It rained all the way from Lanarkshire to Fort Augustus early this morning, and then it stopped. That left the 1.2 mile stage at the Stravaigers Lodge Fort Augustus Gravel Sprint in slippery conditions. The stage itself is in a different part of Inchnacradoch Forest to last year's venue, and it's a tight nadgery affair, but very tricky.
Quickest after 3 runs this morning (although he only did 2) was Quintin Milne in the Lancer who set his best time onhis first run, much as Reay MacKay did last year on his first run. "I was in a ditch the second time," said Quintin, "if it hadn't been for the heavy duty sumpguard, I'd have been out!"
Second quickest was Steven Ronaldson, and although it has a Jaguar V6 in the back of the Metro in place of the original, it still sounds minted. Honestly, there's nothing better than the sound of a V6 rising and falling in the forest, first thing in the morning. It's better than a double shot of espresso. It would lift the spirits of a corpse.
Third quickest is David Wilson in the MkII and the only driver to have gone quicker each time out. "There's no way I can catch Quintin or Steven," said David, "and the road's cutting up now."
Neil Morrison is fourth fastest in the Sunbeam trying out a new 6 spd sequential box in places of the 5 spd dog box. "I used all six gears this morning," said Neil, "just to check that there's six in there!"
Andy Horne was a non-starter. Pity, it would have been doubly good to hear his DAM in the woods alongside Steven's Metro. "I just ran out of time to get it ready," said Andy, ""we've moved the petrol tank and the wiring just needs finished - but I don't do electrics." The chap who normally does this for Andy was in bed with the dreaded lurgy yesterday.
Fastest times after 3 stages:
1, Quintin Milne, 1m 45.0s
2, Steven Ronaldson, 1m 51.3s
3, David Wilson, 1m 53.5s
4, Neil Morrison, 1m 55.5s
5, Kenny Wood, 1m 55.8s
6, Kevin Ronaldson, 1m 56.4s
7, Ritchie Ramsay, 1m 56.9s
8, Calum Strachan, 1m 58.9s
9, Keir Beaton, 2m 00.4s
10, Brian Watson, 2m 02.1s
One more observation, what a cracking day out now that it's dry, Highland Car Club have laid on a superb wee event here in an ideal location. Who needs a TV link and F1 qualifying!
Just one wee problem, there's such a poor signal here I won't even try and put up any piccies.