Rally crews prepare for Reivers

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Local competitors in the ARR Craib MSA Scottish Rally Championship are readying themselves for the only tarmac event in the eight-round series, the Jim Clark Reivers Rally on Sunday.

Based in Duns, the rally – held on closed public roads – has attracted around 100 entries, and is one of a number of championships contested over the Jim Clark weekend.

Newton Stewart driver Mark McCulloch starts 25th in his Subaru Impreza, alongside co-driver Elliot Edmondson from Milton Keynes. The pair turned in a fine performance in last month’s Granite City Rally, finishing tenth overall. Mark last competed on the Jim Clark Reivers in 2010, also in a Subaru, ending the day in 15th place.

Port William’s Fraser Wilson and Steven Broll will be back in action in their Group N Mitsubishi EVO 8, after a bruising round in Aberdeen which saw them take class honours, despite a string of mechanical problems.

Fraser was one of a number of competitors who took part in a test day at the military range at Dundrennan on Saturday. It was an opportunity to get a feel for the car on tarmac and try different set-ups ahead of the fast and unforgiving Berwickshire event.

James Haugh from Sandhead will again co-drive for Dumfries garage owner Ian Paterson in his Subaru Impreza, while “Motorwise” boss Jim McDowall from Creetown will have his daughter Charlotte on the notes as he targets a strong finish in an historic class Hillman Avenger.

Newton Stewart’s Laura Marshall will navigate for Lanarkshire-based Honda Civic driver Graeme Smith, the pair looking for their first finish of the SRC season after two consecutive retirements.

At the top end of the entry list, reigning champion David Bogie takes a one point lead into the weekend as he seeks his fourth Reivers victory, and his fifth straight Scottish title. The 25-year-old Dumfries driver dominated the Granite City Rally in his Ford Focus WRC and declared himself “happy to be back to winning ways”.

However, he will face stiff competition from his Border rival – and last year’s Reivers winner – Euan Thorburn, also in a Focus WRC. After a disappointing start to his SRC campaign, the Duns man was buoyed by victory on the Plains Rally in Wales earlier this month.

Castle Douglas duo Jock Armstrong and Kirsty Riddick will be eyeing a podium spot – Armstrong’s Subaru Impreza has been re-engined since a blow-up on the Granite – and Kirtlebridge driver Mike Faulkner, runner-up in Duns last year, will also be a threat in his Mitsubishi EVO 9.

Full details can be found at www.jimclarkrally.com.

For news and updates of all SRC rounds, go to www.scottishrallychampionship.co.uk

Jim Clark Reivers Rally: Dumfries and Galloway competitors with car no:

2 David Bogie (Dumfries) Kevin Rae (Jedburgh) Ford Focus WRC

3 Mike Faulkner (Kirtlebridge) Peter Foy (Bingley) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9

4 Jock Armstrong (Clarebrand) Kirsty Riddick (Haugh of Urr) Subaru Impreza

14 Rory Young (Dumfries) Allan Cathers (Carlisle) Mitsubishi Lancer

25 Mark McCulloch (Newton Stewart) Elliott Edmondson (Milton Keynes) Subaru Impreza

28 Ian Paterson (Dumfries) James Haugh (Sandhead) Subaru Impreza

29 Fraser Wilson (Port William) Steven Broll (Port William) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 8

33 Robert Harkness (Stewarton) Mike Curry (Lockerbie) BMW 316I

38 Stuart Paterson (Dumfries) Colin Maxwell (Dumfries) Subaru Impreza

39 Stephen Thompson (Kirkcudbright) Darren Thompson (Tobermory) Ford Escort

40 Richard Stewart (Dumfries) Kenneth Marchbank (Thornhill) Subaru Impreza

41 Lee Hastings (Dumfries) Brian Findon (Dumfries) Subaru Impreza

48 Iain Haining (Dumfries) Mairi Riddick (Haugh of Urr) Vauxhall Nova

49 Iain Wilson (Dalbeattie) Keith Fremantle (Dalbeattie) Vauxhall Nova

53 James Robertson (Penpont) Ian Crosbie (PenPont) Citroen C2R2

54 Graeme Smith (Crossford) Laura Marshall (Newton Stewart) Honda Civic

75 Jim McDowall (Creetown) Charlotte McDowall (Creetown) Hillman Avenger

85 Thomas Alexander Heard (Jedburgh) Amanda Jane Burney (Kirkcudbright) Volvo S70 T5