FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 6, 2006
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Last Ditch Racing
Bangor, Maine, USA -- Last Ditch Racing, Maine's top rally team, had a weekend of ups and downs and lessons in severe deceleration at the recent Team O'Neil Rally in Dalton, New Hampshire.
Dave Getchell, driver of the team's car affectionately known as T-1 was the first to draw blood for the weekend. During testing at the Team O'Neil facility two days prior to the event, he struck a tree with the front of his car. Working furiously throughout Friday, he was able to patch it back together in order to take Saturday's start.
Saturday's rally saw more than 20 cars take the start. Coinciding with a storm having high winds and rain, the crews were a bit worried about how slippery the conditions would be. It didn't take long for the T-4 crew of John Cassidy and Erik Lee to find out! At 2.98 miles into Special Stage 1, the crew exited the road in third gear, striking a large birch tree with the front of the car. Said Cassidy, "Erik and I were making good time and the car felt good. Grip was somewhat poor due to the rain and I had lost the wiper on my side of the car about half a mile before the off. We came over a crest on the wrong side with a bit too much speed. The rear of the car struck something in the ditch and became airborne. When we came down, we were well on our way to the tree and there was no way to steer out of it." Bruised and sore, the crew triggered their onboard fire system, radio'd their crew they were out but ok and deployed their safety triangles.
Lee and Cassidy cheered on Getchell and McKelvie as they sped by, eventually motoring to a seventh overall finish and sixth in class. Said Cassidy, "Dave and Steve drove a tidy and measured race and let the race come to them. I'm really pleased to see Dave's progression as a driver over the past season. For him to recover from a humbling off with his car the day before the event is an example of his drive and heart."
Both cars suffered extensive damage in their respective offs, and will be evaluated and repaired in short order. "We have a dedicated crew and a well equipped shop. The guys have all volunteered their time and energies to return our drives to competitive shape in the shortest time possible. We pride ourselves on being resourceful and doing our own work and the crew's enthusiasm is fantastic! Erik and I will be sore for some time, so we'll most likely be there only to advise and bring the guys food and hand them wrenches," said Cassidy.
The team's 2007 plans will be determined over the short off season. Look for Last Ditch Racing cars at both US and Canadian National and Regional events. After competing in the 2006 Corona Rally Mexico, 2007 may see the team in international competition yet again!
Last Ditch Racing would like to thank their 2006 team partners for their continued support!
For more information on Last Ditch Racing and to hear our podcasts, please visit: www.lastditchracing.com
For more information about the Team O'Neil Rally, please visit: www.rally-america.com/regevent.TONL.2006.php