Peter Hunter in the Mitsubishi Lancer EVO9 has extended his lead after four stages on today’s Charterhall Stages Rally. He was fastest again on the third stage, but on the fourth, both Dom Buckley and Michael Glendinning matched him, so the fight is not over yet.
In second place, Dale Robertson is still quite happy: “This is just a shakedown for the Jim Clark Rally,” he said “I blew the engine at Knockhill so it has just been rebuilt and its got new diffs. I’m really happy with the car.”
Buckley is 13 seconds behind Robertson: “I punctured in stage 2,” he said, “and I spun on stage 4, plus I’ve had a couple of overshoots!”
Stuart Paterson is out following his fire earlier on, there is too much damage to the electrics but it could have been a lot worse: “I thought I was going to lose the car when I saw the flames,” said Stuart. Big brother Ian Paterson is out too with either diff or driveshaft failure.
Billy McClelland has dropped a couple of places in the top ten: “The throttle jammed open in that last test,” he said, “and I’ve kind of lost confidence in it, wondering if it will jam open again at the end of that 100 mph straight in there!”
Jim Sharp is on his third radiator change of the day: “The bottom plug keeps melting,” he explained,” and we’re losing water.”
Billy Cowe has been off twice, losing time but no damage, Duncan Wardrop has had two punctures on two different stages, and Colin Gemmell came out of that last stage with two front punctures.
Top two wheel drive runner is Michael Horne in 8th place with Martin Elsdon nearly a minute behind but Michael’s biggest problem is his Dad, Jimmy, he wants to borrow a couple of tyres from son Michael for his own MkII: “The two rears are knackered,” said Jimmy, “it’s awfy hard on tyres out there.” But Hamish Kinloch is out, the Escort’s propshaft has broken.
1 Peter Hunter, 27m 15s
2 Dale Robertson, 27m 29s
3 Dom Buckley, 27m 42s
4 Michael Glendinning, 27m 43s
5 Doug Brydon, 28m 01s
6 Chris Collie, 28m 06s
7 Billy McClelland, 28m 10s
8 Michael Horne, 28m 28s
9 Lee Hastings, 28m 49s
10 Ivor Clark, 28m 52s