Good turnout for autotest

Machars Car Club had a good turnout for its autotest at Bladnoch Distillery.
Machars Car Club had a good turnout for its autotest at Bladnoch Distillery.

Machars Car Club held a traditional autotest in the grounds of Bladnoch distillery on Sunday.

Nineteen keen and eager competitors turned out for a great day’s competition. With the course being set up by newly elected chairman Steven Broll there was no doubt that there would be some sort of memory skill as well as driving abilities required.

Steven welcomed all drivers to the event and gave them a safety briefing on what was expected of everyone participating. This was followed by a walk around the course explaining what direction and what penalties would be applied.

The event saw five competitors travelling from the Stranraer area and seven from the Ayrshire region.

Stevie Wright was first on the starting line with his special Mini. Stevie showed good skills where there was reversing involved, and also showed tremendous skill in handling his Mini. Throughout the day Stevie’s times improved and he finished third overall.

The Stranraer hopefuls proved to be competitive and were having a good day’s competition. Neil Douglas in his standard Ford KA set some good times and seemed to be progressing well until the results were tallied showing Neil had 10 penalties to be added to his total.

Newcomer Callum Ramsay of Leswalt had purchased a 1.3 Nissan Micra from a local garage in Stranraer. Even though he had not competed in an autotest before, he was a natural.

Junior driver Robert Ramsay had a good day, as did Anthony Reid, who was also competing as well as sitting passenger with Robert who is under the age of 16 and requires an adult beside him.

Wigtown duo Stewart McNabney and Jack Ritchie, double driving a Vauxhall Corsa, were battling against last year’s club champion Dougie McVittie from Colmonell for class awards. Dougie managed to pull just over 30 seconds on the local duo.

Brothers Adam and James Vance from Whauphill were battling between themselves in their Toyota Starlet. James pulled a win out the bag, beating Adam by only 9.5 seconds.

Neil Mckinnel from Monreith was in great form but as results were being tallied he also had been playing with the cones and having a wrong direction also knocked him further down the class points.

Club secretary and official timekeeper Roger Anderson kept his eye on the results throughout the event.

Machars Car Club would like to thank Bladnoch Distillery for supporting this event, and to all the marshals, participants and spectators who showed enthusiasm and support during such a cold day.

Results were – Class 1: 1. Douglas McVittie, 2. Stewart McNabney, 3. Jack Ritchie; Class 2: 1. James Vance, 2. Stevie Wright, 3. Adam Vance; novice: 1. Liam Nisbet, 2. Robert Ramsay..

The next event is on Sunday, February 2, at noon at Culquhirk gravel quarry by kind permission of the Templeton family.

Anyone interested in becoming a member or marshal, contact Steven Broll at or on Facebook page Machars Car Club Ltd.