Thought I’d put some notes together for you on Team “Swap to Street’s” first day rallying. Today was the Hagerty Trophy Run, so it was about a half day of rallying on the clock. Let me tell you, it felt like a full day and then some!
First off, the truck as a Rally Vehicle has a few quirks we will learn to work through the rest of the event. First off, the suspension (or lack thereof) throws us all over the cab on the bumpy and twisty roads. I mean, if the truck didn’t have freshly installed seat belts, there would be dents in the roof from our heads bouncing into it all day. Next, while it has a pretty snappy flathead V8 powering us down the road, the rest of this thing is very much still a TRUCK. Brakes? Not really. Transmission? Pops out of 2nd if you don’t leave your hand on it while under deceleration. Steering? Well, it turns fine but let’s just say we won’t be out cornering any Corvettes, plus the spokes block the speedometer in the turns! We were on a series of very bumpy farm roads with a ton of elevation gain and loss, and it was a serious challenge to keep the needle on the right speed with all the banging around!
Now, that’s just my impression of things from the drivers seat. Jen, as navigator, had her own impressions! This was her first Great Race, and the rally master for these events is known for “throwing in the kitchen sink” with multiple instructions happening in timed sections, tricky signs, and checkpoints that may or may not be blocking your next instruction. Fun stuff- and really kept her on her toes.
But at the end of the day, how did we do? Not bad! We had to put in a 20 second time delay for cattle standing in the road (seriously- in Napa?!) but we ended up with about a 16 second day today. Not sure yet how that will put us in the overall standings, but we will know that after dinner tonight!