For Immediate Release
July 31, 2001
Shillington, PA - The competitive hopes of the Rocky Road Racing team went up in flames 6 miles into the third stage of the Maine Forest Rally this weekend when they came upon another competitorís car fully engulfed in flames.
The team was just getting into a rhythm in their Steve Moyer Subaru, KAM Specialties sponsored 1996 Subaru Impreza when they crested a hill and saw the crashed Audi 4000 of John Keaney and Barry Smith up a bank and on fire. At first we were just shell shocked said driver/owner Don Kennedy. We pulled over and were about to get out when another competitor that had already stopped came over and told us both competitors were out and were O.K. So we drove down the stage in search of someone with a HAM radio [who could inform the stage captains of the severity of the situation.] The team stopped when they found the person they were looking for, only to discover that the person only had a receiver, no transponder. So the team retightened their belts and hurried to the end of the stage, where they were able to advise the workers of the situation.
We figure we lost about a minute and a half or so said navigator Matt Kennedy. Between the time we lost there, and taking it easy on the notoriously rough Stage 2 [Stage 3 in previous years] we knew that we had no chance of catching up, so we decided to take it easy and just finish the event without hurting the car. And that they did, because as Don put it, Iím tired of fixing the car!
The rest of the event didnít go off totally without a hitch though. Stage 4, the first stage on Saturday, saw the teamís connection to the rally computer fall off, leaving them with no odometer to tell them when they were approaching the corners until Matt was able to reconnect it and recalibrate the mileage. Their luck continued as about half a mile from the end of the stage, the team suffered its first, and fortunately their only, flat tire. To cap things off, about a third of the way through Stage 6 the team came upon a rather sharp corner much sooner than it was indicated, causing a few anxious moments as the team wondered if the car would pull back onto the road before one of the fast approaching trees introduced itself to the navigatorís side of the car.
We were lucky to suffer only one flat tire added crew chief Keith Kennedy. I saw a lot of cars pulling into service with bent and broken rims, and Don and Matt reported seeing a lot of broken cars out on the stages. Once again, the DMS suspension work flawlessly, and we proved that Subaru makes very durable cars, even in basically street stock configuration. In the end, and despite all their delays, the Rocky Road Racing team managed to outlast 68 other teams on their way to a hard earned finish.
To find out more information, check out the eventís official web site: maineforestrally.com. Also, be sure to check the Rocky Road Racing's web site:www.RockyRoadRacing.com for photos from the event, as well as other information about the team and rallying in general.
Rocky Road Racing