Carlisle Stages Rally Overall Review – Motorsport UK Scottish Rally Championship

24th October 2022

Carlisle Stages Rally Overall Review

Jock Armstrong & Cammy Fair took their 1st SRC win of the season as a team by 9 seconds at the end of the Carlisle Stages Rally, final round of the 2022 KNC Groundworks Scottish Rally Championship.

It hadn’t been the best of mornings for the Impreza crew, arriving at service down in 5th place with damaged front suspension. Top work by the mechanics in service to fix the damage and alter the car setup and they would absolutely fly over the 3 afternoon stages to take maximum points and give Cammy his first Scottish Co-drivers title by the closest possible margin.  Finishing the season on the same number of points as Claire Mole – who finished 5th SRC alongside Michael Binnie – Cammy got the nod on a tie-break by dint of counting one more maximum score in his final total.

Newly crowned Albyn Garage Challengers Champion Angus Lawrie & co-driver Paul Gribben were once again showing they were a force to be reckoned with. 2nd at first service, they inherited the lead when early pace setters David Henderson & Chris Lees suffered a puncture before rolling out. The Evo crew continued their superb run all the way to the finish, taking 2nd by only 9 seconds at the end of the 6 stages.

4th at service John Wink was then the recipient of a Neil Shanks motivation session, which is a powerful thing for a driver. The Hyundai man upping his pace in the afternoon and closing from 21 seconds down on the black Evo to just 1 by the end of the day. A well-deserved reward for the team after a challenging season in the SRC.

Top Autoshop 2wd and a fantastic 5th it was an excellent day out for John Crawford & Josh Davidson. They had spent the morning battling with fellow Mk2 crew Stuart Egglestone & Brian Hodgson and were just 5 seconds behind the Pinto powered car when it retired in SS4. After that they kept the pressure on to produce one of the best, if not the best, results in the SRC.

With team-mate Angus Lawrie already wrapping up the Albyn Garage Challengers Drivers’ championship, the pressure was on Willie Paterson to do enough to give Tom Hynd the navigator’s title. Willie did his best to mess it up, putting the Evo in a ditch and almost ruining the clutch getting back out. There were also a couple of spins in the tricky conditions but they made it to the finish and did enough for Tom to take the title.

The Haddo energy Super Seniors was a straight shoot-out between the Mk2s of Steve Bannister & Alistair Brearley. Unfortunately for Steve & co-driver Callum Atkinson they were out early with a broken clutch cable. That left Alistair & co-driver Gerry Bryden free to relax and enjoy the rest of the day and give Alistair the distinction of being the 1st ever Haddo Energy Super Seniors champion.

There was early drama in the Ladies contest when Meghan O’Kane’s Fiesta’s engine blew on the opening loop. That left champion elect Aileen Forrest to cruise to the finish and take her 1st Ladies title after 3 years of trying. Aileen guided all the way by her husband John in the hotseat.

There was carnage in the Moates Offshore Juniors contest. Newly crowned champion Robert Proudlock & Fiesta pilot Justin Gunning joining Meghan O’Kane on the retirements list.

However, there was good news for Junior sponsor Mike Moates. Despite ending his event in a ditch after breaking a driveshaft, he had done enough to take his 1st Five Star Vehicle Deliveries Subaru Cup title after rivals Orrin McDonnell & Eoghan Anderson had slid off the road in SS1. Mike is already planning some upgrades for next season.

images courtesy of Alistair Farquhar