30 April: Ingliston Gossip

News and Gossip ….

Gordon Boyd missed out on the Granite City because he was in Italy helping Callum Guy and Peter Martin who had entered the Memorial Conrero Historic Rally in Callum’s Group 4 Escort MkII. After 120 kms of stages, Callum finished 5 seconds behind the Talbot Sunbeam Lotus of Federico Ormezzano. The rally was won by the Porsche 911 of Luca Ambrosoli, so third overall in foreign parts was pretty damn good. But was Gordon full of the joys of life? Don’t be silly. “It was 25 degrees when I got there on the Thursday – then it p*ss*d down for three days, just like here!”

Richard Stewart and Robin Nicolson had a bit of a bump at Ingliston although both are OK. The Corsa’s not in such good shape though.

Gary and Gordon Adam appeared at Ingliston with the red MkII and although they completed all 8 stages, they didn’t feature in the results. “We were OTL before the first stage,” said Gary, “we had just started the car up to go to the start of the first stage, and the battery exploded!” Turns out when they changed the solenoid the day before and re-connected the battery, it was shorting out. So it was OK getting the car on and off the trailer, but once fired up in anger and heading for the stage start, the battery was having none of it. By the time they had installed the battery from the generator, they were OTL. Still, the day was a good shakedown for the Reivers Rally at the end of the month.

Hamish Kinloch didn’t get far at Ingliston. He was out before the first Time Card was handed in when the Escort’s gearbox started grumbling. Mind you, it could have been Jim Howie’s tummy that was rumbling. It makes more or less the same noise at times.

Paul Ballantyne appeared with his new-er shape Renault Clio which has replaced his old shape job: “It’s got a similar bottom end to the old car but the cylinder head is different. It’s got a bit more power and torque.” He started cautiously with the new car but once comfortable with its sharper turn-in, the times improved and he finished an encouraging 10th overall.

John Paterson was supposed to be doing the Ingliston event, but the Nova is still at Protec, so Steven Paterson entered his own Corsa instead: “John’s my big cousin and I usually service for him,” said Steven, “but I bought the Corsa before Mull last year and it kept snapping driveshafts.” Guess what? He snapped another one at Ingliston. Back to the drawing board.

Tom Middlemiss finished 32nd overall in his Corsa, but it was his first event since the Tyneside in 2000. It was also co-driver Craig Horsburgh’s first stage rally.

Ross Carbry had his first rally when he drove big brother Grant’s Volkswagen Golf, but retired with a broken second gear, although he assured me that his big brother did know he was using the car. He will now.

Some folk who don’t know any better try to belittle Ingliston as a rally venue, and yes, scope is a bit limited, but the winner’s time was 53m 20s. Compare that to the Granite where the winner’s time was 42m 25s. That’s 11 minutes less rallying for £265 more pounds, as the Ingliston entry fee was £230 for 8 tarmac tests, as opposed to £495 for 5 stages in the woods.

Perhaps the best battle of the day was in Class 1. James Thomson was under severe pressure all day from second timer Stephen Hay and first timer Murray Coulthard. Going into the final stage, Hay was leading Thomson by 9 seconds with Coulthard a further 18 seconds behind after clattering a steel barrier and having to ratchet strap the gearbox mounting in place for the final run. At the end of it Thomson was back in front from Coulthard and Hay. Stephen’s Corsa clutch expired on the final stage and Murray’s tyres were down to the canvas on the Nova.

Rally refugee Shooey Steel made a rare appearance at Ingliston and the MkII was going well till the battery broke loose in the boot, hit the fuel tank glass and fuel p*sh*d into the boot. Thankfully Shooey took the fag out of his mouth before opening the boot to peer in and see what was wrong. He finished 27th.

And finally ….

Having rolled the Subaru in Aberdeenshire, John McClory was at Ingliston with the boy who was out in the Juniors, but when asked how the repairs were coming along, John said: “It was only cosmetic, we actually drove the car out of the stage on to the trailer.” A voice from the background was heard to mutter: “Cosmetic? It was cosmetic to every single panel,” said Gordon Cunningham, who is repairing the car.