The shape of the 2013 NASA National Rally Championship is now complete, with NASA Rally Sport publishing the championship rules today and naming Prescott Rally as the Championship Rally. Prescott Rally, a two day race based out of Prescott, Arizona, will be the National Championship Round this October and national champions will be crowned at that event.
‘I am very excited to see how our concept of one rally to take the crown works,’ said John Lindsey, NASA’s Chief Divisional Director. Lindsey added that ‘The geographic location, the timing on the calendar, and the long history of the Prescott Rally lends itself well to being the National Championship Round and we hope to see a great battle between all the teams who qualify this year via our innovative new format.’
‘I’m very excited about Prescott Rally this year,’ said Ray Hocker of NASA Rally Sport. ‘It has always been a cornerstone of the rally community on the West Coast, and this year is going to be huge. Car counts in the NRS events so far this year are up about seventy to eighty percent, so it should be a fantastic season.’
Photo: Andrew Pascarella
The rules governing the series were also published today on NASARallySport.com. The structure is unique in that there are four different ways to qualify to compete in the National Championship Round. The traditional method, performing well in a season-long series, is present. The second method is to reach a podium position at a two day event. The most exciting method is the Power Stage, which is an outright win on the final stage of the rally in both the all wheel drive and two wheel drive classes. Finally, there is one wild card selection available from each coast.
‘I think the Power Stage is going to be awesome.’ said Anders Green of NASA Rally Sport. ‘The concept of anything being decided by a single stage is completely counter to what most people are used to with rally, but that kind of out of the box thinking is what we do a lot of around here. Just imagine fighting a close race all the way to the end of the rally, and sitting just a few seconds out of the lead on that last start line. Knowing that you could qualify for Nationals, right now, on the road right in front of you, if you hold nothing back on this stage, with no protests or penalties involved, just you and the road, the adrenalin levels are going to be insane. That’s the level of racing that the MaxAttack series showed us was truly out there. Of course, you still have to go win the whole National round to be the champion, there’s no way around that.’
Photo: Andrew Pascarella
The structure of the multiple qualifying methods was based around finding and qualifying racers who have the potential for amazing speed. However, just like the Olympics, come the day of the actual race, no one will be able to stand on their laurels, they must come out on top in that gathering of all of their speedy peers. In many racing series across the country, it is well known that simply towing the race car to enough of the events will grant you a year end trophy, but when it comes to the NASA National Rally Championship, ‘you can’t win it with a trailer.’
NASA Rally Sport, the grassroots rally sanctioning body in the US, focuses on competitor fun and providing support for rally organizers. Providing tools, technology, and systems to the organizers, racers, and fans to increase their enjoyment of rally is a core mission of NASA Rally Sport. Making sure that rally remains a sustainable and affordable passion for the drivers and organizers, and building the family of racers and volunteers that make rally happen goes hand in hand with that mission.