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I am not here anymore
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It didn't hit me until I was flying on the plane home from LSPR how much I had been through at the event and Dennis Martin and I didn't even start Saturday.

- Because of the seeded draw, I co-drove in the first car on the road at a National event for the first time.

- We were running a very strong third place overall until we DNF'ed. It was the first time I had ever run near the top of the field in a National event.

- I red-crossed a stage.
A big tree fell across the stage and blocked the road between car 0 and the first competitor (Seamus). Tim O'Neil ran back to the start (1.6 miles) and Martin (Tim's co-driver) and I (later just me) stopped cars far enough back to slow them down before they rounded the bend where all of the cars that started ahead of them were sitting.

- I had the scariest stage of my life, up to that point.
We encountered torrential rain in the last third of the first run through Passmore. Dennis and I could not see out of the car. We were driving completely off of the notes. I would get a glimpse of the turn and call it and Dennis would respond. I was also concerned that we were going slow enough that the car behind us might catch up with us and not see us.

- I had the true scariest stage of my life.
We went wide through a long, fast downhill turn and struck some trees, including three big ones that we took down, but, in return, they also rolled and spun the car. That wasn't the scary part. The scary part was when we realized that we were upside down in the middle of the road in pitch dark in a long, fast downhill, slick turn and couldn't get the doors opened and knew the next car would be coming soon. Dennis tried to kick out the glass on his door and that eventually opened the door (but didn't break the glass) and we got out.

- I got to meet Doug Havir.
Doug was the next car on the road after our roll-over above and when presented with the choice of hitting our car (he could only see me and thought Dennis might be in the car) or hitting a tree, he center-punched his car into a tree.

- I had my most humilitating moment in rally.
When I got out of the car after the rollover, it was pitch dark and I could not see the stage road and didn't know which way we were facing. Neither did Dennis because he had run down the stage to warn the next car, but he ran the wrong direction. I saw the lights from that next car (which turned out to be Doug and Scott) and realized the triangles, flash light and OK/red cross sign were all trapped in the car. I ran up the stage on the inside of the turn, but realized they wouldn't see me there, so I crossed the road. From Doug's lights, I could see some thick trees that I could get behind, so, with an escape route, I started flagging him down. He saw me and slowed and made the choice mentioned above. I could see that he was slowing enough that he wasn't going to go through the trees and I was directly in front of his car when it stopped, directly in front of his in-car camera. When his car stopped, I went to see if Doug and Scott were OK, but I slipped and fell in the mud, flat on my face, all on Doug's in-car. You can even see my feet fly up in the air (because I fell down an incline). As I walked through service on Saturday, everyone kept saying to me "have it seen the video - it is so funny".

So, that was my weekend.

alan
 

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It may appear funny in retrospect, but I'll bet no one was laughing at the time! Doug's description to me sounded just like yours. Sometimes you wish flares were still legal.

What I find remarkable(and maybe I shouldn't) is that given the horrible conditions and the immediacy of the situation, everyone involved still did the right thing without hesitation. It speaks highly of our sport.
 

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Stage 1. Broke positive wire connector to ECU at the battery. Took
6 minutes on the stage to find and strip wire and clamp into the
battery clamp. Passed Bruce Davis on the way out of the stage and
broke his light. Send me the bill, Bruce. Dead last.

Stage 2. Holed radiator upper tank from abrading by my braided oil
cooler hose. (in other words, poor car prep...I'd fire myself if I
could). Took it easy.

Stage 3. Many competitors gave me their drinking water bottles to
pour into my cooling system. 5 of us chewed Extra Winterfresh and
tried to patch the hole with gum. It helped, but didn't last long.
Drove entire stage at less than 3500 rpm to keep from overheating.
Just cruising in 5th gear.

Stages 4&5. Epoxy putty stuff did not hold so continued cruising in
5th gear at under 3500rpm. (This is hard for a guy with a size 15
right foot and an engine that works from 4500 to 7500) We pulled the
radiator to change over to my spare...which is a stock radiator.
Unfortunately the 2 radiators use a different depth cap and we had to
put the holed one back in. Note to competitors...check to make sure
you have spare caps and fans and hoses already on your spare radiator.

