Late penalty hands Marshall Mach 1 win
Organiser: Dunfermline CC When: July 2/3 Where: Machrihanish Airbase Championships: Scottish Tarmack Championship Stages: 12 Starters: 101
John Marshall and David Robson won the Mach1 Stages Rally at the weekend, but going into the final stage, Bruce Edwards had been leading from Alistair Inglis with Marshall holding third, and then it all went wrong for the top two.
A Judge of Fact reported that Edwards and Inglis ‘had struck a course marker and gained an advantage’ and were each given a 30- second penalty.
That presented Marshall with an unexpected victory. Going into the penultimate stage, the Darrian of Edwards had been leading the Lotus Exige of Inglis by 27 seconds with Marshall a further four seconds behind.
Two nine-mile tests remained, but with warm sunshine drying out the wet Tarmac, Marshall put in a blistering time in his Subaru a full 17 seconds quicker than Edwards, more than halving the leader’s advantage. On the final stage shootout, Inglis set the fastest time from Edwards with Marshall off the pace and shaking his head: “Wrong tyres!” he said.
That left him third with just 8s separating first and second place – until the Judge of Fact report came in.
John Rintoul showed a welcome return to form with fourth place in his Hyundai Accent WRC ahead of the MG Metro of Tom Morris and a smiling Barry Renwick. Smiling because for the first time in three outings the Proton had behaved itself with Renwick hoping that he has now got to the bottom of its electrical gremlins.
Leading the rally at the end of day one had been Shaun Sinclair, but he retired with gearbox trouble.
The best battle of the day was fought out by the Citroen C2 1600s of Gareth White and Sean Robson dead heating with two stages to go. White’s machine snapped a driveshaft handing victory to Robson.