Defending two-wheel drive United States Rally Champion, Erika Detota began her season on the podium. As the opening eastern round of the USRC, Rally New York USA took place in and around the towns of Monticello and Walton, NY. The roads themselves, still coated in spots with sand and snow, were made more treacherous with fresh ice from the weekend’s unseasonably cold weather.
Prior to the event, crews were allowed to go out and “recce” the course, driving at normal speeds along the route and making their own pacenotes, with which they would navigate at speed during the race. This was the first time Detota created her own pace notes from the ground up, rather than modifying those supplied by the event’s organizer. “I decided to take on the challenge of writing my own notes, which was a huge challenge for me but it is part of growing as a driver” she said.
Detota was partnered for this event by mentor Travis Hanson, who was a rather exciting surprise to see in the right seat. Hanson is the current Rally America National Championship leader making history as the first Super Production driver to have the honor. “The plan for sitting with Erika was to help her with pace and driving skills” says Hanson “and I was pleased we accomplished our goals together.”
Photo: Rob Plafta
Detota and Hanson turned in solid times throughout the race until a broken fuel line towards the end of the second day cost them over ten minutes and dropped them back in the order. Once back under way, Erika pushed forward and made her way back to a solid 3rd place finish in the 2wd class. “After a few setbacks throughout the rally I was pleased on the last stage to feel much more confident and end the rally with the top 2wd stage time.”
For more information and video from the race please go to: Rally New York, 2011 Video by SportCE.com featuring
Erika Detota http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GUvFaIddyLk
Erika would like to thank her friends and fans, Broken Motorsports, The Keep a Breast Foundation (http://www.keep-a-breast.org/
), Rally Armour (http://www.rallyarmor.com
) and Big Boulder Park (http://www.bigboulderpark.com/
) for their continued assistance and support.
Rallying is a form of motorsport unlike any other and involves real cars traveling at breakneck speeds down closed off sections of real roads. Cars are generally started at one minute intervals and the shortest cumulative elapsed time to complete each section of closed road, wins. Each team consists of a driver and co- driver, whose job is to instruct the driver where to turn and warn them of potential obstacles ahead. In between the competition sections, the teams transit along public roads, while obeying all traffic laws, en route to the next closed section.