The Rally America Series has a new owner and a new schedule for 2012. While the six events remain the same, the length of the season is extended beyond the X-Games in an effort to provide more continuous support for many of the regional rally events throughout the year. It also gives teams time to recover and rebuild between rallies. During the 2011 season, half of the championship events were crammed into a short couple of months. With the new schedule, and events spaced out a bit more, there should be easier on the teams, and provide a longer presence and exposure of Rally America in the motorsports media. We love rally here at OpenPaddock, and even we haven’t been talking about Rally America much since this year’s New England Forest Rally. So without further ado, here is your 2012 Rally America National Championship Schedule.
2012 Rally America National Championship Schedule
|Sno*Drift||Atlanta, MI||January 27 – 28|
|Rally in the 100 Acre Wood||Salem, MO||February 24 – 25|
|Oregon Trail Rally||Portland & The Dalles, OR||May 4 – 6|
|Susquehannock Trail Rally||Wellsboro, PA||June 1 – 2|
|New England Forest Rally||Newry, ME||July 13 – 14|
|OIympus Rally||Seattle, WA||September 22 – 23|
In addition to a new schedule, Rally America also gained a new owner. Series founder, Doug Havir, stepped aside as Vermont technology entrepreneur and rally fan, Bill Fogg, bought the Rally America, Inc. and has big plans for expanding the streaming video and social media experiment that began at NEFR this year. While I saw the ALMS on-line streaming deal with ESPN3.com as a bad idea, and I still do since I have no access to ESPN3, I think the on-line streaming solution for Rally America makes a lot of sense. Right now, Rally America has zero television exposure and there’s no live coverage at all of the stages. That’s set to change in 2012 as Rally America plans to bring live streaming and an online video channel. I’m very excited about this increased access to Rally America events, and I hope they solicit the services of Mr. Bill Wood as they did for NEFR. 2012 is looking pretty good for rally here in the US!
Here is Rally America’s official release regarding the transfer of ownership to Fogg and the media plans and goals for 2012.
RALLY AMERICA ANNOUNCES NEW OWNERSHIP AND 2012 RALLY SCHEDULE
Business veteran takes the helm and navigates course for more fan and sponsor opportunities in the 2012 National Championship Series
Golden Valley, MN, September 22, 2011 – Rally America, Inc., the premier sanctioning and Rally promotion organization in the United States, announced today the seamless transition of ownership to Vermont business professional, Bill Fogg. Fogg has twenty-five years of entrepreneurial success in distribution, manufacturing, software development, telecommunications and marketing. Fogg is also a founding partner in a business development company that invests in a number of technology start-up businesses.
Managing Director, J. B. Niday, will continue in his long-standing role along with Mike Hurst, Rally America’s Competition Director, Paul Giblin, Rally America’s Director of Business Development, and Ananda Siverts, the organization’s Marketing Director. The Rally America staff, new and old, is also quick to acknowledge the founder of Rally America, Doug Havir, for his many contributions to the development of the Rally America National Championship Series.
“First, I want to express my appreciation to Doug Havir for establishing and building Rally America,” said J.B. Niday, “Bill Fogg and his team bring great, new talents and resources to Rally America, as well as fresh ideas and perspectives.”
Fogg has been working with Rally America personnel as well as professionals from other companies to assist in planning for the expansion of Rally America’s reach into homes around the globe. “I want to expose as many people as possible to Rally and turn them into rabid fans,” said Fogg, “Rally America is in a unique position to put Rally and Rallycross in front of the mainstream public.” Fogg believes that Rally America’s future success will be built on the vision and depth of its management team and a history of producing safe and exciting Rally events.
As part of that vision, social networking, live streaming, and online video channel development will be enhanced or launched during the 2012 season. “I have spoken with top performers in the sport, team owners, sponsors and manufacturers, and they all agree that now is the time to bring Rally and Rallycross to the masses,” Fogg said.
Fogg first attended a rally three years ago with his sons Jon and Tom when long-time friend and Rally driver Chris Putzier suggested they give it a try. “We had no idea what to expect at the New England Forest Rally in 2009 but we had a great time, it was a wonderful family experience with the boys and an exciting introduction to the sport of Rally,” said Fogg. “I’m thrilled with the opportunity to put my years of business experience and entrepreneurial spirit to work for Rally America.”
The 2012 Rally America National Championship Series schedule has been created in partnership with local Rally event organizers. In the upcoming season, Rally America will make the series more accessible and build more excitement for fans, sponsors, drivers, and teams.
For 2012, the six Rally events will stretch from coast to coast and are scheduled to run through September. Rally America organizers have moved the Seattle, Washington-based Olympus Rally to September from April and have pushed back the Portland, Oregon-based Oregon Trail Rally by a few weeks to allow more time between it and the Susquehannock Trail Performance Rally in Wellsboro, PA in early June. This new National Championship schedule for 2012 accomplishes two goals. First, it extends the Rally season into the fall, and secondly, it eliminates the compacting of half the Championship into less than two months. Rally America is in the process of evaluating the addition of a seventh National Championship Series event in 2013.
The company also announced it was reverting back to its original name Rally America, Inc.
About Rally America
Based in Golden Valley, MN, Rally America, Inc. sanctions the premier performance Rally series in the United States, the Rally America National Championship Series. In 2012, Rally America will be conducting six National Championship events at venues across the country, from Seattle, Washington to Newry, Maine. Rally America competitors reach speeds of well over 100 mph in modified street cars on natural-terrain courses consisting of gravel, dirt or snow. More information about the Rally America National Championship Series and the sport of Rally can be found at www.rally-america.com and videos can viewed at www.youtube.com/rallyamericaseries.