Tag Archives: 2WD Challenge

National Competition Intensifies 2WD Challenge at Prescott

The 2015 Prescott Rally was the culmination of the local California Rally Series Championship, the points battle for the Pacific Rally Cup, and the winner-take-all NASA National Rally Championship. With that as a starting point for the competition, it was going to be a real challenge to capture any of those 2C winnings. Teams from all over the country traveled to take part in the event, and this offered a unique opportunity to see just how fast the 2WD competition in the Southwest is. Our supporters, Team O’Neil Rally School and Streetwise Motorsports, believe that starting with 2WD is the best path to future success in the sport and they encourage competitors to master these skills before upgrading rally machinery.

Local competitor Brian Scott took his historic rally machine off the display floor of the local Nissan dealership and right onto the leader board for stages 1 and 2. This gorgeous Datsun 240Z has all the trimmings of a modern rally car and is an instant hit with spectators. In the right seat, Brian’s long-time experienced co-driver John Dillon made this team hard to catch at their home event. On day two however, the team broke the throttle cable (no doubt pushing it to the max) and was out of the fight.

Brad Morris had helped to arrange travel for himself and the AWD team of Eric Wages from South Carolina to take on the NNRC. Brad has driven and won this event in the past, and along with local co-driver Doug Nagy, the team was looking for the win. Setting a 4th fastest time on SS1 the team charged into the second stage. They suffered a hit to the right front of their Mitsubishi Lancer, which caused two flats. With only one spare, they limped into the first service. On Saturday they did well to climb back up into the top spots, but a broken axle would end their event on the very last stage.

Brent Lee had to scramble a bit to find a co-driver for Prescott, as his mentor John Dillon would be riding in the Datsun. Experienced Northwest co-driver Billy Irvin stepped up for the 2WD challenge, and a chance at the national championship title in Brent’s Ford Fiesta R2. The pair was quickly up to speed setting a fourth fastest on stage 2, and was just behind Millen setting second on stage 3. An electrical sensor problem that prevented the engine from knowing its temperature crept up on them and they unfortunately stopped towards the end of stage 4. In the spirit of pressing on, they would restart on Saturday but the problem resurfaced and the car refused to start after stage 8.

Mike Hurst, who has been involved with the operation of rallies for many years, so it was exciting for him to come out and race in a very clean Ford Capri loaned from Bob Olson. Along with experienced driver / co-driver Michel Hoche-Mong the team was at the head of the 2WD pack on Friday. They set great times for the first two stages on Saturday, but a leaking radiator was discovered pulling into service. The bottom of the aluminum tank had come in direct contact with the chassis, so a quick repair was out of the question and Mike chose to save the car and savor his first outing in a rally car in many years.

Two teams having a great time at Prescott were Richard Burden with co-driver Sean McElwain in Richard’s new VW Golf, and Steven Egger and Christopher Chenoweth in Steve’s BMW 318i. Richard has some experience with Irish rally, and enjoyed shaking out his new car on the technical stages. Consistent over the two-day rally, Steven approached the event with a great attitude. Both teams took to the stages and always had big smiles when they came into service.

Determination was what allowed Javier Olivares and Gian Castellanos in their Ford Escort to finish the event. An electrical problem with their fuel system cropped up on stage 9, and the team barely made the cutoff time for the next stage. It was reported that the co-driver was holding wires together to keep the car running. After their defeat at Gorman, the team was happy to be at the final time control on Saturday.

Learning just how much rally is about pressing on regardless, Jason Hamilton and Ralph Pond started their first rally with alternator problems. Competing on their very first stages they set a decent time on SS1. The Ford Mustang was running off the battery and some bad wiring was identified when they came into the first service stop after SS2. They charged it as best they could with the service truck and headed off into the night. They would retire shortly afterwards, but we know they’ll be back!

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Gary DeMasi & Marie Boyd – 5th

Making the tow all the way from Pennsylvania, Gary DeMasi was looking to challenge the roads and competitors of the Southwest. Teaming up with local co-driver Marie Boyd, the V8 Rally Ranger would tackle the wide flowing roads. Slow at first, but picking up speed, DeMasi gained confidence with the open exposures Prescott provides. Having some issues with fuel didn’t prevent them from continuing on Saturday, and Gary’s unstoppable determination would see the team all the way to the awards. Grabbing a small piece of the cash pool, Gary DeMasi and Marie Boyd were fifth in 2C and finished as the third qualified team for the national championship.

