3 Cars In The Top 5 For Buckleys
At the service area in Duns on the Sunday morning it was dry with a bit of cloud but reports from the first two stages in Bothwell were that it was raining. Tyre choice was crucial.
All the Dom Buckley Motorsport cars went on some form of slicks, some with cuts, some without. As they reached the first stage it was very wet. Dom Buckley Jnr had carried 2 intermediates in the spares and swapped them onto the front of his car. This paid off through the very wet and muddy stage as he set 5th fastest time 18 seconds down on the fastest time despite having a huge moment flat in 6th gear which cost him 15 seconds. Euan Thorburn was 2nd quickest through the stage and Rory Young an incredible 4th after the team worked until late on saturday night to fix his electrical fault. Dale Roberston was 10th quickest through the first stage.
The second stage was drier and many of the crews were happy to just drive round it and get back to service. Euan set the first of his 4 fastest stage times in Bothwell and took the lead. Rory set another blistering time of 3rd quickest. Dale Robertson and Dom Buckley were both content on driving through the stage and getting back down to the home stages. They were 8th and 12th quickest respectively.
So into service and Euan was leading, Rory 4th, Dale 8th and Dom 9th with only 0.1seconds separating Dale and Dom.
SS3 was the Eccles stage, a stage that runs through Dom Buckley Motorsports workshop. Once again Euan was quickest and started to break away from the rest of the field, Dale was 4th quickest through Eccles and Dom was 5th, Dom wanted to have a big push on his home stage and was all on for a good time but dropped 10-15seconds with a spin when his tyres started going off as he had chose to go on full intermediate tyres when 3/4 of the stage was dry. Unfortunately this wool be the last stage for Rory in a very disappointing weekend for him when he had mechanical problems and retired.
Thorburn once again extended his lead with fastest time on the Swinton stage full off big jumps and fast sections. He was 14 seconds quicker than Buckley who was 2nd quickest through the stage, taking 5 seconds out of Dale to move ahead of him in the overall standings and go to service in 4th overall 2.2 seconds ahead of Dale with 2 stages to go.
SS5 was cancelled after an accident on the first run through Eccles so it was down to the 11.5miles off Swinton in a winner takes all for 4th place between Dom and Dale. They both gave it everything with Dale being clocked going over Swinton crossroads at 109mph and Dom at 105mph. Buckley managed to take 2 seconds from Robertson in that last stage to finish 4.5 seconds ahead of him overall. Dom won class 11 and also was the fastest driver under the age of 25. Dale won Group N. Euan Thorburn rounded off the perfect weekend with fastest time yet again through Swinton to finish 1 minute 19 seconds clear of his nearest rival and finished off the Jim Clark double.