Stage 6. Removed rad again and Dad peened the hole shut and we used
liquid epoxy to get it sealed. It worked this time. We were nine
minutes late to the stage, but at least we could run it at speed. We
were 8th overall on this one. 1st G2. 'Bout time.

Stage 7. Checked the rad and it was holding. So I revved it
higher. We were 7th overall on this one. 1st G2.

Stage 8. Due to my problems, we were seeded behind Mark Brown for
day 2. We caught him 4 miles into the 8 mile stage, but his mirror
was broken so he didn't see us to let us by. Lost a minute on that
one.

Stage 9. ECU wire again. Dead last. Engine cut out on every left
hand turn and died at the Delaware Delta. Died for good 400 yards
later and I had to get out and fix it again. @#$%^&*! Lost 1:45.

Stage 10. Finally, another clean one.

Stage 11. 15th overall on the pavement of Brockway in a 200 hp 2900#
car doesn't suck.

Stage 12. Got a pretty clean run at Delaware up.

Stage 13. Happy happy. Joy joy.

Stage 14. 11th overall on the downhill Delaware stage. This is a
fast frickin stage.

Stage 15. Finished the rally with a nice 9th overall on the grease
of Gratiot Lake 2.


Thanks to Dave Shindle. He was a great codriver and had his poop in
a group. I've been blessed with some very talented people in the
right seat.

Thanks to all those workers who braved the weather so we could have
fun. I know there were some glitches, but I can't believe what some
of you had to endure. When I saw Barb Stenken at the top of Brockway
looking like the weatherman who gets to report about the
hurricane "live on location," she just smiled and said, "I like it
when rally cars come...they offer protection from the horizontal rain
for a little while each minute." Hard core.

Thanks to all the competitors who offered help, water, a mouth to
chew gum, and the kind of comeraderie that makes me love this sport
so much.

And finally, thanks to my crew. They're volunteers. They rock.
They SAY they actually enjoy this. Sick individuals. Just sick.

Oh yeah, thanks to Chris Whiteman and his crew. We may be in different classes of cars, but when we drink, its neck and neck. If any of you found some brain cells splattered on the floor of the Library, please give 'em a proper burial. Sucks you went off, bro. Hope the vomit smell is gone from your truck.

Good times.
 

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don't cut
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2,252 Posts
Trees Suck.

Not that he wasn't before, but Doug Havir is the absolute coolest person on the planet. Words cannot express how bad I feel about causing him and Scott to DNF. Once again guys, I'm am so sorry.

And we'll end this rumor before it flies any farther. ALAN PERRY WAS IN NO DANGER OF BEING STRUCK BY DOUG HAVIR'S CAR! Doug was in control, Alan was well positioned, and was never within 20 feet of Doug's car until after the accident.

Dennis Martin
[email protected]
920-432-4845
 

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>Unfortunately the 2 radiators use a different depth cap and
>we had to
>put the holed one back in. Note to competitors...check to
>make sure
>you have spare caps and fans and hoses already on your spare
>radiator.

I was sitting in my Protege5 eating a Hot Dog during service when some stranger walked up to my car (in the pouring rain). I rolled the window down and he asked if I had a spare radiator cap. Of course I didn't so I told him as much. Reading your comment, I bet he was looking for one for you. I would have happily let you borrow mine if I had known what was up, I should have known better. Sorry!
 

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1973 WRC POR
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2,421 Posts
>Sometimes you wish flares were still legal.

Joe:

Why were flares banned?

Dangerous to carry inside the car (I never saw an incident). Or, worries about burning down a forest (I did see this almost happen). Or, with mainly daytime rallies now, flares are not as effective, as at night.

Seems to me that we could still use flares in winter rallies. No danger of burning down the country side, plus lots more warning provided/required to get following cars slowed down or stopped on ice/snow.

