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Old 04-18-2010, 11:19 PM   #1
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Default TiC Kicks a Wolverine in the Face

"Where's the road? Where's the road?!? WHERE IS THE ROAD?!"

"Look, they only gave me Tulips, not pace notes, I have no idea where your damned road is!"

Though blinding dust and past locals shooting shotguns, the TiC Rally Team competed in the 2010 Moonlight Monte Road Rally. Campaigned on primarily gravel roads through central Michigan, the Monte took competitors on a dusty trek though the afternoon and into darkness. With a "brisk" pace required, the rally challenged cars and drivers alike, some teams found it impossible to keep the pace and fell back.

"In the later stages, we kept catching the guys in front of us even though they'd space us back out at the beginning of ever leg. With the massive amounts of dust on course, it was almost impossible for us to keep pressing on. There were times in the technical forrest sections after dark where I literally couldn't see a full car length ahead of me. Lights on, lights off, it didn't matter, I wasn't seeing anything. Mentally, it's a real challenge to keep your right foot down in those conditions, not being able to see if you're about to rear-end another car or miss a turn. Thankfully, we only left the road once due to not being able to see a turn and we were able to drive right back on without reversing. Still, that's time I felt like I had to try to make up.", said driver Ty Williams.

"We ran some of these stages in the deep snow during Son of Sno*Drift and it was very interesting to see them again with dust drifts rather than snow drifts. Traveling them at much higher speeds this time was also a little more interesting.", commented navigator Michelle Carlton.

While the TiC Road Rally Team has not yet received official scores, results were satisfactory. "We didn't have a single course-following error, which is the most important part of any rally. We had a bunch of stages where we were less than a tenth off the pace and a couple of stages were we were less than a hundredth off. At the mid-rally break, the unofficial scores showed we were at the front of the people in our equipment class and experience level. When the only teams in front of you have won more national championships than you've entered rallies, you can feel good about what you're doing.", said Williams.

The TiC Road Rally team takes up the fight once more on July 31st at the CAST in Stone rally and will campaign the legendary Press on Regardless (POR) rally on September 10th and 11th.
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Old 04-18-2010, 11:20 PM   #2
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By the way, I did literally kick a wolverine in the face.


Of course, it happened to be a taxidermy-fied one that I fell over at the hotel...
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Old 04-19-2010, 12:25 AM   #3
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What car are you guys campaigning for this?
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Old 04-19-2010, 12:31 AM   #4
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My personal car/daily driver:





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Old 04-19-2010, 12:37 AM   #5
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Good work, guys!
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Old 04-20-2010, 12:45 PM   #6
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Nice! What tires do you run for a rally like that?
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Old 04-20-2010, 12:51 PM   #7
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Nice! What tires do you run for a rally like that?
That's been a CONSTANT source of confusion for us. For Son of Sno*Drift and Ohio Winter Rally, it was easy. We ran full-on Scandinavian snow tires. For Press on Regardless, I want to run 15" gravel rally tires (probably Lassa because they're affordable) even if I have to beg and steal to get it done. It's these intermediate rallies that are confusing. There's a mix of tarmac, dirt, and gravel, sometimes with mud. Winter tires suck on the tarmac and overheat and melt. Summer tires suck if the mud gets sloppy or the gravel gets deep. So far, we've run my daily set of Dunlop Star Specs. They're obviously awesome on the tarmac sections but they're surprisingly good in shallow gravel and wet clay as well. They suck, though, in deep gravel. I'm willing to bet they'll suck in sloppy mud as well. We don't have a solution for that yet.
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Old 04-20-2010, 03:38 PM   #8
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That's been a CONSTANT source of confusion for us. For Son of Sno*Drift and Ohio Winter Rally, it was easy. We ran full-on Scandinavian snow tires. For Press on Regardless, I want to run 15" gravel rally tires (probably Lassa because they're affordable) even if I have to beg and steal to get it done. It's these intermediate rallies that are confusing. There's a mix of tarmac, dirt, and gravel, sometimes with mud. Winter tires suck on the tarmac and overheat and melt. Summer tires suck if the mud gets sloppy or the gravel gets deep. So far, we've run my daily set of Dunlop Star Specs. They're obviously awesome on the tarmac sections but they're surprisingly good in shallow gravel and wet clay as well. They suck, though, in deep gravel. I'm willing to bet they'll suck in sloppy mud as well. We don't have a solution for that yet.
Ok thats about what I figured for the intermediate stuff. I was surprised at how well my RE-01R's stuck to gravel last year, although I figured anything they had to wade through they would be a severe limiter. I would assume it's easier to make up time on tarmac with summers than it would be to make up time on gravel/mud running rally tires (since the tarmac parts would suck real bad). I need to get out to one of these rally's, they sound like so much fun!
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Old 04-20-2010, 03:59 PM   #9
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Wow I had no idea you would use (to me) race track level tires on gravel. I thought they had some kind of special tires for this type of stuff.
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Old 04-20-2010, 06:40 PM   #10
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Wow I had no idea you would use (to me) race track level tires on gravel. I thought they had some kind of special tires for this type of stuff.
There are very specialized gravel tires, I hope to be using them at POR. However, most of the stuff we're running right now is mixed tarmac and gravel. Gravel rally tires are BAD on tarmac. Like leaving black scrub marks in a straight line, can't slow down without triggering ABS, wear out a new set of tires in 50 miles level of bad. So picking a tire for these rallies becomes quite confusing. The Star Specs are awesome on tarmac and good enough on 80% of the gravel. It's only when the gravel gets deep or sloppy that the Star Specs suck. Right now, there's not enough miles of that kind of stuff to justify a real gravel tire.
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Old 04-21-2010, 11:48 AM   #11
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What if you went with a tire with more grooves but able to drive on tarmac? Like a UHP All Season model?
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Old 04-21-2010, 01:49 PM   #12
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Prior to discovering the glory of seasonal tires, I tried that. AS tires aren't any better in deep gravel, which is the only thing the Star Specs suck at.
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