The 1st annual North Dakota 500 Road Rally competition - July 2010!

Discussion in 'MNSubaru - Regional' started by BadlandsRacer, Jul 21, 2010.

  1. BadlandsRacer
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    BadlandsRacer Well-Known Member

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    July 2010: The 1st annual ND500 Road Rally


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    Finally, here it is! The big news! The car has been sponsored by Ressler Subaru of Mandan, ND, to participate in the first ever (and likely first annual) ND500 Road Rally competition. The ND500 is a 4-day driving event that spans across 2,500 miles and four states. The rally will begin in Bismarck, ND and proceed through Denver, CO, Salt Lake City, UT, and Yellowstone National Park before returning to Bismarck. Though the rally is a timed event, it is not intended to be a conventional race and is not a free pass to speed or break traffic laws. Teams will need to successfully navigate to assigned checkpoints without getting lost or breaking down, and minimizing gas stops, in order to be competitive. There will be awards for the fastest rally times.

    Professionally photographed by Action Plant Photography, and filmed by The Mob Theory (who will be making a DVD production around the event), the ND500 promises to be one of the biggest automotive events in the Upper Midwest for 2010. I’m excited to be a part of it, and whether I win or not, I hope to have a ton of fun with other car enthusiasts, spend some quality time with my co-driver/navigator (aka my fiancée Sami), and promote myself, my car, and of course, the awesome companies that have put themselves out there to back me up.

    I’ll be doing my best to update this thread during the event, but Sami and I will be focused on planning the best routes to the checkpoints and taking notes for use in the car the next day…but there should still be plenty of time to post up some pictures and video! In the meantime, if anyone has any route-planning hints, feel free to send them my way!

    The ND500 begins officially on Thursday, July 29th, with a pre-rally event in Bismarck on Wednesday, July 28th. The pre-rally event includes a meet in which the team cars will be on display and enthusiasts will have the opportunity to come by and meet the teams. There will be vendor booths, food, and great fun for all, so if you’re local, come on out and join us in having a good time!

    Stay tuned for pics, video, and more!
     
  2. BadlandsRacer
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    BadlandsRacer Well-Known Member

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    The Sponsors

    An event of this magnitude would not be possible for Sami and I without the help of our fantastic sponsors. I would like to take this opportunity to say how grateful we are to be backed up by these companies. We appreciate all the support, and hope that we can do an outstanding job of promoting your outstanding businesses. Without further chat, here is who the credit goes to:


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    Ressler Subaru (Mandan, ND)

    Hands down the best car dealership in North Dakota, and the best Subaru dealership I’ve had the pleasure of interacting with. The service department is fantastic. Most people are sketchy about taking their beloved STi to a "stealership"...not with these guys! They've done some amazing work on my Subie, including wiring and installation of all my Defi gauges. They know their stuff, are always professional and always friendly, and get excited at the chance to work with performance cars...and they always make their STi-owning customers a top priority. Check them out at http://www.ressler-subaru.com!


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    Odney Advertising (North Dakota & Idaho)

    Odney is a full service marketing and public relations agency, with three offices in North Dakota (Bismarck, Fargo, and Minot), and an office in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Odney offers advertisement consulting, public relations and social media strategies, creative development, branding, and market research. Odney bases their strategies and consulting on extensive research and years of experience, and can help you grow your business effectively. Check out Odney’s services at http://www.odney.com!


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    EFI Logics (Bethel, CT)

    Man, what really needs to be said? These guys are seriously awesome. They transformed my engine bay from THIS to THIS…and they did so with friendly service! I had a great time at the EFI Logics facility, and can see why half their customers stop by just to hang out for the hell of it. Whether it’s a tune, a suspension install, or a wicked full motor build, they will get the job done with a meticulous attention to detail that sets them above their competitors. I made the right choice when I put my car on a trailer and shipped across the country to EFI…and I’m not the only one who has done so! Whether on the 2,000 mile drive from Connecticut back to North Dakota, or multiple runs on the autocross course, my car has never run better, and I owe it all to these guys! Make sure you take the time to check out the best Subaru shop in the tri-state area at http://www.efilogics.com, and to see my car after they had their hands on it, click [post=2904001]here[/post] and [post=2912977]here[/post].


