Event Chair: Greg Lukach
Posted on June 15, 2013
Posted on May 8, 2013
Event Chairs: Bill and Cathy Burkholder
Posted on April 20, 2013
Event Chairs: Dennis Miller and Scott Spear
Posted on April 13, 2013
Posted on March 24, 2013
Event Chairs: Emanuel Martin and Clark Walker
3/24/2013 Event CANCELLED
Posted on March 5, 2013
Date: Saturday, March 2, 2013
Rallymaster: Bill Wagner, Jr.
Cold run: (none)
Download a PDF of the results: Click Here
The first event of the 2013 CCSCC competition year is now on the books. I caused it to be a non-starter last weekend, but managed to pull things together in time for March 2, 2013, for five teams who came out in the cold to play. I had a couple of problems to contend with right from the start. I managed to mess up the spreadsheet with the details for leg 1 and had to do a corrected one. I was looking at it because the first car, DeMeritts, had arrived at checkpoint 1 early and then presented me with a time delay slip. Since they are usually spot on and tough to beat, I started investigating. I sent all the other teams on their way for leg two while I made up some corrected out slips. Then mistake two appeared on the horizon with a phone call from the Townsends looking for a blank sign. I had made use of a crossroad sign as a landmark on one instruction, but forgot to draw it into the instructions. I called up the other teams and got them all back on course to return to the checkpoint. Since this was a rally master error, I opted to throw that leg out. The other legs of the rally went by without much of a hitch from my point of view.
The scores in Seat of the Pants were very good overall, especially the B&B team of Bedford and Blackwelder, who scored in single digits on legs 1 and 3. They dropped off a bit on legs 4 and 5, but still had a respectable score. Ingles and Flora were only 21 points back at the end. If they had been closer on leg 1 they would have made it a real race. The 3rd team in SOP was the father/son team of Gary and Sean Patrick. Sean was out for his first rally and the two made a respectable showing. I hope we’ll see them out for more this year.
Final congratulations should go to the Townsends who really killed the legs and scored only 5 points for the rally. An excellent start to the year for them. Thank-you to all who came out. It’s always great when a rally actually comes together.
|SEAT OF PANTS CLASS|
Posted on December 5, 2012
The second annual “Monticello Monte” Road Rally took place on December 2nd, 2013. The Rally began at Subaru of Champaign County in Savoy, Illinois, and ended on the historic courthouse square in Monticello, IL. Gary Patrick was the Rallymaster. Club members Emanuel Martin and Angela Patrick assisted with checkpoint operations, along with Angela’s friend Kim Johnson. Michel Watkins, Events Coordinator for Worden Martin Automotive Group, assisted with hospitality at registration. The Rally was a trap-free tour that combined “Jogularity” (i.e. official mileage and car zero time with each route instruction) with Tulip diagrams. There were 16 total controls, all passage style. Because of the control type, automatic time allowance delays were used in scoring.
The competitors started arriving at Subaru of Champaign County around 11:30 and by 12:30 there were 18 individuals ready to compete in 9 cars. A few of the local and not-so-local regulars were there as well as several new faces, some from quite far away. Adam Harden and Andrew Ecker came all the way from Festus, MO, to try their first Road Rally. Abrin Schmucker from Chicago, IL, was also a first-timer and he brought not one but two navigators, James Fox and Ken Everaerts! Other rookies included the local team of Mark Leonard and Geri Horvath, Tim Tavenor of Springfield, IL, (Navigating for Dan Marx) and Adam Deffenbaum (Driving with Tom Ingles as Navigator).
At 12:40 rallymaster Gary Patrick conducted a brief rookie meeting. Basic concepts and terminology were touched upon, but the schedule left no time to go into any subject in any kind of detail. At the time, it was completely unclear whether the information was being absorbed. The rookie meeting ran a few minutes longer than scheduled, and the all-crew meeting got off to a late start. The Rallymaster worked through his points quickly, but it was several minutes after the published “first car off” time before he was finished. Luckily there was ample time for the tire warm up and odometer legs. Despite the late start, all cars made it to the end of the odometer leg before their out-time.
