Region gears up for the return of JC Rally

Did you hear the one about the Irishman, the Scotsman, the Englishman and the Welshman? They're all contesting this weekend's Jim Clark Rally in Duns.

Wednesday, 9th October 2019, 9:40 am
Updated Tuesday, 5th November 2019, 8:58 am
The town centre start is always popular with spectators.
The town centre start is always popular with spectators.

The return of the Jim Clark Rally has been welcomed right across the country and despite the end of season date, many of the country's top amateur drivers and their co-drivers are heading to the Scottish Borders.

Ahead lies a choice selection of the country's finest stretches of testing and demanding roads which will be closed by Act of Parliament for a few hours to allow the competition to take place.

Heading the entry list is top Irish driver Josh Moffett. Winner of 6 rallies in Ireland and Northern Ireland this season so far, this will be his first ever competitive run out on Scottish tarmac. At number two is top Scot, David Bogie.

With one British and five Scottish rally titles already under his belt the Dumfries driver is coming across country to Duns "just for the craic". Unlike Moffett who will be at the wheel of the latest generation 4WD Ford Fiesta R5, Bogie will be driving his cherished RWD Ford Escort Mk2.

All the way from Hertfordshire is the number 3 seed Robert Swann. For this weekend, the Englishman will swap his Subaru Impreza World Rally Car for a Ford Fiesta WRC machine which will be able to take the fight to Moffett.

Another Scot fills the number 4 slot, former race driver Alan Kirkaldy. Fresh from victory in his Fiesta R5 just a few weeks ago on the Cheviot Stages at Otterburn, Kirkaldy will have his eyes on a bigger prize this weekend.

From Wales comes the number 5 seed Hugh Hunter with his Ford Focus World Rally Car and rounding off the top six is Manchester's Steve Simpson, another Fiesta R5 front runner and in his third change of car this year!

Filling the next three places are three more drivers in 4WD machinery, Lincolnshire's Andy Fenwick in a Fiesta R5 and two more Scots both in Mitsubishi Lancers, local farmer Michael Binnie from Cornhill on Tweed and Inverness car dealer Donnie MacDonald.

Completing the top ten line-up is another local hope, Garry Pearson, but like Bogie he has opted for a RWD Ford Escort Mk2. Unlike Bogie, this will be Pearson's first ever run out in a Mk2.