RASC Snowflake

Rainier Auto Sports Club  

The Wishbone Alley Gazette

July, 2003

Rally News

Dryad Fest (June 7-8) – By Mark Nolte

In mid-May, two “fans” of stage rallys were killed when an errant rally car ran into them. The details have been thoroughly hushed up, but the guys were rumored to be behind a tree, and on the inside of a left turn.

SCCA (Topeka) responded by canceling all non-sponsored events, namely Club Rallys. We eagerly await (still!) the resumption of SCCA’s sanctioning of Club rallys, as well as the new rules that are taking so painfully long to formulate.

Faced with a rally weekend and no insurance, the organizers of Shitepoke/ Dryad Quest decided to put on something. A TSD. With a Gimmick Rally (Sign hunt quiz). A poker run. All on the same roads that were groomed for the stage rallys.

A good rally takes about 3 proof runs to perfect the Route Instructions. That kind of time wasn’t available. Sue Lingbloom volunteered “templates” from some Chuckanut events, and that was good enough.

Worker crews were assembled on the morning of each day. It was organized like a Stage rally, with the HAMs guarding the gates and handing out poker cards. The Control Workers were assigned to passage control locations by the Stage Captain; in my case, it was random assignments based on sunshine/shade and wind direction (dust).

Sue Calvert and the Lingblooms were most of my crew, with Ed Storer making up for Sue’’s absence on Sunday.

It worked. Oh, there were a few minor problems when course-following Tulips didn’t make it into the final Route Instructions. The two Sweep cars ended up herding laggards by the end of each day, what with a distinct lack of ‘rally craft” on the Novices’ part.

I didn’t hang around for awards, but, after all, this was just an excuse to get together and tell stories.

Fears of speeding on stage roads were solved with five (5) radar guns checking the contestants during the day.

Pacific Forest Rally (June 13-14) – By Mark Nolte 

The urge to see how other stage rallys are run was satisfied by a trip to Merritt, British Columbia for their CARS National event. The Canadians made me much for comfortable with the way we run our events here in Washington.

The "care and feeding" of workers started hopefully when rooms were made available, free of charge, to the workers.  When this turned out to be 4 to a room, I had my doubts and declined, possibly as a favor since my snoring is legendary. Beyond that, there was a resemblance to cannon fodder that was unpleasant.

The Workers gathered at a meeting room at 7AM, where final assignments were made. The clocks were synched to Canadian time, in this case 2 seconds short of WWV. I was gone by time I discovered that the CP logs were just one form, not the 2-3 that we use here. I had some blank paper, so no biggie. We got out the door at 8AM, after milling around for a while with nothing accomplished.

The organization structure was strange to me. While I've always seen a stage organized by a Stage Captain who is responsible for "his" stage, the B.C. structure was to assemble crews of 4 people, who would be dedicated to just their control (Start or Finish), while there were other people within the Stage as Road Marshals. As the "HAM" for the Stage, I didn't have a clue if they were in place, nor where. Never drove a stage.

The whole rally was controlled from headquarters, taking over the local HAM repeater. I was horrified to discover that everyone was on this single radio frequency. With Service, Pace(s), and Sweeps clamoring for airtime, it was hard for the Stage crews to get a word in. Not knowing who was at the other end of my Stage, I asked three times to get them to switch to one of the two alternate frequencies. Nothing happened the first 2, and Central Control concluded that such wasn't needed on the 3rd try, so I gave up.

 That was the stage where a civilian wandered into the stage where I was at Start. Finish was able to break in and ask the stage to stop. While I was trying to notify the Starter, Central Control was plaintively trying to get a response from me, which I answered once the countdown was stopped. (John Nispel joined me for the trip, had his radio on as the cars were started, and heard the call. He had already stopped the cars by time I got to him.)

Because a crew was late to an early stage, the whole rally was now an hour behind schedule. One of the two Sweeps was sent into the Stage to make sure the road was clear; being an iffy situation, the decision was made to scrub the stage, which was supposed to run twice (up and down). This got the rally closer to schedule.

Using this crewing structure, Team leader Andrew Dobric next led us to the pass north of Merritt, for the last stages, just our two cars worth of workers. We arrived to find a Road Guard who may or may not have been responsible for allowing traffic into the Stage. This, from my observation, because everyone who showed up at the remote area was allowed in.

As it was, large vans shuttled in to take spectators to choice spots. This seemed to include sponsors and Subaru guests. They seemed to know what they were doing, and I was just the Ham at one end, not responsible for whatever happened within the stage. In fact, little news of “happenings” slipped through.

The rally was a one-day affair. National-level entrants ran a 200km course, while Regional competitors ended their event early. The 26 or so rally cars of the morning dwindled to 13 for the later stages.

After being left to scrounging food during the day, the workers were greeted with a nice banquet at the end, plus T-shirts. The thing wrapped up at midnight.

Sam’s Track 2003 by Ron Sorem © 2003

June 28th, Hillsboro OR.  The Oregon Region SCCA and the Oregon Rally Group presented the first edition of their 2003 Summer Saturday Series, a prelude to the United States Road Rally Challenge in October.

