RASC Snowflake

Rainier Auto Sports Club  

The Wishbone Alley Gazette

January, 2002

Club Meeting

It’s Dues time

$17 Single, $20 Family. (amount in paper version of WAG was a typo)

The club meeting is at Billy McHales in Factoria, again.

Rally News

The first round of the 2002 local calendar is printed in this WAG.

The list is confined to NW rallys. You’ll have to find the SOVREN calendar, SCCA road races, cone crushers, and WRC schedules elsewhere.

The ever-optimistic Northwest Region-SCCA “rally group” scheduled some “mini-rallys”, but those may not happen unless some roads can be found. (The same goes for rallycross sites.)

The Wild West returns to the Saturday-Sunday schedule, sacrificing all the impact the Friday event made on local newscasts.

The local Friday Niter started out as a chance to “tune up” skills, teamwork, and equipment for “real” TSD rallys. Now we have a “Novice Series”, with points based on the F1 structure. When I asked what happened to the old “Three events or one win, and you ain’t a Novice anymore” rule, I was told that “Novice” has been redefined. There is a joke about “retaining virginity” in there someplace…

The first one is on February 8, sponsored by NWRC. I assume that RASC will be asked to provide a crew.

Jerry Hines has completed a pre-run of the summer Alcan, which returns to Yellowknife. (Nothing makes you appreciate air travel more than driving to Yellowknife in the summer. Well, maybe driving across Kansas.)

 When first proposed, the idea of a motorcycle class stretched the concept even further than previous crazy ideas, but plans are being made- it’ll happen. For one thing, there’s a whole bunch of bikes out there that were intended for this sort of thing. Much like people buying off-road-ready SUVs and cars for their daily commutes.

Conflicts- April 21: RASC vs. the Canadians; October 5: ORCA vs. stage rallyists, and Reno stage rallyists vs. Canadian stage rallyists; July 20: Chuckanut SCC vs. Canadians. Hopefully the US will respond in typical fashion and buy off the Canadians ($CDN, of course)

Coast 2 Coast on Vancouver Island? (Is the moth plague over?)

TRNT is not The Road Not Taken, since the latter was an SCCA event, and the TRNT is….something else.

There are murmurs that there will be nearly-live coverage of the WRC rallys on Speedvision, probably a 1/2 hour report at 8PM our time.

Club News

Mike Jones is President, Jerry Hines is VP, Eric Horst is Secretary, and Ed Millman retains the checkbook. Kirk Simons and Steve Willey are Board members-at-large.

At http://www.rainierautosports.com, the links seem to be up to date.


  • 3 VHF radios already tuned to 151.625 Mhz.  This frequency is used on long distance rallies and is a requirement for Alcan. GE MASTR radio. 60 watts, ex-police radio. Control head and trunk mounted radio.   4 channels.  Very powerful. Used twice on Lost Patrol. $75.00
  • Motorola MCX100.  1 channel.  About 30 watts. $50.00
  • Uniden Force.  Has a removable Walkie Talkie.  35 watts.  10 channels.  $50.00
  • These radios do not include antennas or installation.  (Installation assistance negotiable)
  • Peter Linde. E-Mail buckley2wa@hotmail.com or leave message at 253-804-7465.
  • Ed Millman got a '97 Taurus, wants to sell the '91 white Taurus wagon. 150K mi. $2000 (206) 361-7389
  • Mike Jones still has the collection of parts in his garage that could make somebody a dandy Fire Arrow. Make an offer. (425) 823-8329
  • Colleen wants a convertible.  The pearl white (with white 17" wheels and new tires)  '89 Corvette is offered at $9900 $8900 Call Jerry or Colleen at (206) 227-6343 or (425) 823-6343.
  • '94 Suburban for sale. New rear differential, alternator, tires, A/C compressor, updated wheels, pw, ps, pdl, rear ac, 3rd seat, recent brakes. Well-kept truck and tow vehicle. $10,500  
  • ’84 BMX 318, rebuilt head, etc, Inc. studded tires (unmounted) $2500 Contact Pete Shelton (206)783-5681


  • Mike Jones is unemployed, again.
  • Eric and Diana Horst have been camping out at a nearby motel while their home was rebuilt for most of December. A water pipe broke, and thoroughly flooded the place before they could shut it off.
  • Well-dressed rally workers will have a new accessory this year- cloisonné pins. They cost the Region about 90¢ each, not a trifle to be worn once and tossed.

NW Rallyists’ Calendar

Call the NWRC Hotline (206) 256-9627 for latest info on Puget Sound TSD events.

The local Friday Nighters start at the Eastgate (Bellevue) Park and Ride lot. Registration opens at 6:45, First Car Out at 7:31. Participating clubs are Olympic Rally and Competition Association (ORCA), Torque Steerers (TS), and RASC.