The first half of the rally was a double loop around the area between White Heath, Mahomet, and Mansfield. A few teams had trouble early on. Chuck Hansen and Bob Demeritt in car 1 (Ford Contour SVT) suffered a flat tire just past checkpoint 2 which put them about 15 minutes behind schedule. The “Chicago Three” in car 5 (Subaru WRX) were already into delay time by Checkpoint 2, not even 4 miles past the “odo” marker. Leonard and Horvath in car 3 (Subaru STI) made a navigational error somewhere after checkpoint 3 and went M.I.A. They didn’t make checkpoint 4 and didn’t answer their phone when the Rallymaster’s attempted to call them. The rest of the teams seemed more or less on track until Checkpoint 5. Deffenbaugh and Ingles in car 8 (Mazda 3) made a course following error which caused them to miss checkpoints 5 and 6. They managed to figure out their mistake and were able to pick the route back up before Checkpoint 7 on a 5.5 minute delay. Hansen and Demeritt in Car 1 missed a turn before checkpoint 5 . The were able to recover, but were up to 20+ minutes of delay time. Eventually every team but Leonard and Horvath in car 3 made checkpoint 8, the last before the mid-rally break in Monticello.
At the half way point Russ Bedford and Mike Blackwelder in car 8 (Subaru WRX) held both the Seat-of-Pants class as well as overall rally lead with 48 points. Brian and Sandy Grable in car 7 (Ford Escape) were 2nd in class with 94. Another 13 behind in S.O.P. was Jonathan Flora in car 6 (Subaru Outback), running sans navigator. Thanks to the off course excursion and subsequent missed checkpoints, Deffenbaugh and Ingles in car 8 were sitting 137 points behind the S.O.P. class leader.
Hansen and Demeritt in car 1 seemed relieved just to have made it to the break location. As the only competitors in the Navigational class, they probably didn’t expect to be sitting in 6th place overall at mid-way point with a score of 143. They were eager, however, to get to the starting point for the second half and resume the role of lead car.
In the Novice class, Schmucker, Fox, and Everaerts in car 5 held a slim lead over Harden and Ecker in car 2 (Mitsubishi Lancer), 115 to 126. Not far behind were Marx and Tavenor in car 4 (MINI Cooper) with 151. Leonard and Horvath in car 3 were still A.W.O.L.
With all the cars besides #3 back in sequence, the second half of the rally commenced at 3:16 pm from the south side of Allerton Park. The remaining route was a double loop of the area between Allerton Park, Cerro Gordo, and Argenta. Having adapted well to the rally format, the 8 remaining teams stayed more or less in sequence through the second half. Hansen and Demeritt in car 1 showed what they were really capable of with their navigational equipment by picking up just 4 points total in the first 5 second-half legs. At the same time, the Grables in car 7 were nibbling into the class and overall lead, cutting 15 points off their deficit by checkpoint 13. At the other end of the S.O.P. standings, Ingles, navigating in car 8, was having trouble harnessing his driver. Deffenbaugh, an accomplished autocrosser but rally newbie, was struggling to come to grips with the concept of going something other than “Fast As Possible” and was steadily getting the team further and further ahead of schedule. The rookie teams in cars 2, 4, and 5 all stayed on-course and relatively close to on-time. The points margins between positions fluctuated, but the relative positions stayed constant through 13.
Just as the Rallymaster was about to close checkpoint 11 his phone rang. It was the crew from checkpoint 10/12. Just as they were about to move the checkpoint marker from one side of the road (to close checkpoint 10) to the other (to open checkpoint 12) Leonard and Horvath in car 3 were spotted. They were nearly 30 minutes behind, but seemed determined to complete the route to the finish. The crew was able to get them an in-time. The Rallymaster had to close 11 before car 3 arrived, but observed from 14 that they were still on course in the vicinity of 11 and had shaved off a couple minutes of lateness.
Checkpoint 14 proved to be the decisive point in the rally in for the leading two teams. The Grables in car 7 collected 18 penalty points while Bedford and Blackwelder in car 9 came in with just 2. In one leg, all the work Brian and Sandy had done since the break to close the gap to the rally leaders was undone. Barring a major mistake, it seemed as though Russ and Mike were cruising towards victory. Meanwhile, Deffenbaugh and Ingles in car 8 had gotten more than a half minute ahead and were collecting “max” penalties of 50 points.
While most of the teams were passing through checkpoints 15 and 16, the Rallymaster waited at 14 to get an in time for Leonard and Horvath in car 3. The crew at checkpoint 15 was aware that car 3 was still coming, but the Rallymaster was unable to make contact with the crew at checkpoint 16 to alert them. Fortunately he knew a more direct route there than the course the competitors were following and was able to get to the last checkpoint in time to get car 3 their in-time just as dusk was settling in.