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Chris Palermo & Andy Bautista – 4th

Chris Palermo and Andy Bautista were new teammates for Prescott in their Nissan Sentra. Problems with a brake pad on Friday night was the only thing that slowed them for the weekend. Battling with Andrew Cowan and Ryan Dunham in their more powerful VW Jetta, the fight went down to the wire with Cowan losing a rear wheel on stage 12. This put Palermo into 4th place in the 2WD Challenge.

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Ray Piloto & Brock Palmer – 3rd

Ray Piloto and Brock Palmer were debuting their brand new Chevrolet Sonic at Prescott. Not wrapped up in the championship or national fight, the team had a relatively stress free weekend. Some turbo issues were sorted on Saturday morning and the climb to the top of the leader board was on. Grabbing the third fastest time on the last stage would land them third in 2C for the weekend and Ray Piloto would take home $75.

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Markus Saarinen & Alicia Saarinen – 2nd

Markus Saarinen admitted that the gearbox he had to work with was not the best for the fast Prescott stages. Along with his co-driver and wife Alicia, the couple was still flying off the jumps and cattle guard crossings that dot the roads. Matching speed with Millen on Saturday wasn’t going to be enough to take the lead, but staying in second in 2WD and fifth overall was going to capture points for the Pacific Rally Cup, and $150 of 2C cash!

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Ryan Millen & Christina Fate – 1st

Ryan Millen and Christina Fate were squarely on a mission to finish out a great season of events with their Toyota RAV4. Grabbing cash at two of the three 2C events this year, many knew they were going to be competitive at their very first Prescott. Once again using his Baja desert racing skills, Ryan was able to get out ahead on stage 3 when the sun set and the dust came up. Grabbing a minute on most of the field, the team catapulted into the lead. They take home first place in 2WD, third overall, and $250 worth of cash for winning the 2WD Challenge!

Our presenting sponsors are serious about 2WD as a starting point for rally. Team O’Neil in Dalton, NH offers classes in Ford Fiesta school cars and their curriculum focuses on starting with the skills and techniques of 2WD. Streetwise Motorsports in Rancho Santa Margarita, CA builds and supports 2WD rally cars and is ready to help you get started in 2C with their many years of technical experience.

More info on 2C – The 2WD Challenge
Prescott Rally
The event was part of the California Rally Series
This event was part of the Pacific Rally Cup
This event was the 2015 NASA National Rally Championship Final

Photos by Matthew T. Stryker
Stryker Rally Media

Season End at Prescott Rally makes for a top notch 2WD Challenge!

We saved the best for last with our 2015 2WD Challenge event at the Prescott Rally in Arizona. We knew that local teams would be pushing hard for California Rally Series points in CRS-2, and we were sure that the Pacific Rally Cup would be hotly contested. We also knew that some fast teams from the East would be out to capture the 2015 NASA National Rally Championship. With the 2WD entry list at 15, if all those cars start, Team O’Neil Rally School and Streetwise Motorsports are going to double the 2C cash for Prescott! This will be a wild 2C event.
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We’ll be watching Markus & Alicia Saarinen closely as 2WD winners of this event last year. Will they be able to set a faster pace in their Mini to stay ahead of Ryan Millen and Christina Fate driving the new RAV4? This could all be un-done with local and experienced racer Brian Scott and veteran co-driver John Dillon racing in a very well prepared Datsun 240Z who has also taken top honors at this event.

Teams from the East make up two of the 2C entries, both supported by co-drivers from the West. Brad Morris and Doug Nagy will be driving a FWD Mitsubishi Lancer. Brad is all the way out from North Carolina for this event. Traveling even further, Gary DeMasi and his V8 Ford Ranger from Pennsylvania, will be working with co-driver Marie Boyd. Going for the national win means working even harder to take the top spot in 2WD.

NASA Rally Sport Wild Card pick, Brent Lee is sure to be just that with his fast stage times and 4th place at the Gorman Rally this year. Brent will be working with an experienced co-driver from the Northwest – Billy Irvin – to tackle the Prescott Rally in their Fiesta R2.