 The Oregon Friday Niter series used to be on the 2nd Friday Night of the month. Something is happening in June -Father’s Day?

  • Jan 26               NWR-SCCA Workers Party, Fort Lewis Golf Club (I-5 Exit 116) 6PM-midnite No charge, door prizes. Also Regional Awards
  • Feb 8                Friday Nighter    NWRC
  • Feb 16              NWR- Sunrise Mini-Rally  Shelton
  • Feb 16-17         Thunderbird TSD ,BC Rally
  • Mar 2-3            Doo Wop (stage) Hoquiam/Tahola/Brooklyn
  • Mar 8                Friday Nighter   ORCA
  • Mar 9                CSCC TSD Rally school, Oregon
  • Mar 15              Friday Nighter (Portland)
  • Apr 12              Friday Nighter    TS
  • Apr 19              Friday Nighter (Portland)
  • Apr 20-21         Heart of Darkness,TSD, BC
  • Apr 21             Raindrop, TSD, RASC
  • May 10             Friday Nighter    ORCA
  • May 17             Friday Nighter (Portland)
  • May 18             NWR- Mini Rally (stage) Shelton
  • May 18-19       CARS Nat  Big Horn (stage)
  • May 18             Beaver Cleaver (SCCA Nat'l), Oregon
  • May 19             Barlow Trail  (SCCA Nat'l), Oregon
  • May 25-26       Rocky Mt (stage) AB
  • June 2-3          No Alibi by RASC, Wenatchee-Spokane-Wenatchee
  • June 8/9           Mt Trials, BC (stage)
  • June 14             Friday Nighter            ORCA
  • June 15-16       Dryad/Shitepoke (stage) Shelton
  • June 21             Friday Nighter (Portland)
  • June 29             Oregon Trailblazer TSD (Oregon)
  • July 12              Friday Nighter  NWRC
  • July 19              Friday Nighter (Portland)
  • July 20              Mountain to the Sea,TSD,  Oregon
  • July 20-21        Gold Digger, TSD, BC
  • July 20              Monte Carlo Rally,TSD,                                Bellingham
  • Aug 3-4            ORV Rallysprints       McCleary
  • Aug 9               Friday Nighter            ORCA
  • Aug 10             TRNT, central Oregon
  • Aug 16             Friday Nighter (Portland)
  • Aug 16-24        2002 Alcan 5000    http://www.alcan5000.com/
  • Sept 10             Kananaskis Rally AB, (stage)
  • Sept 13             Friday Nighter     TS
  • Sept 14-15        Coast 2 Coast,TSD, BC
  • Sept 14             Fri Niter (Portland)
  • Sept 20             Friday Nighter (Portland)
  • Oct 5                 Night On Bald Mtn TSD, ORCA
  • Oct 5-6             Reno Rally (stage)  NV
  • Oct 5-6             Pacific Forest Rally (stage)  BC
  • Oct 11              Friday Nighter     RASC
  • Oct 18               Friday Nighter (Portland)
  • Oct 26               Ghouls Gambol XXXVI,TSD, Oregon
  • Oct 26-27         Midnight Rally,TSD, BC
  • Nov 2               Armageddon XXI,TSD, Bellingham
  • Nov 16-17        Totem Rally, TSD, BC
  • Nov ?               NWR Mini-Winter rally, Shelton

Winter Rally Survival by Ron Sorem ©2001

You find yourself “off”… probably of your own doing… feeling a bit foolish, and begin to assess your circumstances.  Do you have enough warm clothing?  Water?  Food?  Do you have something to use to start a fire?  Do you know how to start a fire?

                Rally cars go to some exotic and faraway places.  Whether summer in the desert of Arizona where heat is a problem, or winter in the BC forests, or on the Alcan, competitors should put together a survival kit…  This may be more important than the first aid kit.

                When rallying in the snow and cold, small problems can turn into big problems in a hurry.

                Our last excursion lasted an hour and a half before first sweep.  We had (…I had) ignored the suggestion at the Novice Meeting (we weren’t Novices) to buy a local newspaper and get some matches before you leave town… Just in case.  We did manage to borrow a lighter from second sweep, another hour after the first, and soon had a warming fire growing, away from the car, in the cover of the trees.  We managed to find dry grass and fir boughs under the snow, under the trees.  Adding lichen and moss, then breaking off the dead lower limbs from the trees around the fire, we built up a small flame, enough to hold while we searched for bigger, dry wood--deadfalls and blown down branches, up to 3 inches, which we could drag to the fire and break into a manageable size.  The fire felt good…  We were actually warm enough.  We’d cleared snow away near the fire and piled dry needle litter around to stand on, instead of the frozen ground.  Comfy?  Not really.