From the last checkpoint, the competitors and workers proceeded to El Toro Restaurant on the Courthouse Square in Monticello where the staff was kind enough to move all the tables in the center section together so the all competitors could sit together. While the Rallymaster compiled scores, the teams shared stories over drinks and food. Just as most were finishing their meals, the Rallymaster was ready to announce the final results and award event T-shirts to the class winners.
As anticipated, Bedford and Blackwelder in car 9 were able to hold their lead through the last two legs and finished first in the Seat-Of-Pants class and first overall with 88 points. The Grables in car 7 held on to finish 2nd in class and overall with 136 points. Flora, competing solo in car 6, capped an excellent rally with a perfect “0″ on the last leg and finished third in SOP with 152. Deffenbaugh and Ingles in car 8, who showed a lot of spirit, finished fourth in class with 388.
Hansen and Demeritt in car 1 fared much better in the second half than the first. In the final 9 legs they scored just 8 points. It was only enough to move them into 3rd place overall, however.
The Novice class cars finished in the same order they had stood at the break. Schmucker, Fox, and Everaerts in car 5 finished first with a very respectable 178 points. Harden and Ecker in car 2 were close behind in second with 196. Marx and Tavenor in car 4 were the only Novice team to complete the second half with no delay time and finished 3rd in class with 251 points. Leonard and Horvath were 4th in class but 1st in perseverance, finding their way to the finish with 502 points after having fallen over a half hour behind.
Overall the event was a great success. Despite a few challenges, all the competitors made it to the finish. Three of the four rookie teams did so with minimal course following issues. While navigation and staying on time within a certain window was fairly easy, the veterans still seemed sufficiently challenged to earn low scores. Most importantly, smiles were abundant at the finish. All in all, it seemed everyone enjoyed themselves, even Mark and Geri who drove around in car 3 for over an hour and a half without seeing a checkpoint.
If you missed the 2012 Monticello Monte rally you missed a good time. Next year the Rallymaster hopes to make it even more fun. Don’t make the same mistake two years in a row! Watch the Champaign County Sports Car Club’s Road Rally Schedule page for information about the 2013 event.
FOR A COMPLETE ALBUM OF PHOTOS FOLLOW THIS LINK
Gary Patrick, Rallymaster
Posted on November 10, 2012
Event Chair: Emanuel Martin
Posted on November 4, 2012
The day started with bits of snow that actually stuck to the ground for a while. It was a great beginning for a Northwest Adventure, and a sign that it really is November already. Thirteen hardy souls came out to run the rally and four came to work it. I cleverly convinced Russ and Mike that they should take my place in working Jon’s rally in the afternoon instead of working mine. This made one more car to run my rally and gave me the opportunity to participate in the afternoon one. The down side was that Greg and I then had to run all four checkpoints. This kept us very very busy as the checkpoints were several miles apart and we had to get to all of them sequentially instead of leapfrogging checkpoints with another crew. We survived but had to hold the rally up a couple of times in order to give ourselves time to get to each checkpoint ahead of the rally cars.
One car ran in the Adventure Class where the goal was to answer 36 questions as they traveled the rally route. Questions as devious as “How many ‘Champaign County 1’ signs did you see between instructions 20 and 23. If contestants were sharp they could have seen three ‘Champaign 1 County’ signs facing them, including one that was to their right as they turned left onto Champaign County 1. There was even one that they might have been able to recognize from the back due to its pentagonal shape. Unfortunately spotting and counting the signs wasn’t the trick. The trick was realizing that the signs literally said ‘Champaign 1 County’ instead of having the question’s ‘Champaign County 1’ wording. The correct answer was therefore zero (0).
After seeing that they had 6 incorrect answers (for the 9 questions) for the first leg of the rally Basil and Johanna quickly realized they needed to pay way more attention and only missed 7 total on the following three legs. That 7 they got on leg 3 is the result of a side trip to Rantoul that made them late enough to the third checkpoint that they picked up the maximum Adventure Class timing penalty of 5 points. All in all a very good showing for Johanna’s first rally and for Basil’s first one without an experienced rallyist as a partner. They had a great time and want to try more adventure rallies where the emphasis is on course following, observation, and cleverness. You’ll see more of them next year.
