After a few rough years, this event has been growing and this year really paid off for the organizers. Once again the event brought drivers and co-drivers to come out and challenged the dirt roads of northern Nevada. This year the event was sanctioned by RallyCar, and was included in the regional Rally America Regional Championship and the Bilstein Southwest RallyCup series, along with the support of Lucas Oil, Subaru, All Wheels Driven, and the California Rally Series.

There were 20 teams from various states, including Utah, Oregon, California, Arizona, Nevada, and Idaho. This year there were night stages again with over 40 stage miles of competition in the dark. The first leg of the stages started in the daylight with two stages of competition just west of Lovelock. After competitors finished stage four, they came into service and then went onward to do the same stages the opposite direction, to give the competition a different prospective to the stage roads (besides being night-time).

Having competition at night, most of the rally cars use either hood-equipped light pods or modify the car to use an extra set of lights on a bar. This adds a better view of what lies ahead of them on the stage road, besides what is being called out (instructions) from the co-driver.

At the finish of the first day; Will Hudson and Brian Szykowny took a overall time of 39:53 in their Subaru Impreza. Second place went to George Doganis/Thomas Smith in a Group 2 Honda Civic (2010 Bilstein Cup Class Winning Team) at a time of 43:14. Jon Burke/Tucker Heinz took a time of 44:01 in their Subaru Impreza, to finish in third place.

It was a wild Friday to say the least, when starting twenty cars and only twelve completed all of the stages. Pat McMahon, coming back after a 23-year hiatus. It felt good to him to get back behind the wheel- it is like riding a bike, you never forget. But the car was somewhat under-power, and engine was over-heating/sluggish, and big factor was the dust hovering over the stage roads after the first few of cars running head of the pack. So Pat had to withdraw from the event and decide if the car could be fixed for Day Two. There were several other mishaps for additional rally teams that had to withdraw that Friday night.

On Saturday of Day 2, only 15 cars were able to start Stage One, but not all could finish the final stage: only seven survived. Two cars limped to Stage Four finish, while one team was left on side of the road where their car broke down. Friday’s winning team, Hudson and Szykowny, had problems from the beginning of the day and were not able to finish.

The team of Dick Rockrohr/Marie Deangelis came back on Saturday to set a time of 1:24:37 and took overall and Open Class victory. One other team came back strong from finishing fifth on Friday’s event in the Open Lite Class was Alex Rademacher and Jeana Yi, who ended up second with a time of 1:27:21.

What was great about this event? It brought Pacific Northwest and Southwest teams together to compete. Plus, there were several other types of competition going on that weekend, with the support of Subaru Southwest Region and Lucas Oil. There was the Subaru All Wheels Driven Class and Lucas Oil 2WD Class. This is a Bilstein SWRC series, and also the Bilstein Cup Class really had a battle going on and almost all of the cars in this class survived with the exception of two competitors. That tells you need strong equipment under that car with struts, shocks and suspension all the way around to compete in the Southwest events.

Pete Soper and Michel Hoche-Mong, who organize North Nevada Rally, were two “busy bees” with the help of volunteer control marshals and Ham Radio operators that set-up and keep the event controlled and safe, with communications being a vital part of keeping track of all rally cars and reporting any problems as cars move along on the stages.

This year’s North Nevada Rally was successful, with strong competition, and it is a definite venue to see who can survive. But not only competitors who won at the event(s) (or did not finish)- everyone is a winner for just supporting the sport of rallying.

See you at the next Bilstein Southwest RallyCup Series event, which is August 6th for the Mendocino Red Tail Rally in Ukiah, California.

