Today Frank Beyer and I released the following announcement about the 2013 WINTR Series:
TO INTERESTED RALLY COMPETITORS:
We organized the WINTR (Winter INTernational Rally) SERIES for two winters to encourage rallying in the eastern US and Canada and discovered too many good rallies were missed by too many competitors (including us) because the short season results in many events operating on the same date. Folks had to choose whether to go to Ontario or Vermont, Finger Lakes or Ohio, Michigan or Quebec.
We decided to reorganize, expanding the “season” while still trying to develop a competition bringing the best rally folks out to events to run against each other. We needed a Championship that would encourage more rallying and identify the best teams, then, put them on the road head-to-head.
We hereby announce the WINTR MASTERS INVITATIONAL RALLY, ABSOLUTE ZERO, to be held on March 2nd, 2013 in Central New York; an extended event for a select field of 40 entries.
We intend to develop a list of qualifier WINTR SERIES rallies, to include but not be limited to the following: Press on Regardless and Son of Sno*Drift (Michigan); Covered Bridge and Winter Challenge (Vermont); Night Trial and Rallye des Neiges (Quebec); Maple Leaf Winter (Ontario); Long Way Home, Ithaca Winter, and Event #3 of the Finger Lakes Series (New York). Then, we will extend MASTERS invitations to the following, in order:
1. The Driver who finishes first in each class in each SERIES qualifier event (i.e., Equipped, Limited, Seat of Pants, Expert, Intermediate). NOTE: Novice/beginner class winners will NOT be invited as this is a Championship for veteran competitors. We assume that this will provide us with around 25 invitations.
2. The Rally Master for each SERIES qualifier rally. We want to encourage expert competitors to put on these rallies for their Clubs without worrying that they might not qualify for the MASTERS. (To drop some names: Greg Lester, John Buffum, Alan Smith, Gary Thomas, Jeff Dungen, Bruce Leonard, Scott Harvey, who have supported the SERIES).
3. The season class leaders from the various Clubs/Regions, so that good rally people who haven’t snagged a first place finish don’t get left out. Also, other serious competitors from outside the SERIES primary area who might wish to compete. We are thinking along the lines of Rick Beattie, Bill Laitenberger, Satch Carlson, Mike Freidman, Mark Johnson, et al., who regularly rally at a high level but don’t happen to live in our backyard.
The plan is to charge $40 per car over expenses for a prize fund. We have discovered that each area uses different formats and rules to present TSD rallies; our hope is to incorporate our experience and come up with an event that equalizes equipment, giving everyone (including SOP) a chance to win. Speeds will likely be at least 10% below posted limits yet we hope that the combination of twisty roads, snow (likely), and darkness (a certainty) will yield a rally where “ENJOY THE DRIVE” is first priority while not compromising safety. Mike Mazoway will be working with Frank Beyer to help make this a high quality event that is worthy of challenging the top rally teams in a championship event.
Contact Steve at email@example.com to be included on our mailing list for event updates.
Steve McKelvie and Frank Beyer for the WINTR SERIES.
PS: I will also be posting information about the 2013 WINTR Series on this website throughout the winter. Let it snow! Let it snow!