Ray Piloto and Brock Palmer will be out in their new Chevrolet Sonic. It has some testing miles on it, so we’ll be very curious to see how it does on its debut event! A very clean Ford Capri driven by long time rally supporter Mike Hurst, with co-driver Michel Hoche-Mong, will be out on the Arizona stages. Chris Palermo and Andy Bautista will be looking for a solid drive in their well built Nissan Sentra SE-R. Javier Olivares, with Gian Castellanos, will be looking for some redemption after suffering a mechanical failure on their Ford Escort at the Gorman Rally. Andrew Cowan, with new co-driver Ryan Dunham, will be out at Prescott with their VW Jetta for the very first time. Steven Egger and Chris Chenoweth love the faster stages in their BMW 318i, and might just throw an even better after-party if some 2C cash comes their way.

Always good to have new teams joining us! Richard Burden, with a yet to be announced co-driver will be attempting his first Prescott Rally. Aaron Stump and Michael Broyles will be competing at their first event in a Mitsubishi Lancer. Jason Hamilton and Ralph Pond will be hitting the stages for the first time in a Ford Mustang.

Watch for some great 2C competition! Follow live scores and text for the Prescott Rally at http://rallydata.com. On Twitter & Instagram #PrescottRally #2WDRally @NASARallySport and on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/NASARallySport. Looking to learn to drive at the limit in a 2WD car? Go to the Team O’Neil Rally School at http://www.teamoneil.com. Looking to build a 2WD car? Talk to Streetwise Motorsports at http://streetwiseparts.com.

Ryan Millen unstoppable at Gorman 2C, absolute battle for 2nd between Lockhart and Robinson.

2c_pr-Gorman_1stSporting a field of 26 competitors, with almost half of them in 2WD, the 2015 Gorman Rally in Lebec, California made for a great 2C event! The mileage of the rally doesn’t tell the full story, as the fastest competitors on one of their 3 mile stages can’t break the 3 minute mark. Tight and twisty with hundreds of corners in the hot August sun make this rally a challenge just to finish. At the after party we got to experience the friendship and comradery that defines the California Rally Series. 2C is supported by Team O’Neil Rally School and Streetwise Motorsports who believe that starting with 2WD is the best path to future success in the sport.

Ryan Millen and Co-Driver Christina Fate have been carefully and slowly turning up the pace in their Toyota RAV4 this season, and this weekend was their time to shine. “No problems – and we’re not going to have any,” was Ryan’s mantra when they checked into the finish of stage nine. Ryan’s desert racing experience was put to the test on these stages and the team responded with an unstoppable pace from the start. Setting the fastest 2WD time on every stage but one, they took home 1st in 2WD and $250 cash for the 2WD Challenge. Quite an impressive drive on these stages!

2c_pr-Gorman_2ndAndrew Lockhart’s sister and listed Co-Driver Robin Lockhart was unable to attend last minute, so Andrew asked Michel Hoche-Mong to hop into the Co-Driver’s seat. Michel has experience driving and finishing on the podium at this event in a Volkswagen Golf, so the pair hit the ground running. Almost immediately times were being traded with another Volkswagen Golf team of Bret Robinson and Brent Ellzey. Robinson took SS1, was slower on 7 & 9, but tied Lockhart on SS8. After the service break Lockhart was a bit faster on 10 – 12, but Robinson grabbed a few seconds on SS13 and even more on 14! Anything could happen going into the last stage and Andrew Lockhart dug deep to pull out the fastest 2WD time on the Gorman Rally Power Stage! At the end of it, Andrew Lockhart collected $150 for 2nd in 2C and Bret Robinson earned $75 for a hard fought 3rd place.

2c_pr-Gorman_3rd2c_pr-Gorman_4thA last minute entry from Driver Brent Lee and Co-Driver John Dillon brought a Ford Fiesta R2 out to Gorman for Dillon’s 150th rally! Some early engine gremlins kept the team out of it until SS8 & SS9 when they jumped back into the fray of times coming out of the 2nd place battle. Their perseverance allowed them to take over 4th place on SS12 and overcoming those issues earned them $25 for 4th in the 2WD Challenge. We look forward to seeing Brent Lee and John Dillon at future events!

