Best rally year
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This is a discussion on Best rally year within the Motorsports Talk forums, part of the Community - Meet other Enthusiasts category; Alright, I have a question for you more knowledgeable guys out there. Which year STi would you say is the ...

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    Best rally year

    Alright, I have a question for you more knowledgeable guys out there. Which year STi would you say is the best for rallying out of the 06, 07, 08, and 09 years? I've been watching videos and things on rally racing and it looks like it would be an absolute blast to do. I figure that I can use the car as a DD for a while (at least until the warranty runs out), then I can start really throwing on the heavy mods, maybe get a cheap little beater for a DD. Opinions?

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    NEVER under any circumstances build a rally car. Ever.

    Adopt one instead. Buy a ready car with a full spares supply and a road book from last year. The book will give you at least a fighting chance of passing tech this or next year. Don't bother with a budget, you will spend more money than you have anyway. Don't make the car your daily driver, you will need something that actually runs to drive around and to tow the rally car around too.

    A 300 HP AWD vehicle is a terrible rally car for anyone asking. Look into a 1.3L or 1.6L normally aspirated car, 2L max. A Golf, and older Starlet are good choices. Make sure the car has competed under the sanctioning body you're enrolled with before, you do not want to be getting a car through tech first time round.

    Just in case I'm being vague, let me emphasize: do not do this.
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    Well alright then. Lol.

    So pretty much what your saying is that an AWD turbo'd vehicle is the complete opposite of what you want to start off with? I'm assuming that an STi would be for a much more advanced racer?

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    I forgot to mention -- don't do this. Here's a stage in-car with a 1.6L GrN motor, FWD chassis Pug 106 Rallye. Figure roughly 150 HP less than a showroom stock STi, and only 2 wheels driven.

    This is solidly in kill-everyone-around-plus-yourself territory and the driver is backing off enough on the bends that it's clear more power isn't the issue.

    Gravel is better or worse depending on your point of view, the speeds can be slower but the grip much less, the stage rougher, and there's no armco, just nature (nature hurts a lot).

    YouTube - Peugeot 106 Rallye Papaxristopoulos Mosxokaria 2005
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    The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong in the broken places. Ernest Hemingway
    I lied. I cheated. I bribed men to cover the crimes of other men. I am an accessory to murder. But the most damning thing of all... I think I can live with it. And if I had to do it all over again - I would. Benjamin Sisko
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    Quote Originally Posted by scubajose86 View Post
    Well alright then. Lol.

    So pretty much what your saying is that an AWD turbo'd vehicle is the complete opposite of what you want to start off with? I'm assuming that an STi would be for a much more advanced racer?
    In essence. Think of it this way - it's more expensive to purchase and maintain, the parts are costlier, it's mechanically more complex, and there's little point in dealing with all that if all you're out to do is have fun (which, sadly, is what rallying ought to be about but isn't any more, but that's another story).

    Cars generally have to be homologated to compete. The US is a "special" case in the worst sense of the word, they've decided to not homologate anything and then wonder why nobody is watching the series (yet another story for another time). Still, you will need to be a member of the club that's sanctioning the event, have a safe, tech-inspected car, have the proper kit, and so on. It all adds up to time and money. I don't want to discourage you, quite the opposite.

    Go to a local rally-x event. In the US, these aren't really rally-x events, they're like autocross events on gravel or soft dirt and are a lot of fun. Ask for a ride with someone there and see what you think. Less chance of vomiting and zero chance of putting your own car into something large and immobile, and you'll get an idea if you like those events. They're cheaper, simpler, and anyone can enter etc. I'd still not enter my DD, but people do.
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    I lied. I cheated. I bribed men to cover the crimes of other men. I am an accessory to murder. But the most damning thing of all... I think I can live with it. And if I had to do it all over again - I would. Benjamin Sisko
    DISCLAIMER: Opinions expressed are the author's alone and are inherently worthless.

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    I figured that it would probably end up being pretty expensive, which is why it would be a project that would be happening over the course of a couple of years. I like your idea of going and watching a local rally event, I just need to find one that will be happening in my area lol. And there is no way that I would be using the "in progress" rally car no matter what model of car it is. I would definitely buy some sort of cheap beater to use as my DD before I'd even start modding whatever car out. I also like the idea of buying a rally ready car, would just be a matter of finding a decent one in this area.

