I was the bearer of good news this morning at the Garmony re-start gathering ahead of Leg 2 of this year's Tunnocks Mull Rally. Calum and Iain Duffy were there with the MkII. Calum thought he was 88th overall at the overnight halt, but I was able to inform that he was actually 87th. He was thoroughly reinvigorated and encouraged by these glad tidings.
Anyway, I ventured forth and asked what happened last night. Equally forthright was the response: "I f*ck*d up. It was the end of a long straight in Ardtun and I braked just a bit later than I normally do and got one wheel on the gravel at the road edge. That was it, the car just snapped into a complete 360 and landed in a ditch on top of a gatepost. It was my own fault."
"The diff had beached on top of the gatepost and even with Del pushing it wouldn't budge. But he's just got wee short legs so I got out and he drove and tried to push but it was going nowhere. Eventually enough spectators turned up and pushed us out. But a rosejoint on the alternator bracket had broken so the car was still going nowhere."
The car has now been refettled and Calum will be assuming a top ten running order position despite his current overall placing (on safety grounds). He winked at me: "We're going for a top 50 finish," he said, but Iain also winked: "Do you think a top ten finish is out of the question?"
In other words good people, be prepared for some extraordinary antics on this 44th running of the best rally in the world on this sun kissed bit of rockery just off the west coast. There will be fireworks this afternoon, but at ground level.
MacCrone leads by 1m 17s after 7 stages from Peter Taylor and Fast Eddie, but a minute and a half covers the next seven runners. If you're out watching, stand well back.