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3/14=my 42nd rally anniversary
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Search on "rally ward gossett" and read the rest of his articles on CT.

Also, some people on Rally-L commented that Kurt's remarks were not helpful. I say three cheers for Kurt for standing up publicly to what is apparently a officious bureaucrat! Get public opinion, local businesses, the mayor and the state reps involved and hopefully the "Ranger" will find himself reassigned to scraping endangered moss off a pipeline somewhere in Alaska.

Of course, I'm not known for my diplomatic skills. :D
 

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RE:

Ok, I'm going to preface this by saying that I have issues, in general, with law enforcement officers. Without turning this forum into a debate on current policing methods, I have to say...

What's with those Tree Pigs? Maybe there wouldn't be such a problem if they tried to act like law enforcement officers, and not babysitters. In reading that article, I just get the impression that they felt obligated to have a forestry service eyeball on each and every person who was there for the rally... I'm not sure why they felt compelled to treat us differently than the other hundreds of thousands of people who tromp through that forest each year.
 

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Well....

Not to defend the park service guys, and not knowing what's been going on between the organizers and the rangers, but...

First of all, we fear what we do not know. Perhaps the rangers need to be educated on rally, spectating, etc. If they don't understand rally, how are they going to support it?

Second, always try to understand your opponent. What motivates them? What are their concerns? What makes their life difficult? Could this be a group that is understaffed and overwhelmed by the rally?

Third, is this a reaction to something that happened last year? Were we disrespectful of the forest? Did we leave a mess? Speed by the head ranger's house? Have we put our best foot forward?

Cherokee Trails has some of the best roads around. It's a great event and I know the organizers have put an incredible amount of work into this event. I'm probably restating things Kendall and John have already thought about and dealt with. And yes, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. Maybe ranger Bob is just a PITA who is against the rally. But maybe we can work together to get ranger Bob's support.
 

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RE:

I think that every bit of effort need to be put forth to maintain this race and promote other races in national forests. The argument about environmental impact is not relevant in this situation. If the forest service was really concerned about environmental impact, the roads would not be there in the first place and logging trucks would not be lumbering up and down them day in and day out hauling off our nations trees to be sold. Our great president has issued a decree that encourages the building of more roads in our national forests directly undercutting the Clinton administrations ban on road building. Bush's decree is nothing more than an attempt to boost profits of complaining logging companies. Building roads in forests is in itself the single most destructive thing that we as humans can do to our forests. Well the clear cutting that comes after is probably worse. But all for profit what can we do? We can make the best possible use of these horrible roads and race around on them. The foresters in charge of the CT race have nothing to complain about save for the fact that we are not a major corporation with the political clout to silence them. Every one of us that enjoys this sport has the duty to call hypocrisy loud and clear and make everybody hear it when a debate like this arises.

[email protected]
 

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RE:CT

Good for Kurt! I am heartened to see that he did not mince words for the sake of being PC and maybe hurting someones feelings. He is right however, in that the USFS is supposed to encourage diverse use of the parks, but they can make life utterly miserable.


Brian
 

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"The forestry service, by government charge, has to make the forest available to all," Spitzner said, "but the (forestry) mindset is, 'If there are people we don't want in the forest, we can make their lives pretty miserable.'

"It is in our interest to make sure we are going places that we are wanted, and the situation is not invisible to myself, the national office or the (automobile) manufacturers involved."


umm... yeah... Prescott has COMPLETE support from the forest service and the county for permissions and use. The county completely loves our event, and bends over backwards to help us out. 2002 we are a Club rally only. Makes the above statements rather suspect I would say....
 

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RE: Well....

Daphne has made the same points I have in the past. Ignorance is our worst enemy and while we rallying people may know the ins and outs of the sports, trying to explain it to some pen pusher can be very difficult. You have to get them out there!!!! To experience what the sport is.

I've talked to organizers that have a great rapport with the beaurocrats and others that can't get through to them. The common factor in the difference of attitude by various services is the inability to comprehend what the sport is about.

Lets face it, if you try and describe your sport to a "Protector of the Environment" and that person goes and watches a round of the WRC on Speed Channel, how would you react???? We have to educate them on the local circumstances. If G.W.Bush is going to overturn a Clinton edict and allow 2,000 Snowmobilers a day to cruise around Yellowstone National Park, then he aint got a problem with a 100 rally cars using established roads in other national parks!!!

I know organizers face a difficult job dealing with these beaurocrats but maybe a brainstorming session amongst them all wouldn't go amiss either.

Don (hoping to see rallies in National Parks in 2025) Roberts
 

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That seems consistant...

If the local forestry guys are with you, great! If they're not cooperative and can't be won over with a basket of free WRC videos, make some noise and take the case to someone who can overrule the local ranger.

What would you do in this case, Bill?
 

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RE: That seems consistant...

as I wasn't there, and do not know the full story, I can't comment on the Cherokee incident. If the local guy was anti rally, it would have been evident all throughout the prep stages. Something may have fallen through the cracks on the forestry side. It is hard to speculate such things, when so many things can be a factor in what happened. The economic impact statement may have much to do with changing views of the event in this particular situation.
 

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USFS, not NPS

You'll never see a rally in a National Park. The National Park Service is designated to conserve natural resources and they'd never allow it. (Wondering now how anyone allowed the Yellowstone situation to get so bad).
We are dealing with the United States Forest Service whose primary purpose is to harvest timber and as a secondary purpose to provide recreation. Rallying is recreation thus we sometimes are granted road use permits. Many offroading and ATV clubs are given permits to build trails in National Forest that do far greater damage than is inflicted by a rally on designated roads.
The case in Cherokee Trails can be contributed to anal retentive tree hugging rangers who do not know rallying or the mission statement of the USFS.

