Scottish Rally

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General Classification

1st: R. A. Clark/J. Porter (Cortina GT) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 3,153 penalty marks

2nd: J. D. Lewis/R. Turvey (Hillman Imp) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..3,706 ” ”

3rd: W. J. Morrison/J. Seyer (Rover 2000) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. …3,944 ” ”

4th: J. Tordof/N. Thomas (Cortina GT) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .4,587 ” ”

5th: Miss R. Smith/Mrs. S. Taylor (Hillman Imp) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..4,932 ” ”

6th: T. Paton/S. Parker (1071 Cooper S) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 5,129 ” ”

7th: J. Partridge/D. Rowe (970 Cooper S).. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 5,143 ” ”

8th: R. Clift/B. Lockyear (Cortina GT).. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. … 5,191 ” ”

9th: E. Moorat/B. Crawley (Cortina GT) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 5,282 ” ”

10th: R. Charleton/Mrs E. Charleton (Anglia 1200) .. .. .. .. .. .. ..5,293 ” ”

THIS year, for the first time, the Scottish Rally was supported and officially recognised by the trade, so that it was no great surprise to find strong teams from Ford, B.M.C., Rootes and Rover competing as now, if they had a good result, they were at liberty to advertise it. This is because of an arrangement similar to that found in racing, where only certain events are recognised by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, and only results in those events can be used as the basis for an advertisement. Despite these works cars and drivers if was a privately owned and entered car that won and, not only that, it was the same driver and navigator that won last year and the car was of the same type and had the same registration number as last year.

However, how much Roger Clark and Jim Porter in their Cortina GT can be considered as private entrants is debatable. The Royal Scottish Automobile Club refused to consider as a private entrant anyone who had any connection at all with the motor trade, which, in fact, disqualified Clark as he sells cars for a living. The same exclusion applied to fourth-place man, Jack Tordoff, also driving a Cortina GT, and to sixth-place man, Toni Paton in a 1071 Cooper S, who both earn their living the same way, so that the private entrant’s prize went to John Partridge in a 970 Cooper S, who happens to be a farmer. Now perhaps that is taking things a little too far, but, it does raise the interesting question of what comprises a private owner. To start with, he must obviously own the car that he is entered in, but how do you find out if the works have supplied him with an engine or a gearbox that he might not have been able to come by had he not been looked favourably upon by the team manager? As it happens, Roger Clark is at present contracted to the Rover works team but as they had not intended to supply him with a works Rover for this event, he was presumably free—under the terms of his contract—to drive his own Cortina GT, which he did and most successfully. It was no doubt his reputation as a works driver and his previous success in this event that prompted Ford to put him in their second team entry and to provide him with the same service-as the works cars, and a very sensible arrangement it turned out to be. A team manager would be stupid indeed if he refused service to a car which was of the same make as his works cars and was doing well on the rally, but was entered by a private owner.

Such pre-rally assistance and rally service does make some private entrants less private than others, but it has been going on for many years now and it doesn’t seem likely that any organiser can think up anything foolproof to differentiate between those private owners without assistance and those who do it all off their own bat. When tyres, brake pads, lights and various other bits and pieces are available at rally discounts (and without these discounts it is difficult to see how a lot of people could be going rallying at all) it becomes impossible to define a private owner.

Be that as it may, within a fairly limited definition, Roger Clark was a private owner and he did very well indeed to beat the works entries that did go on the Scottish Rally. The four works Fords suffered great misfortunes in that three were eliminated by virtue of having left the road while the remaining car of Henry Taylor broke two differentials in the course of the rally and was much delayed having them replaced. The leading contenders for supremacy with Clark after the works Fords had dropped from contention were B.M.C.’s two winners of the Monte Carlo Rally, Paddy Hopkirk and Timo Makinen. Makinen had elected to drive a Healey 3000 and, in fact, outlasted Hopkirk in the Mini-Cooper S, but while the Cooper S was running it gave no trouble, while the Healey had first an ignition fault and then lost its sump shield. In the case of both cars, however, it was the final drive that failed, with the Cooper S coming to a halt on the third day while comfortably in the lead, while the Healey went through to the fourth day and was overhauling Clark rapidly after losing time on the road as a result of having the sump guard fixed.

Rootes had a fairly mixed bag of luck after their Tulip victory, with one works Imp retiring with mechanical failure in the engine and the other two finishing first and second in their class, and in most creditable second and fifth places overall. Tiny Lewis’ second place overall is very creditable in the Imp, especially as he was recording stage times that were very little slower than those of the fastest cars. As far as the Tigers were concerned, suffice it to say that the works one driven by Andrew Cowan suffered a variety of mechanical misfortunes and retired, while the privately entered one of John Melvin managed to finish despite much the same sort of troubles.

The Scottish was a good rally this year and there can be little doubt that participation by the works teams will have encouraged the organisers to make it even better next time.—J. D. F. D.