|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||June 9, 1980|
WELLSBORO, Pennsylvania. -- Most of the top PRO Rally drivers in the country gathered in this small northern Pennsylvania resort community for the fourth running of the Susquehannock Trail PRO Rally, and one by one they either broke or fell off the road. Not one driver in the top two seeds had a clean run.
Fighting two inches of rain, slick mud and muck, and nearly impenetrable fog, New Zealanders John Woolf and Grant Whittaker drove their RX-3 Mazda to a 17 minute victory over a 65 car field in the 250 mile SCCA National PRO Rally June 7-8. Second went to the privately entered Volvo 142S of the New Jersey husband/wife team of Wayne and Debra Baldwin.
Third, in a truly remarkable drive, went to Mark Hardymon and Tom Drake of Columbus, Ohio. It was their best drive ever and a well earned finish. One does not expect to find drivers starting back in the pack (they started 23rd) to move into the top 5 on a rally as big as the Susquehannock Trail.
Fourth was John Chalmers of Findlay, Ohio, who announced that his Dodge Colt was for sale and that he was taking the summer off to relax and see what might come along.
Fifth went to the International Harvester Scout of Texans Dick Turner and Tom Grimshaw, who took advantage of the Scout's 4WD to stay on the road while others fell off.
Just such a fate befell top drivers Hendrick Blok and Rod Millen. Blok's Mazda GLC went off on the first stage and Millen's Mazda RX-7 went off on stage 8 while he was leading the rally by over 4 minutes. When series leader John Buffum took a .5 minute lead into the mid-rally service break to discover a broken valve, he decided to call it a night.
Production honors again went to Jon Davis and Harry Ward in their Saab 99, moving them into a huge lead in the Production Class standings. Second were Gary Webb and Bob Hoffman earning Triumph its first Manufacturer's points in the Production category.
The PRO series now moves to Bakersfield, California, June 21-22 for the Mikuni La Jornada Trabajosa where more than 50 top teams, including all of the front runners, will be on hand for the 350 mile PRO Rally.
NEXT THREE EVENTS June 21-22 La Jornada Trabajosa Bakersfield, Calif. August 9-10 Happiness is Sunrise Coudersport, Penn. September 27-28 Mendocino Forest Clear Lake, Calif.
SCCA CONTACT: Tim Cline (203) 453-1742, T. Michael Moreland (303) 770-1044
EVENT: Susquehannock Trail EVENT CONDUCTED BY: Finger Lakes Region, SCCA LOCATION: Wellsboro, Pennsylvania LENGTH: 250 miles, 12 stages, 155 stage miles DATE: June 7-8, 1980 WEATHER: Warm, rain, mud, fog. ENTRANTS: 65, FINISHERS: 25 TERRAIN: Forests, rolling hills TOP 10 FINISHERS FIN CHAMP MFG. POS. DRIVER/CO-DRIVER/HOMETOWN CAR SCORE POINTS POINTS 1. John Woolf, Auckland, NZ Mazda RX-3 3:18.28 100 100 Grant Whittaker, Auckland, NZ 100 2. Wayne Baldwin, Waldwick, NJ Volvo 142 3:35.04 80 80 Debra Baldwin, Waldwick, NJ 80 3. Mark Hardymon, Powell, OH Dodge Colt 3:40.16 60 60 Tom Drake, Columbus, OH 60 4. John Chalmers, Findlay, OH Dodge Colt 3:41.78 50 Phil Schmidt, Maumee, OH 50 5. Dick Turner, Lancaster, TX IH Scout II 3:44.42 40 40 Tom Grimshaw, Aubrey, TX 40 6. Alex Liversidge, Williston, VT Saab 99 3:51.25 30 30 Linda Wilcox, Williston, VT 30 7.(1P) Jon Davis, Houghton, MI Saab 99 3:51.72 20 Harry Ward, Toledo, OH 20 8. Calvin Landau, Caraopolis, PA Ford Capri 3:57.71 19 Karen Landau, Caraopolis, PA 19 9. Robert Schneider, Sylvania, OH VW Rabbit 4:01.21 18 Larry Ward, Toledo, OH 18 10. Larry Schmidt, Rochester, MI Dodge Colt 4:01.47 17 Joe Andreini, St. Clair, MI 17 PRODUCTION CLASS WINNERS 1. Jon Davis, Houghton, MI Saab 99 3:51.72 100 100 Harry Ward, Toledo, OH 100 2. Gary Webb, Mechanic Falls, ME Triumph TR-7 4:28.86 80 80 Bob Hoffman, Kingston, NJ 80 3. Wilson Hopkins, Indianapolis, IN Dodge Colt 4:31.91 60 60 Paul Amos, Carmel, IN 60 STANDINGS AFTER SIX EVENTS DRIVER: PRODUCTION DRIVER 1. John Buffum 400 1. Jon Davis 280 2. Rod Millen 260 2. Jim Olinger 160 3. Jon Woodner 200 Dan Wing 160 4. John Woolf 180 4. Pat Nowak 110 5. Dick Turner 170 + Four drivers with 100 Points CO-DRIVER PRODUCTION CO-DRIVER 1. Doug Shepherd 400 1. Harry Ward 280 2. Dave Weiman 180 2. Ron Richardson 160 Grant Whittaker 180 3. John Erickson 110 4. Tom Grimshaw 170 + Four co-drivers with100 points 5. David Orrick 140 MANUFACTURER PRODUCTION MANUFACTURER 1. Triumph 460 1. Saab 540 2. Mazda 440 2. Plymouth 290 3. Scout 150 3. Dodge 210 4. Dodge 140 4. Mercury 110 5 Datsun 120 5. Toyota 80 Volvo 120 Triumph 80