DMS Mountain Rally and Nowhere Rally were two of his earliest works, with the former serving as his debut into the track-making scene. It’s been quite some time since I’ve run DMS Mountain Rally, but I do recall not liking it…at all. Hehe - on one hand I don’t think I had enough experience to appreciate it, but then again, even now…knowing what I know, I don’t think my opinion of it would change. Nowhere Rally, however, showed promise, and also served notice that this youngster had a statement to make where track making is concerned after all - something unique, with a distinct signature all unto itself.
With the release of his last two tracks, Fila’s Adventure & this one, Ostego’s Run, I can breath easy now. My fear was after the monumental success of SLO Mountains, (which is his crown jewel in my opinion), he would fall prey to going through the motions, cranking out tracks that lacked inspiration, imagination, and creativity. Alas, I should’ve known better, for that sort of thing would be contrary to this guy’s character. He’s one heck of a track maker who settles for nothing less than exactly what he wants. He doesn’t rush his work for the sake of beating some self-imposed deadline, and “most” of the time he’s great to work with. I’ll elaborate on that statement in just a few, but in order to wrap this up, I just want to say that with Ostego Run, and the many other tracks that preceded it, he’s already carved out a nice little spot in the MTM 2 history books, and I’m not only proud of him…I’m happy to have had the opportunity to share in the experience.
Now let’s get into the track! Hehe—he was a tad bit stubborn with respect to how this track would look. The first time I ran it I thought the layout was terrific, and the corners, although uncharacteristically wide and easy, worked extremely well for the kind of course it was. I don’t recall making a single suggestion about the track itself as far as smoothing or angle changes in certain spots; I thought it was fantastic, and would undoubtedly produce tons of fun-filled races. What I did notice was that there simply wasn’t much in the way of “eye candy”, something to look at, and to me THIS track needed something…something more. Well, to make a long story short, I suggested he kill off some of the billboards he had jammed in there, throw in some more atmosphere in certain spots to liven it up a bit, and wa-la, it looked great! Now, I realize when you’re flying down the road of a track with 2 or 3 other racers hanging onto my tailpipe, the focus isn’t on admiring the finely manicured shrubs and ultra green lawns of the inhabitants scattered throughout; you’re just trying to get your butt to the finish line in one piece. Still, you realize it’s there, and although it’s presence is more understated as opposed to something that just “grabs” ya, it adds soooo much in terms of realism and authenticity.
This one is set in the mountains…somewhere, and as with all of his tracks he’s taken great care to ensure it’s shortcut-free. That’s fine in my book, for a track of this caliber should be run on the road anyway. I made mention of the wide corners that were very “un-Fila” like, but one thing you’ll notice is he definitely took steps to ensure this wasn’t a gas and go, pedal to the metal melee that required zero finesse and speed control. There are several spots whereby exercising a little caution is mandatory if you don’t want to end in the side of a mountain or on the wrong side of the road. Mostly though this particular track seems to focus on carefree fun with its relatively undemanding course and flow. He’s also thrown in an optional music add-on, as he did with Fila’s Adventure. I don’t think the choice of music meshes well with the track, but it’s pretty interesting music nonetheless. Who knows though, the more I run it, the more it seems to be growing on me!
Well what do you know – it’s “Copey Rating” time!! I know, I know…it’s what everyone has been sitting on the edge of their seat waiting for (hehe—uh huh), but before I go there, indulge me for a few while I clarify something that came up as the result of a little e-mail exchange between myself and Phineus (this guy’s name keeps popping up in my reviews!). I’m a racer, and it’s the basis for which I rate the tracks I review. There are technical aspects of track making that I have absolutely no clue about, but if I discover some unusual phenomenon I’ll simply point it out and let the track makers deal with it. Again, my focus is to assess the track from a racers perspective. As for the “Copey Rating”…in reality it’s only a measure of how I see the track, to give people some form of numerical measure of the impression it made on me. I simply use a scale from 1 to 10 as opposed to saying “oh this one is real good!” Still, the rating itself is meaningless since it represents nothing more than one man’s opinion. My wife would amend that to say “one man’s narrow minded opinion”, but uh hey – that’s HER opinion, and who cares what she thinks!
The only number that jumps out in my mind is “10”. The layout is nothing short of excellent, the learning curve is minimal, which means regardless of your skill level you’ll have fun on this track in no time at all, and it’s very, very easy on the eyes. It’s quite an accomplishment, and he’s already working on another one that I’m sure will be well received by the MTM 2 racing community. Lastly, I’d like to thank Fila for allowing me the opportunity to work with him on his tracks. He’s a heck of a guy with tons of talent…and a very good friend as well. Outstanding job, bud!!!
[This message has been edited by SLO_COPE (edited 15-04-2002).]