    I was looking up the rules on the Rally-America site and I'm fairly certain that I read somewhere that as a new driver you are only allowed in the production class for racing anyway. Which would mean that I wouldn't be allowed to race an AWD, turbo'd vehicle to begin with. Does this sound about right, or did I completely misunderstand what they were saying? Thanks for all of the advice this far as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by scubajose86 View Post
    I was looking up the rules on the Rally-America site and I'm fairly certain that I read somewhere that as a new driver you are only allowed in the production class for racing anyway. Which would mean that I wouldn't be allowed to race an AWD, turbo'd vehicle to begin with. Does this sound about right, or did I completely misunderstand what they were saying? Thanks for all of the advice this far as well.
    I would think so but it's a weird series, it's not like the rest of the world as far as I can tell. Outside Rally-America, people typically people start with something that's group N or where there's a "national" (read: relic) category, Group 1. This means suspension is free but you can't change mount points or designs, interior has full dash required but also full cage, turbo motors have a restrictor but management is free, and so on. The crew, if they have not competed under FIA rules previously, will need their standard vehicle licenses plus additional physical screens, ophthalmology, signed waivers, club membership forms etc., and will need to get a FIA entrant's license in addition to a competition license issued by their local club. In some countries the standard license for driving any car on the road requires a physical examination anyway. This is usually less complicated than it sounds.

    My suggestion would be rally-x in the US. It's not really a rally, and it's not really rally-x. It's a timed loop on dirt and there is only one car moving at a time. There's usually very little to hit but people do mess up their paint, body, etc. nonetheless. Find one of those in your area and see if you like it. All you need there is an SCCA membership, and many local clubs have spare loaner helmets (to test your immune system... you'll be buying your own the next day guaranteed).

    Do you autocross?
    Last edited by SD_GR; 08-18-2009 at 08:52 AM.
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    The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong in the broken places. Ernest Hemingway
    I lied. I cheated. I bribed men to cover the crimes of other men. I am an accessory to murder. But the most damning thing of all... I think I can live with it. And if I had to do it all over again - I would. Benjamin Sisko
    DISCLAIMER: Opinions expressed are the author's alone and are inherently worthless.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SD_GR View Post
    Do you autocross?
    I've been a few times, and it was pretty fun. I guess the thing that seems to really be catching my eye on Rally is just watching those guys sliding all over the place in dirt, mud, gravel, whatever it happens to be. I guess I'm just kind of crazy lol. I'm definitely going to have to try and get to a Rally event though, seeing as I could end up absolutely hating it.

    Have you ever done any rallying before?

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    Quote Originally Posted by scubajose86 View Post
    Have you ever done any rallying before?
    Tried the wheel in a FIAT, nav'ed a VW, a Datsun and so on, all very marginally Group N, shake-down would have been a reliability milestone for us. Got to do some setup work on a tarmac climb, lots of fun but also lots of work to my surprise, and even the entry fees add up to lots of money plus there's food, lodging, transport, the club fees, etc. etc. Never finished anything, and don't have valid papers any more. Would go in a heartbeat but would never consider building a car with my own money, running my own car etc.

    EDIT: Here's an article on local rallying, I found it very informative, have a look:
    Getting Started on the Performance Rally Circuit
    Last edited by SD_GR; 08-18-2009 at 09:18 AM.
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    The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong in the broken places. Ernest Hemingway
    I lied. I cheated. I bribed men to cover the crimes of other men. I am an accessory to murder. But the most damning thing of all... I think I can live with it. And if I had to do it all over again - I would. Benjamin Sisko
    DISCLAIMER: Opinions expressed are the author's alone and are inherently worthless.

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    sent link to a good friend of mine who is in his 1st season at Rally in Production class in a WRX...hopefully he replies with his input

    and another friend who does rally x from the Mid Atlantic area
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    Quote Originally Posted by SD_GR View Post
    Tried the wheel in a FIAT, nav'ed a VW, a Datsun and so on, all very marginally Group N, shake-down would have been a reliability milestone for us. Got to do some setup work on a tarmac climb, lots of fun but also lots of work to my surprise, and even the entry fees add up to lots of money plus there's food, lodging, transport, the club fees, etc. etc. Never finished anything, and don't have valid papers any more. Would go in a heartbeat but would never consider building a car with my own money, running my own car etc.

