Markinch co-driver helps team to finish third

Middlemiss helps to clinch third in Junior Ecosse rally challenge (pic:Eddie Kelly)
Middlemiss helps to clinch third in Junior Ecosse rally challenge (pic:Eddie Kelly)

Markinch co-driver Tom Middlemiss finished in third place in the fourth round of Junior 1000 Ecosse Challenge at Crail Raceway last Saturday.

Middlemiss in his Citroen C1 alongside driver Andrew Blackwood from Stewarton clocked a time of 49 minutes 37 seconds.

They finished behind Dumfries duo Lewis Haining (Skoda Citago) and George Myatt in 48:19 and winners Johnnie Mackay and Gordon Reid in their Suzuki Alto in 48:17.

Glenrothes driver Aaron Webster (14) did not finish after engine problems.

Glenrothes Motor Sport Club included a few format changes in the event. Firstly, the Juniors did a separate 5 stage rally – starting at 8.30am and finishing at noon. And two of the stages were the longest that our Juniors had ever done – over 10 miles each.

But both moves worked well. Any concerns about the youngsters on the long stages went out the window when they just took it in their strides.

Over the first couple of stages, Ollie Hunter/Tom Hynd (Peugeot C1) stayed in touch with the top 2 – 5 seconds back after stage 2 – but an altercation with a chicane saw them drop some time on stage 3 and this allowed Blackwood/Middlemiss (Citroen C1) to move into third place which they held until the end despite some heroic moments.

Twelve cars started the rally and 11 crossed the finish line. The sole retiral was Webster/Colin Baxter (Nissan Micra) who “buzzed” the engine in stage 2 and lost all compression.

There is now an eight-week gap until the next round – the annual “big event” the Solway Coast Junior Rally - when all three UK Junior 1000 Championships compete together over the military ranges near Kirkcudbright.