Ryan Wilcox Seeking Better Results at 2015 Sno*Drift Rally
Connecticut driver Ryan Wilcox of the River Valley Rally Team is looking for redemption at the Sno*Drift Rally on January 26-27 in Atlanta, MI after a tough outing at the 2014 New England Forest Rally – the last event he competed.
At New England Wilcox went off course during testing in his self-prepared 1996 Subaru Outback STI. Wilcox was able to repair the car to only go off course once again on Stage 2, but still managed to finish fifth in class. However, the team was disappointed to miss New England Forest Rally’s famous Concord Pond Stage and the big jumps within on that fateful first day.
The team decided to make some changes for the upcoming Sno*Drift Rally and run in Open class without a turbo. Wilcox decided that based on the outcomes of previous Sno*Drift events that the Outback STI made too much power for the snow, not something many drivers say, but something that might make the difference for this privateer team.
Among the changes to the car, Wilcox and co-driver Steven Harrell will be running on street legal snow tires rather than the commonly used rally snow tires that the top teams will be using. The team believes the lower powered car would not utilize the rally snow tires to their full potential.
“In the event there is deep snow, we will just open up the tread pattern with a hot knife. Living in New England, we sure don't have a short of snow tires and we are bringing 4 sets of tires to Michigan. We sure dont have the luxury of bringing that many gravel tires with us,” said Wilcox.
Co-driver Steven Harrell as signed on to fill the right side of the River Valley Rally car for the duration of the 2015 Rally America season giving the team a consistent pairing and history.
Harrell navigated Wilcox to the teams best outcome in the Rally America series thus far and arguably the longest air-time of the entire field on the infamous Waste Management stage of the 2014 Susquehannock Trail Performance Rally. With the navigating skills of Harrell, Wilcox finished third in the Open Class, behind the high caliber Subaru Rally Team USA piloted car by David Higgins, and George Plsek in his beautiful Mitsubishi EVO.
Wilcox is confident the common icy road conditions of the Northeast have yet again prepared him for the Rally America season opener. In 2013, River Valley Rally entered Sno*Drift as their first National rally. After day one the team sat in 11th overall among the National drivers, before Ryan had to withdraw due to the flu.
“I want to continue to prove I belong among the top ten drivers in Rally America,” commented Wilcox. “I'm looking forward to driving this car like the cops are chasing me all weekend. To the rest of the field, I’m coming for ya, no turbo necessary!”