The Subaru factory driver/co-driver
teams of X Games 13 Rally (left to right
above, descending below): Alex
Gelsomino, Ken Block, Travis Pastrana,
Christian Edstrom, Boris Said, John
Buffum, Carolyn Bosley, Colin McRae.
There was no track time scheduled today. Instead, the Subaru teams made final preparations and celebrated the birthdays of Colin McRae and team owner Lance Smith.
During the night and into the morning, X Games grounds crew completely transformed the floor of The Home Depot Center. They removed the multiple motorcycle jumps and in their place was a larger ramp intended to launch a car 70 feet, crossing above the track where another car would be traveling underneath. Teams had practiced a similar jump earlier in the week.
With practice scheduled for 8:00 a.m., drivers and crews anxiously waited for the grounds crew to finish. Teams brought their equipment into the stadium, lining up side by side along the north wall.
Practice finally started at about 10:30 a.m.
Competitors followed a lead car from the start line, around the jump, up the ramps to the two tracks, and back again.
Then each car had one practice run that included the jump. Significantly longer than last year’s jump, this one proved spectacular. Dust swirled throughout the stadium as the teams tested and eventually parked their cars in their pits.
Thirteen cars started the rally Super Special, and preliminary races narrowed them down to eight. The bracket racing was wild. During the first round, Block/Gelsomino punctured a tire and encountered a barrier in the northwest part of the track. They limped back into the stadium, where their adversaries weren’t to be seen. Having landed the jump just a little short, Comrie-Pickard/Goldfarb were unable to complete the northeast part of the course.
In the next round, Pastrana/Edstrom entered the stadium at the same time as Foust/Beavis, driving toward each other as they made the last turn. However, Pastrana overshot, pushing into the other car’s lane – disqualifying Pastrana/Edstrom and moving Foust/Beavis into the final round.
The McRae/Bosley-Block/Gelsomino dual was equally exciting, with McRae/Bosley rolling over at the start-finish line turn. With #7’s rear wheels hung up on a barrier, the team’s attempt for X Games 13 gold was over.
Photo: Eric Lars Bakke/ESPN Images/
As a result, the final round was fought between Block/Gelsomino in #43 and Foust/Beavis in #34. Evenly matched, Foust/Beavis finished only 0.68 seconds ahead of Block/Gelsomino. Although the drama this year was different, a Subaru sweep of the X Games Rally remained intact.
We at Drive Performance are deeply saddened by the loss of Colin McRae in a helicopter accident near his home near Jerviswood, Lanarkshire, Scotland, on Friday, September 14, 2007. We extend our most heartfelt sympathies to his family, friends, and fans.
Read about X Games 12 Rally in Version 3.2.
Ready for next year? X Games Rally is scheduled for X Games 14.