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Last revised: 31-Jan-99

Copyright © 1999 by
Indianapolis Region
Sports Car Club of America

Clutch Chatter -- February 1999

SPECIAL RALLY ISSUE

Get ready rallyists and potential rallyists: Indy Region is readying its 1999 Road Rally season. And to get things started, there is a rally school set for February 7 (details below). Included in this special rally issue we have dug up a few tidbits that will supplement the training that Chuck Hanson plans to provide at the school. It will also help you realize how much fun rallying can be.

RALLY SCHOOL AND FUN NON-POINTS RALLY

February 7, 1999

2302 S. Shelby St.
(west side of street, 1-1/2 blocks south of Raymond Street and just west of I-65)
Park on west or south side of the building.

PRE-REGISTRATION: Pre-registering for this event is preferred, in order that we may plan for the event and refreshments more effectively. Call 317-891-8596 to pre-register. You may register the day of the event from 12:30 PM to 1:00 PM.

SCHEDULE:
Registration: 12:30-1:00 p.m
Class - 1:00 p.m. promptly
Demo Rally - Approximately 2:30 p.m.
Review - Approximately 4:00 p.m.

COST:
School - $5.00 member/non-member/team
Rally - $3.00 (sanction fee if applicable)
Drinks and munchies will be provided!

NOTE: Chairs are limited - attendees are requested to bring their own chairs.

Smoking is prohibited!

RE REPORT
by Sam Crites

I donít know about the rest of you, but I think January 1999 has pretty much been the pits, and I donít mean that patch of pavement where you see race cars doing all sorts of strange things.

By the time you read this we will have had our first activity, Thunder in the Dome, and we will be days away from the rally school. Several of us will be preparing to make our way out west to San Diego for the National Convention. I believe our contingent is small: Pete, Cindy and Aeron Hylton (Pete is making presentations as the National Archivist), Bob Burns will be attending Comp Board meetings, and myself. There is a lot of ground to cover so we will do the best we can. If there is anyone else going, please let me know, and we can give you some meetings to cover.

We are still looking for an at-large board member or two so if you are interested in the inner workings of the club, give me or one of the board members a call.

Hereís hoping the worst of the weather is over. See you at the Races.

FEBRUARY ACTIVITIES MEETING

FOXCO 600 Racing Tour
(Legend Cars)

8775 US 36 EAST
Avon, IN

February 19, 1999
6:30 PM

Snacks will be provided!

RSVP to Myra Kulke at (317) 745-6918

CALENDER

Feb 1 -- Board Meeting, 6:00 PM, Laughners at Southern Plaza
Feb 7 -- Road Rally School/Fun Event
Feb 19 -- Activities Meeting

NOTE: 1999 Points Rules will be discussed at the February 1st Board Meeting. If you have input, plant to attend or contact a Board Member prior to the meeting.

RALLY REPORT
by Roberta & Dave De Bolt

As we stated in last month's column the start of the 1999 Indianapolis Region Rally Series is just around the corner, except now it is a lot closer to the corner! Our first points event is March 14th, just about six weeks away from the time you read this.

Get ready for this first points event by attending our rally school and associated non-points, demo rally on Sunday, the 7th of February. This school is for ALL rallyists- first-time novices to seasoned veterans. The school, instructed by Chuck & Julie Hanson, will cover all aspects of rallying from common rally vocabulary words and time, speed, and distance calculations to basic concepts or themes used in the writing of a rally.

We encourage all of you whether you are a S.C.C.A. member or not, or whether you are a soloist, a racer, a rallyist, or a wannabee to give this school a try. We think everybody will be able to gain some information, some tips, or some pointers that they can add to or apply to their knowledge of the sport of rallying. The price is right and the snacks are free! See you on Sunday and see elsewhere in "Clutch Chatter" for more information about this event.

Registration the Day of Rally Events -- As we have had more rally teams enter our events, and as we have experienced, on occasion, the phenomenon of most everybody arriving at the same time, and as we work out of the trunk of our car, Roberta & I will be trying a new method of registration for this year. Hopefully, this change will: a. Eliminate trading pens and/or clipboards so much, b. Eliminate loosing items, c. Help in the exchange of money, and d. Make the event process smoother. Upon arrival at registration each team will receive a car number in sequence as well as a registration form and the rally general instructions. Car numbers then will be called out in sequence to complete the registration process such as the signing of the wavier form, the paying of the entry fees, etc.