North Nevada Rally Results:
Lucas Oil 2WD (Overall 2 day event scoring results)
1. George Doganis
2. Adam Crane
3. Sean Lane

Subaru All Wheels Driven (Overall 2 day event scoring results)
1. Alex Rademacher
2. Eric Larsen

Bilstein Cup Class – Friday
1. George Doganis
2. Adam Crane
3. Andrew Lockhart
4. Daniel Rockrohr – DNF
5. Pat McMahon – DNF

Bilstein Cup Class – Saturday
1. George Doganis
2. Adam Crane
3. Daniel Rockrohr
4. Andrew Lockhart – DNF

Friday – July 8th Overall Event Scoring
1. Will Hudson/Brian Szykowy – Open Class – 39:53
2. George Doganis/Thomas Smith Group 2 – 43:14
3. Jon Burke/Tucker Heinz – Open Lite – 44:61
4. Kris-Jon Lyssand/Joshua – Open – 44:54
5. Alex Rademacher/Jeana Yi – Open Lite – 45:00
6. Adam Crane/Britta Nielsen – Group 2 – 45:43
7. Andrew/Robin Lockhart – Group 2 – 46:38
8. Tyler Turnbill/Tony Holden – Group 2 – 50:20 –
9. Javier Olivares/Brock Heinz – Group2 – 50:55
10.Eric Larsen/Alan Perry – Open Lite – 50:57
11.Katianna Pihakari/Sean Gallagher PGT – 53:24
12.Sean Lane/Christian Coulter – Group 2 – 55:39
13.Ben Hetland/Tyler Smith – Group 2 – DNF
14.Chuck Wilson/Brent Elzey – Group 2 – DNF
15.Dick Rockrohr/Marie Deangelis – Open – DNF
16.Daniel Rockrohr/Eve Thomason – Open Lite – DNF
17.Paul Eklund/Karen Jankowski – Open – DNF
18.Pat McMahon/Bret Norgaard – Group 2 – DNF
19.Tim/Dick Moser – Group 2 – DNF
20.Paul Wiliemsen/Travis Bos – PGT – DNF

Saturday – July 9th Overall Event Scoring –

1. Rick Rockrohr/Marie Deangelis – Open – 1:24:37
2. Alex Radmacher/Jeana Yi – Open Lite – 1:27:21
3. George Doganis/Thomas Smith – Group 2 – 1:27:54
4. Adam Crane/Britta Nielsen – Group 2 – 1:28:58
5. Daniel Rockrohr/Eve Thomson – Open Lite – 1:32:56
6. Eric Larsen/Alan Perry – Open Lite – 1:41:23
7. Sean Lane/Christen Coulter – Group 2 – 1:42:02
8. Kris-Jon Lyssand/Joshua – Open – DNF
9. Katianna Pihakari/Sean Gallagher – PGT – DNF
10. Will Hudson/Brian Szykowny – Open – DNF
11.Andrew/Robin Lockhart – Group 2 – DNF
12. Jon Burke/Tucker Heinz – Open Lite – DNF
13. Tim/Dick Moser – Group 2 – DNF
14. Tyler Turnbill/Tony Holden – Group 2 – DNF
15. Ben Hetland/Tyler Smith – Group 2 – DNF

About Bilstein Southwest RallyCup Series:
Based out of Southern California, Southwest RallyCup is a series that supports both organizers and competitors in the Southwest region and competitors who come from out of region to support the southwest area events. The series main goal is to bring awareness about the southwest region and to help events to be successful, fun and rewarding to both sides of the rally program. Which is supported by the title sponsor Bilstein USA, Lucas Oil, Subaru Southwest Region, Rallygrafix.com, K2 Awards, Team O’Neil Rally School, Real Estate of South Bay, Poly Performance, Fast Aid, Silverstone Tyres, etc.

About RallyCar, Inc.
Based in Golden Valley, Minn., RallyCar sanctions the premier performance rally series in the United States, the Rally America National Championship Series. In 2011, RallyCar is conducting six National Championship events at venues across the country, from Olympia, Washington to Newry, Maine. RallyCar competitors reach speeds of well over 100 mph in modified street cars on natural-terrain courses consisting of gravel, dirt or snow. Additionally, RallyCar sanctions the 2011 U.S. Rallycross Championship featuring rally cars racing door-to-door on tricky tarmac/dirt race tracks. More information about rally and rallycross can be found at www.rally-america.com, and videos can viewed at www.youtube.com/rallyamericaseries.

Will Hudson and George Doganis. Photos courtesy of Motorsport Memories

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