Posted Saturday, May 5, 2012 at 2:33am

Saturday Oregon Trail Rally

Problems continued to plague Lauchlin O’Sullivan and co-driver Scott Putnam in Day two of three at the Oregon Trail Rally east of Portland Saturday. The crew is 12th overall and fourth in the Super Production category with four stages left on the final day Sunday. Some observations from co-driver Scott Putnam:

We came in on a tow strap from the eleventh and final stage Saturday night. That’s the kind of day we had. We’re still in the event but they were inspecting the spark plug and found chunks of metal. There may be damage but the engine still runs.

We’re going to see what we can do. We’ve contacted someone in Portland who says he can fix the problem and keep us in the event tomorrow. He’s on his way now. I mean there are only four stages left in the event. We have to finish and get the points. Our closest competitor for the championship, Travis Hanson, didn’t even come. We need these points!

It’ll be a late night but at least we’ll be running. The car has to be in Parc Expose at 10 AM and the first car out is at 11 AM. So we have time. We have to fix this engine, though. We can’t put in a new engine according to the rules.

But today was one thing after another. The worst was the brake issues that are back. It’s the same issues we had at 100 Acre Wood. We thought those were all behind us. We had intercom issues where Lauchlin could hear me but I couldn’t hear him.

I mean it was just a laundry list. But even with all those problems we were the third fastest overall on SS8 and the fastest Super Production car on SS7. Maybe that was because we didn’t have any brakes and Lauchlin was trying not to need them! We didn’t even have a handbrake to use on those two stages.

On SS9 the turbo hose came off so the power went away. but with that we caught a car in front of us so we were caught in that dust for about two miles. That was exciting when we arrive five feet off his bumper because he didn’t see us. It wasn’t malicious because once he saw us he moved over right away. On SS10 we started losing power then on SS11 we reached the end of the stage but needed to be towed back to the time controls at the end of the day. If we can fix the engine we’re still fine.

I don’t see the possibility of getting the podium anymore. We just need to get to the end and get points. You do your best to avoid it but you do your best, you know? It’s just part of rallying. Just press on regardless!