ProRally: Sand Hills Saturday notes

Sand Hills Sand Blast PRO Rally Cheraw, South Carolina Round ...

Sand Hills Sand Blast PRO Rally Cheraw, South Carolina Round #2 - SCCA/Michelin PRO Rally March 16, 1996, 3:00 PM 10. 28 cars took the starter's countdown in front of Quincy's Family Restaurant in Cheraw starting at 1:01 PM on Saturday afternoon. This is the largest field for this event since it became a 60 percent national rally (national license-holders get 60 percent of points available at a full national event) in 1994. The good weather has pulled in a record number of workers as well, in addition to a large number of spectators at the daytime spectator area. With the spectator area in walking distance from the first service, service crews will actually be able to see their cars run during the rally. Temperature at start time was 77 degrees F, with little wind and no humidity. 11. Although all the cars made it through stage #1 without incident, the rally has fallen behind as the organizers inadvertently had the cars at three-minute intervals. Organizer Greg Healey might shorten a service later in the event, and do away with stage #7 - the rally's shortest stage - to make up the difference. 12. In the time-warp department, the Open class 1983 Audi Quattro of Bruno Kreibich/Rod Hendricksen continues to be a show-stopper at Parc Expose, and looks better than it did when it came from the factory. Bruno wants to let everyone know that, in the scene from the SportsChannel show in December showing Pat Ayer passing him, that he pulled over to let Pat by - he did not stuff it in the snowbank. Hendricksen pointed out the that he and Bruno had 49 years combined PRO Rally experience, not the 50 years mentioned in the February issue of SPORTSCAR. The season has begun! 13. We've talked about Open and Group 5 classes, but there are several other battles of note. Both the Kurt Thiel/George Anderson VW GTI and the Gerry Sweet/Stuart Spark Saab 99EMS won Group 2 events last year, and should wage quite of battle for the 12 points awarded for first place in this event. The big "two" in the Production class are the two Honda Prelude VTEC's of Greg Trepetin/Sonia Trepetin and Jim Anderson/Martin Dapot. Perhaps the fastest Production class vehicle, the #66 Ford Escort GT of Peter Ford/Kirsten Sachwitz, is last in the field because this is Mr. Ford's first event, and he is running the divisional class only. The car, owned by -more- -2- Production class champion Tad Ohtake, is being rented to Peter Ford this weekend, and Ohtake is crewing for the team. 14. The Audi Quattro of Constantine Mantopoulus/Barry Berg, which won the now-defunct Group A class at the last event in 1995, expected to run Production GT this year, but their 1987 vehicle is too old (must be 8 years old or newer to qualify). The now-Open class Quattro, which has already won its season debut at the divisional event at Bridgehampton (NY) in February, has beefed up its suspension this year after fixing a broken suspension member from the Maine event. There are no other Production GT vehicles running the event. 15. After three stages, we have the following reports from the field: --The Jay Kowalik/Jeff Wheeler Acura Integra GS-R - yes, it's the former Peter Cunningham championship car - ran of the course on stage #3, as did the VW GTI of Doug Davenport/Lynn Dillion but both were pulled out by sweep in time to finish the stage without being time-barred (30 min. after the last car finishes). --The Porsche of Mike Hurst/Rob Bohn went off the course at the end of stage #3, and were reported to be stuck in a ditch. The sweep busy vehicle pulled them out, however, and the duo is still in the event. --The Ford Escort GT of Peter Ford/Kirsten Sachwitz is of the event at the end of stage #1 with mechanical problems, possibly a fuel pump failure. --The Triumph TR-8 of John Shirley/Kendall Russell also failed to answer the bell for stage #2 - cause unknown. --The Audi Quattro of Constantine Mantopoulus/Barry Berg lost its bumper on stage #3, but the rest of the field managed to avoid it on the course, and the sweep vehicle picked it up. # # #

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Series SCCA
Drivers Peter Cunningham , John Shirley , Rod Hendricksen , Greg Healey , Jim Anderson