Topping the timesheets at the end of the first day of competition was the No2 Ford Escort RS1800 of Jason Tauber Pritchard and Phil Clarke, the first in a trio of Escorts that make up the top three. In second place, 33 seconds back, are Osian Pryce and Noel O’Sullivan closely followed by Paul Barrett and Gordon Noble.
Sitting further back are Tony Jardine and Allan Harryman, who Motor Sport is following throughout the event. They made steady progress in their Hillman Avenger through the darkening conditions and, as the final times drifted in, the mindset of the tortoise had ensured that not only had the pair survived the evening, but they had also done so with some achievement. The No 131 car sits fourth in its class and 40th overall at the end of the first four stages.