RALLY IN THE 100 ACRE WOOD: Pastrana, Gelsomino top the field

The Rally in the 100 Acre Wood was a show like no other this weekend.

With all the rain leading into the race, Thursday’s recce (reconnaissance) and the shakedown before the start were filled with sloppy turns and deep running water over the water crossings.


All teams knew going into this race it would be a massive challenge. Coming out of Sno Drift in February, Travis Pastrana and Rhianon Gelsomino led the series, with fellow Subaru teammates Brandon Semenuk and John Hall in second. After them was Barry McKenna and Leon Jordan driving for Ford.

This weekend, the battle for the lead was expected to be fierce, but there was a new force to be reckoned with: a Skoda Fabia R5 owned by McKenna Motorsports and driven by Ken Block and Alex Gelsomino. This is a car manufactured by a company from the Czech Republic, and it did not disappoint. The team won the first stage, followed by Barry McKenna and Leon Jordan, Travis Pastrana and Rhianon Gelsomino, Brandon Semenuk and John Hall, and Ryan Booth and Andy Hayes to round out the top five.

Block and Alex Gelsomino would go on to win two more stages before finishing second overall only to longtime friend and competitor Pastrana and Rhianon Gelsomino. Barry McKenna and Leon Jordan rounded out the top three, with Semenuk and Hall in fourth and Jeff Seehorn and Glen Ray in fifth.

Class winners included John O’Sullivan and Cameron Carr in the RC2 class, Michael Hooper and Kevin Allen in O2WD, Ele Bardha and Corrina Roshea in L4WD, Ryan and Rachel Rethy in NA4WD, and Roberto Yglesias and Chale Salas in L2WD.

Just finishing this race was a feat this year. The entry list had over 90 participants, while the list of finishers only had 45.

Many teams will be working hard to be up and running again for the DirtFish Olympus Rally April 24-25 in Shelton, Washington.

Final positions after SS14

1 Travis Pastrana/Rhianon Gelsomino (Subaru) 1h23m07.6s

2 Ken Block/Alessandro Gelsomino (Škoda) +29.0s

3 Brandon Semenuk/John Hall (Subaru) +1m14.1s

4 Barry McKenna/Leon Jordan (Ford) +1m38.5s

5 Jeff Seehorn/Glen Ray (Subaru) +8m23.8s

6 John O’Sullivan/Cameron Carr (Ford) +14m22.6s

7 John Coyne/Andres Bautista (Ford) +15m35.2s

8 Michael Hooper/Kevin Allen (Lexus) +15m45.5s

9 Enda McCormack/Liam McCormack (Hyundai) +16m18.2s

10 Patrick Brennan/Ryan Dunham (Ford) +18m01.0s

American Rally Association