Our 1999 rally schedule is as follows:

DATE -- RALLYMASTER

February 7 -- Chuck Hanson -- Rally School and short Fun Rally
March 14 -- Dave & Cathy Hart
April 25 or May 2 -- Candice & Frank Pope
June 12-13 -- Pete, Cindy & Aeron Hylton -- Rally on Saturday/Overnight stay Sunday - Wright Field Air Force Museum
August 15 -- Ken Osiecki
September 26 -- Dale Baker
November 14 -- Chuck Hanson -- The November rally date has been changed from the 7th to the 14th in order to avoid conflict with the CenDiv Roundtable scheduled for November 6 & 7

RAMBLING ROAD RALLY

POINTS EVENT

1999 Indianapolis Region Rally Series

Sunday, March 14, 1999

I-69 and 116th Street (Fishers)
Meet in McDonaldís Parking Lot

This rally will be a map rally which can be run entirely on paved roads. It will be suitable for beginners and interesting for all competitors.

Registration: -- 12:00 noon
Competitorís Meeting: -- 12:45 PM
Event Start: -- 1:00 PM

Rallymasters: Dave & Cathy Hart

1999 GCR and Specification Books

Your Indy Region Competition Chairman will be ordering 1999 GCR and Specification Books for this coming racing season. Jan Castelluccio will be placing an order with the National Office on March 1, 1999. If you would like to order one or more books, please complete the form below and mail it to Jan before the end of February. Jan will have them at the April Driverís School and/or you can make arrangements to pick them up at another SCCA activity or event. Please Note: Jan says heís not going to be running a delivery service or mailing them out, but heíll make sure you can get your order picked up.

1999 GCR AND SPEC BOOK ORDER FORM

NAME: ______________________________________

ADDRESS: ___________________________________

HOME PHONE: ________________________________

WORK PHONE: ________________________________

#5660 General Competition Rules (GCR)
#5661 Production Car Specs
#5662 GT Category Specs
#5663 Touring/Showroom Stock Specs
#5664 Sports Racer Category Specs
#5671 Improved Touring/American Sedan Specs
#5674 Formula Car Specs

Books are $10 each.

Make checks payable to: Indianapolis Region SCCA

Mail before February 20, 1999 to:
Jan Castelluccio
9115 Trinity Pl.
Indianapolis IN 46229
(317) 898-9273 (evenings)

ON THE ROAD AGAIN
with Aeron Hylton

Just heard that at Sebring Bruce May had a side-to-side which caused him to crash into a wall and demolished the right rear of his car. It was severe enough that they had him transported to the hospital. They X-rayed him and found a spot on his neck that looked funny. So they scanned him for cats, or something like that. Guess they found what they wanted Ďcause they let him go back to the track.

Meanwhile, his crew rebuilt the car, and he ended up driving a winning race! I donít know how he did it because he must have been in a lot of pain. That shows what a hard core racer he is! Besides, I like him because he showed me a secret sign he uses with his son (Thumbs up! Number One! Youíre the Man!).

For everyoneís info, this tidbit was passed on by Fritz and Donna Baker (WOR members who have retired to Florida). They report that they are having fun working Sebring, Daytona and Moroso.

SOLO REPORT
by Dave & Cathy Hart

Thereís not much happening yet this season in the world of Indy Region Solo II. Included in this issue is a TENTATIVE 1999 Solo II schedule. We still have some dates open for new sites and we encourage anyone with ideas for new sites to contact us.

Dave Hart Ė (317) 849-2495 Ė hart@integrator.com

1999 INDY REGION SOLO II SCHEDULE (T = Tentative)

Date(s) -- Event/Site

Mar 28 T -- Informal School/Test&Tune / To Be Announced
Apr 11 T -- To Be Announced
May 16 -- Columbus Municipal Airport
Jun 6 T -- To Be Announced
Jun27 T -- To Be Announced
Jul 7 T -- Australian Pursuit / Speedrome
Jul 18 T -- To Be Announced
Aug 8 T -- To Be Announced
Aug 29 T -- To Be Announced
Sep 19 -- Columbus Municipal Airport
Oct 3 T -- To Be Announced

ACTIVITIES CENTRAL
by Myra Kulke

When you receive your Clutch Chatter we will have had our first activities meeting for 1999. I know this will be a great event because we all love the Midget racing at the RCA Dome and especially having dinner at TGI Fridays.