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    Litespeed Performance (IWSTI vendor)

    Litespeed Performance is a still-relatively-new vendor dedicated to the pursuit of Subaru performance. At first interaction, they offer fantastic customer service and quick response times. A deeper look shows some truly innovative products, like the Rear Chassis Bridge (a less expensive, lighter-weight version of the no-longer-produced CarLabs X-brace), or their awesome titanium turbo heatshield. And shhh, let’s keep this between you and me, but I hear there’s some weird contraption called a header, and possibly some ultra-lightweight exhaust, currently under development. Scoot your browser to http://sites.google.com/site/litespeedperformance!


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    Out There Customs (3434 Saratoga Ave, Unit 4, Bismarck, ND)

    BRAND new to the car scene in Bismarck (and I mean new, these guys opened in June), Out There Customs offers body and interior work, paint, car audio/video, and aftermarket part installs. They are an authorized dealer for more than 350 aftermarket brands, including Tein, AEM, Greddy, HKS, Enkei, and more! They specialize in car audio/video and contribute years of knowledge and experience to that arena. I had the pleasure of meeting the owner, Tyler Fitterer, not that long ago and can say with confidence that he is both friendly and professional. Whether you’re looking for aftermarket parts or some monster subs, give them a call at 701-595-2375 or stop in…it’ll be worth your while.


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    Perfection Plus Auto Detailing (555 Memorial Hwy, Bismarck, ND)

    Jeff at Perfection Plus will shine up your baby like it’s his own. Perfection Plus has done the tint on my ’07 STi, some detailing on previous cars, and I know plenty of guys that won’t take their cars anywhere else. Perfection Plus can also order aftermarket wheels or basic parts like sway bars or brake pads. The customer service is top notch and the detailing is thorough, so stop on by or give them a call at 701-223-1032 so these guys can take care of you!


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    Al’s Barber Shop (206 N. 8th St, Bismarck, ND)

    The best barber shop in Bismarck, hands down. Just a tiny shop with two friendly barbers and a great atmosphere. I’ve been a customer here for years, and can tell you from personal experience that there is no one I would rather go to than Joe and Travis. The walls of the shop are decorated with awards and newspaper features about this awesome little place, and they’ve earned it. The service is great! Next time you need a haircut, give them a call at 701-223-1050, or stop in for a walk-in!


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    Michael Jays Tattoo and Piercing Clinic (North Brook Mall, 1929 N. Washington St, Bismarck, ND)

    Voted the best in Bismarck-Mandan 3 years in a row! These guys really care about their customers…but friendly service and great attitudes aren’t all that describes this place! The words “hospital-grade sterilization,†“six tattoo artistsâ€, and “40 years of experience†also come to mind! My tattoo was done by Trip, and he was courteous, easy to get along with, and did a great job! Michael Jays also has the largest selection of body jewelry in North Dakota, and has done five of my fiancée’s piercings. Next time you get the itch for some ink, or want to put a hole in yourself, stop in or call them at 701-222-8282.
     
  3. turbo_turtle
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    turbo_turtle Well-Known Member

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    Wow, I wish I knew about this earlier! How many cars are running?

    Are you the event master? Did EFI Logics tell you about NER??

    While I have never done NER myself, I hear that its loads of fun and everyone looks forward to the next years right away.

    ~Dan
     
  4. BadlandsRacer
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    BadlandsRacer Well-Known Member

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    Definitely not the event master. The event is being hosted by Team NSX of Bullrun. I believe that we have 30 cars entered so far.

