.

* The rally starts at the Holiday Inn headquarters hotel In Palmdale, CA, at 6:30 PM, with a Parade Lap of all the cars entered. At the 7:00PM, each car will negotiate a special spectator stage at speed in a lot adjacent to the hotel giving everyone a chance to see the cars in action up close, before the cars head off into the night.

-SCCA/SCCA ProRacing-

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About this article
Series SCCA
Drivers Paul Choiniere , Richard Tuthill , Seamus Burke , Mark Lovell , Rhys Millen , Brian Maxwell