La Jornada Trabajosa Pro Rally 1980



BAKERSFIELD, California -- Rod Millen and his long-time friend from New Zealand, John Woolf, raced to the wire in their very different Mazdas to sweep top honors and the SCCA National PRO Rally, La Jornada Trabjosa (The Difficult Journey) - After nearly 12 hours of rallying in the beautiful Sequoia National Forest in the High Sierras north of Bakersfield, Millen's RX-7 nudged Woolf's RX-3 by only 17/100 of a minute (about 10 seconds). "It was really a close one," said Millen, "Did you see our scores? It was nip and tuck all the way. I won some stages by a little bit, and he won some by a lot, and we tied a few."

Third went to Hendrik Blok of Los Angeles in his Plymouth Fire Arrow. Blok had been running a specially built Mazda GLC most of the season, but when his deal with Mazda expired, he went back to the tried and trusted Arrow, which he rallied so successfully last year. In 1979, at LJT, Blok finished 6th in a controversial scoring decision. That marked the start of a streak of bad luck for the fiery Dutchman which has been going on ever since. Perhaps this good finish will turn things around for him.

Fourth went to Jon Woodner of Washington, D.C. in his Triumph TR-8, less than a minute behind Blok. In spite of the good showing, Woodner slipped from third to fourth place in the overall standings because of Woolf's good finish.

The fifth, sixth and seventh place cars were separated by a mere half-minute at the end of the 297 mile rally. It shows what a great equalizer PRO rallying can be when cars as diverse as a Scout, an RX-7 Mazda, and a Production Class Plymouth Arrow finish that close together. Dick Turner in his International Scout II finished his seventh event of the season: - the only driver on the rally circuit to boast such a record. Nick Van Nugteren of Singapore was sixth in his Mazda which had been completely rebuilt after a bad accident last month. Kris Mellon was seventh overall in his Plymouth Arrow claiming first in the Production Class. Ted Hocker was second in Production in another Arrow followed by Del Hoffman in a Saab 99. Hoffman's finish gives Saab a whopping 600 points in the Manufacturer's standings.

Pre-rally favorite and defending champion, John Buffum didn't get his Triumph TR-8 as far as the first stage. "I don't know what was wrong. It was a brand new engine, well, a new rebuild, and it just didn't work. We think it might be a cam. Everything went bad on the way to the stage, so we just turned around and rolled back to the bottom of the hill.

One of the biggest winners at LJT was B.F. Goodrich. In seven rallies this year, a BFG-shod car has won every time. At LJT, both Millen and Woolf were on Goodrich T/A radial street tires.

The rally, which drew 40 entries from 12 states, was the seventh in the SCCA National PRO Rally Championship 13-event series. In spite of his DNF at LJT, Buffum continues to lead the series with 400 points followed by Millen who now has 360 and Woolf with 260. Mazda now takes the lead in the Manufacturer's Category with 540 points followed by Triumph with 510.

The next rally in the Championship will be the Happiness Is Sunrise in Pennsylvania August 9-10.

SCCA CONTACT: Tim Cline (203) 453-1742, T. Michael Moreland (303) 770-1044


EVENT: La Jornada Trabajosa                 			EVENT CONDUCTED BY: Bakersfield Rally Club
LOCATION: Bakersfield, California                               LENGTH: 297 miles, 11 stages, 80 stage miles		    	    
DATE; June 21-22, 1980                            		WEATHER: Fair and mild			
ENTRANTS: 40: FINISHERS: 27            				TERRAIN: Mountains, Forest		

FIN											CHAMP	MFG. 
POS.	DRIVER/CO-DRIVER/HOMETOWN		CAR			SCORE		POINTS	POINTS                                                           				CHAMP     MFG.
 1. 	Rod Millen, Santa Ana, CA     		Mazda RX-7    		1:32.25     	100       100
	Mike Franchi, Santa Ana, CA                               			100

 2. 	John Woolf, Auckland, NZ      		Mazda RX-3   	 	1:32.42     	 80
      	Grant Whittaker, Auckland, NZ                             			 80

 3. 	Hendrik Blok, Los Angeles, CA 		Plymouth Arrow    	 1:35.74	 60        60
      	Steve Ruiz, Torrance, CA     			                            	 60

 4. 	Jon Woodner, Washington, DC 		Triumph TR-8 	 	1:36.61     	 50        50
      	David Orrick, Spring Valley, NY                           			 50

 5, 	Dick Turner, Lancaster, TX    		IH Scout II  	 	1:41.48     	 40        40
      	Tom Grimshaw, Aubrey, TX                                   			 40

 6. 	Nick Van Nugteren, Anaheim, CA 		Mazda RX-7   	 	1:42.00     	 30
      	Steve Feuerhelm, Anaheim, CA                              			 30

 7.(1P) Kris Mellon, Kings Beach, CA 		Plymouth Arrow 	 	1:42.02 	 20
      	Julie Anderson, Manhatten Beach, CA						 20

 8. 	Ray Rocker, Ridgecrest, CA		Dodge Colt   	 	1:45.79     	 19
      	Damon Trimble, Newark, CA							 19

 9. 	Ken White, Fremont, CA			Datsun 510   	 	1:46.66     	 18
      	Gene Kaczmarek, Fremont, CA                               			 18

10.	Rod Koch, Norco, CA           		VW 2100CC    	 	1:51.84     	 17
	Bill Sturm, Rancho Cucamonga, CA						 17


 1. 	Kris Mellon, Kings Beach, CA  		Plymouth Arrow	 	1:42.02     	100       100
      	Julie Anderson, Manhatten Beach, CA						100

 2. 	Ted Becker, San Jose, CA     		Plymouth Arrow	 	1:52.38		 80
      	Amy Atkinson, San Rafael, CA							 80

 3, 	Del Hoffman, Kirkland, WA     		Saab 99L      	 	1:53.18      	 60        60
      	Greg Harris, Bellevue, WA                                  			 60

                         STANDINGS AFTER SEVEN EVENTS
DRIVER:                                      		PRODUCTION DRIVER
1. John Buffum        400                 		1. Jon Davis         280
2. Rod Millen         360                 		2. Jim Olinger       160
3. John Woolf         260                     		   Del Hoffman       160
4. Jon Woodner        250                     		   Dan Wing          160
5. Dick Turner        210                 		5. Pat Nowak         110

CO-DRIVER                                    		PRODUCTION CO-DRIVER
1. Doug Shepherd      400                 		1. Harry Ward        280
2. Grant Whittaker    280                 		2. Ron Richardson    160
3. Tom Grimshaw       210                     		   Greg Harris       160
4. David Orrick       190                 		4. John Erickson     110
5. Dave Weiman        180
1. Mazda              540                 	  	1. Saab              600    
2. Triumph            510                 		2. Plymouth          390
3. Scout              190                		3. Datsun	     210	
4. Dodge              140                 		4. Mercury           110 
5. Datsun             120				5. Toyota             80
   Volvo              120                		   Triumph            80

Results 80
RRN Index