2c_pr-Gorman_5thHaving the most fun of any 2C team out on the stages, Chrissie Beavis and new Co-Driver Erica Sacks were always smiling when they arrived at the finish controls. Driving their Volkswagen Jetta through all the tough and twisty stages, the team had a great event and a great attitude. With a 5th place finish in 2WD they received $15 on top of the champagne for winning the California Rally Series P-Stock class.

Both of our presenting sponsors are serious about 2WD as a starting point for rally. Team O’Neil in Dalton, NH offers classes in Ford Fiesta school cars and their curriculum focuses on starting with the skills and techniques of 2WD. Streetwise Motorsports in Rancho Santa Margarita, CA builds and supports 2WD rally cars and is ready to help you get started in 2C with their many years of technical experience. Looking to learn to drive at the limit in a 2WD car? Go to the Team O’Neil Rally School at http://www.teamoneil.com. Looking to build a 2WD car? Talk to Streetwise Motorsports at http://streetwiseparts.com.

Our next event is already going to see a huge field of competitors as the Prescott Rally is the 2015 NASA National Rally Championship event. This winner take all, East vs. West competition, will have the extra bonus of being a 2C event again this year. Let’s get more than 15 2WD cars on the start list so we can double the winnings! We’ll see you in Prescott, Arizona on October 2nd, or you can follow the action online with #2WDRally #USRally #PrescottRally @NASARallySport

Big 2C field to challenge the twisty Gorman Rally

Gorman is a rally that defines the toughness and spirit of Southern California rally competitors. If you’re from out of town, don’t call it “rough”. Gorman is the reason competitors from here are often successful all over the US. It’s a rally that teaches you what rocks and terrain to avoid. It shows you how hot your engine bay can really get, and how inadequate that rear skidplate you made out of 1/8″ steel is. Cap that all off with a legendary after party and you’ll never look at “just finishing” the same. Presented by Team O’Neil Rally School and Streetwise Motorsports: 2C the 2WD challenge makes this victory even sweeter with a cash prize for the top 5 2WD competitors.

Ryan Millen with co-driver Christina Fate will be taking the challenge for the first time in the RAV4. We’re not too worried as Ryan’s desert racing experience will really come into play here, but this will be a serious test for the new Toyota. Look for Ryan to pull off a solid finish and not take too much risk – the question is: Will this strategy be enough to land him in a top 2WD spot?

Markus and Alicia Saarinen will be looking for a bit of redemption at Gorman. Last year a mistake over a long crest landed them off the road, and literally ripped a wheel and strut off the tough little Mini Cooper. They will need to keep it clean here at Gorman to match their win in Idaho.

Bret Robinson is back to challenge 2C from his last outing in Prescott 2014 where he captured 3rd place cash in his VW Golf. This time with seasoned co-driver Brent Ellzey. These two have raced Gorman for years and will be prepared to challenge for the top spot. Also in a VW Golf: Andrew and Robin Lockhart are back to Gorman after not running the event for a few years. Look for this to be a great VW rivalry!
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Co-Driver Chrissie Beavis slides over to the drivers seat again, this time to compete with co-driver Erica Sacks – Erica, the first US competitors to enter the Gazelle Rally in a side-by-side quad. Both of them have completed the Gazelle. That rally being a nine-day, all-women, off-road rally across the Sahara Desert. This team will no doubt have an interesting perspective of the Gorman stages in their Volkswagen Jetta.

Long time competitors Larry and Lance Gross in their tough Toyota Corolla will be trading times with John Black and Lori Stone in their equally capable Ford Ranger. Look for Javier Olivares and Brock Heinz to be in that mix with their Ford Escort. Gorman first timer Andrew Cowan and Tim Brown will see if they have what it takes. Chris Palermo will be looking to improve his speed here at Gorman with a yet unnamed co-driver. For some RWD fun, Steven Egger & Christopher Chenoweth are back sliding around their 318i BMW. While Christian Arboleda & Oscar Arteta push a Suzuki Swift to the limit! Twelve 2C competitors make up the large field for Gorman 2015!

