FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 29, 2001
For more information,
Contact: Patrick Richard
Rocket Rally Racing
VANCOUVER, BC -- They hit the wall. Literally. Rocket Rally Racing found itself stuck in a wall of snow at this past weekend's Rallye de Quebec in Quebec City. As a result, the team finished the event near the bottom of the pack.
"It was a disappointing start to the season, that's for sure," says Patrick Richard, Rocket Rally Driver, who is used to finishing events near the top of his class. The team finished the event last in its class (11th) and 32nd overall.
But Richard made the best of his time at Rallye de Quebec. "This event was one of our first true all-ice events, so we decided to do some testing of the car's performance on the ice. We were able to spend a lot of time working on our ice setup for Rallye Perce-Neige in two weeks, replacing tires and tweaking our suspension. In the end, I think we put on a bit of a show for our fans and our sponsors, DMS Shock Absorbers, Specialty Subaru of North Vancouver, SPD Tuning Service and Dragon Eyewear."
The team had started off well, pacing itself on the short stages Friday night. Richard and co-driver Ian McCurdy knew the event would be won or lost on the long stages on Saturday and they were saving the car for those times. But early Saturday, on stage B2, while attempting to set a fast time to break out an early lead, the team slid into a snow bank and couldn't get out. It took 20 minutes to get back on the road. And then, the team was hit with a 10-minute penalty upon reaching the next stage. With such a setback, there was no way the team could bounce back. With so many cars in the event, a record 61, the team was not able to score any points towards the Championship.
Rallye de Quebec will be televised on three national networks - The Sports Network, Réseau des sports and the Outdoor Life Network - beginning February 16. This event was the first of eight national events in the Subaru 2001 Canadian Rally Championship presented by Yokohama. The next event is Rallye Perce-Neige, February 9 to 11 in Maniwaki, Quebec.