Tuesday 30 May 2023

Rally - The Reivers Return

It was just a short visit to the Jim Clark Reivers Rally this year, but it was good to get outside and get some fresh air at the Rally Service Park just outside the town. The field had been cropped but the jaggy stubble still presented a prickly health hazard to those wearing shorts! Even so, braving such terrors it was good to be there and enjoy the craic.

The atmosphere in a Scottish service park is always friendly especially when the sun is shining. And there was much goodwill in evidence between the teams, for instance, Robert Proudlock loaned arch rival Archie Swinscoe his spare steering rack. Archie had damaged his Vauxhall Adam’s rack on the Friday/Saturday run and would have been out but for Robert and Malcolm’s sporting generosity. Nice one boys, and it has to be said, both youngsters came away with mighty impressive results. Archie finished 15th overall and Robert 19th leaving Dangerous Des Campbell in third place in the class and 23rd overall. Des admitted that even without a split manifold he would have struggled to keep the bairns in sight.

Speaking of youngsters, ex-SRC Media refugee and now Dirtfish correspondent Luke Barry had his first taste of competition in the driver’s seat. And what an event to choose, albeit this event and these roads were home territory for him. Not only did he finish, he wasn’t last, and with a smile brighter than a solar array.

There was little to choose between the ladies too. At the half way point Meghan O’Kane had a one and half second lead over Aileen Forrest but managed to stretch that to nine seconds by the finish. Mind you there might be trouble in the O’Kane household after this as it was Meghan’s first run out in faither’s Subaru Impreza and her first rally with four wheel drive. Ashleigh Morris was a close third and Sarah Hunter may well have featured had not the Peugeot 205 given up the ghost in SS4. In fact she was leading her class when the hard pressed Peugeot stopped. Just four lady drivers, but on a more encouraging note there were 26 lady co-drivers on the Reivers event!

It was good to see the Sloan boys back in action. At 10.00 am on Saturday morning Scott Sloan was out on the tractor cutting silage when he got the call. He was 15th reserve and didn’t think he was going to get a run at all - and so it was too heck with the silage and get the car prepped and trailered! Then it was off to Duns for him and David. They had hoped for a top thirty finish in the Peugeot 208 but were pleased enough with 43rd – as they hadn’t had time for a recce!

Technical Terms & Excuses …

John Rintoul was one of the first to get into his civvies. “On the first stage I was carrying too much speed into a chicane,” said JR, “I got through the first three bales OK but hit the fourth. It wasn’t a big hit, but it burst the radiator.”

An onlooker thought it just looked like a nudge.

John added: “Well, maybe it was a nudge-plus!”

And finally …

Ian Forgan buzzed the Ford Ka’s wee engine: “It wasn’t my fault. I was wearing the wrong shoes! I had loaned my blue shoes to another driver and hadn’t got them back so I was using my black shoes – and I over-revved the engine.”

That’s a new one for the book, eh?

And finally, finally …

Garry Pearson’s expensive weekend woes prompted one local bystander to comment. “If anyone wants coal this week they’d better buy it this afternoon before Garry gets back to the office!”

( Pearsons of Duns are the local coal and log burner merchants.)

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