|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
October 10, 2000
|For more information, contact: John Dillon|
Creativity in Action
P.O. Box 1231
Thousand Oaks, CA 91358-0231
Prescott, Arizona -- Bryan Hourt, Hilliard, Ohio, and John Dillon, Thousand Oaks, California, won the Prescott Forest ProRally in the Group 5 category on Saturday, 30 Sep 2000, after a strong performance all weekend in a supercharged Honda Civic. The team finished fourth overall behind three Open-class high-horsepower four wheel drive rally cars. At the end of Leg 1 on Friday night, Hourt's two-wheel drive Civic had notched a third place position, but the Saturday stages favored the four-wheel drive cars with their ability to transfer maximum power to the wide open dirt roads between Jerome and the Verde Valley.
The Prescott Rally partnered Hourt and Dillon for the first time. Hourt, a safety engineer for Honda, has raced with several co-drivers this season, while Dillon navigated for Mark Nelson on the National circuit until a crash in Washington put their team out of the running. The Prescott racers hit it off immediately, posting times in the top four on every stage Friday despite never having raced together before. "Bryan is an incredibly fast driver," said the navigator. "He combined exceptional car control with smoothness behind the wheel to keep us near the top all weekend."
"Due to the tight Fall Pro Rally schedule we came to this event with a fair amount of work to do on the car," noted Hourt. "Fortunately, York Honda in Prescott helped us prepare the car in time for us to race. My hat's off to them for all their help."
A tense moment occurred early Saturday when a passing train blocked a transit road for over four minutes, leaving the team with a short window for servicing the car. "Bryan wanted to change a half shaft," said crew member Buffy Allred, "but it takes fifteen minutes and we only had ten." Crew chief Joe Hourt examined the part closely and determined it would hold up till the end of the race.
For Hourt, the Prescott win was particularly satisfying. This victory makes him tied in the Group 5 championship points race with Mark Utecht. It also gives Hourt a good chance of winning the prestigious Woodner Cup, an honor bestowed upon the fastest two-wheel-drive pilot of the season. With one rally remaining, the Lake Superior ProRally later this October, Hourt will be dueling to the wire with Utecht for both awards.
Performance rally is a sport where teams race across desert paths, logging trails, and other unimproved roads in cars licensed for street use. The team consists of a driver and co-driver, the latter calling instructions from a route book provided by the rally organizers just prior to the start of the event. They are not allowed to pre-run the course. For more information, visit www.scca.org.