    I have heard about New England Forest Rally...EFI Logics sponsors Tim Ostermann's "Team Pin-It-To-Win-It" stage rally STi. I did not have the opportunity to attend this year unfortunately. My friends Steve and Amy, met while picking up my car from EFI Logics' facility, did and took lots of pictures for me! :D

    This will be a road rally event. The goal is to navigate to assigned checkpoints on public highways without getting lost, pulled over, or breaking down. Not a stage rally, in which you're driving balls out. I would love to do that, but it's far too expensive at this point in my life.
     
  5. J.Rex
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    J.Rex Well-Known Member

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    So the goal is to drive the fastest without getting pulled over or is it like a tsd where you're trying to get a certain time? Do you loose if you get pulled over or do you just loose that time not moving?

    Looks like fun, good luck!
     
  6. turbo_turtle
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    turbo_turtle Well-Known Member

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    No not NEFR... NER. New England Rally. It's exactly as you are describing ND500, but it's 1500 miles in 3 days all over New England. I think they have prizes along the way too.

    ~Dan
     
  7. BadlandsRacer
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    BadlandsRacer Well-Known Member

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    That would be awesome...I have not heard about this, no. Just the NEFR.

    You are not DQ'd for getting pulled over, you just lose that time you spend not moving. To my knowledge, though, it is like a T/S/D, but different. Instead of trying to make the checkpoint within a certain window of time, as I see in T/S/Ds, you are trying to get the lowest time, without getting pulled over. They do stress that it is NOT a free pass to break the law. It will be interesting to see how exactly they run this...as this is the first one ever.
     
  8. carl
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    carl Well-Known Member

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    so it's nothing like a TSD. It's just another drive as fast as you can on open public roads "rally". They put the disclaimer in to cover their ass when some jerkoff inevitably goes whipping through a town at 150mph or crashes into something/someone. If the goal is to get the lowest time, you know people will be speeding and speeding excessively in many cases (not saying you will, just saying that it's likely to happen given the nature of the event). The goal should be a target time that is the fastest time AT the speed limit for the shortest route to the checkpoint - that doesn't blatantly encourage speeding but you'd still have to push to achieve it). Anyway, good luck with the event and hopefully it doesn't have any incidents. The car looks good!
     
  9. BadlandsRacer
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    BadlandsRacer Well-Known Member

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    I completely agree, and mentioned such when this was still in the planning phase. But the organizer, being a Bullrun team himself, is very touchy about his "rallies," and how they are a "proven success." Personally, I think it gives an unfair advantage to those who are unwilling to speed at all to get the job done. I would rather see something that makes it fair for everyone and puts people's navigational skills to the test. I quite honestly feel this will be a glorified cruise, and would not be doing it were I not sponsored to do so...but I may as well make the most of the sponsorship offer and try to have a good time with some fellow car enthusiasts. And I, too, hope there are no incidents.
     
  10. BadlandsRacer
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    BadlandsRacer Well-Known Member

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    29 July 2010: Final ND500 Update

    Car #911 has officially withdrawn from the ND500 Road Rally. Prepare for a lot of verbage. [​IMG]

    This rally was portrayed as the "premier road rally event" for the Midwest...something long overdue in North Dakota and the Midwest in general. Sami and I were lucky enough to receive sufficient sponsorships to allow us to participate; without the donations of our sponsors, we would not have been able to enter, as the entry fees are well beyond what your average car enthusiast can afford.

    From the start, I was concerned about the methods of the "rally." I was worried that the event would be a glorified cruise filled with speeding and street racing. Because of the opportunity to promote Ressler Subaru, which is a fantastic dealership, as well as our other awesome sponsors, I put my gut feelings aside and decided to give it a shot. I even started to feel a sense of pride, that my car was considered good enough to be sponsored for this event, that I could be involved in helping to bring something to car enthusiasts in North Dakota.

    The pre-rally "expose" kicked off yesterday at noon. The ND500 website advertised a video promo shoot, for which "the Bismarck Police Department will be blocking off the roads for." This did not occur. The pre-rally expose was held in a small parking lot in a small park, in a very out-of-the-way location in Bismarck, ND. Police did not block roads, there was no video promotion, and though the site says "we're expecting at least 1,000 people to show up," I would be surprised if there was 300 throughout the day.

