FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 1, 2002
Contact: Matthew Kennedy
Rocky Road Racing
Web: www.RockyRoad Racing.com
SHILLINGTON, PENNSYLVANIA -- Apparently for Rocky Road Racing, good things sometimes come in 2's. Despite getting 2 simultaneous flats on 2 separate stages, Don and Keith Kennedy were able to take their Bob's Subaru, KAM Specialties sponsored 1996 Subaru Impreza to a 2nd Place finish in class at the Sno*Drift ProRally in Atlanta, MI this past weekend.
Unlike last year, when road conditions were better suited for playing hockey than racing, the 2002 edition threw almost every imaginable kind of road surface at the teams. "One minute you were on snow and ice, the next minute you were on hard-packed mud with ice filled ruts" commented driver and team owner Don Kennedy. "Add to that the sun, which turned the frozen mud and ice into a gooey slop by mid afternoon, and you've got quite a mess."
Things weren't helped much either when, less than a mile from the end of Stage 3, the car slid wide and tapped a bank on the driver's side. In the process, the bead of both tires popped, resulting in two instantaneous flats. The team was able to finish the stage, but, because they were only carrying one spare at the time, had to borrow a "doughnut" from one of the finish control workers (who happened to also be driving an Impreza) in order to make it back to service.
"At that point we had to switch to running our Hakkapeliitta 10s" noted navigator Keith Kennedy. Right away the Rocky Road Racing crew notice a loss of traction in the snow/ice sections with the different tires. "Fortunately, Don's old team mate Dean Fry was able to lend them his set of 1's for Saturday." But as luck would have it, the team was hit again with another pair of flats from tapping the bank on the driver's side. This time, however, they were about six miles from the end of the event's longest stage, and were forced to change tires on the stage, losing almost eight minutes in the process.
In the end, though, the pair was still able to walk away with a strong 2nd in class, and are now 2nd in the SCCA ProRally Production GT Championship heading into the next round in Tennessee. As for Rocky Road Racing's third member Matt Kennedy, the number two wasn't so lucky.
The Team O'Neil Rally Cross that he was competing in was planned as a snow event, but because of a recent warm spell, followed by a sudden drop in temperature at the end of the week, it turned out to be an ice event. For Matt, trouble struck on the first run when his car inexplicably refused to go into second gear. "At these slower speeds, and in these conditions, second gear is absolutely critical because it allows you to maintain speed and avoid excessive wheel spin." After his disastrous first run, Matt turned his attention to experimenting, particularly with tire pressures, and on his last run was able to post the third fastest time of the day for his class. "Rally Crosses are supposed to be about trying things learning what your car will do, and I certainly learned a lot today."
To find out more about this weekend's events, including results, check their official web sites: www.sno-drift.org, and www.teamoneil.com. Also, for photos, videos, and more information about Rocky Road Racing, as well as rallying in general, be sure to stop by our web site: www.RockyRoadRacing.com.