    EDIT: Here's an article on local rallying, I found it very informative, have a look:
    Getting Started on the Performance Rally Circuit

    That was a great article, thanks for linking that. It definitely completely answered some other questions that I previously had.

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    You have one of the best rallycross venues in the country within a short drive. I help organize the Washington DC Region SCCA rallycross events that are held at Summit Point in WV.

    RallyCross

    Our next event is on Saturday, September 26th. It's our Fall Driver's School.

    The very next day we have one of our points events.

    Rallycross is a great place to start and you just need a car that will pass a basic tech inspection. It would be good to have a car that's not lowered as sometimes the courses can be a little rough. We do have loaner helmets available at our events. If you come out to one of our events, don't be shy and ask some folks for a ride-along. Almost everyone there will be happy to take you around the course.


    As far as never building a stage rally car, meh... You just have to be reasonable and understand a few things about the sport and what you are starting with. I agree that you should not start out in a high-powered turbo car (even though you can at NASA RallySport events). I'm slowly building a 1995 Impreza L that will have a 2.2L motor and about 140 HP. That is more than enough to get started and get into trouble.

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    Jard, thanks for posting the info mate
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    Quote Originally Posted by Weasel 555 View Post
    sent link to a good friend of mine who is in his 1st season at Rally in Production class in a WRX...hopefully he replies with his input

    and another friend who does rally x from the Mid Atlantic area
    ^
    l
    l
    l
    ME.

    I got my start in rallying in the US back in 2001. I went to my first rally on a whim right after i got my first subie, my 2001 RS. The rally was STPR and i had no idea that rally existed on that level in the US till then. I always had inklings of WRC and other events in the rest of the world but was totally shocked to find it present here and at somewhat of a high level at the time. Group N and imported cars like the WRX, STi and EVo's were big at the time. I ended up working the rally and found quickly that was the best way to see the rally and get involved.

    Fast fwd a few years and i had an attempt at building my own rally car with that same RS. The cage install failed horribly and i missed a few years at getting behind the wheel.

    Fast fwd again to the end of 2008. A bugeye fell in my lap after i was getting ready to start prep on 2000 RS sedan and i decided to use that as my mode of transportation for my first year out. This WRX i built from the ground up minus the cage again and found a reputable shop to install it. Im currently in the running for the Prod AWD Cup in USRC (USRALLYCHAMPIONSHIP.COM) and stand in first place in class and tied for 3rd overall in the USRC with a few teams including Ken Block.

    The car i run is completely stock minus just a few items. The struts are DMS 50 gravel spec, have a straight pipe for a cat back but retain the stock downpipe due to the need for a functioning cat, rotors are actually less than stock bc i go through them alot on the tarmac events, pads are Hawk HP+, open source tune, clutch is stock but can be changed for a better piece, and the obvious safety equipment.

    There are room for more changes in the Prod AWD class but i prefer to spend my $ on getting to events rather than making the car better. I make due with what i have and gain lots of experience each event to go faster and slower where i need to.

    I would prefer that if you do go the turbo AWD route that you start with something like i have. Bugeyes are cheap these days and parts can be had pretty much everywhere. They really arent much to maintain so long as you keep it on the road, which i was slightly unfortunate at NEFR last month. YouTube - Car 15 Crash New England Forest Rally 2009
    Even with going off we have been running on the same motor and trans all year and havent had any issues thus far. Just keep changing fluids between each event and soemtimes at the event depending on the demands of the course.

    Or you could do what Jard is doing and run something with a little less power that is even less to maintain on costs to get you out there and do a ton of learning.

    Auto-x, rally-x and track days are all things i recommend for leaning car control on your own, but if you have the means go to Team O'Neil. They can teach you many things quickly 3-4 days, in what took me nearly 5-6 years to learn on my own in my own cars. I have not been to TON yet, but will when i get a chance and the money to do so.

    Good luck in whatever you choose.

    William Petrow
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    Prod AWD USRC
    93' Impreza Open class rally car / 94' Impreza LS wagon /02' WRX Prod AWD rally car = DEAD 2011 WRX sedan rally car coming soon

    74' 914 ...

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    Thanks for the advice everyone.

    I'm definitely going to have to think about this a lot more then I thought I might. I originally planned on going to that O'Neil training school up in NH when I got the chance, it sounded like it would really help. One of my good friends is really intersted in getting started with this too, I'll have talk to him about getting started in this together.

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