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Old 02-25-2009, 07:43 PM   #1
DannyGrant
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Default First rally car?

Sorry for the vague title.

I want to get involved in stage rally. After doing some brief research autox seems to be a good place to start.

I was wondering if anyone could give me some tips on which car I should start to learn with.

I hear many people say that a FWD, low HP car is ideal.

My daily driver is a STI.

My dilema is:

A - Keep the STI a dd and go find a cheap beater to learn with,
B - OR get a beater DD and try and learn with the STI.

Any advice? Thanks!
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Old 02-25-2009, 08:03 PM   #2
MatthewakaMatt
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I believe some of the series won't let somebody run anything as fast as a STI or WRX until after safely completing a number of rallies. If you are serious about stage rally, buying a cheap, used, already prepared and log-booked fwd car is probably the cheapest and safest way to go.

On the other hand, if you just want to try racing in the dirt in a relatively safe environment, rallycrossing with the SCCA is a lot of fun and would only cost a few entry fees. Oh, and if you haven't already gotten your fill of "rally is expensive" threads, here's a good one to start with. http://www.dirtyimpreza.com/forums/s...ead.php?t=5388

Last edited by MatthewakaMatt; 02-25-2009 at 08:10 PM.
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Old 02-25-2009, 08:04 PM   #3
MatthewakaMatt
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double post ...

Last edited by MatthewakaMatt; 02-25-2009 at 08:25 PM. Reason: double post
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Old 02-25-2009, 08:08 PM   #4
XmanSTi
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AutoX is definitely a stepping stone to rally, but rallyX can translate a little more quickly for most people and very similar vehicles can be used, autoX cars, not so close to stage rally cars.

I would suggest you sell the STi, buy a beater DD and use the extra money to buy a rally car to start rallyXing and progress up to stage rally. low hp fwd is definitely cheaper than AWD but that is dictated more on your personal preference and budget.

First things first though, you need to actually attend a rally and see what is involved and talk with some other drivers to get a feel for the budget level you are looking at. it is NOT cheap, don't fool yourself into thinking it can be done on a few hundred dollars a year.
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Old 02-25-2009, 08:25 PM   #5
big16gwrx
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get a beater! if you want to stay subaru i'd suggest an old impreza n/a or non subie possibly look at vw's
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Old 02-25-2009, 08:36 PM   #6
leecea
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You might as well start out autoxing the STi, then look for a beater rally car. At one point I had my eye on a nice looking Neon ACR with a current log book and safety equipment for around $6K.
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Old 02-25-2009, 09:04 PM   #7
Fogrider
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Suggestion from someone who has gone down one of your optional paths:
If you can afford it, keep your STi and DD and autoX it. Buy your first rally car, usually something like a P or G2 car that is used. The cost and time to build a log-booked rally car is significant. After you have learned everything you can from that platform and you still want to go faster, sell it to another newcomer to the sport and either buy or build your 2nd rally car. As mentioned previously, some sanctioning bodies restrict the types of vehicles with which newly licensed competitors may compete. I raced a Production class car for three years then switched to Open class.
How familiar are you with what it takes team/time/money/skills-wise to compete at a stage rally? The team of Derek Dekar and Jessie Barry crewed for me last year while they acquired their used car and repaired it, learning all about logistics, service, planning, budget, etc. They are racing this year and I believe the lessons they learned last year have sped their progress considerably.
Consider some time at Tim O'Neil's Rally School (www.teamoneil.com) to speed your improvement as a driver.
Let me know if you have any questions. Competing in stage rally events is one of the most enjoyable things I have done in 52 years on this planet.
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Old 02-25-2009, 09:11 PM   #8
bmxpunk
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My advice comes from my current experience with prepping a RS for open light...

Buy your first car. I was tod a million times, but we said "we have an impreza sitting around thats paid for, how hard can it be?"

SO far we have:
1 Set of wheels and tires
2 harnesses 6pt sparco
1 Seat
1 seat on layaway
2 helmets
1 Intercom
1 Defender Device

Total:that's about $5000 right there and we still have to get the cage (goes in saturday actually) which will be another $3000. We still have to get suspension, and all the little stuff (spill kits,triangles, spare tire) all before our goal of April 4th

Find a good GTI that has already been setup and the major battle is over. You will learn alot more in the fwd car than you will in the STI. and you won't feel nearly as bad WHEN you smash into something.
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Old 02-25-2009, 11:40 PM   #9
Geek Guy
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Agreed. Buy your first car. Now, I'm converting my WRX to rally mode, but then again, I've been doing 0/00 duties for rallies in the SE for 3 years, and have been involved with rally prep/team management since 2002.

That said - if you're curious on costs, you can see my spreadsheet here of what it will cost to cage and then put the car back on the rally as 0/00, non-competition ready. The competition costs are broken out separately.

http://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?k...w9lJGdBQ&hl=en
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Old 02-27-2009, 08:07 PM   #10
DannyGrant
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Thank you everyone for the input!
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Old 02-27-2009, 09:59 PM   #11
watchdoc
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Stage rally is very expensive from every angle. RallyX on the other hand is not. We have guys race their Sti's in our local rallyx all the time. ERS is running a 6 stage 36 mile rallyx in march. Your Sti is a rare car in that it can be sucessful at autox, rallyx, track days, and even as a DD.
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Old 02-27-2009, 10:54 PM   #12
carl s.
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start going to rallyx's and tsd rallies in your sti to figure out if you really want to do this. Then look at the big picture and figure if you can afford it.

I built my daily driven sti into a rally car. on top of flat out buying the sti (no one is going to rally a car they are making payments on lol) I have dropped well over 10k into basic car prep, bought a daily driver, and bought a tow rig. all said and done, close to 50k investment. I estimate spending between 2 and 3k at each 2 day rally. Sure, you can do it cheaper but just be aware of how stupid expensive it is. Also, you are pretty much guaranteed to wreck at some point so keep that in mind before committing to racing (I look at my car as a $30,000 piece of scrap metal).

Keep the STI, get out to some rallycross and TSD rallies - ice racing too. Volunteer and work some stage rallies to get a feel for it. If you're still convinced after all that to pursue stage (and you will be!), figure out how much you can spend and act accordingly.
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Old 03-02-2009, 02:32 PM   #13
SmoothSTI
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I have an 85 VW Golf GTI Rally Car for sale. It was my learning car, and it's terrific for getting a feel for stage rally! PM me if you want more information
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Old 03-02-2009, 06:06 PM   #14
Ralliart4
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Here is what many have told me and have continued to tell me over many years of racing.

"Buy something you can afford to throw away"

or in Jamaican/caribbean language....

"Buy something you can crash and not care if you leave it in the bushes or not"

Last edited by Ralliart4; 03-02-2009 at 07:09 PM.
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Old 03-02-2009, 06:50 PM   #15
bmxpunk
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Yeah as I was told this weekend:

"remember shells are consumables... like tires or brake pads." kinda sets you back on your heals...
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Old 03-02-2009, 07:11 PM   #16
Ralliart4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmxpunk View Post
Yeah as I was told this weekend:

"remember shells are consumables... like tires or brake pads." kinda sets you back on your heals...
Yeah i was surely mad when i tore a whole coilover and a control arm out from under my then almost new and very sexy Evo III. Ever since then i have taken the advice others have given me.
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