Commander Salamander
Former National Park Service Ranger (Great Smoky Mountains)
BS in Natural Resource Management including NPS Law Enforcement
Active ProRally codriver
 

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RE: That seems consistant...

I keep wondering if any of you actually read that article and what it said.

Try this quote...
"A squabble between the Cherokee Trails International Rally organizers and the U.S. Forestry Service could end the automobile race's three-year run in Chattanooga, organizers say."

The organizers didn't say that. Kurt however continually alluded to it even going so far as to mention lifting the event's sanction.

Say Bill, how would you like Kurt to wander into your rally and tell the reporters he doesn't think the rally's welcome there? My guess is you'd be p*ssed!

Kurt was supposedly hired to further rallying in this country. How do any of his comments accomplish this? By maybe creating a tense situation in a locale that's trying to establish a rally? Exactly what are his credentials for speaking with such authority? He arrived there 4 days prior to the rally? I find Kurt's comments ill-founded, ill-conceived and entirely out of place given his current employer and tasks.

Kurt's non-PC comments only serve to antagonize a situation that is in flux. Cherokee is a relatively new event and needs time to establish relationships with everyone. Not every event out there has been running for the last 10 years or longer. Teething pains are a reality.

And other than the spectating issue what major problems with the USFS occured? Road fees? Ask any of the other events what they spend on that.
....0ran...
 

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RE: That seems consistant...

Oran...

hope all that wasn't directed to me... I do know who said what. I also know some people in this world have ulterior motives. There are a few organizers the SCCA (the PRD specifically) would like to see go away. We all know who we are, and we don't play ball by their rules. Sad to say, Kurts comments may have had nothing to do with the forest service, but his own feeling about the event, or the organizers. That is pure speculation on my part, but I have been in some of the meetings, we're not all friends any more.

I did read the article, a few times. My response was to Jon on how I would handle it. I cannot comment on it, just with the facts I have read here, or in the story. I was not at the event. I did not have any conversations with the FS, or the organizers. I do not have the proper info to make a claim of what I would do in such a situation (that situation being the moved spectator areas, not the article info).

You also have to realize that many people involved with organizing won't stick their necks out in a public forum, bashing those that hold the key to the kingdom, and hope there is no retribution. The SCCA has handed down swift retribution in the past (Prescott for example) and many do not want that to happen to their investment.

I know all too well what goes into an event with the FS, thus my comments that if they were anti rally it would have been evident. I do not feel (through my conversations with Kendall and John) that the area is anti rally. My comment was pure conjecture as to a few forestry people that may have been having a bad day because they had to work extra hard, or miss a day off, or stand around and watch crazy people in their forest. Everyone has an agenda, and rally may not fit in with a few, but they are not the rule makers, and will certainly be "fixed" before next year rolls around.

The article is completely counter productive. Such comments should not have been made, but they were. Not only is it counter productive, but might possibly constitue a conflict of interest to have the promotors of an entire sport give any interviews on any single event. You can be assured many people "up the chain of cammand" have been made aware of these desparaging comments.

Bill
 

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Kurt might be doing the right thing...

From what I've heard from organizers who have spoken with Kurt about CT directly, the situation with the forest is worse than we think, to the point of politcally threatening the whole program on NFS lands, nationwide.

<useless speculation mode>

Perhaps by killing the rally now with harsh words we can avoid more serious repercussions in the future?

-Mark McNamara
www.100aw.org
 

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RE: Kurt might be doing the right thing...

>-Mark McNamara
>www.100aw.org suggested:

>From what I've heard from organizers who have spoken with
>Kurt about CT directly, the situation with the forest is
>worse than we think, to the point of politcally threatening
>the whole program on NFS lands, nationwide.

Was this the conclusion of the organizers, Spitzner or Someone
really in a position to know?


>Perhaps by killing the rally now with harsh words we can
>avoid more serious repercussions in the future?

Or maybe the patient needs to seek a second opinion before
resorting to an amputation. It may not be gangrene,
but rather a case of a travelling salesman wanting to sell
used surgical saws...


GB the GG
 

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RE: Kurt might be doing the right thing...

the information should not be coming from Kurt, but from the event organizers, who are in direct communication with the FS. You are getting news 3rd hand from an original source with motives that are questionable. Kurt does not have anything to do with obtaining forestry permits to run an event, I would be surprised if he had any info with regards to "threatening the whole program on NFS lands, nationwide".
 

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RE: Kurt might be doing the right thing...

>>Or maybe the patient needs to seek a second opinion before
resorting to an amputation. It may not be gangrene,
but rather a case of a travelling salesman wanting to sell
used surgical saws...>>

OMG!!! that is so freaking funny!!!! thank you for giving me a good chuckle..
 

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RE: That seems consistant...

RE: Another Problem:
Three characters:

7PM

On the subject of dealing with the USFS...
Hfrom what I have seen on SpecialStage, and what I have gathered from the Ojibwe organizers. The USFS is dealt with for each rally is so ridiculously different. Lyn Nelson has talked about having to wire money to a party in California, it is my understanding that Ojibwe pays a party in Minnesota.

In my mind, it seems unlikely that pissing off one USFS unit would end up causing a ban on rallying in _any_ USFS unit. OK, a really extreme act could I suppose, like burning down a part of the forest in retaliation...

remember just the thoughts and opinions of one guy.

Re: Selling the event to the community.
I know some events are doing them, and sounds like Cherokee did. But I can't escape the value of presenting a report to the community generated from the Finanical impact questionaires.

Maine does a cool thing of giving the competitors their tow fund and starting bonus in the form of Sakagawea gold dollars. That way, the stores can directly see that rally related money is coming to them.

jb
 
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