Hills win for Bogie
David Bogie stormed to victory on the Armstrong Galloway Hills Rally on Saturday.
The Dumfries ace and co-driver John Rowan won all five stages of the Castle Douglas event in their Skoda Fabia R5, Bogie getting his name on the winner’s trophy for the fifth time.
He was 45 seconds ahead of runners-up Garry Pearson and Dale Bowen in their Ford Fiesta R5, with Northern Irish crew Jonny Greer and Liam Regan completing the podium, also in an R5.
Bogie, who is taking part in Wales Rally GB next month, said: “It’s been a great day, especially with weather like this to finish with.
“I think if you looked at the weather this morning you would have never believed how it turned out this afternoon but it’s been a fantastic day all round.
“The stages have been superb and the rally is excellent as always. There has been some good competition too and it’s just one of those days where you can go home very happy.”
More than 45 crews from across the UK and Ireland took part in the 45th running of the popular event, organised by Solway, Machars and East Ayrshire Car Clubs.
The start ceremony took place at Threave Garden and Estate. Heavy rain ensured it would be a tricky start to the day. Ninetime winner and Castle Douglas ace, Jock Armstrong, and co-driver Cameron Fair led the field away in his Subaru Impreza but he had trouble with a misting windscreen.
Bogie was fastest out of the blocks, opening up a nine second lead on the first stage and continuing his charge as the rain dried up ahead of the return to the finish at Threave.
Behind the podium trio was John Wink, in his Hyundai i20 R5, who held off the charging Armstrong in the closing stages.
The rally was the final round of the ARR Craib MSA Scottish Rally Championship title, which went to Andrew Gallacher and Jane Nicol in their Ford Focus WRC after rivals Donnie MacDonald and co-driver Jamie Edwards had to retire their Fiesta just half a mile into the first stage.
Dumfries’ Mark McCulloch had a great day as he and Michael Hendry finished seventh in their older spec Subaru Impreza.
New Abbey’s Richard Dickson and Castle Douglas’ Roger Alcorn won class nine in their Subaru Impreza as they finished 12th overall. Second in the class was Canonbie’s John McIlwraith, who took a commanding Used Car Parts Subaru Cup win in his Impreza.
Craig McMiken, from Newton Stewart, and Charlotte McDowall from Creetown were 23rd overall and seventh in class 10 in their Mitsubishi Evo 9.
Fraser Wilson, from Port William, and Craig Wallace, from Kirriemuir, were 38th in their Evo 9.
Penpont’s Greig McKnight and Thornhill’s Harry Marchbank won the Scottish TwoWheel Drive Championship as they finished a fantastic ninth overall in their Ford Escort Mk2.
Second in the category was Haugh of Urr’s Keith Riddick with co-driver Steven Clark, who suffered oil leak issues in their MG ZR. However, they came out on top in class three as Castle Douglas’ Angus Lawrie and Annan’s Paul Gribben went off the road in the final stage.
Niall Cowan Jnr, from Dumfries, emerged as the new Scottish Junior Rally Champion with a consistent drive in his MG ZR. He was second in class one behind the MG ZR of Scott Peacock, of Castle Douglas, and Robin Neil, of Haugh of Urr.
Class went to Donald Peacock, from Castle Douglas, and Mark Roberts, from Dumfries, in their Peugeot 205 GTi. Third was the Chrysler Avenger of Castle Douglas duo, Alan McMorran and Albert Connelly.
In class four, Jim Robertson, of Penpont ,and Mike Curry, of Thornhill, were fourth in their Ford Escort Mk2. Castle Douglas’ Finlay Brock was third in class six in his Ford Fiesta. Dumfries’ Helen Brown was co-driving for Greig Pollock in his Escort Mk1 and they won class seven.
Clerk of the course, Michael Riddick, was delighted with how the event went.
He said: “When the weather drew in this morning we thought it would be a tough day for crews, spectators and marshals but luckily the sun came out this afternoon.
It’s thanks to our sponsors The Armstrong Group, our stage sponsors, Forestry Commission Scotland and the backing of Dumfries and Galloway Council that we could offer crews from across the UK and Ireland such a great day’s rallying.
“Thanks go to our volunteer marshals and spectators who came out to watch the rally.
“We extend our congratulations to David and John for their win and of course to Andrew and Jane for the SRC title.
“We look forward to seeing everyone again next year.”
Title Niall Cowan Jnr won the Scottish Junior championship. Picture courtesy of Lindsay Photo Sport