Blythe, CA (March 6, 2011) - The PikaSports team with driver Katianna Pihakari and co-driver Marie Boyd were victorious in the Production GT class in all three events at the Desert Storm Rally, held March 3-6, 2011 in Blythe, CA and La Paz County, AZ. At the end of Sunday, the PikaSports 2002 Subaru WRX was one of only four cars still running. This victory placed PikaSports in the lead for both Rally America SouthWest regional Championship and California Rally Championship series.
“Katianna did what you have to do to win these events,” said co-driver Marie Boyd. “Finish with the rubber-side down [on the road] and the shiny side up.”
“It was a wonderful event and a great start to the 2011 season,” Pihakari said. “The terrain was rough and it was getting much worse each pass and still we were gaining time with every stage. It was great having Marie in the car and we are so fortunate to have Streetwise prepare and maintain the car.”
“Katianna is driving with greater confidence and that’s showing up in her increased speed,” Boyd added. “She’s braking later and being more aggressive in accelerating through the corners.”
Saturday night, March 5, featured a Super Special stage at the I-10 Speedway in Blythe, CA, where the surviving four cars put down a time over four laps on the tarmac of the quarter mile bull ring. “Being the ‘all-girl’ team, we got a big reaction from the crowd,” Pihakari said. “The Super Special was a blast. Denise [McMahon] put on a great event this weekend.”
“Katianna has made great strides as a driver,” crew chief Doug Nagy commented. “I am really optimistic about the rest of 2011. We are coming together as a team and should show some exciting progress which will be noticed by everyone throughout this season.”
Sanctioned by RallyCar, Desert Storm Rally is a Coefficient 1, 3, 2 points paying rally and is also part of the California Rally Series (CRS), the Bilstein Southwest RallyCup Series, and Rally America.
PikaSports campaigns a 2002 Subaru Impreza WRX built and prepared by Streetwise Motorsports (www.streetwiseparts.com). Lights are provided by Anzo USA (www.anzousa.com). Photos courtesy of Castle Island Photography. For high-resolution images, contact email@example.com.