This last Friday, the 5th was the first Friday of March. that means it’s a First Friday Nighter TSD road rally night. My partner Lance and I hadn’t done a rally in 5 months so it was time.

This rally drove north from the usual starting point in Mission Hills to the 14 Freeway, then it settled in the Agua Dulce and Acton areas. This rally was a lot of fun. Long winding roads through canyons and two passes through the small town of Acton at night.

We managed to fall for each trap in the first two legs and our times reflected it. We missed three different turns costing us a minute, 27 and 47 seconds respectively. We nailed the last two legs though,  with scores of 11 and 16. Those are great times! We’re hoping we were 3rd overall for class C. We’ll know for sure when the score are posted online towards the end of the month.

In the first we leg we fell for the ol “double left turn on the road that connects at both ends to the main road” trick. I fell for this on my first rally. I remember thinking what a clever thing it is. Since if you do it right or do it wrong you end up in the same place, only at different times. It works like this; You’re asked to turn left or right onto a road that eventually rejoins the road you’re on.  When you meet the original road you make another turn in the same direction as the first turn. This returns you to your original road/course. The trick is in which end of the side road you start on.

I wish I had video or photos to share, but it’s dark out there, plus we’re always in a hurry.

I do have a cool map with our course detailed on it. It’s made by recording our trip on a GPS receiver. I have the GPS device set to record a track point every two seconds. With that data I’m able to determine exactly how long any mistakes in our route take. Here’s a link to our course. As we do these rallys, I’m often impressed with the countryside we find ourselves in. I often think I should go back out there sometime during the day. I haven’t gone back out yet, because I’m pretty sure a lot of these places look better at night.

When I was younger I had a fascination with all sort of automotive auxiliary lighting. Mostly “fog lights” and a light known as a “driving light”. Driving lights were basically super bright, high beams.  Illegal as could be, so i never got got the courage to buy a set.  Even though the headlights in my S2000 are excellent, these very lightly traveled back roads are night have caused me to long for a set of modern driving lights.  I can’t imagine how I’d even install any extra lights on my car, so the worry is moot.

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