Local rally co-driver Craig Wallace and driver Craig McMiken got off to a good start at the Scottish Rally - but didn’t quite make the finish.
Starting from the traditional base in Dumfries the five stages were all in great condition and ready for action.
Seeded 19th, Wallace and McMiken in the Red Evo9 were well prepared.
Craig said: “There is no margin for error on these stages, they are fast and technical with a lot to catch you out so preparation is everything. I had prepared the pace notes carefully so we were ready to attack the event and maintain our good form with this car.”
Indeed that was the case and with good pace through the first stage, Windy Hill, they moved up to 14th. This was better than expected as for the first time they were using a sequential gearbox in the car.
The next stage was Ae West, a tremendous stage, but with a stall on the start line they lost a few seconds and such was the competition they lost four places.
Returning to service the harshness of the stages was telling with new tyres required all round and a careful but speedy spanner check.
The third stage of the day was the short spectator stare at Heathhall complete with water splash. Then heading north west to the fourth stage at Shawhill they were reasonably pleased to have held their seeding, especially being the first event with the sequential box. Unfortunately in the final stage there was an immediate deflation of the tyres and with the team not being in a class-winning position they made the decision to pull out and not risk damaging the suspension.
Craig’s Next event is the Nicky Grist Stages based in Builth Wells, Wales on Saturday, July 13 followed by the Albar Rally the following day.