SCCA ProRally Championship - Round 3 - Oregon Trail Day One Results and News The British are coming - again Tillamook, OR, The skies cleared just moments prior to the start, which gave the large crowd gathered at the Air Museum a great view of...
SCCA ProRally Championship - Round 3 - Oregon Trail
Day One Results and News
The British are coming - again
Tillamook, OR, The skies cleared just moments prior to the start, which gave the large crowd gathered at the Air Museum a great view of the field as they splashed and slid their way through the .75 mile spectator stage set on a devilish combination of mud, gravel and WWII era concrete at the airfield.
Key Notes and Quotes:
* The weather rapidly deteriorated after that, with a constantly changing scenario facing the drivers as they worked their way into Oregon's coastal high country. Snow, local hailstorms and rain kept tire choices and suspension settings in constant flux, with many teams simply going on best educated guesses throughout the day.
* Bad luck simply cant describe what Noel Lawler and Charles Bradley have gone through today - in fact Bradley is describing it at the best luck of all - escaping from their Hyundai without a scratch after rolling their Tiburon and landing 'like a pancake' in the bottom of a creek some 15 feet (4.5m) below the roadway. The duos wild rooftop ride, their second in as many events, came to an end about three quarters of the way though SS2, with Bradley convinced that the two feet of water they landed upside down in actually cushioned the impact.
* Series points leader Seamus Burke had an exciting ride, "soft" rolling his Mitsubishi near a spectator point on SS3. While thoroughly wrinkled, Burke lost barely 30 seconds in the incident, and continued on. At the next service, the team replaced the windshield, and banged out a few panels, allowing the Irishmen to continue on with literally no delay.
* Paul Choiniere is having problems of his own, with front driveshaft and transaxle problems slowing the 2000 series champion considerably. He is currently in 11th position overall.
* The British Invasion of US Rally, headed up by Mark Lovell/Steve Turvey (Prodrive Subaru) and Richard Tuthill/John Bennie (Mitsubishi) is turning out to be an incredible battle to watch, as these leading drivers from across the pond battle it out on Oregon's slippery logging trails. At the end of day one, Lovell had a nearly two-minute advantage over Cherokee Trails winner Tuthill, due mostly to turbocharger problems that beset Tuthill early in the days running. Repairs made late in the day got the Mitsubishi back up to speed, setting the stage for an exciting day two.
* Rhys Millen's day came to an unfortunate end with a missed route instruction causing the New Zealander to get his Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VI to get high-centered on the edge of a stage road, and waiting for a tow. The car is fine, but he was time-barred from the event.
* Karl Scheible, the 2000 SCCA ProRally Gr N Champion, appears to have all of his mechanical woes of the previous event solidly behind him, is leading his class and finished day one in 3rd position. The competition is tight however, as less than two minutes separate him from the next four drivers, and his closest Gr N challenger, Ramana Lagemann.
* In the SCCA classes, a variety of stories are being written. Carl Jardevall easily leads Gr5 and finished the day in 6th place overall, an absolutely astounding placement in his two wheel drive Volvo. The traditional Group 2 "Spec-Car" battle of Volkswagons is being handily led by Oregon natives Nate Tennis and Nate Petit in a 1973 vintage SAAB 99.
* Day two of the Oregon Trail Rally begins tomorrow at 9:00 AM from the Tillamook Plaza in downtown Tillamook. A total of five stages will be run Sunday, with the last stage revisiting this morning's spectator stage at the Blimp Hangar.