Press Release

August 5, 2000
For more information, contact: Eric Burmeister
Burmeister Engineering Rallysport
Phone: 313-792-2397


DETROIT, MI -- Another rally has come and gone on the SCCA ProRally Championship and the Burmeister Engineering Rallysport team of Eric Burmeister and Mark Buskirk are fighting their way back into the Group 2 points after a disappointing run early in the season. This time the schedule took the team to Maine for the Maine Forest Rally 2000.

Before the rally Rui Mauricio and his team from RM Pro Tune helped get the #42 VW GTI running in top form with some fuel injection tuning. Based in Rhode Island, RM Pro Tune is a performance shop specializing in Volkswagens. Amazingly, they even do house (rally) calls.

A total of 108 cars took to the woods on Friday night to race against the clock along the logging roads of western Maine. The first few stages went by cleanly for the pair, but the #42 VW GTI was not handling as well as it should. A bent rear axle proved to be the culprit. The team did a rear axle realignment upon returning to the host town of Rumford and got some sleep for the second day of competition.

Saturday morning came all to early and the team was back at it with some long stages. Near the start of stage 6, an overexuberant moment saw the pair slide off on the outside of a tight right hand turn. Unfortunately there was a very robust stump directly in the path of the car. It hit in the center of the right door and bounced the car back across the road. "We were really quite lucky," Burmeister exclaimed. "If the stump had been 3 feet fore or aft of where it hit, it would have caused catastrophic suspension damage and put us out of the rally. I certainly didn't plan to hit there. It just happened." Due to the door bars in the roll cage, Mark suffered little more than an anxious moment from the incident. "...but he does always seem to go off on the co-driver's side," joked Buskirk. Eric drove conservatively through the rest of the stage as he was unsure of the extent of the damage.

Two stages later and the 24 miler was upon them. This is one of the longest stages in North American rallying and proved even more treacherous when a downpour of rain greeted the pair just a few miles in. The wipers on the car were only going about half speed and visibility was poor. Then the right wiper locked up completely and made the right side of the windshield useless. Water was pouring in through the roof vents onto the faces of Eric and Mark. When the vents were closed, the glass steamed up quickly. "I just had to keep wiping my glasses and windshield with my hand and squint to keep the rain out of my eyes," said Eric. The intercom gave up halfway through the stage from the water and left communication to hand signals and shouting in the loud car. Needless to say, it was a very stressful stage.

Stage 9 went by cleanly at a conservative pace and that just left the town stage through the streets of Rumford. This is a perennial favorite with the spectators and drivers alike as the cars race through town and slide sideways across the finish...between a Dunkin' Donuts and a Bank. Eric tried to mimic his form from last year, but over rotated the car at the first handbrake left turn throwing the car through the grass for a bit. (Always have to end with a little drama.) Everything was fine, though, and the pair could be heard laughing up the hill on their way to the finish.

Maine always provides Burmeister Engineering Rallysport with a good dose of excitement. This year was no exception. They wound up 33rd overall and 4th in Group 2.

The Maine Forest Rally program will be aired several times on SPEEDVISION starting August 14 at 8:00 p.m. EST.

The SCCA ProRally series is a "stage" or "performance" rally series that stretches across the nation. Sanctioned by the Sports Car Club of America and televised on SPEEDVISION, this form of motorsport is growing by leaps and bounds in the United States. Competitors race flat out against the clock for hundreds of miles on a course of backroads closed to public usage. A co-driver or navigator tells the driver where every jump, dangerous turn or other obstacle is to the hundredth of a mile. There is no practice and the pair has not even seen the road prior to competition.

Burmeister Engineering Rallysport is a two-car team of Volkswagen GTI's owned by Art and Eric Burmeister. Based in Michigan, the father/son team also includes co-drivers Randy Moore and Mark Buskirk. The team receives help from Quaife America, Sachs of America, North American Radiator, Nokian Tyres, and RM Pro Tune.

For information on Quaife America, go to:

For information on Nokian Tyres, go to:

For information on Sachs Race Engineering, go to:

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