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FW: Sprongl News Release
For immediate release
Sprongl hopes for repeat rally win end against Pennsylvania tree
WELLSBORO, Penn. -- Their hopes of a repeat win in the most popular rally
in the U.S. ended against a stout maple tree here Saturday as Canadian
Rally Champions Frank and Dan Sprongl crashed while leading the SCCA
Susquehannock Trails Pro Rally.
The Mississauga, Ontario pair and their Audi Dealer Team Castrol S2 coupe
held a narrow 9 second lead over Irishmen Noel Lawler and Charles Bradley
in a Hyundai, with a further 16 seconds in hand over the factory Hyundai of
Americans Paul Choiniere and Jeff Becker when the rally reached the halfway
point. But the sixth special stage of the day was dusty and the defending
champions caught the right side of the car on a tree in a third gear
corner, ending their rally.
"Amazingly, there was minimal mechanical damage," explains co-driver Dan
Sprongl. "Bodywork, frame rail, strut tower -- they're all bent. But the
engine and transmission seem to be fine." Neither driver was injured.
Choiniere and Becker went on to win the event ahead of Lawler and Bradley.
A field of 80 cars started the rally, making it the most popular event in
the SCCA rally schedule. The Sprongl brothers won the rally in 1998.
Susquehannock was the first rally the team failed to finish since last
October, and marks the end of a six-event winning streak for the pair. The
five-time Canadian and three-time North American rally champs are currently
leading the Subaru Canadian Rally Championship. The Susquehannock is part
of a four-event deal with Castrol USA for 1999 that will see the team
return to defend their title and the Audi - Mt. Washington Hillclimb in New
Hampshire later this month.
- 30 -
Frank or Dan Sprongl