Jim Clark Rally, Scottish Borders 30th/31st May 2014


A new navigator, Phil Boyle, was to be sat alongside Andy for this event, as Del Johnson had suffered injuries whilst working at his day job as a Paramedic – he was in the rear of the ambulance when it was involved in a high speed incident.


Friday night would see us do the first loop of stages. Dunns was un-eventful and great fun – getting the crew through their first stage as a new pairing. They would then move onto Abbey St.Bathans – after recce this was holding a few “this is a car killer stage” thoughts in Andy’s head. However, the stage was fantastic and the Golf thoroughly loved the bumps and twists. They had, by the end of Abbey, lost the now obligatory wing mirror through one of the chicanes, but there are not many people that have seen the car with both mirrors during an event. The following two stages would see them make steady progress, Andy getting to grips with the precision notes that Phil was reeling off – and driving the dark fast lanes on spots. Back to Keslo service area for park up and ready for the next day.


Arrival at Kelso service on the Saturday would see the start of the team’s troubles with the car not wanting to start; it was identified as a broken power cable and a “clubman” repair made – jubilee clip! Heading to Swinton 1 is was clear that there were issues with the engine / fuelling etc. the car had developed some kind of misfire and would not rev correctly at all. They battled through with the car cutting out after a heavy landing over Swinton cross roads, and rolling to a halt on stage. Andy set about finding the issue, car was turning over but nothing, air/fuel/spark the mega three. Fuses and relays were changed and nothing, a quick talk to the car and another try and away she went (still misfiring). 300 yards and stopped again. It seemed that every turn on/off was doing something so the crew limped to the end of stage in this fashion, receiving a stage maximum. This had been the first of three stages on this loop and the plan was to get back to service. In the next stage, Edrom, the cutting out was getting worse and a clumsy handed Andy turned the kill switch the wrong way and hey presto the fault was found – the kill switch was not working correctly. Edrom and the following stage, Langton, were run without any calls whilst Phil held the kill switch on with his bionic thumb!


Arriving to service 1 at Kelso would see us with two stage maximums, but still in the event. Short services gave little time for much, but a repair was done to the kill switch and outer plugs changed, various wires and connections checked to see if we could find the misfire.


The following loop of two stages were run at highest gears and revs possible to try push through the misfire, car was becoming a handful as it was either bogging down in the slow / technical sections or little feedback on the more flowing roads. Stage 12, Eccles, would see a small moment with a bank following a square right slippy – this would result in a knock that was ignore through the stage and the following Westruther stage.


Service 2 would see the reason for the knock; front sub frame had become a little detached in our incident in Eccles – this was repaired and in the short time the inner plugs were replaced to try resolve the misfire.

Due to incidents on the following stage and the final loop, they only managed one more run through Westruther before the end of the event – this went well and despite having the misfire managed to catch the previous car up on stage and resulting in a finish on the event.


Ashadi Rallysport would like to say that our thoughts and prayers are with all people involved in the incidents that occurred during the running of the Jim Clark and to praise the organisers on their professional organisation and running of the event.

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