Our February event will be on the 19th at Foxco 600 Racing. We will meet at 6:30 PM for a fine tour of their facility. See you there!

I am trying to get a full yearís calendar so you can plan on making all the activity events for 1999. This will be put in Clutch Chatter in March. If you have any suggestions, please contact me at (317) 745-6918.

WORKER/STEWARD SEMINAR Ė MARCH 6-7
by Kent Williamson, CenDiv Executive Steward

By now the rumor mill should have told everyone the Worker-Steward Seminar has been moved to Fort Wayne, Indiana, at the Days Inn. (Registration form is enclosed.) This move was necessitated by the time constraints placed on us by the State of Indiana Gaming Laws (full explanation will be made at the seminar). The cost to attend is very reasonable and everyone should be there.

What's on the agenda:

  • The first presentation of the CenDiv Incorporation - ALL RE's should be there!
  • The transponder issue - and how we are going to proceed - all Timing and Scoring people and Drivers!
  • The CenDiv Registration form - all Registrars, T&S, Emergency Services, Drivers and WebMasters (online registration and how do we handle it?)
  • The CenDiv WebPage
  • Regional Champ Series Committee
  • GCR update - everyone who wants to know what's new
  • Closed session for Stewards will deal with Operations and Operating situations.
All workers are invited to share ideas and become part of the movers, shakers, and idea team. All Regional Executives should attend to learn about the Incorporation and what it takes to put on a race. All Race Chairs to learn about the new rules and share ideas on how to make the job of putting on a race easier (especially, if this is your first year). All Divisional Administrators (you are expected to be there) to share with your workers the "new stuff" and to discuss problems and procedure with the stewards. ALL STEWARDS - THIS IS NOT AN OPTIONAL MEETING (it is part of the evaluation which goes into your renewal and upgrade requests made to the Executive Steward each year).

I am looking forward to seeing a great many of you at the seminar. CenDiv is the largest division in SCCA, holds the most races, and has the best people around - and I want to keep it that way.

CEN-DIV STEWARD/WORKERS SEMINAR

MARCH 5-7, 1999

DAYS INN - NORTH
5250 Distribution Drive
(I - 69 - Exit 111 A - Lima Road South)
Fort Wayne Indiana
219-484-9681

The Days Inn is located just off I-69 on the North side of Fort Wayne. Take I-69 to Fort Wayne get off at exit 111 A - South on Lima Road. Turn Left onto Ley Road (stop light) then Left into the hotel drive. You can see the Days Inn sign and building while on Lima Road.

SCCA Room Rate: $38.85 per night up to 4 per room (includes tax). Rooms are comparable to those in Milwaukee for Roundtable.

Call Days Inn directly to make reservations - a block of rooms is being held until February 19 at the above rate. Request the SCCA rate when making your reservations. The hotel has an indoor pool, Jacuzzi, sauna, lounge & restaurant. The registration fee covers Seminar, continental breakfast and lunch on Saturday, Buffet Breakfast on Sunday morning. This is the same hotel where Steward Seminars were held previously for many years.

Registration Fee for the Seminar: $40.00. If registering with Spouse, their fee is $30.00. Lunch Only Fee is $15.00. Registration form and fee must be received by Feb. 26. Late Registration add $10.00 per person if postmarked after February 26.

Registration will open on Friday, March 5 at 6:00 p.m. at the Days Inn.

Make checks payable to: Central Division/SCCA

Other areas of interest that are nearby: Glenbrook Mall, Glenbrook Commons, and Coldwater Crossing Mall for shopping. Restaurants nearby include Hall's Factory, Guesthouse, Cracker Barrel, Cork N Cleaver, Speedway Café, Golden China, Joe's Crab Shack, Applebee's, Cheddar's and many more. Other hotels/motels in the area: Marriott Hotel, Guest House hotel/restaurant, Sumner Suites, Budgetel Inn, Economy Inn, Lee's Inn, Courtyard by Marriott, Hampton Inn & Suites, Residence Inn by Marriott and Signature Inn (Washington Center Road and Challenger Parkway - all at exits 111 or 112).

Please print all information on your registration form and mail with fees to:
Liz Eslaire
5720 Homewood Dr
Fort Wayne IN 46825-4306
For more info call Liz at:
219-483-7266, 5:00-9:00 P.M.

