My plan to ride with only Codys this year took a turn when the amazing Cody Crane discovered some non-overcomeable mechanical difficulties with the Fire Breathing Volvo Monster. Lucky for me, old friend and competitor Bryan Watson had an opening and was planning on a laid-back shot at finishing a rally in the tempremental but awesome Turbo Recon Rally Rabbit.

Unfortunately, the rally gods dealt Bryan and I yet another cruel blow when the battery died at the start of stage 3.

The new one-day format was going to be exciting with night stages and morning recce. Morning recce went fine and us two vets probably won that with a "good enough" attitude. We got back early to set up service (we were self-servicing for this one) and hang out in the mildly damp conditions. Everything was in order, people at Parc Expose appreciated the laser green fo the old Rabbit, and we headed out to the stages on time and ready to party.

Stage 1 and 2 were fine. Solid mid-pack times and the laid-back plan-to-finish pace that I was promised. Conditions were a bit tricky in the powerful FWD beast, but Bryan is a very competent driver and kept the old Rabbit reigned in. Unfortunately, right as we got to the start of stage 3 -- I mean literally right on the start line -- the Rabbit stopped growling and wouldn't restart. The workers were nice enough to help us push it out of the control so we could give fixing it a shot, but there was no recovery since the battery was dead. After the rest of the field had started, we pushed it back to a volunteer's car, borrowed a bit of charge from them and then drove back to service. Given that we couldn't run lights due to the unknown status of the alternator, night stages were out of the questions, so Tour De Forest 2019 was over for the team.

I was glad Bryan got a couple stages in, but I hope his next rally goes better!

Photographer unknown (from facebook).