Watch for some great 2C competition. Follow live scores and text for the Gorman Rally at http://rallydata.com. On Twitter @GormanRally #GormanRally @NASARallySport #2WDRally and on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/NASARallySport. Looking to learn to drive at the limit in a 2WD car? Go to the Team O’Neil Rally School at http://www.teamoneil.com. Looking to build a 2WD car? Talk to Streetwise Motorsports at http://streetwiseparts.com.

Markus Saarinen pushes past Dave Clark on final stages to take 2C win at Idaho!

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Seventeen 2WD teams took to the stages at this year’s Idaho Rally for the 2WD Challenge. Set in Boise County, the roads converge on the small town of Placerville and made for a fantastic weekend of racing. Eleven special stages make up the two days of rallying that would test the competitors skill, machines, and perseverance. The 2WD Challenge is supported by Team O’Neil Rally School and Streetwise Motorsports who believe that starting with a 2WD in rally is the best path to future success in the sport.

Ramana Lagemann established quickly that he was the man to beat in a BMW M3. Setting the fastest 2WD times on all of Saturday, he and Co-Driver Chrissie Beavis settled into 5th overall gunning for the podium. A flat tire on Sunday barely slowed the pace of the M3 on SS7 and it wasn’t until a differential failure on stage 9 that wrote the end of the story for the BMW. Lagemann rejoined the rally for fun and super rally points, but you have to finish all the stages to win the 2WD Challenge.

2c_pr_2ndThe close battle for 2nd on Saturday then became the close battle for 1st on Sunday. On day one; Dave Clark in his RWD XR4Ti was 24 seconds ahead of Markus Saarinen in the FWD Mini Cooper and Ryan Millen in the FWD Toyota RAV4. The Merkur was reportedly having steering pump bracket issues and was on the verge of destroying itself, while Clark and Co-Driver Jennifer Daly were running out of decent tires. The team was still having fun though, setting off a shower of RWD gravel where spectators had setup a line of colorful plastic flamingos on the outside of a sweeping turn. Dave Clark scored well at Flamingo Bowling.

Markus Saarinen in the Mini Cooper started to catch the RAV4 of Millen on stage 4, and turned the attack all the way up on Sunday morning beating Clark on SS7. Clark responded with a win on SS9, and back into the last service the three teams learned that they would be fighting for the $500 prize with Lagemann out. Markus and Alicia Saarinen had 7 seconds to make up for 1st in 2C and they pushed to take the lead with 11 seconds on the final two stages! Sarrinen takes home the 2C win with $500, and Clark takes the 2nd place prize of $300.

2c_pr_3rdRyan Millen and Co-Driver Christina Fate were excited to debut their Toyota RAV4 at Idaho, and WE were excited to see where an experienced off-road racer, with a brand new navigator, in a brand new showroom stock RAV4 would end up on the standings. The team was right up with the pack on the first 3 stages and Millen settled into a rhythm to take 3rd in the 2WD Challenge at Idaho earning $150.

2c_pr_4thA back and forth battle emerged with some historic hardware from John Hill in his 1967 Ford Cortina and an experienced Irish Rally Champion John Coyne in a rented 1982 Toyota Corolla. The Cortina unfortunately stopped on SS8 with a mechanical issue after winning the first stage of Sunday. John Coyne and Co-Driver Doug Nagy were having a blast on the Idaho roads and happily accepted the $50 for a great weekend of rallying. Coyne was 4th in the 2WD Challenge.

Setting consistent stage times all weekend was what kept Erik Christiansen in his Volkswagen Golf ahead of James Rimmer in a Subaru BRZ. Other than crumpling a fender with a bump on Sunday, Christiansen had a smooth weekend with Co-Driver Amy Floyd. Not expecting to be in the top placement at this event, the team hung in there to grab $30 for 5th in 2C.

2c_pr_5th2C is here to get teams excited about running in 2WD and we were pumped to see Ryan McLaughlin & David Brown finish their first rally event with their Acura Integra. Ryan says: “We finished Rally Idaho with only two gears left in the transmission and even brought home some hardware. Happy to have made it across the finish, even though we had to come home on a trailer. Stage rally is the most intense motorsport on earth.” We couldn’t agree more! Both of our presenting sponsors are serious about 2WD as a starting point for rally. Team O’Neil in Dalton, NH offers classes in Ford Fiesta school cars and their curriculum focuses on starting with the skills and techniques of 2WD. Streetwise Motorsports in Rancho Santa Margarita, CA builds and supports 2WD rally cars and is ready to help you get started in 2C with their many years of technical experience.

