With October coming round again it was time for our annual trek up to the Isle of Mull in the North West of Scotland for the Mull Rally. This years 50th running had a different look and feel from the past couple of years with new stages, stages run in directions not used for years, the return of the Tobermory street stage and a new 30 mile stage!!
For the 50th running of the rally the Tobermory street stage made a return, last run in 2014 run twice with the second run joined on to the Mishnish lochs stage, nerves got the better of us on the first run with a half spin and engine stall on the last corner. Once onto the Lochs everything was fine, tyres working well now the roads had dried out from all the rain of the previous days. In fact all of the Friday stages were bone dry.
So the rest of the night was all about blowing away any cobwebs and trying not to get distracted by all the cars off in various places! We were happy to end the first leg in 21st position overall.
The daylight of Saturday brought the rain with it, in a big way! The Leg 2 stages comprised of a 2 loops around the top of the island then finishing with Ben More ans Scridain and wet tyres would be fitted for the start and not changed until the end of the rally! With only a few minor problems like loosing my place on the notes and a bit of fuel surge, oh and the torrential rain in places reducing the visibility down to almost nothing! The more worrying one started on the last stage and sounded like the prop center bearing starting to collapse! The long road section back from the last stage was spent texting and messaging everyone we could think of that might have a spare.
With a few hours before the restart of the final leg we have time to have a good wiggle and a wobble of the prop. As we could not find any play or other obvious damage and as we could not find a spare the decision was made to carry on and see what happens. The main talking point of the 3 leg was the 30 miler. Mull has often run a 22 mile stage by joining 2 stages together but this year it was one better and 30 miles from 3 stages joined together! But no sooner than we had started it seemed to finish…. 31 Min 26 sec later. It was after 02:00 on the Sunday morning when we started the last stage and mist was starting to settle in placed up the Glen so the last thing you want to hear on the start is “be careful 6 miles in” “there is loads of mud across the road” Great!!
As we pulled in to the final control the weather decided to celebrate with a downpour of hail and rain so no celebrating and back up to our digs very happy with our 16th Overall and 5th in class!