Quintin Milne and Martin Forrest ended their season last year with a win on the McRae Stages Rally and have started this year's ARR Craib Scottish Championship with a win on today's Brick & Steel Border Counties.
They finished 67 seconds clear of Barry Groundwater and Neil Shanks, but according to Barry, Quintin was very lucky: "I was behind him in SS4 and could see his wheeltracks, he was up bankings, down ditches and across firebreaks. He was off the road more than he was on it - but he did drive well today. Fair play to him."
As for Quintin, he was cock a hoop: "I'll need to apologise to the guys with a cameras in Stage 4," he said, "they had left their cameras on the edge of the road at the end of a long downhill, icy straight. There was no way I could stop and I went right off, but I was lucky, the car shot out the other side and back on to the road."
"As for the last stage, it was so slippy, I thought I had a puncture," he added, "the rear kept trying to overtake the front."
Stephen Petch and Michael Wilkinson finished third in the Lancer and just glad he wasn't out in the Focus he used on the Malcolm Wilson Rally.
Donnie MacDonald was shocked to find himself in fourth place: "I was 16th and ready for home after two stages," he said, "but I decided just to tidy it up and point and squirt this afternoon - and it worked."
Mike Faulkner salvaged 5th: "It was a bad day - and a bad week" referring to his engine rebuild during the week. I put ice tyres on for the last stage. They were great for the first 2.5 miles - then they disintegrated."
David Bogie finished sixth: "You know what?" he said, "I would have been better in a Group N car today. Just stick it in a higher gear and let the torque do the work."
Top Ten (provisional after 4 of today's 4 stages):
1 Quintin Milne, 38m 27s
2 Barry Groundwater, 39m 34s
3 Stephen Petch, 39m 43s
4 Donnie MacDonald, 41m 05s
5 Mike Faulkner, 41m 30s
6 David Bogie, 42m 09s
7 Chris Collie, 42m 16s
8 Andy Horne, 42m 27s
9 Euan Thorburn, 42m 35s
10 Dougal Brown, 43m 16s