Originators of UK closed road motorsport

2002 – Murmur Chapter 7


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

Provisional leaderboard after SS15 (of 20)

1  Harper/Campbell (Mitsubishi Lancer) 1 Hr 37 mins 08 secs
2  MacKinnon/Stayte (Subaru Impreza WRC) 1h 37m 28s
3  Duffy/Duffy (Ford Escort MkII)  1h 39m 53s
4  Cope/Cope (Ford Escort Cosworth)  1h 41m 39s
5  Colman/Colman (Nissan Sunny)  1h 42m 32s
6  Bird/Pulleyn (Ford Sierra Cosworth)  1h 43m 59s
7  Swinscoe/Whittaker (Ford Escort MkII)  1h 44m 03s
8  Durham/Mort  (Opel Corsa Kit)  1h 44m 09s
9  Miller/Bailey (Subaru Impreza)  1h 44m 50s
10 Cameron/Southall  (Mitsubishi Lancer) 1h 45m 39s

Whisper it, it’s dry at the moment on the the 33rd Philips Tour of Mull, but I know the reason why, the island gods ran out of rain during the night and they’ve sent over to Ireland for some more – it should arrive later to-night!

But what a tussle for the lead. Just when everyone was expecting Boko to sweep into the lead during daylight, it didn’t happen. Harper is digging deep and despite only his second time out in a 4WD Lancer is doing the business. At the end of stage 13 he couldn’t get out of the car quick enough. The reason? He was desperate for a p**. That’s not to say MacKinnon isn’t trying. He half spun the Subaru in Calgary and tore a bit of the front spoiler off.

Harper doesn’t actually feel under pressure: “Everyone was expecting him (MacKinnon) to take that 40 seconds off me and go past this afternoon but it hasn’t happened. I’m feeling pretty relaxed about it and I’m not taking any risks. We’ll just have to wait and see what the weather does to-night.”

Earlier I said Billy Bird was out, but that was the result of mis-information, guess who had the joy of telling me I was wrong? Yup, Billy and he’s still in the top ten and says: “I’m going as hard as I can. I love this four wheel drive business but I just can’t make the Sierra go any harder”, but it looks as though Paul Kirtley has gone. The big blue Subaru was spotted parked up for an awfy long time at the end of stage 13.

John Baird got a puncture in SS14 but didn’t drop to much time although Brian Cameron may have benefited from that and taken over Baird’s top ten position … Mike Storrar reckons this event is better than sex (sad sod) and revealed that the Anglia has a bog standard Vauxhall engine in it … Pat Johnson got a puncture at the hairpin … Mick Briant might have a problem, engine smoking badly at end of SS15 and doesn’t sound too good … Theo Bengry is astonished at the pace, especially in these conditions … John Cressey has got fuel vapourisation problems in the Astra and it keeps missing and cutting out … Chris Tooze was off in SS15 but back on again after dropping time … Willie Bonniwell is in the wars again, this time with a broken throttle cable … Doug Weir has been off the road and his 11th place overall might now be suspect … and having a trouble free run – till now, was Mark Jasper. A wheel problem in the final two stages has cost him time and he might also have a problem with the front suspension.

The O’Donnell twins are up to their usual tricks. They put the Salen Silver Escort on its ear in Mishnish this afternoon … the reason for James MacGillivray’s disappearance last night? The turbo failed in SS2 … John Dalton is going quickly but the car refuses to fire up at times – first time out in a Nova (used to drive a Mini) Andy Rhodes is not sure if he likes it … Eamon Kilmurray lost time last night when he inadvertently switched off the fuel pump … Trevor Lewis burst the power steering pump last night and spent the rest of the night in Diddy Dave’s place fabricating a new one … Andrew Davies has got a grumbly driveshaft … Steve Kay got a stack of penalties last night and is catching cars today … Derek Hosie’s throttle is sticking open … Andy Blower gave photographer Frank Williams a fright when he handbraked the hairpin. The lads had forgotten to tell him they had tightened it up, and he chased poor Frank across the grass! … Mike Curry is finding the Clan very tail happy in the wet with the engine hung out behind the rear wheels … Haydn Williams is struggling with the Mini, it won’t rev cleanly over 4000 … Phil Bruce’s gearbox is getting noisy … John Rintoul broke a propshaft in the Escort Cossie last night. All the bolts sheared at one end, so he disconnected the other and carried on with 2WD but borrowed a spare for today … Dermot Common spent most of last night on 3 cylinders and now the clutch is failing in daylight … Carol MacCrone in a fit of understatement reckoned: “It’s a bit slippy out there” … Alan Douglas finished the tenth stage grinning from ear to ear in the wide-track Nova: “It’s not a grin, it’s a grimace – through fear!” he said … Rod Brereton is beaming for another reason: “It’s the furthest we’ve got in 9 years – we’re going to try and tie with Alan Douglas for the last finishers’ award!”

Dougi Hall took an early lead in the Trophy Rally from James MacGilivray but Robin Hamilton retired again, the Metro lost rear wheel drive and the lads are trying to repair it to get him out again to-night (methinks Hammy is a few teeth short of a full differential, he’s a glutton for punishment). Symptomatic of Hammy’s weekend, the cracked electric w/screen got worse rumbling out the stage last night on the punctured tyre so the team changed it, and the spare didn’t work!

And finally an appeal. Crispin Edwards in car 89 needs a diff for a MkII Escort. He thinks its an Atlas axle but is sure it’s a front loading diff. If you can help, call 07866 332599.

Yer auld pal, Jaggy Bunnet, Salen Hotel, Saturday, 5:30 pm.

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