Doug Woods

P.S. The most dangerous part of using flares, in my experience, was having hot bits falling off the flare onto my hand, as I ran back with the lit flare and then stuck it in the ground. :'(
 

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I am not here anymore
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
>And we'll end this rumor before it flies any farther. ALAN
>PERRY WAS IN NO DANGER OF BEING STRUCK BY DOUG HAVIR'S CAR!
>Doug was in control, Alan was well positioned, and was never
>within 20 feet of Doug's car until after the accident.

I had not heard the part about me being in danger of getting hit by Doug's car. It wasn't even close. As Dennis said, although I was directly in front of the car, I was some ways away from the impact. I just stayed where I was because it was obvious that Doug had slowed enough that he wasn't going through the tree. If that weren't the case, I had more places to run over that side of the road than on the embankment on the inside of the turn.

I was in much more danger when I was red-crossing at stage 4. Besides the tree that blocked the stage, another one came down along where I had the red-cross out between when Dennis and I drove through there and when we walked back to warn the other competitors about the big tree.

alan
 

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I've only heard some bits and pieces of stories about trees falling on Friday night. Lucky for me, I just got to see the light show from my room in Franklin Square Inn....
Gratiot Lake SUCKS. I aced my foglights (which would've been nice to have on the drive back to Houghton after 15) on one of the huge mud puddles.
Then I got to drive it AFTER you guys went through and churned up the mud/water/dirt mess into a more uniform s--t surface.
I'm going to the car wash, and I'm sending ALL of you a bill.:+
 

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Faster Mabricator
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Thanks Lurch (I think)

>He was a great codriver and had his
>poop in
>a group.

Remind me not to list you as a reference on any of my resumes:)
Other than that, the pleasure was all mine. You did well and it was loads of fun.
 

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good to hear the real story, the rumor I heard was that markku engine rolled, was so dissoriented he stood in the midle of the stage as doug came and had the choice of hitting markku or the tree. but markku seemed fine at service so i figured it wasnt true..
 

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>- I had the scariest stage of my life, up to that point.
>We encountered torrential rain in the last third of the
>first run through Passmore. Dennis and I could not see out
>of the car. We were driving completely off of the notes. I
>would get a glimpse of the turn and call it and Dennis would
>respond. I was also concerned that we were going slow
>enough that the car behind us might catch up with us and not
>see us.

Silly question: I guess DM actually slowed down some??
>
>- I had the true scariest stage of my life.
>We went wide through a long, fast downhill turn and struck
>some trees, including three big ones that we took down, but,
>in return, they also rolled and spun the car. That wasn't
>the scary part. The scary part was when we realized that we
>were upside down in the middle of the road in pitch dark in
>a long, fast downhill, slick turn and couldn't get the doors
>opened and knew the next car would be coming soon. Dennis
>tried to kick out the glass on his door and that eventually
>opened the door (but didn't break the glass) and we got out.

Been there; know the feeling! At least our door opened, but it still seemed like the next car was arriving RIGHT NOW!
>
>- I got to meet Doug Havir.
>Doug was the next car on the road after our roll-over above
>and when presented with the choice of hitting our car (he
>could only see me and thought Dennis might be in the car) or
>hitting a tree, he center-punched his car into a tree.

Good choice and good thinking!
>
>So, that was my weekend.
>
>alan

Want to guess what one of your most memorable rallies will be??

Thanks for sharing!
Mark B.
 

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Glad to hear everyone came out ok and thankyou to all the competitors who risked their lives in some of the U.P.'s best weather conditions. Sorry to hear about the wreck Dennis, I came up with a tech grad who I went to high school and was involved in the baja program.(Zach Bruin-slot says hi by the way) We were rooting for ya and were worried about ya when after standing around at SS4 and then not seeing your car at the Quincy in the morning. Thanks again to everyone for putting on a great show. Alot of fans stood out in the rain and crap and still enjoyed it. Autovalue hotdogs rock!!!!!
 

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>Perhaps the logical successor to the flare would be a
>compact red strobe. I know such things are available.

Seamus Burke used a strobe beacon on his Evo after dark while a mechanical issue left him stranded on a long sweeper at the earlier Rally NY this year. We could see long before we got there but I guess vegetation and terrian could sometimes limit how far in advance it could be seen by approaching cars. I thought it worked well.
 
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