By all accounts the pre-McRae Rally Forum went very well and when the lights went up at the end it was noted that there were very few empty seats – in an auditorium which seated 320!
Coltness Car Club were therefore very grateful to their guests who included Euan Thorburn, Mike Faulkner and the politically incorrect Jock Armstrong. Also in excellent fettle were Jim McRae, John MacCrone and Stuart Loudon with special thanks to Dario Franchitti who proved he was up for a giggle too, especially when the MC wondered why he had gone to Indycar racing as opposed to F1.
For despite driving for the Paul Stewart Racing Team in the early days and getting a test with the Jaguar F1 team in 2000, Dario wasn’t tempted, which prompted the question: “Was it do with the fact that in America you only have to turn left all the time whereas in Grand Prix racing you have to turn right as well as left?”
There are a number of over-inflated egos in the heady world of motor racing who might have taken exception to such provocation, but not Dario, and he bantered with the best of them.
The night was finished off when an elderly couple approached the MC at the end and shook him warmly by the hand, saying they had never been to a rally before and had just come along on the evening out of nosiness – and thoroughly enjoyed the show, even the ‘rude one’ who was on first. And before you say it, no, they didn’t have any carers with them!
There was also an American lady in the audience who was delighted to get Dario’s autograph. All the way to Scotland to get the autograph of one of America’s top sporting stars, eh?
( My grateful thanks to Alistair Farquhar for the pics )