    This morning, the 29th of July, was the official start of the rally. At 7:30 am, teams assembled in Mandan to kick off the event. We drew a small crowd and it all started nice enough...video being shot as the cars left the lot in two lines and began the rally. What the ND500 really was quickly became apparent.

    The website advertises "Though there will be an award for fastest total rally time, this is by no means a free pass to speed or break the law. This award can and probably will be attained by the team with the fewest gas stops, break downs, or without getting lost or pulled over." Waivers that Sami and I signed stated, in the first paragraph, that speeding was not permitted, nor was entering a contest of speed with other participants at any time.

    Our first checkpoint was Keystone, SD. I am ashamed to admit that I averaged 105mph for the major part of the trip, and according to the GPS, a top speed of 133mph. I witnessed rally participants passing non-rallyists on the shoulder of the highway, or in the closed lanes of construction zones. I did it once myself. [​IMG]

    Once I came to Interstate 90 in South Dakota, I limited myself to 10mph over the speed limit. We arrived in Keystone with 6 teams behind us, and the majority of the group already there. The drive from Bismarck -Mandan to Keystone typically takes about 5 and a half hours. We hear that the first team there made the drive in under 4.

    I label myself as a campaigner for legal, sanctioned motorsports...racing where people can have fun, enjoy driving fast, and not worrying about getting in trouble, or hurting someone not involved. This event was not something I would want to recruit people for. I also strongly felt that promoting such reckless and irresponsible behavior was inappropriate for someone representing the companies that sponsor me. Not to mention, had I been pulled over today, my career as a law enforcement officer would be over.

    After a discussion with Sami, we decided we did not want to be a part of the event any longer...that it would be hypocritical for me to continue. After a phone call to Ressler Subaru, during which I was told that the dealership stood behind me regardless of the decision that I made, Sami and I got in the car, and drove away.

    I will continue to loyally promote my sponsors, both local and non-local, at autocross racing, car shows, enthusiast meets, and on these forums...and I hope you all will continue to follow my journal for autocross and car show coverage, and other updates.
     
  11. idget
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    idget Want to pokéman? PM ShortytheFirefighter Staff Member

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    After reading this last update, absolutely!

    Good for you for withdrawing. I hope nobody gets hurt during the remainder of this street race.
     
  12. BadlandsRacer
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    BadlandsRacer Well-Known Member

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  13. headrush
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    headrush Well-Known Member

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    Good call on backing out, this sounds like exactly the kind if attention our sport does NOT need. It sucks they call it a "rally" at all when its just orchestrated street racing....
     
  14. turbo_turtle
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    turbo_turtle Well-Known Member

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    Same exact stories I've heard about NER... I suppose that's why I never actually participated. Sad to hear, but not surprised.

    ~Dan
     
  15. carl
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    carl Well-Known Member

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    yea totally not surprised. events like this are, unfortunately, highly detrimental to those of us that enjoy legally sanctioned rally (due to the word association of "rally" and the public cannot necessarily tell the difference making road permits tougher to get). Good on you for withdrawing, much respect
     
  16. greg donovan
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    greg donovan Well-Known Member

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    after seeing some of the pictures of this on facebook you definately made the right call.
     
  17. BadlandsRacer
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    BadlandsRacer Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I'm glad I chose how I did. I am currently trying to get refunded the co-driver entry fee (my fiancee was my co-driver) from Nic based on the fact that although we signed Terms and Conditions stating absolutely no refunds whatsoever, those same Terms and Conditions also talked extensively about obeying all traffic laws and regulations, drive safely and with regard to other persons on the road, etc...and no one followed THOSE. So if those won't be enforced, why should the part about no refunds?

    Also, "ND500" owes Signs & Wonders like $10,000 for all the work they put in for them before the "rally."
     

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