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3 questions — Black Bear Rally, winning ingredients: team, time, talent

June 15, 2011

Wow, in the last couple of rallies (Rocky and Black Bear) a lot of people told me that they enjoy the ‘3 questions’ very much.

We are into the busy season now and despite dropping ‘3 quotes’ and ‘I love Fridays’ for the time being, we are going to continue with the weekly 3 questions.

First one

What happened at Black Bear Rally and why did you and Martin end up 6th?
Thanks for the show! Josh

— We had a blast and the most important was that no stages were cancelled. Well, and the stages were amazing!

Here’s what happened: on the second run through the famous stage called “Peanut”, after hitting one of the rocks in the middle of the road, the steering got kinda jammed — almost locked. We kept in it (Martin yelling: “no heroics now!!!”), eventually I realized that the steering was ‘consistently’ broken, hence quite predictable… I was sure that we broke the steering rack. I’ve never broken the rack before, so I didn’t know how it should feel and there was no way to contact the team. So we decided to do a “fast recce” on the last stage.

Just before the start of the last stage I pressed the button… and the Beast wouldn’t start! And the starter didn’t make proper sounds… We didn’t have much time to think: bump started the car in reverse (we were on the uphill), and started the stage. The handling was consistent and I was trying to test how fast is too fast for Martin to make changes in the notes -:) I think we were about 2 seconds per km slower than our pace on those roads before the problem. And I was impressed to see that all the changes I wanted were put in the notes.

Now, when we came to the finish, pulling into the service park, I accidentally stalled the car… and we had to push it for the last 30 meters… but it was nice to finish after that little drama!

We have later found out that it wasn’t the steering rack… the impact with the rock broke the starter’s mounts, causing the starter to fall down and get jammed between the gear box and the steering column… that’s why, on the jumps, the steering was working great!

Despite being quickest all day, the team made the decision to take a penalty, so that we wouldn’t interfere with the Ontario Championship standings. Congrats to the Narinis, Mathews and Warren & Ray on a day long battle and a good finish!

You can view the results here.


What did you think about the Canadian GP?

— I haven’t watched it yet, but I’ve heard it was wet!


What advice would you give me if I want to become a rally driver?
Thanks, Blake

— What do I know? I’ve only started rallying quite recently… but from what I’ve learned so far, here are the ingredients for success: Team, Time (a.k.a. commitment), Talent.

Team: no one can do it on their own, it is a TEAM SPORT. Rallying, probably, more than any other motor racing.

Time: no matter, who you are and what kind of potential you’ve got – if you aren’t ready to give it all you’ve got, you won’t make it to the top.

Talent: some people are just not meant to be fast drivers… like some people are not meant to be good accountants. Anyone can do it for fun, but few can get to the top. But you will never know, unless you’ve tried.

Every Wednesday I answer 3 questions about anything. Unprecedented honesty! Send me your questions:

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