October 2020 - Nolan S. // Flat Out!!!
I’m Nolan. A long time ago, I’d watch rally whenever I could find it on TV. It usually seemed to be relegated to a time slot between infomercials and the color test patterns at the end of the broadcast day. It was the most entertaining motorsport, yet nobody else around seemed to know anything about it. As it turned out, my childhood friend, John (Founder of Rally Innovations) not only knew what WRC was, and who Colin McRae was, but was already well on his way to becoming a rally driver and building a business around it. Talking with John opened the door to the discovery of a local community of road and stage rally enthusiasts who, unbeknownst to me, have been exploring and racing local back roads for decades. This gave us an opportunity to find places off the beaten path in California that we never would have thought to visit, and routes to the Grand Canyon that most people don’t have the chance to drive on. After I traveled around the world a bit, John had faith (perhaps mistakenly) in my ability as a navigator, and thought I would fit in as the co-driver for the team. So, for a few successful years, I was fortunate to be the ballast in the passenger seat of the Rally Innovations Racing Team 2.5 RS. John, The Kevins, and a great bunch of other Subaru magicians took care of maintaining, mending, and rebuilding the car over and over, and keeping us safe. They taught me things like how you can take the ratchet straps used for holding the rally car on the trailer and repurpose them to swap out the suspension in just five minutes, right before the stage starts. Kevin W. was also particularly skilled in driving really fast and keeping the car right-side-up, all while calmly tolerating my incessant talking. Usually I would just read random directions from a book and try to not throw up. I look forward to take to the dirt roads again. But in the meantime, I may just start training my daughters to be the future of Rally Innovations Rally Team! Rally On!!!