BORDERS 2009 REPORT
The NessRallySport Team of Don Murray and Andy Philip enjoyed another solid, if unspectacular finish on the Border Counties Rally in their Macritchie Highland Distribution backed Subaru Impreza WRX, finishing 44th overall.
The drama started even before the event began, when a split water pipe was detected as the car was being loaded on to the trailer. Fixing that delayed the service crew’s departure, but it would have been a much more significant issue had it not been detected and rectified before departing, and would probably have resulted in an early retirement on the event.
A sluggish start on the first stage, compounded by more suspension damage on the second stage saw the crew lose over a minute as they backed off to ensure they got back to the service area. Don takes up the story;-
“I was as dejected as I’ve ever felt in a rally car after stage 2, as it simply wouldn’t go where I wanted it to, and we had to back right off to about 50mph on places where we should have been doing 100mph plus. We lost over a minute, and pulled off the road to let a following car through. At service we discovered that one of the front suspension struts was loose, allowing the wheel to follow its own course, so we fixed that, adjusted the alignment and then set about rebuilding some confidence in the afternoon. We did that, and thoroughly enjoyed the last 3 stages, and yet another finish.”
The remainder of the day was relatively trouble free, though Don finished the event in some pain, suffering from very bad cramp in his left foot. He spent the last 2 miles of the last stage stamping his foot on the foot rest to try and relieve the discomfort, as the only other option was to stop the car and that was never going to happen!
Were it not for the lost time the team could well have repeated their top 40 finish from the opening
round, but such events are part and parcel of pushing cars hard on rough forest tracks.
The team are grateful as ever to Tim Finch and Warren Smith of TFRallyesport for their preparation of the car, and on event servicing, and to our sponsors, Donald Macritchie, of Macritchie Highland Distribution, Ness Properties, Rallyimages and Signed Graphics