Monday, 25 May 2015

Reivers at the Ready

This weekend’s Jim Clark Reivers Rally marks the halfway point in the 8 round ARR Craib National Scottish Rally Championship.

First run in 1970 this year’s event will return to its roots. Tree roots, that is. Having run as a ‘Closed Public Road’ rally since 1997, using stretches of public road closed by Act of Parliament within Berwickshire, this year’s event will revert to forestry road Special Stages just over the Border in Northumberland.

The event will start and finish in Kelso at the Showground on Sunday 31st May, but the competitive element will all be contained within the massive Kielder Forest complex.

Heading the entry list is five times Scottish Rally Champion and former British Champion, David Bogie with two of his main rivals for the 2015 title right behind him, Jock Armstrong and Mike Faulkner. The number four seed is Newcastle’s Peter Taylor, but he’s no stranger to this area as the family holiday business is based in Jedburgh.

The number five seed, Bruce McCombie, is actually the current leader of the Scottish Rally Championship after three rounds. Consistency, with one second place and two fourths has given McCombie a healthy lead at this early stage of the national series, but Bogie is only 20 points behind.

An added attraction for the 2015 Jim Clark Reivers Rally features the return of the Forces’ Land Rovers. The Armed Forces have long supported the ‘Closed Road’ Jim Clark Rally in previous years as the event provides excellent training in teamwork, navigation, time-keeping and fast driving.

Throughout the year, in their own night-navigation exercises, drivers from all three armed forces compete to win the chance to contest a small number of motor rallies throughout the UK. Not for them Subaru Imprezas or Ford Escorts, they compete in Land Rover Wolf diesel powered 4x4 utility vehicles.

Specially adapted to compete on special stage motor rallies, these great lolloping and lumbering beasts are surprisingly agile in the hands of their experienced ‘pilots’ and provide a treat for spectators as they bring up the tail end of the field. Often regarded as the golden retrievers amongst a field of greyhounds, the Land Rover squadron is well worth watching.

The Rally will start from Springwood Park in Kelso at 08.00 Hrs on Sunday morning the 31st of May with the first car returning there for the ceremonial finish around 15.00 Hrs.

Spectator Information:

08:00 Hrs, Official Rally Start, Springwood Park, Kelso.

SS3, Harwood, 1st car due 12.12 Hrs
Spectator Area signposted by green arrows from the unclassified road, one mile south east of Elsdon village.

SS5, Comb, 1st car due 13.47 Hrs
Access to two signposted (green arrows) areas off the Forest Drive, one mile south of Byrness on the A68

From 15.00 Hrs, Rally finish at Springwood Park, Kelso