CEN-DIV STEWARDS/WORKERS REGISTRATION FORM

Attendee Name: _______________________________

Spouse Attendee Name: ________________________

Address: _____________________________________

City, State, Zip: ____________________________

Telephone: ___________________________________

Region of Record: ____________________________

Licensed Specialty or Regional Position: ________________________________________________

Email address: _______________________________

Fee included @ $40.00 _______Fee included @ $30.00 _______Late Fee included @ $10.00 _______

Lunch Only Fee @ $15.00 _______

TOTAL AMT ENCLOSED: _______

THE HISTORY OF ROAD RALLYING

In the late 1940ís, when SCCA was just getting started, one of the typical activities for a local sports car club was a "tour". This consisted of an organized drive out into the country on scenic backroads. It usually ended in a picnic, and in the beginning, had no competitive objective. That didnít mean it wasnít a challenge, though, just imagine what it was like to drive early MGs and Austin Healeys from Indy to Brown County on backroads of the 1940ís. Just arriving at the end point with a drivable car was cause to celebrate.

However, as SCCA types are by nature competitive, it soon became necessary to turn these events into a competition. So, in addition to following the simple instructions which defined the route, timing was added. The instructions now included speeds which were to be maintained as the route was followed. Initially this meant that as well as watching the road, the driver had to keep one eye on the speedometer so as to try to constantly maintain the correct speed. As drivers honed this skill, someone dreamed up new work for the passenger or navigator. Instead of merely reading off the instructions to the driver, the navigator began to do calculations, trying to determine the exact time to be at certain mileages based on the given average speeds. With stop watch in hand, the navigator could now continually update the driver as to whether he was running fast or slow.

As the navigators fine-tuned this ability, the good teams began to end rallies in a tie, all achieving the same perfect score. So the writers of the rallys, or rallymasters, had to complicate the calculation process, creating large numbers of speed changes and forcing the navigator to perform mathematical gymnastics to keep up. Out of this trend came the sportís first purpose built calculating units. The Halda Tripmaster was a compensating odometer, which replaced the carís stock unit, and allowed the navigator to program in correction factors to convert the contestantís mileage to the rallymasterís without correction. A variety of hand held calculating devices such as the Curta mechanical calculator, the rally slide rule, and finally the pocket calculator sped up the navigatorís work. But what really changed the face of the sport was the introduction of the rally computer, which performed all the necessary calculations for even the most complex set of speed change instructions.

So, once again all the top teams who could afford to buy rally computers were tying for first. To spread out the competition, rallymasters began to put in tricks or "traps" to fool the competitors into following (even briefly) the wrong course. These started out simple like the trap known as a "Blackjack." A Blackjack is simply a checkpoint that is clearly in sight, but with an instruction that causes you to turn before reaching it. Those not paying attention drive in; those on their toes turn. Simple, eh. Well, as people caught on, the traps got more complicated, involving higher and higher orders of logic. The most complicated of these became known as "Aristotles," named for the famous Greek logician. As trap rallies expanded, it became impossible for the uninitiated to follow the arcane logic, so most beginners became hopelessly lost. The use of main road determinants created a whole new set of logic above and beyond the traps in the route instructions. Soon these complex course following trap rallies had chased off everyone who didnít want mind-bending logic migraines, and so the whole sport of road rally virtually collapsed.

Then someone had a brilliant idea. What if we threw out the traps and the extreme calculations and made a simple rally that anyone could follow. What if we just did simple courses with simple instructions and simple calculations.

And thus the Touring Rally concept was born in the Ď90s. And rallying became fun again and grew once more.

Guess what goes around comes around...every 50 years or so.

MURPHYíS LAWS FOR RALLYISTS

"If something can go wrong, it will... ü."

No place is Murphyís Law more true, or more evident, than in rallying. With this in mind a few corollaries concerning the sport have been compiled.

