Monday | 04 Jul 2022

Champion McRae honoured at Scotland gathering

Stars of the FIA World Rally Championship gathered to remember Colin McRae’s 1995 title at a specially organised event in the Scotsman’s homeland at the weekend.

The McRae Rally Challenge ran at Knockhill race circuit close to Edinburgh and comprised two days of competition. As important as the rally was the biggest collection of ex-McRae machinery ever, with 24 cars gathering for an emotional parade lap on both days.

Colin’s father, Jimmy, brother Alister and nephew Max competed in the event, with the youngest of the three generations – 18-year-old Max – showing his elders the way home on his debut in a Ford Fiesta Rally2.

Despite not having a workable handbrake and power steering issues, McRae Jr won the final stage and finished seventh overall.

Alister returned to a Hyundai Accent WRC for what turned out to be a troublesome weekend mechanically. Jimmy relied on a Ford Escort RS1800 to make the finish and plenty of memories.

Also in action were former Ford works driver Gwyndaf Evans and Phil Mills, who guided Petter Solberg to the 2003 world title. The pair won their class driving a Ford Escort RS1800. Toyota Gazoo Racing star Elfyn Evans was on hand to keep a close eye on his father.

Star of the show was McRae's title-winning Subaru Impreza 555

Joining the celebrations were former world champions Louise Aitken-Walker, Tina Thörner and Luis Moya. The Spaniard was scheduled to co-drive Stig Blomqvist, but the Swede was sadly unable to attend due to a cancelled flight.

Reflecting on the weekend, five-time British champion Jimmy said: “It’s been a fantastic weekend. Coming in here this morning, the queue went back for such a long way, we were nearly late!

“It’s amazing to see the enthusiasm and the interest that people still have in Colin and this was a great way to keep his memory alive.”

The event was originally scheduled for 2020 on the 25th anniversary of the Lanark legend’s win, but the pandemic forced organisers to delay plans.

Photos: William Henderson

Video: Colin McRae - 25 Years a Champion

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