Jock Armstrong leads the Brick & Steel Border Counties Rally by 8 seconds after 4 stages, with 2 stages to go. At least the weather is kinder than it was a month ago. It’s chilly out and about but it’s dry and it’s even dusty in places in some of the stages. So need for snow tyres on this second round of the ARR Craib Scottish Championship this weekend.
Closing the gap on the fourth test was Shaun Sinclair, first time out in a ‘borrowed’ Ford Focus WRC08. “This will take some learning,” said Shaun, “I’m braking way too early and it’s got lots more power than I’m used to. Even when I get it wrong and have too much lock on going into a corner, just give it the boot on the way and it straightens itself up. It’s some car.”
Impreza driver Armstrong doesn’t look too bothered as yet: “I lost time on the first stage,” he said, “there was a flock of sheep, well, at least a dozen, in the first stage. They were on the right of the road and I thought I’d squeeze past on the left, then they jumped across the road in front of me and ran off down the middle of the road with me following like little Bo-Peep!”
In third place is the Fiesta of Garry Pearson and he’s only 9 seconds behind Sinclair with Mike Faulkner a wee bit further back in the Lancer.
Donnie MacDonald is fifth with Mark McCulloch sixth but complaining of lack of traction: “The rear wants to keep stepping out on corners,” said Mark, “it’s fine on the straights but I’m losing time on the twisty bits.”
Peter Stephenson retired his Focus WRC on the second stage when the car ended up down a steep banking although Dale Robertson was luckier: “I broke a drive shaft on the first stage and did the next two with front wheel drive!” He is holding 11th place and looking for a top ten.
1, Jock Armstrong, 24mins 09 secs
2, Shaun Sinclair, 24m 17s
3, Garry Pearson, 24m 26s
4, Mike Faulkner, 24m 38s
5, Donnie MacDonald, 25m 13s
6, Mark McCulloch, 25m 25s
7, Bruce McCombie, 25m 41s
8, Andrew Gallacher, 25m 49s
9, John MacCrone, 25m 51s
10, Scott Mutch, 25m 56s