Saturday, 16 June 2012

Rally - Inglis Wins Crail

Inglis passes Morris in the murk
What a finish to the Summer Stages Rally at Crail. Lying fourth with two stages to go, Alistair Inglis emerged winner at the end of six rain soaked, sodden tarmac and concrete tests around the wide and exposed expanse of Crail airfield.

On the fifth stage after final service, Tom Morris romped around the 7 mile test, the Metro's clutch obviously having benefited from its wee rest and cool down. He was the only driver under 11 minutes for this penultimate stage. Victory was in the bag, surely?

As things turned out, Alistar Inglis was fastest on the final stage from Bob Grant by only a second from Dale Robertson, so where were the leaders?

The yellow Metro was spotted through the gloom running slowly and sounding woeful: "The wipers failed first," said Tom, "then the clutch went, and finally all the gearbox oil started leaking. We could smell it inside the cab." He dropped 61 seconds to Morris and snatched the win, denying John Rintoul and Chris Collie the opportunity too. 

Rintoul limped through the finish with a front wheel puncture and Chris Collie lost time pirouetting gracefully at the hairpin: "My tyres were completely shot," said Chris.

The drive of the rally must surely have been young Alasdair Graham who finished 7th overall and top 2WD car in the MkII. Not only was he running forest tyres and forest suspension but these were David Wilson's old tyres, and David is renowned for running well used tyres!

Top ten:
Alistair Inglis, Lancer, 65m 31s
Tom Morris, Metro 6R4, 65m 39s
Dale Robertson, Lancer, 65m 48s
Chris Collie, Impreza, 65m 51s
Bob Grant, Impreza, 66m 32s
Alasdair Graham, Escort MkII, 68m 28s
Stuart Walker, Lancer, 68m 52s
Ross Fernie, Impreza, 70m 04s
Chris McCallum, Escort MkII, 70m 14s
Kieran O'Kane, Ascona, 70m 17s

Afterwards, Alistair said: "That's the most fun I've had on a rally for ages. Last year we were worried about tyres lasting in the heat and the dry, this year it was all about grip in the rain." 

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