Well once again the rally has dashed past with the usual haste!
CMR1 was piloted to fifth in leg one - the rally day, and 7th in the Rally sprint. This was one of the car's best weekends however! Though not too high up the finishing order, we finally got some exceptional comparisons of tyres that we use as well as closing to within a second/km of the fastest
Kiwi 2 cars. Also the car performed faultylessly all weekend, no niggles or issues - it just kept going, and going fast. It was on target to be third fastest Kiwi 2 on one stage, before it found the limit on a corner and had one loop of a merry go-round!
The final run of the rallysprint was proof however that our car is just not quick enough right now. Reg used all of the road and more - cutting further than any other car had all day and we still weren't fast enough. Our next big hurdle is to manage and adjust the suspension etc. so that we can get our cornering speeds up to those of the other cars.
It was great to have along our two new team members and this seems a fitting time to introduce the whole crew to you.
Our Driver needs very little introduction, Reg Cook has too many accolades to list including championships in track racing and rally driving. His breadth of Knowledge is the cornerstone of the team.
Our Co-Driver is Tony Mattson, and IT Engineer for Fisher and Paykel. Tony has limited Co-Driving Experience, starting with the car last year on notes, however he also brings some great stories from his stints Co-Driving in a mini at TARGA New Foundland each year.
Our Team Manager is Mark Bradly. Mark is our Chief Mechanic at Cook Motor Racings, and has been with us for more years than we can count! His expertise and love of rallying is one of the high points of going away on rallies.
Our second regular Crew member is Mark Ballantyne. This Mark is nicknames C G. (Chief Go-for) as he is Mr Reliable. Leaving the accommodation at all hours to fetch, find and fix for the team. C.G. is super enthusiastic - relishing everything we do, and a real asset to the team.
The third crew Member is Louise Cook. Louise is Reg's daughter and is in charge of organising tyres, on and before the weekend. She also helps out in service and is the reserve Co-driver for the team and will be hopping in the car at Hawkes Bay in three weeks time.
Another Important team member is Rodney Britton. Rodney is an engineer at Brugar Engineering in North Auckland. Rodney is one of the key fabricators on the team, fixing what we break and making newer stronger pieces for next time! Rodney comes to the rallies when he can, and we loved having him at
Rally Nelson last year.
Our first new Recruit is Harley. Harley is a 17yr old Apprentice Mechanic at Papakura Wheel Alignment. Unltimately Harley would like to work on V8 race teams, but we'll happily have him with us until that happens!
Our final pit crew member is Emily Paterson. Emily is the daughter of Richard Paterson the third name behind CMR NIssan Motorsport Challenges. Emily has recently learned to weld, and does a lot of the welding for the car and service vehicles. She is also taking on the job of Tyre Chief when Louise is busy co-driving.
Finally we have one of our most important Members! Sarah Stewart is Reg's Girlfriend and contributes a huge amount behind the scenes to the team. Sarah is our CMR courier it seems at times, as she spends a lot of time sending and recovering items for repair all over Auckland. Sarah also keeps us fed and watered on Working Bee weekends, and looks after the farm for us all when we are away on the Rally.
Rally Hawkes Bay is on July 29-30, and this year features a two leg event. We will be sending out an Update close to the time to give you the low down.
Cheers until then!