For Rallymasters:

  • The most important sign on the rally will disappear ten minutes after the last course check.
  • If a rally team can get lost...they will.
  • If there is a mistake in the routes, it will send the competitors to the next state.
  • The night before the rally at least one bridge will wash out.
  • Regardless of how many months of preparation are put in, the rally will always be finished on the night before the event.
  • On the day of the rally, it will rain...unless it snows.
  • If your rally contains a stream ford, it will rain the 3 days prior to the event.
  • If you come up with a brilliant new trap, it will be used on another rally the week before yours.
  • Fail-safed rallies fail.
  • On any given rally, someone will bitch.
For Drivers:
  • When running early, there is always a checkpoint around the next turn.
  • When calculating a perfect leg time, the navigator will either stop the watch or clear the calculator memories.
  • The leg that is thrown is always your lowest score.
  • When working on a perfect rally with all zeros, you will max the last leg.
  • The car you are following is as lost as you.
  • At any intersection, the correct path is the most unlikely looking.
  • On the most important rally of the year, the one to decide the yearís championship, your navigator will get carsick.No matter what your leg score, someoneís was lower. If you got a zero, see rule 3.
For Navigators:
  • When you are running exactly on time and are ready to get a zero, you will encounter a checkpoint...backwards.
  • If you are sure youíre on course, you arenít.
  • When using your new mega-bucks rally computer for the first time, you will be beaten by two novices running seat-of-the-pants.
  • After getting all the traps right, you will get lost in a free zone.
  • When the score is good, the drivers takes credit. When the score is bad, the navigator gets blamed.
For Checkpoint Workers:
  • When working a checkpoint, you will invariable be located in a poison ivy patch just down wind of a pig farm.
  • When working alone, all 22 cars will come in in the same 2 minute period.
  • When working a checkpoint in the middle of nowhere, after the last car is through you will find your battery dead.
  • The first car always arrives before youíre ready.
  • The second checkpoint always opens before your first one closes.

NORMAN SRIP AND THE AMAZING TIME WARP RALLY COMPUTER

I usually donít see my good friend Norm Srip too much during the off months of the rally season. But, I made it a point to drop by and visit a few times each winter to keep in touch and talk about the up-coming season. It was a snowy second of February when Janet opened the door and invited me in, saying that Norm was down in the basement and asking if I wanted a hot cup of coffee. From the top of the stairs she called down, "Hey, Norman, Chuck is here to see you." By the time I got to the last step Norm was just sliding a heavy drawer into a cabinet next to a table which had a very suspicious looking lump hidden under a hastily positioned blanket. "Evening, Chuck. What are you doing out on an evening like this one?" he asked as he quickly moved away from the table. "I just thought Iíd drop in; I certainly didnít expect to find any covert activities going on. What is this?" I replied. Hesitantly, he turned back to what he had been working on. "This? Oh, this is the new advanced rally computer Iím working on." With as much doubting disbelief as I could muster, I said, "Really now, is it? And just what can it do that hasnít been done on half a dozen other top flight devices that you can buy on the market?"

"It isnít always necessary to do something different to do it better, you know. Simply making things run smoother, faster, more accurately, and more reliably can make it an improvement over the existing items. Face it, some of the ones in use get pretty unhandy from time to time."

"So, you say this is just a rearrangement of old ideas?"

"Well...no, not exactly. I guess you could say I have some new ideas incorporated into the project."

"Will it work?"

"Letís just say that if it does, I expect us to go undefeated this rally season," he said with a slight trace of triumph in his voice. His wife had just stepped around the corner with two cups of coffee steaming from a tray. My questioning glance brought a shaking head and up-raised shoulders from Normís navigator. "Youíll understand that I canít really tell you what it is. If nothing else, it would be extremely embarrassing if it didnít work." Try as I might, I could never get the conversation back in that direction and I left knowing little more than when I arrived.

When the season opened with the April event, Norm and Janet showed up with an unmarked black box attached to the dash. The buttons and dials were color coded, but totally without labels. Janet told me that Norm had spent hours and hours teaching her its use, but she didnít really understand it and couldnít tell me what it did upon risk of her marriage. Whatever it was, the magic box worked bringing the Srips home with first place with only 3 points across 9 legs. Norm jokingly said he got the three points so no one would get too suspicious about the win. At least, I thought he was joking.

In May, my navigator and I ran an excellent rally. We did everything right and finished with only 29 points. We were 27 points behind Norm and Janet. I didnít laugh when Norm said he was going to have to stop playing around and get those extra 2 points; we were getting too close to him. Not many people were laughing when they won two rallies in June, the July event and both the August events with less total points than you could count on one hand. No one wondered who would win in September; they only shook their heads and wondered how.