Next up is the Gorman Rally in Southern California on August 22nd. This event typically lets 2WD cars shine with their tight and twisty stages. We’re excited about their new roads – and looking forward to the extra competition that 2C will bring. See you on the stages!

2C Idaho Rally Kickoff!

2015_Idaho_2CNASA Rally Sport recently announced the 2C – 2WD Challenge for the 2015 season, and first up is Idaho! The Idaho Rally is no stranger to having 2WD cars on the podium, and the competition will be strong. Offering a chance at a significant cash prize, 2C is what grassroots rally competitors are looking for. The 2WD Challenge is presented by Team O’Neil Rally School and Streetwise Motorsports, who believe learning to push the limits of 2WD rally cars is the best path to future success in the sport.

If you’ve been involved in rally and off road motorsports, a couple big names pop out on the 2WD entry list. Ramana Lagemann has over 50 rallies to his career, and once drove a factory ride for Subaru USA. Lagemann will be looking to have fun at his first Idaho Rally, but he will also be driving for a win. Campaigning a well prepped BMW e36 M3, he could surprise the large AWD field.

Class winner at the 2014 Baja 1000, Ryan Millen has set his sights on rally, and is looking to get a solid start with his new Toyota RAV4. This will be the first event for his team, this car, and we’ll find out quickly if he can get it all dialed in for an attack on 2C.

Hot off his 2015 High Desert Trails win, Markus Saarinen has been a force in 2WD. With lots of Northwest driving experience, this Southwest competitor will be setting fast times on the Idaho stages. Driving a FWD naturally aspirated Mini Cooper to it’s absolute limit is what 2C loves!

A local favorite, Dave Clark will be campaigning his Merkur XR4Ti and will definitely be looking for a podium finish in class! We cannot guarantee that any pink flamingos won’t be harmed on stage when Dave’s around, but we can guarantee a rear wheel drive crowd favorite when Dave gets to the limit in the spectator areas.

The 2C story may be down in the middle of the pack with a wild selection of vehicles going for the top spots and looking to take home some cash. Larry Clark will be in his 1985 Toyota Celica, John Hill in a 1967 Ford Cortina, Erik Christiansen in an underrepresented this year VW Golf, Elijah Fillman-Sullivan driving a BMW 325is, Bruce Tabor in the family owned Nissan Sentra SE-R, Jason Bailey will have a 2014 Scion FRS, Christopher Conrad will be back out with his 1967 Volvo 122, Derek Knight will be in a Volvo 242, and Henry Gillow-Wiles will be campaigning his Honda Civic.

Some new drivers will be taking to the stages, and we love to see them in 2WD! James Rimmer will be in his Subaru BRZ, Eric LaVance will be driving his well prepped Camaro for the first time, Ryan McLaughlin will be out in an Acura Integra, and a last minute entry from John Coyne in a Toyota Corolla.

With over 15 2WD starters, the 2C payout will be: 1st $500 – 2nd $300 – 3rd $150 – 4th $50 – 5th $30. The payout goes up as more drivers battle! And there’s nothing better than the sweet sweet taste of your favorite brew paid for with rally winnings.

Watch for some great 2WD competition. Follow live scores and text for the Idaho Rally at http://rallydata.com. On Twitter @NASARallySport #2WDRally #IdahoRally and on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/NASARallySport. Looking to learn to drive at the limit in a 2WD car? Go to the Team O’Neil Rally School at http://www.teamoneil.com. Looking to build a 2WD car? Talk to Streetwise Motorsports at http://streetwiseparts.com.

Markus Saarinen Takes Prescott 2C Win!

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The beautiful red rock canyons of Arizona were the backdrop to the 2014 Prescott Rally and the first NASA Rally Sport 2WD Challenge. 2C offers up a significant cash prize for 2WD and last weekend gave drivers a chance to really show their talent on the fast and flowing southwest stages. The 2WD Challenge is supported by Team O’Neil Rally School and Streetwise Motorsports who believe that starting with a 2WD in rally is the best path to future success in the sport.

