After the successes and dramas that we encountered at the Wild West event, the Demon Rally team regrouped and rebuilt for the 2010 Oregon Trail event. The issues we had at Wild West would almost all be attributed to stock parts getting too hot. The easy remedy here was to carry out the already planned gear box change. By changing from the stock 020 linkage shift transmission to the much more stout 02J cable shift box, we knew we could gain some much needed reliability. There was also some wiring changes that needed to be made, which we were more than happy to handle.
Another issue we had was some excessive oil coming out of the crankcase, upon our post-rally tear down we found what we had known all along. the #1 cylinder getting some extra oil from the wrong place. Tom (owner/driver) decided that not only would the motor need a rebuild, but a plan was hashed to get him some more ponies. The end result was a ABA/9a 16v combination, built with forged pistons and H-beam rods of course. Atop the ABA sat the robust 16v head that had been previously (and heavily I may ad) by Steve Hanaford. Strapped to the prepped head would be a Garret GT28 turbo. In the end the motor put out a very healthy 191whp and 181wtq!
We arrived at Portland International Raceways for the 2010 Oregon Trail event with a lot more power, a much stronger drivetrain setup and the confidence that came from a good result at our last event.
Arriving at PIR:
Setup service for the first day: You can see Jake from JRM Fab checking over the exhaust before Tom heads out..
We also revamped the dash display for this event
The boys had a good start on Day 1 but it was cut short when they managed to shear off the out axle stub nose. With the car unable to move under it’s own power they were done for the night. This failure unfortunately also ended their chance at the Max Attack 2wd Series podium.
Service crew working way too late into the night. We finished the event around 11pm and had to pack up and head about an hour east to the next days first service location. After a hearty denny’s breakfast we set to fix an overheating problem and also the broken axle:
Parc Expose on Day 2:
Tom ran the car hard on day 2 but the overheating issue kept him from pushing for a win. The car ran well all day but the team ran too low on fuel and got stuck on stage which cost them valuable time on day 2. Exhausted from a late night on the car we packed up and headed south to Dufur for the final service of day 2 and for the final day of the rally.
An unfortunate incident late in the day sat involving a hay bale and speeds of around 80mph brought the car into service on a trailor. Once again the crew set to work in the dark hours of sat evening to get the car back in action. A snapped rear control arm bolt would prove very difficult to fix due to a battery issue with our drill. After we nearly lost a crew members finger in the mayhem of fixing the issues, the car was set down and the crew finally was able to retire back to the hotel for some much needed sleep.
Day 3 brought some awesome weather and with only one service scheduled for lunch time the crew was able to relax most of the day aside from a short and un-eventfull service stop. The car was not making boost and with no time to fix it since no more services were in the schedule, Tom was forced to push on as it. Incredibly though, he was able to shimmy the car through the stages on day 3 down on power, running on 3 cylinders some of the time (faulty spark plug wire) and somehow managed to best all other 2wd competitors!
Coming out of this event with a lot of new knowledge about our setup and even a Day 3 gr2 win, we are heading back to the garage quite happy. We were not able to push for an overall win or even a Max Attack podium, but it was a very successful rally in the eyes of the team. We are making some new additions and planning to come out to Wild West in September with a much better sorted car and be able to run hard and compete for the top spot!