On Saturday May 3rd, the High Desert Trails Performance Rally kicked off the 2014 Pacific Rally Cup and the 40th annual California Rally Series Championship in a big way. The event offered over 120 stage miles of everything that Southern California has to offer, from fast and flowing desert valleys to tight and twisty tree-lined roads covering huge elevation changes. The rally has grown into one of the biggest in the Southwest, just a few hours from Los Angeles.
Last year’s champs Jon Burke & Tom Morningstar set the pace early with a win on SS1, SS3 & 4, but it was not to be when the team lost a tire on SS5, their battery on Stage 8, and their transmission on Stage 11. This opened the door for newcomers Todd McAllister & Trent Bateman in a Subaru STi to take the Open AWD win, followed closely by John Trucks & Christopher Fine also in their Subaru STi. Third place went to an Eagle Talon driven by Hakan Okcuoglu & Sean McElwain. McAllister sweetened the win by also taking the Power Stage victory. He received $200 towards new Pirelli tires from Streetwise Motorsports, and for the AWD overall win, the Ralli Candi contingency prize of $200.
Over in 2WD the story was all about the Volkswagen Golfs. Bret Robinson & Doug Robinson were setting fast times in the morning until an overheating coil took them out on the way to Stage 11. Tony Chavez & Raquel Salas grabbed the lead and held it to win 2WD overall and contingency money from Ralli Candi, but embodying the spirit of the Power Stage, Erik Christiansen & Amy Floyd went for it and set the fastest 2WD time down the 16 mile stage! Christiansen grabs the Pirelli tire prize from Streetwise Motorsports and 2nd in 2WD. Rounding out the 2WD podium in third are Eddie Fiorelli & Brent Ellzey.
2WD Power Stage Winners – Erik Christiansen & Amy Floyd attack the water splash!
Next up is Rally Idaho for both the Pacific Rally Cup and California Rally Series Championship on June 21st-22nd. We would like to thank all the volunteers and crews for making this such a successful event. The High Desert Trails Performance Rally returns May 2nd, 2015!