NNRC 2014 2WD Champion Matt Brandenburg traveled from Ohio with Co-Driver Brian Huntsbarger to be a part of the action after winning two weeks ago at Black River Stages in New York. Matt was the heavy favorite, but an oil soaked clutch on stage 2 quickly put him out after he set the fastest 2WD time on the first stage. Brakim Racing’s e36 BMW M3 did not rejoin the rally on Saturday. Matt Remarked: “Wish we could have fought it out this weekend! One stage just doesn’t cut it.”

Markus Saarinen moved into first after stage 2 and held the lead for the remainder of the weekend. The well equipped Sasquatch Mini Cooper was setting great times and even had a 1st fastest overall on the last stage of the event. Markus and Alicia Saarinen have rallied all over the US in the last few years. Markus had no hesitation when declaring: “Witty Tom is the best rally stage in the country!” For their hard work the team received a $1000 cash prize for 1st in 2WD!

Fighting to maintain 2nd place in 2C last weekend, Kristopher Marciniak, driving a fresh engine in his rallynotes.com 2.0L Dodge Neon, saw his lead slip to just 12 seconds after the first 2 stages on Saturday. The father and son team of Bret and Doug Robinson, who set blistering fast times on Saturday morning in their Volkswagen Golf, forced Kristopher to turn up the speed. The husband and wife team, Kristopher and Christine, responded by setting fast times the remainder of the day and took home the $600 prize for 2nd place. Bret and Doug received $300 for 3rd.

The battle for 4th came absolutely down to the wire. Erik Christiansen and Amy Floyd were determined to improve their stage times from last year at this event in their VW Golf. Chrissie Beavis and Matthew Johnson, who resurrected the family’s Volkswagen Jetta, had an unfortunate flat on stage 1 that set them back about 5 minutes. Determined to claw their way back, the newlyweds began setting a top pace and minutes became seconds as they worked to get back into the hunt passing the father and son team of Larry and Lance Gross who were setting solid times in their Toyota Corolla. During the chase Erik commented: “Chrissie is gaining about 20 seconds a stage on us. We might not be able to hold them off.” On the final pass, Erik and Amy managed to keep their lead by only 2.5 seconds! They were awarded $100, and Chrissie and Matthew were handed the fifth place and final prize of $60.

With the success of NASA Rally Sport’s first 2C event there will be an announcement on 2015 2C events very soon. NRS wants 2C to encourage the building of more affordable 2WD rally cars by setting the goal of winning individual events. 2C competitors have a blast driving as fast as possible on closed dirt roads!

Both of our presenting sponsors are serious about 2WD as a starting point for rally. Team O’Neil in Dalton, NH offers classes in Ford Fiesta school cars and their curriculum focuses on starting with the skills and techniques of 2WD. Streetwise Motorsports in Rancho Santa Margarita, CA builds and supports 2WD rally cars and is ready to help you get started in 2C with their many years of technical experience.

2C Brings out the Competition Next Weekend at Prescott!

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NASA Rally Sport recently announced the 2C – 2WD Challenge for the 2014 Prescott Rally, and drivers from all over the country responded. Offering fierce competition and a chance at a significant cash prize, 2C is what grassroots rally competitors are looking for. The 2WD Challenge is presented by Team O’Neil Rally School and Streetwise Motorsports, who believe learning to push the limits of 2WD rally cars is the best path to future success in the sport.

Hot off his 2014 NASA National Rally Championship win in 2WD, Matt Brandenburg, driving an e36 BMW M3, expressed interest in coming to Prescott shortly after Black River Stages last weekend! The challenge was made sweeter when Derik Nelson, an accomplished driver from the Northwest, who won 2WD at the 2014 Idaho Rally and is currently leading the points for the Pacific Rally Cup – signed up in his e36 BMW M3. This could be an incredible Bimmer showdown on the fast and flowing Prescott stages!

