Rally Animals: Kangaroos

Kangaroos are evil. I base this opinion on the 2005 Rally Australia alone. Never mind that there were no problems in 2006. They did enough damage in 2005 to earn them a spot on the blacklist forever.First, one kangaroo “the size of a horse” ran into Harri Rovanpera’s Mitsu. It didn’t cause terminal damage, but it wasn’t for lack of trying. This is especially inexcusable, as Harri is one of the nicest guys in the WRC.

Evidence of evil, exhibit A

Then, a second kangaroo leaps out directly in front of rally leader Petter Solberg’s car, meaning he’s leader no more. Outrageous. The rock in Japan robbed Petter of a win also, but it was an inanimate object with no evil intent. This kangaroo heaped another serving of heartbreak on Petter’s plate of sadness, with all intent and deliberation.

Petter - Damage to the radiator

PS: The Subaru team bought inexpensive Roo Shoo’s for their cars in 2006. Problem solved. Evil defeated.

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June 27, 2007. Animals, Auto Racing, Motorsport, Rally, Rallying, Solberg, WRC. Leave a comment.

Rally Animals: Sheep

The WRC seems to gravitate toward countries with high concentrations of sheep. And in a place like Wales or New Zealand, where there are more sheep than people, well… the law of averages means it’s inevitable for rally car and wool to meet.

Rally New Zealand 1997: the infamous encounter between Carlos Sainz, Luis Moya and Mr. Sheep.

The story goes that an itty-bitty Matthew Wilson was permanently scarred by the shreds of meat on the Escort coming into service. Apparently, it was both the sight and smell, as the engine was hot enough to barbeque the mutton. 😛

Lamb chops, anyone?

May 29, 2007. Animals, Auto Racing, Ford, Motorsport, Rally, Rallying, Sports, WRC. Leave a comment.

Rally Animals: Cows

We all know it’s the human beings that make rallying happen, but sometimes other species want in on the action. This is part one of a series of…not really shout outs, but featurettes that will examine the impact (pun not intended) that wildlife has had on the rallying. Because what is the WRC if there’s not something crazy going on?

First up: COWS!

As previously posted, the most recent bovine incident occurred in New Zealand when Takuma Kamada and Denis Giraudet found a cow in the road. Or, as the normally very gentlemanly Mr. Giraudet put it, the “big milky thing.” But these two got away without a scratch.

The cow that met Sebastien Loeb’s Xsara in 2005’s Rally Argentina wasn’t so lucky. But it’s in cow heaven now.

Goodbye, cow.

Another Spanish-speaking cow tried to take Seb out in 2006 in Mexico on leg two. But the real problem was the whole herd of cows that got in Chris Atkinson’s and (famously) Manfred Stohl’s way. I’ll let Manfred tell the story. Then, the part we didn’t hear: apparently, STI’s George Donaldson thought the whole thing was a hoot. He found out the next driver had indeed hit that leetle cow and killed it, and took it upon himself to tell Manfred. Manfred told George, “No, you don’t understand. My wife is going to have a baby, and I was thinking of the mommy cow.” Aw, that is tragic! Here’s the doomed cow family:

Poor leetle cow and his mommy cow!

On a lighter note, I thought I’d mention the random rally cows from Eurosport’s 2005 Tour de Corse coverage, just because. They were just hanging out behind a fence, chewing their cud and sniffing the camera. Unfortunately, I can’t find them, but if I do, I’m sharing a picture of them with the world!

That’s all the cows I can think of right now. I know I’m missing tons of cowy moments, so if you know of any, gimme a holla.

January 5, 2007. Animals, Auto Racing, Citroen, Peugeot, Rally, Rallying, Sports, WRC. 2 comments.