Rally Master Kevin Poirier wrote a shortened version of Barlow Trail.  “Sam’s Track” (Samuel Barlow, Oregon Pioneer) was an SCCA Divisional Tour Rally covering four hours and 112 miles of twisting paved roller coaster and hillclimb west of Portland, with a quick loop of Sauvie Island for the flatlanders, and about 15 miles of gravel thrown in for those craving dust. 

Years ago a well-known car rental ad campaign was “We’re number Two.  We try harder”…  Well we were car number One, and we tried very hard indeed, but we’re still number Two.  Monte and Victoria Saager, in their Impreza 2.5RS, took top honors, although a brief misinterpretation of the route instructions caused minor points on the first controls.  Route instructions contained some “Zero Car Times”, where by adding your car number to the ZCT should give you perfect time at that point, regardless as it would seem, what your calculations or computer would indicate.  Monte and Victoria figured this out too late for the first of the “Do It Yourself Controls” and we found the calculation error, but couldn’t decide the “correct” DIYC time… Our computed time versus the ZCT was off by a minute, leading to general debate in the car as to which time to record as “our” time.  The confusion, and calculation error, eventually would cause the control on “Island Hopping” TSD to be scrubbed.  However the tour around Sauvie Island was well worth the effort, particularly the fresh Strawberry Fields, including Penny Lane.

Leg Two “Possum’s Tribute”, began with a 33mph hillclimb up Logie Trail, with hairpin after hairpin, wheelspin, and not enough straightaway in between to maintain the average, but surprisingly when the CAST changed to 43 there was time to recover before the first control.  The first gravel started the rally down off the mountain, with sections of brisk loose washboard.  One benefit of first car on the road is the “infinite dust window”, unavailable to car two and others. 

Leg Three “Michele’s Moment” was sedate travel past houses with views of four snow-capped peaks, then 26mph downhill on the washboard for a control, and continue down to the river plain, with level fields of corn, hay, and veggies.

Leg Four was the “Puppet Master” drive past Michael Curry Designs, home of the PuppetMaster, of Disney’s “The Lion King”.  The flat plain was broken up by quick turns along the river and through the hybrid pulpwood stands.

Leg Five “Gimme a Break” again climbed into the foothills for a DIYC at “Bunker Hill” and included a rest stop at the historic Yankton Store.  Temperature in Yankton:  102. 

Warm temperatures not withstanding, the remaining sections began to blur.  “Pilgrimage” TSD began a search for a sign, to mark a DIYC, that seemed to take forever.  Another section of gravel, aptly named “Gravelfest” ending at the old Shiloh School.  “Goin' Home” took us past Beaver Home Grange and past the RM’s house for another DIYC.  The “End of the Road!” eventually brought the rally out of the hills into Rainier OR for the finish and awards.

Three cars competed in SCCA “Equipped”, with unlimited equipment.  Monte and Victoria overcame paper errors and maintained a lead, First E, First OA.  The Ron Sorem/Max Vaysburd demise was a misread figure transferred from the route book to the DIYC log.  A 3:55 should have read 3:53, the result a max on a DIYC, and moved us to second.  Mike Daily and Nick Reynolds recovered from an off route, recalculating an entire leg to take third.

Top honors in SCCA “Limited”, and Third Overall, with limited equipment, namely a handheld calculator, went to Brandon Harer and Marcus Song (leaving his Alfa at home).

First SCCA “Stock”, Seat of Pants with a calculator, was Rob Marssdorf and Loren Jahraus in the first of two Sedona Red WRX Wagons, followed closely in sequence and points by Bruce and Janice Tabor strictly SOP in Janice’s Red WRX Wagon.

First SCCA “Stock-Novice”, SOP with a calculator was Novice April Smith and “Not-so-Novice” John Elkin.

A Subaru WRX class was included to favor the SCCA Membership promotion with Subaru marketing, and the resultant WRX attendance was noted.  First place WRX was Jenn and Mark Tabor.

Next event in the Series is the July 26 Divisional Course Rally by Monte Saager, and concluding with the August 23 Divisional Tour Rally by Matt Tabor.  All three are shortened previews of the Nationals presented as the USRRC October 17-19.

Info at www.oregonrally.com   or  503-844-6664

Coast to Coast: (Vancouver Island)

19 Entries. Eric Horst/Steve Willey got 4th UnL/4th O’all. (Steve’s still on the nearly vertical learning curve of the Timewise 798.)  Jeff McMillan/Marvin Crippen were 7th O’all, 3rd Calc. Cynthia Peterson/ Sasha Horst were 3rd in the “paper “ class/ 18th O’all.


* Marvin Crippen got his HAM licence: KD7WMU. Ron Sorem has his: KD7VSK.

* Two new members at the June meeting. Minutes of the meeting to available soon on the RASC Website.

* Roy Ward mentioned a visit to the hospital on July 10.

* The SOVREN Historics had 3 days of racing with no notable incidents. Ed Millman utterly dominated fourth or fifth place in his class but was more happy to actually finish. He may just have the “hot” carburetor fixed.

