#ThrowbackThursday: 2017 Show-Me Rally
24 entries took to the stages in last year’s Show-Me Rally, as the Rally America National Championship returned to Missouri for another day of action after March’s Rally in the 100 Acre Wood. Taking on many of the same roads as its two-day counterpart, the routebook-only rally offered competitors another chance to secure points towards the 2017 title.
A number of top competitors signed up for the event had already competed at 100AW earlier in the year, and the experience paid off as that group produced every Show-Me stage winner. Nathan Usher/Marianna Langosch kicked off the event by winning the Lions Club Super Special, later winning the second pass at Colen to Brazil; James Robinson/Brian Penza, the eventual 2WD class winners, also won two of the first six stages. In fact, the 2WD field won four of the first six stages in total, as Micah Nickelson/Tyler Ptacek and Cameron Steely/Preston Osborn took a stage each.
Usher/Langosch would hold the lead over Charles Surdyke/Matthew Conte by 22.4 seconds after six stages, with Todd Tortorelli/Cameron Carr in third overall as the top Open class competitor. After skipping Turkey Trot, the seventh stage, it was down to two passes at the 9.95-mile Berryman to Floyd stage for the competitors to “show us” what they had.
Surdyke/Conte did what they had to on the first pass, winning the stage with a time of 9:41.0, but only gained 0.8 seconds on Usher/Langosch in the process. But going into the dark in the final stage, Surdyke/Conte bettered that time by 7.5 seconds on the second pass to take another stage win at 9:33.5. Usher/Langosch were fourth on the final stage, posting a 9:56.8.
When the scores were in, the final difference between first and second was a razor-thin 1.7 seconds. Both crews had completed the event in under an hour, but it was Surdyke/Conte who would steal the victory at the very end. It would be the closest margin of victory all season. Usher/Langosch and Tortorelli/Carr would complete the overall podium.
More information on the 2018 edition of Show-Me Rally can be found on the event’s official website here. Interested volunteers can learn more and apply here. The full entry list for the 2018 event can be seen here.