It was 2 days before the October rally when Norm called me. "Chuck, Janet has a horrendous case of the flu. There is no way sheís going to be able to run on Sunday. I need your help, but you have to promise me your absolute secrecy." Norman and I had always been friends, and so I pledged my silence. It wasnít so much that I wanted him to go undefeated as he wished, but that I was dying to get a look at that computer.

Norm came by my house to get me the morning of the rally. He had decided that he would navigate while I drove his car. It would be easier that way than trying to teach me all of the problems involved with running his computer. "But, I thought the whole idea of your computer was to take the existing ideas and rearrange them so as to make the whole device easier to operate. Why, from what you said last winter, this thing should run itself; you shouldnít even need a navigator."

"Well, I lied to you!" he snapped back. "This device does things that have never been done before and you have to be extremely careful with it. There is no limit to the trouble it could get you into if you werenít careful."

"Well, thanks a lot for your trust, pal. Just what does this silly thing of yours do? If its that hard to keep your timing up, then how do you get it to beat the standard rally computers?"

"Look, I couldnít tell you what it was supposed to do. You would have gotten mad at me for lying to you because you never would have believed I was telling the truth."

"Why not? What does the blasted thing do, for heavens sake?"

With a look of sincerity so deep that I almost believe him, Norm said to me, "Itís a time warp device, Chuck."

It amazed me that he had been able to say it with a straight face, yet he not only had, but he had managed to keep it straight. I, on the other hand, had not. "Stop laughing," he ordered me. "You see, I was right. Thatís why I couldnít tell you that Iíd come up with a rally computer that warps time."

"Get serious, Norm," I begged. "If you intend to win this rally today and keep your streak alive, youíd better let me in on what you really do with this wonderful black box of yours."

"Chuck, think for a second. When you come to a control on course and you know that you are behind time or ahead more time than you can lose before you crosses the checkpoint line, what is it you think to yourself?"

"I usually think about killing my navigator and kicking myself for getting off time."

"What else?"

"I wish that I could go back and do it right now that I know where I blew it."

"Exactly..." And so I entered into the most incredible rally of my life.

If Norm hadnít been so serious about the whole project, I never would have given him the chance to convince me. But, he seemed almost desperate. With Janet sick in bed I was the only one left he could trust his supposed secret with to run the rally. And he was convinced that he had to sweep the entire rally season. He took the cover off of the box and showed me the insides. It was certainly unlike any rally computer Iíd ever seen apart before. I didnít even recognize most of the stuff, and the rest of it seemed completely out of place. He made an effort to explain the uses of the knobs and switches. But he was taking it all so seriously that I had actually started to wonder if he might be telling me the truth. That concept so boggled my mind that I couldnít hope to follow all the theoretical physics, advanced electronics, technological engineering, and gobbledygook that he was trying to explain. Then he took me around to the trunk and showed me the biggest capacitors that an electrician could ever hope to dream of.

"I had to enlarge the trunk just to fit them in there. Thatís why there isnít a back seat any more."

"How much charge do those things carry?" I asked in bewildered amazement.

"You donít want to know."

"You are probably right. What are they used for?"

Norm leaned against the fender. "Well, in order to launch myself through time, which, simply stated, is what this whole set up does, there has to be an incredible electronic discharge within the system. Thatís what these babies are for."

"So, you set your equipment to move yourself through time so that you arrive at the checkpoint at the exact time you should be there?" I was so close to believing this madman friend of mine that it frightened me.

"And zero the leg. Thatís right."

"How do you recharge this after your time shift?"

"Well, letís say itís 12:01, alright. You are behind time and you come up to a checkpoint. You should have been there at 11:59, right. So you quickly, but accurately, set the device to move you back in time. And at 12:01 and 30 seconds, just before you cross the control line, you hit the button. And the system discharges and you end up in the same position, only now it is 11:59 and you zero the leg. But, in addition to that, you must remember that at 11:59 the system was completely charged. Therefore, you enter the checkpoint with two charged capacitors. Simple, isnít it?"

"But what if you have to move forward in time?" I managed to ask, amazed that I had come up with an intelligent question.

"That is what the other capacitor is for. You can then go back and recharge your capacitor. We better get going if we plan to be at registration before they close."

I do not recall the drive to the rallyís start point, but we did get there, and I was quizzed by every competitor there. Everyone wanted to know how Normís super computer worked. Norm was right. I couldnít try to tell them. They would never have believed any of it.

