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West Coast Rally Associaton
1999 Thunderbird Results
Ovl Car Driver Navigator Car  Pos Class Score
1 1 Peter Hill Shawn Bishop Eagle Talon 1 unlim 56
2 6 Satch Carlson Russ Kraushaar BMW 325ix 2 unlim 61
3 5 John Fouse Dennis Wende Subaru Legacy 3 unlim 74
4 3 Gary Webb John Kisela rental 4 unlim 90
5 9 Grant Lindsay Daryl Leiski Nissan 200SX 5 unlim 217
6 12 Byron Meston Mark Ward Datsun 510 1 hist 257
7 33 David Rennie Matt Rennie Ford Explorer 1 novice 307
8 10 Steve Richards Gary Reid Toyota Starlet 1 calc 399
9 15 Ted Wilkinson Neil Prescott Ford Cortina Mk II 2 hist 444
10 17 Mike Welland Gord Passmore BMW 2002 3 hist 537
11 14 Marcel Chichak Rod Johnson Morris Cooper 1000 4 hist 573
12 13 Mark Viskov Malcom Muir Ford Cortina Mk II 5 hist 622
13 31 Steve Brown David Glassman BMW 325ix 2 calc 624
14 39 Scott Henderson Mike Beyer Mazda RX7 3 calc 728
15 7 Glenn Wallace Richard Squire Subaru Impreza 2.5RS 6 unlim 775
16 20 Andrew Ralph Matthew Powell Ford Cortina Mk I 2 novice 812
17 11 Dave Rush Bill Schmidt Dodge Mini Ram Van 4 calc 869
18 27 Matt Tabor Chris Hale Subaru Impreza 2.5RS 1 paper 976
19 26 Jon Tabor George Grayson Dodge Neon 2 paper 1147
20 28 Bruce Tabor Janice Tabor Suzuki Sidekick 3 paper 1201
21 35 Andrew Tilson Brad Dolman VW Golf GTi 5 calc 1203
22 37 Vic Karenen Melvin Willis Subaru Legacy Wagon 3 novice 1238
23 2 Dennis Gunn Katy Wood Audi 4000 Quattro 7 unlim 1443
24 38 Chris Yuchum Ben Collette Mazda 323 GTX 4 novice 1483
25 36 Pat Richard Ian McCurdy Subaru Impreza 2.5RS 5 novice 1600
26 29 Mark Tabor Kristen Tabor Mazda 323 GTX 6 calc 1624
27 25 Neil Edmondson Lee Edmondson Dodge Dakota 6 novice 1696
28 34 Dave Page Wayne A'Court Suzuki Swift 7 novice 2673
29 24 Sigi Wolff Peter Wolff Datsun 710 DNF novice 4205
30 8 Martin Wilson John Rapson Porsche 911T DNF unlim 4261
31 32 Taun Chapman Kelly Watkinson Audi 5000CD Avant DNF novice 4459
31 4 John Nispel Ed Storer Toyota Celica AllTrac DNF unlim 4604
33 21 Dale Van Wyck Andy Sharples VW Beetle (69) 6 hist 4740
34 30 Mike West Scott MacDonald Nissan 200SX 8 novice 6198
35 22 Howie Wong Ken Nickel Ford Zephyr (53) DNF hist 6443
36 16 Teresa Davenport Cheri Huntoon Saab Sonett V4 DNF hist 6537
37 18 Aart Van der Star David Cohen Hillman Imp DNF hist 6918
38 23 Chris Plaine Lita Joy Robinson Ford Mustang (67) DNF novice 7314
39 19 Bill Westhead Alan Barnes Alfa Romeo Berlina DNF hist 7510
Note: In order to be considered a finisher, the team must pass at least one control in each leg. Those that  didn't are listed as DNF (Did Not Finish).

Thunderbird Rally, February 6-7 1999 Official Results by Paul Westwick

  First of all, I'd like to give a big thank-you to our sponsors, Nokian and Kal Tire, for the donation of a set of Hakkas for first overall, to Wilkinson's Automobilia for some neat prizes and tireless work promoting the  event, and to ABTCI for the new WCRA web site and for those fabulous series decals.

