When Trey at TRR reached out to us a few months ago, we were super excited to figure out how we could turn our Rally Ready curriculum into Raptor Ready. But immediately a few hurdles jumped out at us. First off, nobody here has driven a Raptor! Second off, our cars are all specially prepared for our curriculum and vice versa. Our lessons are designed around a specific driving style that is very different from what you’d find behind the wheel of Raptor, and especially in a desert racing environment. Nonetheless, we sat down and started brainstorming.
Fast forward a few weeks and we put together a great meeting of the minds during a half day class in April. Trey joined us at the Rally Ranch along with our good friend and resident cage-builder “Ol Dirty” Roy Tomkins, fresh from a 2nd place finish in his 1400-class desert racing Ford Ranger. We started off the day with the standard fare of rally curriculum in our fleet of rally school cars and were thrilled to see Trey and Roy, both experienced racers, getting so much from the training. Both remarked at how much they enjoyed the environment just because it was such a relaxed place to push themselves and the cars without the stresses of the competition environment. From our end, it was yet another reminder of exactly what we love so much about our work as we watched our friends developing as drivers with just a little bit of help from our curriculum.
As we finished the day, we took out Trey’s Raptor to see how much of our existing curriculum would transfer over and how much new stuff we needed to add. Much to all of our surprise, with some very minor tweaks, we were sliding the Raptor around like a rally car and finding more and more small changes we could make to mesh together our collective experience in road racing, desert racing, and rally, to help make our friends faster, safer, and more engaged drivers at the next Raptor Run.
Of course, no day would be complete without a few laps around our new off-road course (built for our 2016 Raptor Rally Weekend) with the madman, Ol Dirty Roy, himself behind the wheel.