                As good as it was, doubt crept in…  Co-Driver asked, “What if the tow truck doesn’t find the road?”  Driver responded, “They will.  But sweep said they’d come back if we didn’t check in at the finish…” The shortfall of this statement was that they may not come back, they may assume everything went as planned, and you may be waiting for a very long time…  (I was asked by sweep when I did check in, if I’d seen anything of another car, which was still missing and unaccounted for…)     Pay close attention at the driver’s meetings, get emergency numbers.

See RallyBC’s Required Equipment for Tech Inspection” on their Web Site for the basic, most important stuff.

A quick note about running in deep snow (over the bumper powder).  It gets into everything.   Stop as soon as you can and see that the engine compartment hasn’t filled with snow, and that the radiator and grille are still unobstructed.  Also, if you park the radiator in a snowbank, dig out the grille and radiator quickly, before the snow melts and then refreezes into one big ice cube.

Winter Rally Survival Kit…

Water…  you dehydrate even in the cold, take maybe two liters per person.  Food…  energy bars, snacks, trail mix, canned fruit with pull-top, several MRE’s etc.  (Remember you can last a long time without food, but not very long without water)Batteries for your flashlights  (also those little LED key chain lights are great).  Maybe two lengths of tow straps:  2 @ 25’ or 30’--you may be a long ways “off”.  (Note that tow straps usually have “loops” at both ends and coincidentally most cars have “loops” for tow rings or tie-downs…  get something that will hook loop to loop like a 3000# carabiner or quick link… or get a tow rope with “hooks” at both ends)

In addition to the “come-along”, a short length of chain for a “choker” to tree, rock, etc.  Fire starter (matches, lighter, flint stick & tinder, etc.) (Highway flares work great but may be considered “hazardous materials” at the border crossing—maybe pick up after clearing customs)  Fire materials  (paper, sterno, starting fluid for the car and the fire) (worst case scenario you can light a spare tire or seat cushion)Space Blankets, pack two per person, they’re small, use as ground cloth, reflector for the fire, shelter…whatever.  Chemical light sticks, put one in your pocket just in case…  Chemical hand warmer packets (again, pack a few, they have pretty much unlimited shelf life and can be used for hands and feet and ears).  If you can keep your Head covered, your Hands and Feet dry and warm, you can retain most of your body heat… If you are wet and cold, try to get into dry clothing ASAP!  Extra gloves or mittens to put on after you’ve gotten wet trying to dig out the car…  Dig out the car with a shortened garden hoe, to get under the car and pull snow to the outside, then shovel…  Eye Protection, clear goggles… for protection building a fire, working on the car, or while driving the car out without a windshield.  Maybe an old two-quart saucepan for digging snow, melting snow, heating coffee, cocoa, tea, soup packets, etc. Note that if the car’s engine still runs, just can’t move, you can heat with the manifold.  Tyvek® disposable coveralls, water repellant, thermal layer & cool winter camouflage.  A small camp axe or saw…  the axe could double for possible bodywork, but might take some explanation at the border crossings.  The USFS used to recommend everyone entering the woods carry a “shovel, axe and bucket” even a canvas bucket.  Jumper Cables…  Lug Wrench…  Siphon Hose…  Jugs of Antifreeze/Coolant…  Quarts of Oil…  Fan Belt(s)…   Electrical Tape…  Racer’s Tape…  Multi-Tool with good knife blade…  ¾ inch plywood pad (12x12) so the jack doesn’t sink…  Metal police whistle…  Tube of ready-mix epoxy putty for gas tank, oil pan, radiator tank…  Kit of small nuts, bolts, and washers in the usual sizes that fall off your car.  Tools to put the stuff back on your car.  Drop cloths, a couple of cheap poly tarps for working on or under the car… or for shelter from the weather, and maybe a section of clear plastic for a makeshift window, racer-taped to the space where there used to be glass before the roll.  Detailed Local Map to find where you are, to direct someone to pick you up, etc…  Most route books will have some reference to the general area, but most will not have all the roads named…  If you can follow a local map and refer to the turns in the route book, you should be able to get help to your location.  As to the Emergency Radio, if you have access to Cell Phone service great, if not, try Ham, CB, or FRS radios…  Surprisingly even these last two short-range radios may be able to reach great distances at night, depending on the atmospheric conditions and the bounce off the ionosphere… You might not be able to talk to anyone two miles away but mightbe able to reach a hundred miles away.  As long as they can call for help that’s all you care about!

                All of this should fit in an old knapsack or duffle bag and should stay with the car at all times, in the trunk or belted in the back.

 Make a checklist and check it every trip.


Thanks to all those whose rally stories contributed to the make-up of this list.

This is only a starting point but I’m hoping this will help, somewhere down the road…


Subaru RX Rally Team     10835 SE 170th Street, Renton, WA  98055     ronsorem@hotmail.com

…for really cold weather info, check out www.alcan5000.com


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