 Thanks are also due to all of our control officials/photographers and mapping crews: Andrew Dobric, Leslie  Tuck, Tony Latham, Ron Hall, Leszek Brykajlo, Marek Kik, Greg and Nora Hightower, Brian and Tina Thomlinson, Roy Lima, Adrienne Lang, Jim and Jenna Reid, Becky Tilston, and Scott Trinder. I'm sure  everyone joins me in thanking our fabulous sweep crew, John and Linda Mawhinney, who were assisted on Day One by Russ Huntoon. Without all of these people, I'm sure I would go mad.

  It was obvious even before the start that this was going to be one of the toughest Thunderbirds in recent history. Near blizzard conditions on the Coquihalla highway, with the encroaching snowbanks having  reduced it to one lane over the passes, meant that it was a bit of a challenge just to make it to the Merritt start. Many of the competitors were delayed several hours by an accident, because it took highways that  long to plough a new path around the wreck! 39 crews made the start, making it the best attended TBird since 1973, with crews coming from various parts of BC, Alberta, Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Nevada and Maine.

 Day One: Saturday, February 6, 1999

 The first regularity is generally supposed to be a gentle introduction, a small gift to the drivers to let the  navigators figure out which was is up. Fresh powder on the road ensured that it would not be so this year! Despite lower speeds than in the past, Kane Valley proved the undoing of many crews, with at least six  planting their cars in the snowbanks. Most were extracted and got back on their way, but the Alfa Romeo Berlina of Bill Westhead and Alan Barnes retired due to what Tony Latham called "a typical Italian electrical  problem: they hit a tree and knocked the top off the distributor!" Aside from some bodywork, the car is OK, and they drove it home, vowing to return with more modern snow tires.

  The wierdest DNF in Kane Valley was the Porsche 911T of Martin Wilson and John Rapson. They buried it well enough in the snow that neither door would open, and had to climb out the windows. To do that, John  handed his instruction-laden clipboard out the window and it got placed in the back of the checkpoint vehicle that had stopped to help them. Once they were extracted, off went the checkpointers, instructions  and all. All that remained was for Martin and John to drive to Kelowna and start the festivities early. Needless to say, a few other crews also bypassed large sections of Day One.

 On into Kentucky and Sunset, the deep snow continued to slow the cars down, up the junction where course opening found it just got too deep to continue. The crews were eventually corralled and sent back  along a bypass route, losing one regularity in order to get back on schedule by Penticton. Into the dark, past Idabel Lake, around the access road to Big White, back towards Kelowna on McCulloch road, and  then a final loop up Aberdeen Lake and down to Winfield.

We left all sorts and shapes of indentations in the snowbanks, and not all of them right side up! The novice  crew of Taun Chapman and Kelly Watkinson (in Taun's wife's Audi 5000 Avant) were gradually improving their scores, getting closer to ideal time until they misjudged a corner in Aberdeen, went through the  snowbank and down the embankment, ending up not quite upside down, but definitely not right side up either. The crew got out and climbed up the 15 foot bank to the road to put out their triangle and wave at the  remaining competitors. The next morning, the BCAA tow truck, along with a huge log bundler machine managed to get the car back to the road without further damage. After cleaning the ice out of the distributor,  they managed to fire it up and drive home with all of the glass still intact.

 By the end of the first day, last year's winners, Peter Hill and Shawn Bishop, in their Eagle Talon were  leading with 39 points. In a tie for second were Satch Carlson and Russ Kraushaar in the BMW 325ix, and John Fouse and Dennis Wende in the Subaru Legacy, with 53 points each.

