Originators of UK closed road motorsport

1996 – Murmur Chapter 2


– published on the island, during the event by Jaggy Bunnet

This here modest little epistle is designed to entertain and inform all who are here to celebrate the 27th Philips Tour of Mull Rally so let's start with a serious bit. In the Spectator Guide which is issued free of charge to all spectators (available at the Aros Hall in Tobermory) there are a few errors, only two of which are deliberate and we will not name Pete as the guilty party since to save his blushes he will remain anonymous.

But apologies to Dave Paveley and Andy Bull in the Enterprise Racing Mini 1300 (number 50) and Kevin Haselden and Bill Cook in their Peugeot 1300 (number 101). As you will see from the Spectator Guide the page break caused a bit of a kerfuffle and Pete missed them out.

By the way have a good look at Paveley's Mini. This wee beastie is reputed to have 145 BHP and a 6 spd sequential gearbox and the whole device is reckoned to weight 8 cwt (I haven't gone metric yet!)

There will be a few other changes to the entry list as the reserve entries get a run and are slotted into the spaces left by those who didn't turn up. So don't panic if you see car number 5 running in the 80s, its only Chris MacKenzie/Duncan Kennedy in their Peugeot. Car 7 is Willie Paterson/Euan O'Neill in an Escort, car 77 is Paul Marshall/Steve Hughes in a TR7V8, 75 is Gordon McCombie/Russell Blood in a Saab and 48 is Andy Wilson/John MacArthur in a Mini.

However, let's not forget this event is also the final round of the EARS Motorsport/Motoring News Rally Championship. Pete Doughty has already clinched the title and ain't here – chicken – but 2nd place is still up for grabs. But with John Brodie also opting out (another chicken) it's down to a three way fight between Graham Dale (26), Keith Robathan (17) and Michael Russell (45). So one of these guys is going to be runner-up. Dale and Russell will also have to decide who gets the Group N award in the series.

Another award still to be decided in this national series is the Formula 2 prizewinner. Monty Pearson (62) in the Nova and Graham Darcy (49) are the hot favourites, Darcy has a score to drop but Monty adds anything he gets. On the other hand, Tim Stell (52) in the Astra could snatch the title at the last gasp if the other two strike trouble.

In the Under 25 age group section, Gavin Rogers (87) could still beat category leader Gary Fincher (who ain't here to defend his lead) so he'll be going for a steady points scoring finish.

Roger Binyon and Cath Phillipson took the Montego for a run last night and found it a tight fit on the island roads. The ex-David Gillanders machine likes straight bits but isn't so sure about the corners. more /…..

And here's a nice story. Ian Donaldson and Graeme Taylor were out checking their Notes at 1:00 o'clock this morning when the electrics failed on their road car. They were stranded until Fiona from Dervaig turned up and gave them a lift back. Now isn't that nice, a young lady out on her own late at night stopping to give two strange men a lift – and they don't come much stranger than those two! Maybe she knew that they were at a low ebb as the car has only just been repaired following a dry stane dyke destroying roll on the McRae Stages just a few weeks back.

Did you see the windscreen strip on car 133? I asked Pat Inkle what it stood for and he said "Pat Inkle Sports Services", but all the sticker has is the initials followed by Engineering – think about it! Speaking of nicknames, look out for car 121, it's driven by Smudge and co-driven by Piemuncher – but don't poke fun at him, he's a big lad!

Meantime, 2300 Car Club still have some souvenir rally goodies left for sale at the Aros Hall – and remember to buy a Philips torch, the profits go to the Mull Swimming Pool fund.

That's yer lot meantime, we'll be back later at Craignure during the night. Look out for the while Albion Automotive minibus.

Hopefully we'll get a few more decent stories for the next issue, it's all been remarkably quiet so far. Usually MacKay's Garage is going like a fair with sparks flying from welding torches and curses emanating from underneath bent bodywork and broken engines. Even Chief Scroot Roger is noticing a higher standard of car preparation this year. The calm before the storm?!?!

Oh, and by the way, young Duffy has swopped his 2.1 Pinto for a 16 valve Astra 2 litre engine – crikey he was too blooming quick last year.

Did you hear about the rally driver who went out to try the car and got four punctures. The guy who fitted the tyres put tubes in them, so not only had to take the tubes out of those four but the other 40 wheels and tyres in the van! Nice one, eh?

Yer auld pal, Jaggy Bunnet, (Friday afternoon).

P.S. We've got another Philips guest here. The regulars will remember John Whybrow who flagged off the cars two years ago. Well, the President of Philips Lighting International is back for more. Mull has that effect on everyone doesn't it?

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