Markus Saarinen has been getting faster all year in his Mini Cooper. He will be recovering from a crash that removed the front right wheel and strut at the Gorman Ridge Rally a month ago. Markus will have his work cut out for him trying to get ahead of Kristopher Marciniak in his Dodge Neon. Kristopher is no stranger to Prescott and was the 2013 NNRC 2WD Champion and came in 4th overall last year to take the title. In the mix will be a Datsun 240Z driven by Brian Scott. Brian has extensive experience at this event in an AWD car, and took the 2WD class win last year.

Tony Chavez could take the Pacific Rally Cup home if Derik Nelson has issues, but Tony is driving a slower production class car for the California Rally Series. Tony made it clear though: “We already clinched the P-Stock championship. We will race for the 2WD win! No more points racing for us!” We couldn’t have said it better, this is what 2C is all about!

Bret Robinson will be looking to shake out the gremlins from Idaho and Gorman that seemed to be giving his VW Golf some trouble. Other VW Golf hardware will be driven by Erik Christiansen who came from behind to set the fastest 2WD time on the 2014 High Desert Trails Power Stage earlier this year! Roger Matthews will be coming down from Colorado with one of two Volkswagen Rally cars. He’s looking for a solid finish after his DNF at Idaho.

Some wildcards at this event include: Championship co-driver Chrissie Beavis, who pulled the family’s VW Jetta out of storage for this event. Not having driven for a few years shouldn’t mean much, as she is used to incredible speeds from the right seat in Open AWD cars. Also, Jason Lightner in a very fast Porsche 912 has been known to set some great stage times in his vintage rally machinery.

Rounding out the 2WD Competition will be Larry Gross in his Toyota Corolla, Deke Williams in a Dodge Neon, Steven Egger in a BMW 318i, and Jason Trubey in a VW Jetta. With the prize fund out to 5th place, look for any of these guys to be taking home some cash!

The stage is set for some absolutely fantastic 2WD competition. Follow live scores and text for the Prescott Rally at http://rallydata.com. On Twitter @NASARallySport #2WDRally #PrescottRally and on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/NASARallySport. Looking to learn to drive at the limit in a 2WD car? Go to the Team O’Neil Rally School at http://www.teamoneil.com. Looking to build a 2WD car? Talk to Streetwise Motorsports at http://streetwiseparts.com.

Announcing the NASA Rally Sport Two Wheel Drive Challenge – 2C

2C 2WD ChallengeThe world’s best drivers started out in small two wheel drive cars. They pushed the limits of their low-traction machines and broke records people never expected. Thousands of hours spent practicing techniques would them serve well when their cars got faster and the margin of error became smaller. For some, 2WD is a stepping stone. For others, it is the only class that matters.

NASA Rally Sport is proud to introduce the Two Wheel Drive Challenge presented by Team O’Neil Rally School and Streetwise Motorsports. 2C will consist of several individual events throughout the country starting with the Prescott Rally this October 3-4th. 2C events will offer a substantial $2,000+ cash purse paid out to 5th place for the fastest 2WD driver. Prescott will also award a 1 day rally school to a driver of its choosing. The 2WD Challenge is offering great competition with a simple rule: Two wheels driven.

Both of our presenting sponsors are serious about 2WD as a starting point for rally. Team O’Neil in Dalton, NH offers classes in Ford Fiesta school cars and their curriculum focuses on starting with the skills and techniques of 2WD. Streetwise Motorsports in Rancho Santa Margarita, CA builds and supports 2WD rally cars and is ready to help you get started in 2C with their many years of technical experience.

The Prescott Rally headquartered in Prescott, AZ will feature 110 stage miles over two days. This event will push 2WD competitors to maintain speed going up the long hill into Jerome and reward those who stay on the throttle coming down into the valley where top speeds will be achieved. It doesn’t happen often, but should there be precipitation, a whole new appreciation for car control will be learned. Payout is as follows for rally finishers in 2C: 1st – $1000, 2nd – $600, 3rd – $300, 4th – $100, 5th – $60. The organizers have extended the early entry deadline to Monday, September 8th 2014.

Our mission is to continue growing the grassroots excitement of the sport and encourage the building of more affordable rally cars and setting the goal of winning individual events. We want to showcase grassroots talent with social platforms, driver interviews, video, and buzz around the battles that are often overlooked. Let’s show the next generation of rallyists how much fun we can have driving as fast as possible on closed dirt roads! Join us!