Last Ditch Racing flew high and far at the recent Rallye Baie Des Chaleurs, in New Richmond Quebec. Round three of the Canadian Rally Championship, the event, is known for it’s driver’s stages, combining technical sections with fast flowing sections. Conditions this year were especially difficult due to recent rain.

Finishing 10th overall, the team set 8 top 10 times out of 17 stages. A record 46 competitors took the start of the event, 27 finished and 19 DNF’d, attesting to the difficulty of the stages.

The team took the DC Shoes sponsored, “Longest Jump Award,” after flying their 2003 Subaru WRX STi 116 feet off the famous jump at the end of the Camp Brule stage. Said driver John Cassidy, “The first time through Brule, we had a flat on the rear so couldn’t take the jump with any speed. We only had one more pass and wanted to give the fans something to remember, so took the jump in fifth gear!” The team landed hard, nearly knocking co-driver Dave Getchell unconscious. Said Getchell, “That’s the biggest hit I’ve taken without crashing!” DC Shoes principal Ken Block, suggested the award and won the rally outright in his 2008 Subaru Impreza STi, driving for the Subaru USA Rally Team. Block’s jump was 115 feet. “Ken has really progressed in his driving over the past few seasons and devoted himself to the sport. His progress has been impressive and I think we’ll see a lot more of him in the years to come,” said Cassidy.

The event was universally praised by the crews. “We’ve been coming to the Rallye Baie Des Chaleurs and have encouraged other US teams to do so. It’s almost like one of those secrets you don’t want to share with anyone, but we love the event and encourage all our fellow US teams to come up. It’s clearly the top event in the North American calendar at the moment. We’ll be back in 2009 and I’m sure more US teams will as well!”

The team’s next event is their home event-The New England Forest Rally. Held in Rumford, Maine and based out of the Sunday River ski resort, the event is known for it’s fast and flowing roads that are also filled with car breaking rocks. Said Cassidy, “This was our first event in 1999, and we’ve been there every year since. Because it’s our home event, we tend to put a lot of pressure on ourselves. Coming so soon after Baie adds another degree of difficulty as there’s car re-prep to do as well. The Fourth of July weekend will be a work weekend here at Triple Caution Farm!”

The team is hoping for a repeat of their 2006 10th place finish. “Erik and I finished 10th that year after a really clean run over the two days. We’re hoping for a repeat and will do our best to give the home fans something to cheer about this year!”

Last Ditch Racing would like to thank their 2008 partners:
Triple Caution, LLC, http://www.triplecaution.us
Hydra EMS, http://www.hydraems.com
Team O’Neil Rally School, http://www.teamoneil.com

Dave and John would like to thank their crew for the event: Duncan Matlack, Ken Anctil, John Cassidy and Drew Simpson

For more information on Last Ditch Racing, please visit: http://www.lastditchracing.com
To Purchase Last Ditch Racing Gear, please visit: http://www.cafepress.com/lastditchracing
For more information on the Rallye Baie Des Chaleurs, please visit: http://www.rallyebdc.com/
For more information on the New England Forest Rally, please visit: http://www.newenglandforestrally.com/

Photo by Warwick Patterson

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