Subaru Rally Team USA has come to Canada.
With the SRTUSA team on our home turf, it was time to show them what we are made of up here in the great white north. I was super happy to have a chance to both meet Travis and hear what he thought of the conditions. Even more exciting was that Subaru would now produce a Launch Control episode about our home event.
Travis Pastrana at Rally of the Tall Pines
With the aim to take a serious shot at the entire 2017 Rally America season, Travis Pastrana and Robbie Durant needed more time to work on their notes capability. With the new “American Rally Association Championship” will start at Rallye Perce Neige – which is no joke of a rally.
In order to prepare for Rallye Perce Neige in Maniwaki Quebec, more time with Robbie and get notes in order, so instead of heading out to a training ground they decided to contest the Rally of the Tall Pines here in Canada. With the team at Vermont Sports Car using this as a training round, Travis is under instructions to go easy – but there is no question he is out here to win.
With the countless wins and championships from Antoine L’Estage there is no question that he is here to win, the championship is on the line. The question was, will Travis take that from him? Will Antoine feel pressured by Travis to push too hard and risk it all.
Speaking with Travis Pastrana on Friday night, he was a super happy guy, and told me that he was happy to be here, but the conditions were challenging.
Travis was gracious enough to sign my hat for me. I go to a dozen events per year, and I never fan boy it up, but really how often do you get the SRT-USA team up here?
Times were traded all day, with Travis and Robbie in the SRT-USA 199 car sometimes within 2-3 seconds on Antoine, and even winning a few stages, but in the end Antoine L’Estage won by only 3 minutes and 25 seconds. While that may seem like an eternity, the next competitor was almost 15 minutes off that pace. With this being the first Rally of the Tall Pines for Travis – that is an amazing accomplishment against someone like L’Estage who basically owns the Canadian Rally Championship.
Without further, here is the final Launch Control of the season, episode 14, where I make an appearance at 5:40 as I live stream for our event from the side lines – bright orange coat on the right of the frame.