In the Time/Speed/Distance (TSD) classes there were two navigational cars, four Seat of Pants (SOP) cars and one Novice team. Baily and Clark, the novice team, did an outstanding job for their first rally. They beat all of the SOP cars and one of the Navigational cars. That blank space where there should have been a score for their last leg is my fault (partly). The checkpoint was in the back of a parking lot adjacent to the Prospect Avenue exit off of I-74 in Champaign. Contestants were instructed on the prior checkpoint’s out slip that they were to wave, honk and flash their lights as they exited the interstate in order to distinguish themselves from among all the other Saturday traffic and to catch the checkpoint crew’s attention. Unfortunately Baily and Clark missed seeing that instruction. Fortunately the fact that the checkpoint crew missed seeing them didn’t affect their class position so we’re both off the hook. Whew!
I should also mention that Baily and Clark followed the course correctly to the letter and thus were the first to finish the rally. The first four cars all made mistakes at one place or another and therefore moved back in the pack since cars are usually sent out of the checkpoints in the order they arrive. Being “in the lead” is still pretty heady stuff for novices (and is certainly justified in this case by their excellent scores). Unfortunately on rallies your on course position doesn’t mean anything in terms of your actual finishing place.
One of the mistakes that helped move the experienced rallyists back in the pack was an assumption that rallies are like regular life. The navigator read a “right at stop” instruction to the driver then was busy twiddling with her rally computer and didn’t notice that the driver turned at a traffic light set as a stop blinker instead of at a stop sign. What you see and take for granted day by day isn’t necessarily the way a rally works. To keep everyone on the same page every rally has its own set of general instructions. It is standard for most generals to define a stop as an official octagonal sign. That was the case for the Northwest Adventure. Fortunately the driver’s error nagged at the back of his mind. When he also realized that the next sign he was supposed to see was probably one he had passed earlier but was in the opposite direction from where he was going everything clicked. He than ran his suspicion by his navigator and they decided to go back and try again to follow the course, this time successfully.
One of the funnest incidents (but not really funny, at least to those involved) was car 6 turning in a delay request for the last leg but putting the wrong car number on it. What’s the rallymaster to do? Use the delay allowance to change the wrong car’s score? Disallow the delay allowance? Give the unfortunate rallyist a hard time then allow the request? Well we certainly can’t have rallyists creating fraudulent delay allowance requests that will increase other rallyists scores so I went with that last option. Interestingly had the delay been awarded to the wrong car it would have helped their score and given them second place instead of last place. As you can see from the results, allowing the legitimate request (with the boo boo on it) ultimately ended up moving car 6 up from last place to second in their class. Ah yes, rallies are a whole bunch of details, one ofter another after another. You can never let your guard down if you want to do well.
Speaking of details, one thing a good navigator does is to look ahead in the instructions so that they can be on top of things when finishing an instruction. Unfortunately you best not bring that knowledge of the future back and apply it to the present where it doesn’t belong. One navigator saw a transit zone coming up and then started it one instruction too soon costing their team 38 points. Two others saw a right turn onto Interstate 57 coming up and convinced their teammate that they must have missed the sign they had been looking for. Had they just kept looking for the sign they would have crossed over the interstate going west on Olympian Drive and found the sign just before Mattis Avenue. Instead they both ended up heading north on the interstate, and just a bit off course. One team called the rallymaster while headed for Rantoul. The other got called by the rallymaster. Both teams were talked back on course but it took 20 minutes for them to both get back there. Meanwhile all the on course participants were being held up at checkpoint 3.
Well, here I am still writing this even though I sat down to write a real short article so I could get it posted ASAP. That’s the thing about rallies. So much interesting stuff goes on that it can’t really be told in a short article. And the amazing thing is that it’s all different from rally to rally. In any case I’ll start wrapping it up here even though I’ve described only about half of what I heard about and even less of what I saw. (Stuff like a questionable turn across another lane, or like a driver not being able to hold his average speed down to 20 MPH while going around Parkland’s winding perimeter road). I’m sure you can find out more of this neat stuff from the participants. Even stuff that I don’t know about so don’t hesitate to ask them how the rally went.
Anyhow, the 5 minute delay of the rally for the confusion between a “stop” and “stop blinker” along with the 20 minute delay for the folks who decided to doubt themselves and assume they had missed an “ONLY ONLY ONLY” sign made the contestants 25 minutes late in getting to Dos Reales Mexican Restaurant. Fortunately the service was fast and the food was outstanding. The delays also almost threatened to hold up the start of the Yellow Line Rally but that’s another story and I’ll let Jon tell it.
Thanks to all who came and to Brian Ford for the cold run and Greg Lukach for all the assistance with the checkpoints. Great fun! The scores are below.
Jerry White, Rallymaster
Posted on October 21, 2012
Event Chair: Greg Lukach