Wednesday 11 October 2017

Rally - Mull by Merc

Provisions fit for a Prince - pies, porridge and a Tunnock's or two. Sufficient sustenance to endure this weekend's Targa Rally and Mornish Time Trial on the MacNificent Isle of Mull which is being supported by Beatson's Building Supplies. Nice one boys.

There's a different sense of anticipation this year. No closed roads and no wicked rally cars. It's all going to be just a tad less frenetic. It should be no less competitive though and one wonders just how many folk will be able to stick to the rules given the make-up of some of the rally crews and the motorised conveyances in which they will be competing.

I suppose part of the magic is the island itself. The fact that a short sea trip is required to get there. That always breaks the monotony and anxiety of motoring on congested roads, variable speed limits and the Polis lurking behind bushes with their speed guns knowing that folks are travelling to a rally.

The 'powers-that-be' can be pleased with themselves too. Mull's loss is the Isle of Man's gain with quite a few would-be competitors heading to the Pokerstars Rally instead. That will result in a substantial loss of revenue to Mull ahead of the Winter tourism and activity lull. As if island life wasn't already precarious enough.

Moving on. In addition to Beatson's there are some other genuinely nice people out there.

Take Mercedes-Benz for instance. As part of their motor sporting 'Care in the Community' initiative they had expressed some concern about the welfare and wellbeing of the elderly and infirm, especially journalists. Mixing as I do with rallying's native clubmen and women (and not the hoi-polloi!), they generously offered to provide me with transportation and accommodation for the Mull events this year. The transportation arrived yesterday - and so did the accommodation!

It's a sort of BoGoF deal. The transportation is combined with the accommodation. This is the new V-Class Marco Polo. A campervan, but not just any campervan, this is a Mercedes-Benz campervan.

The fixtures and fittings are quite luxurious and the two double beds offer up a sumptuous blend of firmness and comfort. It's about 5 years since I last spent the night in a campervan and that was one of the best night's rest for a long time. Here's hoping that the ambience to be experienced this weekend will deliver yet more much needed rest after two days of arduous labour, chasing after rally cars and crews.

To that end, sustenance was sought to stock up the cupboards and on-board fridge. Typical heart warming Scottish fayre was sought.

As for washing down liquid - washing down food that is - that part of the holiday diet will be taken care of in one or more of a choice of Tobermory hostelries.

Anyway, this year's adventure gets underway at first light tomorrow.

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