REIGNING Scottish Rally Champion David Bogie was beaten by Duns driver Euan Thorburn by 20 seconds in Saturday’s RSAC Scottish Rally in Dumfries.
Runner-up 12 months ago behind Bogie but this time victorious, Thorburn took to the 40-mile forest stages in Dumfries and Galloway with co-driver Paul Beaton of Inverness in his Ford Focus WRC.
Bogie, co-driving with Kevin Rae from Jedburgh in his Ford Focus WRC, held a seven-point advantage going into his home event in the eighth round of the ARR Craib MSA Scottish Rally Championship. He has twice won the rally in 2010 and 2012.
In third place was Quintin Milne and co-driver Martin Forrest both from Aberdeen, in their Mitsubushi Lancer EVO 9, who drove 1 minute 10 seconds behind Thorburn.
Behind the top three came Jock Armstrong from Clarebrand and co-driver Kirsty Riddick from Haugh of Urr and fifth place saw Barry Groundwater from Stonehaven and co-driver Neil Shanks from Elgin.
After a seven-year gap, the Scottish Rally became a counter stage in the British Rally Championship (BRC) which saw Alastair Fisher from Trillick and Gordon Noble from Omagh in first place.
BRC driver Jukka Korhonen and co-driver Marko Salminen from Finland followed in second place and Tom Cave from Aberdovey and co-driver Ieuan Thomas from Llanelli in third.
Other rounds in the Scottish Rally saw Callum Atkinson from Lauder win the Ecosse Challenge 205 and Graeme Smith from Crossford win the Ecosse Challenge civic.
Thorburn said: “The Scottish was a good day for me. I obviously had to go hard to beat David. It was fast out there on the stages and the pace has been hot at the top, so it’s good to get a win.
“Four of us beat the bogie on the last stage. It was extremely fast, but we had done the work before it so all was good. The Scottish is generally good but there were some big stones that get dragged down, but it just the same as every year and the stages are always good.
“The pace was really fast. It takes commitment, and it’s good for Quintin to get up there as well.”
Bogie was philosophical about his runner’s-up spot, describing it as “one of those days”.
He said: “The pace at the front has been very quick, so to finish second I am really happy. Of course a win would have been great for the Scottish Championship.
“However, it has just been one of these days. I have driven well, but the times just haven’t been there. I have given it my best anyways. The new Galloway stages have both been very good. On the last stage we beat the bogie by about 20 seconds, although that didn’t change the overall result.”