It??s the final event in the Rally America championship. Lake Superior Performance Rally, or LSPR, is gearing up to name the fastest rally driver.
Two-wheel Scion rally driver from California, Andrew Comrie-Picard, has been rally racing professionally for ten years and said there's nothing quite like it.
??It is the most challenging, gnarly, extreme kind of auto racing there is,?? said Comrie-Picard. ??You're flying over jumps down one-lane dirt roads. It's like professionalizing a Dukes of Hazzard movie.??
Fifty-six race teams from around the world will speed through public roads in Houghton and Baraga counties, testing the limits of man and machine.
But before zipping down the courses, cars are prepped on the test track at the Keweenaw Research Center.
??The competitors are trying to get their car tuned for this area, for our weather and climate, the roads, and things like that,?? said LSPR chairman, Dean Rushford.
Not only do the cars have to be in top shape, the drivers need to know the course ahead of time, and that means charting the course with a co-driver.
??On race day, they read back to us so that we can basically drive a little bit ahead of our eyes,?? Comrie-Picard explained. ??When you're going 120 miles an hour down a one-and-a-half lane dirt road, you need all the information you can get.??
This year, the government shutdown threw a wrench in the race course, forcing the race out of Ottawa National Forest and causing a loss of 60 miles of track. They were, however, able to reroute to regain 40 miles.
??Unfortunately, we have two downfalls,?? Rushford explained. ??One is that we have to utilize the same roads several times, and we also lose some of our best viewing areas for the spectators.??
There are still plenty of good areas to view the races, and maps are available online.
LSPR events will take place this Friday and Saturday.
??They should come out and see it because it's the best motor sport that there is,?? Comrie-Picard said.
For more information on Lake Superior Performance Rally, including spectator information, visit the LSPR website here .
For more information on Rally America events, visit their website here .