Vince Plancich was there, too. He got to do some laps with his Alfa, although he was balked from achieving real excitement by rules’n’things.

FOR SALE / Wanted:

  • Lucas' 1994 Ford Explorer XLT is for sale.  It's a 4WD 4-door with brand new automatic trans & brakes, looks & runs great.  Factory alloy wheels, tow package, tinted glass   $3950 (May special price), J. Hines 425-823-6343.
  • ’96 Town & Country, white. (Need to pick out a new ride for the next Alcan.) New heads (they crack, Chrysler is in denial.) 119K miles, loaded – leather, trailer hitch. 7 passenger. $4950 Jerry Hines 425-823-6343
  • ’74 Italian Moped. Runs. $300. On display at Café Veloce. Jerry Hines 425-823-6343
  • Future Classic: TSD rally-ready 1983 Audi Turbo Quattro Coupe.  Mars red.  170K miles.  Lots of goodies, well maintained by owner (retired mechanic) $ 7,500.00). E-mail Peter Linde at pjnconn@yahoo.com.
  • For Sale: JVC CH-PK 210 AM-FM-Cassette-12 disk CD changer. 160 watts (40x4) new in box. Single-DIN size, removable faceplate, remote mount CD changer. $200.00 cash. Roy Ward, 425-485-6225.

RASC Calendar

• Call the NWRC Hotline (206) 256-9627 for latest info on Puget Sound TSD events. NWRC Friday Niters start at the Eastgate (Bellevue) Park and Ride. Reg opens at 6:45, FCO 7:31

Friday Niters: They have started building a parking garage at the site of our usual start location on Eastgate Way. Most of the lot is fenced off. A new Park & Ride lot is now open. It is 0.50 miles WEST of the old start location, on Eastgate Way.

NW Rallys- TSD & stage

  • July 11 - Friday Nighter (NWRC)
  • July 12- Oregon Trail, Hillsboro, OR
  • July 13- Trail's End. Hillsboro, OR
  • July 18 - Friday Nighter (Cascade/Portland)
  • July 19-20 TO BE RESCHEDULED:
  •  Gold Digger,TSD,            Pemberton, B.C.
  • July 20 - Mountains to the Sea, Cascade SCC, Portland
  • Rainier Auto Sports Club, P.O. Box 852, Kirkland, WA 98134
  • Aug 2  ORV Rallysprint I, McCleary, WA
  • Aug 3- ORV Rallysprint II, McCleary, WA
  • Aug 2-3 Maine Forest PRO-Rally
  • Aug 8 - Friday Nighter (ORCA)
  • August 9-10 - The Road Not Taken (SCCA Nat'l) Grand Ronde, OR.
  • Aug 15 - Friday Nighter  (Cascade/Portland)
  • Sept 6- Sou'Wester, Olympia, WA
  • Sept 7- Simpson Stages, Shelton, WA
  • Sept 12 - Friday Nighter (RASC)
  • Sept. 19 - Friday Niter (Cascade/Portland)
  • Sept. 26-27  Mountain Trials (stage), Merritt, B.C.
  • Oct. 4 - Night on Bald Mountain (ORCA)
  • Oct 10 - Friday Nighter (Torque Steerers)
  • Oct. 17-18 - SCCA National TSD championship, Portland, OR
  • Oct 25-26 - Midnite Rally,TSD, Victoria, B.C.
  • Nov. 1 - Armageddon, Chuckanut, Bellingham
  • Nov. 15-16 Totem TSD, Cache Creek, B.C.

Rainier Auto Sports Club

will meet this coming Monday, July 14, at 7:30 PM at Café Veloce at the Totem Lake shopping center. Best way I can think of to get there is north on I-405, take the "NE 124th" exit, then keep right under NE 124th and straight at the signal. This puts you on Totem Lake Blvd, not whatever the frontage road is next to I-405. Then right first poss, with the Café on your right at that point.

 Monthly meetings are the second Monday of each month. Past Members, visitors, and spectators are welcomed.

Agenda: Just completed Oregon Trail report from those who were there. Maybe some boasting from recent entrants in summer events. Jerry is hearing rumors of a Mitsubishi Alcan entry- maybe he’ll share.

Jerry also ran across a “deal’ on some driving lights. The word spread and he doesn’t have any left, but there may be some swapping. Or Mike Jones may not want the PIAA’s he reserved.

The club may purchase a binding machine. Besides looking good, the price is good. To be discussed.

2002 Board Members:

 President: Steve Willey – (206) 417-8517; Vice-President: Jerry Hines (425) 823-6343;                                 Secretary: Eric Horst  (206)363-9752;  Treasurer: Ed Millman (206)361-7389

Members at Large:, Mike Jones- (425)823-8329, Mark Nolte- (425)652-3578

The Wishbone Alley Gazette is published for the members and friends of Rainier Auto Sports Club. Subscription price is $10 per year.

 The editor is Mark Nolte, ph. (425)652-3578. View back issues at http://www.rainierautosports.com/wag/default.htm

Contributions and paid/unpaid ad eagerly received at

 2108 NE 12Th. St., Renton, WA 98056  or e-mail: mnolte@blarg.net



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