As Taggart might once have said: "It's murder out there!" Conditions are so bad that cars are sliding off the road on every bend and even on the straights. After two accidents this morning (just one broken arm though) the top seeds have only contested one stage. The general opinion seems to be that there would be more grip on snow than the mud of Drummond Hill.
So with one stage gone and 3 to go it's hard to say who the favourites are. As rally leader Shaun Sinclair said: "It's a matter of survival today, just getting to the finish will be an achievement."
He leads Euan Thorburn by half a second with Mike Faulkner a further 8 seconds behind but happy enough with that in these treacherously wet and slippery conditions.
In a surprising 4th place is the two wheel drive Escort MkII of Malcolm Buchanan in front of Robbie Head and John McClory but Head lost time when an intercooler pipe broke and he lost boost for the last 6 miles. Chris Collie is losing boost too, and the Subaru also blew a plug out of the engine in the first stage.
Donnie MacDonald's rally ended in a boggy ditch, but poor Sandy Arbuthnot. He didn't even see the trees. Leaving the service are on the way to the Rally Start, a cam belt broke! John Lloyd has clouted the nose of the Subaru but it's only panel damage.
I'll leave the last word to Euan Thorburn: "I counted 12 cars off in that one stage. I was going that slow I had to time to count them!"