On the first leg I saw the device in action. The object was to stay ahead of time and then drop back through time. That procedure was the most simple. When the checkpoint came into view, Norm went to work on his dials and as we were just about to cross the line, he calmly informed me, "Here it goes." He threw the switch. Everything outside the windshield got fuzzy for just a second then it cleared up, and we came into the checkpoint--with a perfect score.

We ran the rest of the rally with the driver in a daze. Fortunately, I didnít need to even keep up with the exact average speeds. Normanís amazing time warp rally computer took care of that. Once we fell for a trap and ended up way off time at the next checkpoint. Norm informed me that things got more complicated this way, but not by too much. He simply dropped us back to before the checkpoint crew got there, and then drove back to where we had gone wrong. We ran the leg the right way and came in on time for yet another zero. "If things got bad enough, I could always just drop us back to 7:00 this morning, and we could drive to the starting point and register again and start the whole rally over again," Norm informed me.

I nodded in agreement. I was beyond the point of any arguing or even questioning.

Norm and I won the rally-Ėwith 2 penalty points. I had screwed us up on the last leg by altering my speed too much as we came into the checkpoint. Norm said that we could afford two points and he didnít feel like moving around the clock anymore. I didnít argue about that, either. I just took the trophy that Norm allowed me to keep and went home. Several people asked me how it was that he did it. I think I mumbled something about a genius once or twice and just shook my head the rest of the time.

It was amazing that participation in the seasonís rallies didnít fall off more than it did. But, we had a good turnout for the last event of the year in November. It was all Norm needed to complete his sweep. Everyone else was talking about the race for second.

I had agreed earlier in the year to work as checkpoint crew for that rally since it was written by another friend of mine. I had the duty at checkpoints 3 and 6. When Norm and Janet came through at 3 I asked them how it was going. Janet replied with a smile that they had three straight zeros. I just shook my head again.

I was waiting at checkpoint 6, watching a storm brew up in the cold November sky and thinking about what Norm had done to rallying. More than that, he had an unbelievable discovery for physics. As the raindrops began to hit the car, I marveled at how the greatest breakthrough in physicsí history was being kept secret as a rally computer. Then, I notice Normís car coming toward me, probably early and about to drop back and come in on time. There was a sudden flash and a tremendous bolt of lightning struck the ground only yards away from their car. With the flash of lightning, Norm and Janet were gone. The computer must have reacted to the stormís outburst of electric discharge. Time had warped, but this time it went uncontrolled.

Somewhere, or rather sometime, Norm and Janet are wandering around looking for a nonexistent checkpoint...in search of yet another perfect leg.


 
 

Youth and Enthusiasm can be overcome by Old Age and Treachery! Larry Lefebvre and the Triumph he races in both Vintage and EP.

 
 
 

THE CLASSIFIEDS

FOR SALE: 466 CID Ford Engine. Great for towing. Fresh, never run, many high-end parts, PI heads. Complete, carb to oil pan. C6 core, starter, alt., p/s pump and Hooker headers included. Asking $2500. Call (317) 216-9562. (2/99)FOR SALE: T8990 Red Devil F440, new engine, rains, good shape. Ready for Regionals or Solo. Have trailer available. $3000 OBO. Call Ron Stewart (317) 916-9690 (evenings) (1/99)

WANTED: Recently relocated SCCA member needs garage to store and prepare FV. One or two bay garage would be just fine. Call Jon (317) 392-7092 (w) days or (317) 570-9455 (h) evenings or E-mail at jleeper@sbpost1.lof.com or leeper@tcon.net. (1/99)

FOR SALE: 1983 Rabbit GTI. Car was used for Solo II last two years in E Stock and Street Touring 1. Bilstein struts and shocks, Neuspeed front swaybar, upper strut support and race springs, two sets of wheels. Koni adjustable shocks and struts available. Would make a good start for IT car, DSP car or daily driver. $4850 OBO. (317) 852-8062 (h) or (317) 917-5075 (w). Tow Dolly is available for $750 with all new bearings, kingpins, tires and wheels. (1/99)

FOR SALE: 1986 2M4 Red Fiero. 119K miles. 4 cylinder, 5 speed. 1996 E Stock Regional Solo Champion. $1200. Call Sam Crites (317) 882-5721. (1/99)

FOR SALE: Bell SA95, Sport II Helmet. Brand new, never worn, still in box. $260. Call Jeff (765) 563-5011 evenings. (1/99)