Euan Thorburn goes into his home event in Duns on Sunday with an eight point lead in the 2014 ARR Craib MSA Scottish Rally Championship after three rounds.
The Borderer, won the season-opener in Inverness, steered his Ford Focus WRC to victory on last month’s Granite City Rally. He’s now looking for further success on the Jim Clark Reivers.
Euan told the Berwickshire News: “We’ve never started that well in the Scottish championship, so to have built up a wee cushion after three rounds is a new experience. There is always that bit of added pressure when it’s your home event but once the rally starts its all forgotten about.”
Thorburn will resume his duel with defending champion and fellow Focus driver David Bogie. Last year Bogie chalked up his fourth win on the challenging Berwickshire stages with Hawick co-driver Kevin Rae.
Kelso’s Dom Buckley, with Patrick Walsh co-driving, will be another local hopeful in his Subaru Impreza. He starts two places ahead of Yorkshireman Steve Bannister and Hawick’s Louise Sutherland.
Dale Robertson from Duns and Tranent navigator Paul Maguire return after their Mitsubishi EVO was completely burnt out on last year’s rally. “We were still in the car when it caught fire”, recalled Dale: “I looked across and couldn’t see Paul for flames, and because he couldn’t get out of his door, he had to clamber through them. It was a big fright.”
Father and daughter, Garry and Hollie Wilson from Duns, will also be looking for a strong finish in front of home support in their EVO 5. Another father and daughter crew are Ian and Carin Logan from Kelso in their Ford Escort Mk 2.
Among the 2WD competitors, Coldstream’s Keiran Renton, co-driven by Dave Robson from Jedburgh, will be targeting a good points haul in the 1600cc class in his Ford Fiesta R2.
Other Borders crews: Bob Grant/David O’Brien (Duns), Subaru Impreza; Kev Dunn (St Boswells)/James Braithwaite (Newtown St Boswells), Vauxhall Nova; Des Campbell (Coldstream)/Craig Forsyth (Kelso), Peugeot 206; Nick Thorne (Earlston)/Ian Murray, Honda Civic; Peter Fleming (Cockburnspath)/Martyn Scott (Kelso), Ford Escort; Donald McEwan/Ellis Flemming (Duns), Citroen Saxo; Tommy Heard (Jedburgh)/Amanda Burney, Suburu Impreza; Colin Aitchison/Garry Pearson (Duns), Vauxhall Chevette; Blair Brown/Richard Simmonds (Duns), Peugeot 205; Max William Redpath (Duns)/Jack Clayworth (Duns), Peugeot 205; Peter Mosgrove (Duns)/Shug McIntosh (Kelso), Ford Escort; Iain Heard/Alistair Maxwell (Ancrum), Ford Escort; Keith and Graeme Meins (Eyemouth), Proton Satria; Thaarique Fazal/Paul Wood (Jedburgh), Peugeot 205; Daniel Patterson/Sean Liddell (Duns) Nissan Micra.