Back-to-back Navigator Award victories for Team Hudson!
The 2012 Bullrun rally proved to be another worthy challenge for those seeking out the Navigator Award – the award given to the three teams that exhibit the strongest overall navigational ability.
We had many teams set their sights on this elusive prize this year, but the Navigator Award title went to the one team that wanted to make history! Team Hudson, Seth Rose and Tony King, from New York City, took home the first place Navigator Award last year - and they were hungry for more!
No team has ever won the Navigator Award twice in a row, and only one Bullrunner has ever claimed the award twice. Richard Rawlings took home the trophy in 2004 with his wife, Sue Rawlings, and then again in 2009 with his good friend, Michael Collins.
When the teams sat down for Bullrun’s official awards ceremony, the atmosphere was tense for Seth and Tony.
“I have never been so nervous in my life,” Seth exclaimed. “The whole week Tony & I were questioning if we had done enough. Did we get enough 1st's? Did we place enough top 10's? Did our run-in with the Oregon State Police ruin our standings? And lastly, did Ricky & Billy pass us in the point standings? We sat and pondered this for days. I drove Tony crazy literally in the car and in conversation. He kept up our spirits and always said 'we got this.'”
As Andy Duncan and David Green took to the stage to announce the awards, the atmosphere was very tense.
“The moment that Andy and Dave announced second place, The Big Easy Bandits, I realized we had won,” Tony said. “I felt a complete sense of relief and achievement. I was honestly close to tears! All the hard work had paid off!”
Seth and Tony both agree that Billy Blatty and Ricky Chancey in the Mercedes ML63 were great rivals.
For the first three days of the rally, Team Hudson and Team Big Easy Banditz swapped positions at every checkpoint.
For the entire rally, the Big Easy Bandits and Team Hudson battled it out. Even up to the final checkpoint it was unclear who edged out their competition. The Banditz flew under everyone’s radar with a low-key SUV. They powered through many police roadblocks and often went unnoticed by the Highway Patrol. They used this to their advantage and proved that they wanted to take home the prize just as badly as Seth and Tony.
Seth commented that: “We tend to stick out like a sore thumb in a loud Red/White/Blue Nissan GT-R with enough antennas’ to broadcast overseas!”
In terms of strategy, Seth and Tony agree that a successful strategy should never be shared with the competition. All we know is that with Seth at the wheel and Tony in the navigator’s seat, the New York duo has everything nailed down.
“We navigated smartly, found some nice back roads, kept it slow though towns and worked together,” Tony said. “Our victory was really a combination of many things; an incredibly fast car, a good driver, smart navigation and a little bit of luck.”
What’s in store for Team Hudson in 2013? The guys are keeping everything on the down-low at the moment, but Seth was able to provide some information regarding his plans for 2013: “What we have in store for 2013 is a new car. The only hint I will give is: more room - a 4 door with a full back seat so Tony and I can bring our significant others to enjoy the ride. They are both 'gearheads' and will certainly add a flare to our trip!”
Seth and Tony would like to thank the Bullrun crew for giving them the opportunity to participate in the Bullrun Rally. “We’ve done it four years in a row, with last three years winning awards, starting with the CEC Wheels Award in 2010,” Seth said.” “Then back to back wins for 2011/2012 - we are on a roll, and we will be pushing even harder next year! The pressure is on!”