David Bogie won the third round of the 2017 Prestone MSA British Rally Championship ahead of Osian Pryce and Marty McCormack after Fredrik Ahlin retired on the final stage of the event from the lead.
Bogie and Ahlin fought at the head of the field for almost all of the second day of action after overnight leader Tom Cave hit issues for the second event running in the Hyundai i20 R5; this time with a broken wheel at the end of SS3 after suspension issues at last month’s Pirelli International.
After Cave was forced to retire, the battle heated up with Bogie and Ahlin the two names comfortably at the top of the timesheets. The CA1 Sport duo continued to trade fastest stage times throughout the day, with Bogie hovering just over a second behind with two stages remaining.
The penultimate stage again saw hometown hero Bogie reduce the gap, this time to just one tenth of a second behind Ahlin going into the last stage of the rally. Things couldn’t be any closer with the one run through the Ae stage left to decide the winner.
Ahlin, who took the first two wins of the season, would not make it a hat trick however as midway through the final stage the Swede would clip a rock that would get into his Skoda Fabia R5’s radiator and subsequently burst it. Ahlin had no choice but to retire and Bogie, who is from the nearby town of Dumfries, went on to claim his first BRC win in six years; his last coming in his title wining 2011 season.
Bogie said on his last gasp victory: “This is unbelievable! This is the one I have wanted to win the most. We didn’t get off to the best start on Friday night, but we pushed hard on Saturday to put us in a good position to fight. To go into the final stage with 0.1s between Fredrik and I was all or nothing, and it was disappointing to see him go out.”
“It’s been a tough event – the weather has been changeable and the pace has been unreal, but we kept out of trouble and brought the car home in one piece. It’s really special to win at home in front of my friends and family. In fact, I have booked a table at a local restaurant so we will be celebrating this evening!”
The ever consistent Osian Pryce continued his strong start to the season and finished a fine second in his Ford Fiesta R5, ahead of Martin McCormack who jumped from fifth to third on the final stage after the demise of Ahlin and a late puncture to Keith Cronin in the M-Sport Fiesta R5 meant that the Irishman would have to settle for fourth overall after a podium beckoned.
Fifth went to Desi Henry who finished on the podium in Scotland last season in another Fabia R5, while Euan Throburn took sixth in the BRC1 class as well as wining the Scottish championship event earlier in the day. Jamie Anderson took seventh ahead of Alex Laffey in the U-Student backed Fiesta R5.
The Prestone Motorsport News Junior BRC class saw a third different winner in three events, this time going the way of Welshman Cameron Davies. Davies, who had been battling with overnight leader Oscar Solberg would go onto win after the Scandinavian’s Ford Fiesta R2T hit turbo issues midway through Saturday.
Davies said on his win: ““This is fantastic, I don’t think it will ever sink in. It’s been a long time waiting for this. Last year we did the Fiesta Trophy in the BTRDA series. We won the prize to get to the BRC and now that we are here, to take the win is worth all the hard work”
Second in BRCJ went to Meirion Evans but would finish almost a minute and a half behind the dominant Davies, while Irishman Marty Gallagher would take third with the top three all driving Peugeot 208 R2’s.
William Creighton took fourth ahead of Callum Devine in fifth, James Williams in sixth and Josh McErlean in seventh in his Citroen C2 R2 Max.
The Cadet BRC class saw Josh Cornwell make it three wins from three events and finished 46.1 seconds ahead of Tom Williams with Arron Windus a further 13.2 seconds adrift in third. Fergus Barlow finished fourth with Alex Waterman in fifth and Nabila Tejpar rounding out the finishers in sixth.
National Rally Cup saw Donnie Macdonald finish a fine eighth overall on his way to class honours in his Ford Fiesta R5 while Spencer Wilkinson would take his Subaru Impreza to 27th overall in Scotland.
The Prestone MSA British Rally Championship continues with round four, the Belgian Ypres Rally, between June 23-24.