SRRT confidently campaigns #35 WRX STI on major road racing circuits in North America. That means pushing it into corners of varying banking and radii; adjusting for pavement that could be cold, dusty, sandy, wet, extremely hot, or anything in between; cornering on three wheels where necessary, but alert to pavement irregularities that could bounce the car onto two wheels; accelerating down long straights, short straights, and anything in between; and coping with steep hills, diabolic S-turns, blind corners, sweeping turns, and down-hill runs that terminate in curves of more than 90 degrees. #35 does all this and more while racing other cars attempting to do the same things in less time, passing and being passed, all while the team calculates when to stop to switch drivers, change tires, and add fuel.
By the end of a season in search of a championship for Subaru, a lot of the WRX STI that took the green flag for the first race in January at Daytona will be replaced due to wear and/or contact. Engine, transmission, shocks, brakes, doors, fenders, hood -- nothing is immune to the attrition on track.
SRT USA #199
Photo: Lars Gange | rally.subaru.com
Rally stages are run on surfaces of just about every type throughout the season: isolated gravel roads with ruts, roads with dirt so thick that it flows like water when the cars plow through, roads that wind along the edge of mountains and hills with a sharp cliff face on one side and precipitous drop-off on the other, tree-lined trails that threaten any misstep with ultimate peril, pavement of every description subject to weather ranging in temperature from below zero to above 100 and with sun, rain, ice, sleet, snow -- every type of precipitation. Throw in hills that launch the cars into the air as well as water crossings as dangerous as they are thrilling to watch, intersections that demand hand-brake turns and sliding sideways with precision, and that's a taste of rally.
Red Bull Jump Car
Photo: Photo: Garth Milan/Red Bull Photofiles
Photo: Garth Milan/Red Bull Photofiles
Jumps are a part of rally, where the best of drivers negotiate them smoothly and with an apparent fluidity that belies the pounding taken by machine and driver/co-driver. Only the most jaded can watch a rally car jump without at least an inward gasp.
Now drivers such as Ken Block and Travis Pastrana have taken jumps to the extreme, with Block setting the bar at 171 feet in November 2006. On New Year's Eve 2009, Pastrana jumped 269 feet from a Long Beach (California) pier onto a floating barge.
The Red Bull jump car was prepared to enable a smooth launch at approximately 90 miles per hour and to land safely and under control. All powertrain and chassis components were chosen to perform under such heavy abuse.
Versatile and Consistent
Subaru partners Phoenix Performance and Vermont SportsCar have turned one of the world's most exciting street machines into a road racer, rally champion, and spectacular jumper.
However, for as divergent as these applications may be, the WRX STIs have powerful consistencies. All three are solid in their base construction and durable in their applications – traits shared with all WRX STI models.