 The traditional battle for historic between Ted Wilkinson's Cortina and Martin Wilson's Porsche was off, but by the end of the first day, they clearly had new rivals: Byron Meston and Mark Ward, in the Datsun 510  (with those amazing skinny tires with the big studs!). Byron and Mark finished the day leading the class with 195 points, over Mark Viskov and Malcom Muir, in another Cortina, with 381. Ted Wilkinson and Neil  Prescot were third in class with 410, just ahead of Mike Welland and Gord Passmore, in the BMW 2002 with 415, and Marcel Chichak and Rod Johnson in the Mini Cooper with 426.

 Calculator class saw Steve Brown and David Glassman, in the BMW 325ix, finish the day with a strong lead over Steve Richards and Gary Reid, in the Toyota Starlet, 194 points to 339. Behind them, Scott  Henderson and Mike Beyer brought in their RX7 in with 490 points.

Paper class (or do I mean Tabor class?) was lead by Matt Tabor and Chirs Hale, in the brand new,  hasn't-even-made-the-second-payment-on-it, Subaru Impreza 2.5RS, with 544 points.

 In Novice class, David and Matt Rennie, driving the Ford Explorer, finished the day well clear of their field,  with 237 points. They led over Andrew Ralph and Matthew Powell, in the Mk I Cortina, who finished the day with 574.

 With all of the extraction work, sweep didn't make it to the hotel until after midnight, and suddenly an 8:30 start for Day Two looked very early indeed. (Not to mention for the officials who were up until 4:00am fixing  the scoring software and planning where to put the Day Two checkpoints.)

Day Two: Sunday, February 7, 1999

By morning, we had a few retirements announced: The Saab Sonett of Teresa Davenport and Cheri Huntoon  was having ignition problems and decided to head back, rather than risk the second day. The 53 Ford Zephyr of Howie Wong and Ken Nickel had lost a belt, and the Sunbeam Imp of Aart Van der Star and  David Cohen retired with gearbox trouble. John Nispel and Ed Storer, in the Celica AllTrac, had a major stuff on Aberdeen - no damage, but with all of the earlier off's, they had to wait a long time for sweep, and  decided not to run Day Two. (Note to Andrew: I don't know why Sigi and Peter Wolff retired - car 24, nor Chris Plaine and Lita Joy Robinson - Car 23)

 Back up to Winfield, through Beaver Lake, we were again into loose powder snow, as the checkpoint scores show. Day Two speeds seem to have been a little more acheivable, though, even leaving enough  time for car 1 to turn around and take some photos of the ostrich farm at the end of Trinity Valley. If the regularities were more reasonable, the simple transit down highway 5A wasn't, as most crews found  themselves in the midst of a blizzard, with enough wind to throw the Suzuki Swift of Dave Page and Wayne A'Court off the highway and down the hill! The car stayed upright and undamaged, but was too far off for  sweep to recover. A tow truck was called and they eventually made it home under their own power.

 Just in case anyone thought that Day Two would be a breeze, the final regularity fixed that. 36 km/h proved  rather difficult to maintain on such a narrow road, with the depth of snow and very little in the way of protective snow banks beween the road and the exposures. It was bad enough that some crews chose to  put on chains. In an act of poetic justice, even the rallymaster (yours truly) was drawn into the ditch! Once  stopped, it took a lot of pushing to get the first few 4 wheel drive cars up the last hill. Eventually, about half  of the crews had to turn around and go back to the start of the regularity. Of course, on their way back, they were stopped by the extraction of Patrick Richard and Ian McCurdy's Subaru Impreza 2.5RS. They had  made a 90° right some 50 metres before the road did, just in front of the only checkpoint in that section. In the end, with so many problems, the last regularity wasn't scored.

  Finally winding into Merritt exhausted, Peter Hill and Shawn Bishop had maintained their lead, to finish with 56 points, over Satch Carlson and Russ Kraushaar with 61.

  Note for reading the checkpoint by checkpoint scores:

Above each column is the name of the regularity and the position of the checkpoint in km. Each team has  two numbers at each control. The upper number is your raw difference from perfect time in seconds, with  "E" for early and "L" for late. Below that is the resulting score. Note again that the maximum score per  control is 300 points, and the maximum per regularity is 600. The scores are totalled across one page, which is generally more than one regularity.

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