Monday 19 November 2018

Rally - Snap, crackle and bang

Bradford's Anthony Jackson won the weekend's Scottish 'Borders' Hill Rally by just over 9 minutes from Papplewick's William Stubbs. However, just 29 seconds covered 2nd, 3rd and 4th places after 110 miles of Special Stages. Mark Jacques from Weighbridge was 3rd just 13 seconds behind Stubbs with Ravenshead's Ian Gregg in 4th place.

The top 3 cars represented quite a spectacle and sounded glorious echoing across the wide open frost-encrusted south Ayrshire hills and glens, like a herd of rampant bucks on the annual rut. Jackson's car had an Audi V8, while under the skin of the Stubbs motor was a 5 litre Mustang. It was hard to choose an aural winner, but maybe Jacques had the edge with his bellowing 6.2 litre 550hp Corvette LS3. And the best bit? The exhaust silencers are tiny, allowing the engines to breathe and belch deeply. Wonderful.

Ian Gregg's 4th placed Polaris added even more variety with its  995cc twin cylinder turbo, but there was plenty of variety amongst the other V6, straight six, four, three and two cylinder offerings running on either petrol or diesel. But the main point was everyone had fun whether running a near bog standard Mitsubishi Pinin or Defender 90 or one of the more exotic prototypes or ATVs. The competition was fierce, the crack was good and the weather was sunny and bright. That doesn't mean to say it was warm, the minute the sun dipped below the horizon, it was colder than a mother-in-law's stare!
Top Scottish crew were husband and wife pairing George and Jacqueline Bryson in 7th place overall and 2nd in class. The former Escort Mk2 rally driver now has a BMW V8 powered Kirkland Proto. It may lack the lines and the looks of his Mk2, but it doesn't half go!

As a (cheaper?) alternative to forest stage rallying, Hill Rallying and Competition Safaris have got something to offer those who like driving, speed, slippery surfaces and challenging conditions with a dash of excitement and danger.

I'm planning to write 'An Introduction to Hill Rallying' for the Scottish Hill Rally Club website so if anyone else is interested I'll let you know.

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