At lunchtime not much had changed results wise, more penalties had been accrued of course, certainly many more than yesterday, but the top three were static. Post lunch though and the mistakes would start to occur, mistakes that influenced the positions in a big way come the end of the day. The second timing point of the regularity immediately after lunch was an infamous long way around a triangle, with the timing point on the opposite as it were. Now, these can prove tricky, but this particular triangle had a ‘NO’ board on the hypotenuse, in essence directing the cars straight to the timing point. This was seemingly all too much though, with many driving straight past the timing point altogether. Car 34 was one of these, Chris Lacey driving straight on as the marshal at the timing point waved her clip board at him in despair, but to no avail. Suzanne Barker, best navigator of the day on day one, also dropped 15 seconds on this section of the regularity, but the biggest casualty was car 52, David and Sally Ward who had been second up until now. The timing point was missed completely, and they would end the day in 33rd place.
After one more soggy test and two more regularities the results of the day were calculated and first place still belonged to Paul O’Kane and Iain Tullie, in the bright orange Porsche 911, a valuable splash of colour on a very grey day.
Paul O’Kane: “It’s been a very wet day, we’ve been fast on the tests and so far, accurate on the regularities, although we have almost come in a little early on some. Hopefully we can keep that going tomorrow.”
Iain Tullie: “Spirited is how Paul has been described on the tests by a marshal! Big thanks to the marshals, it’s been very tricky in the rain. The rain has meant that there have been no other summer road users to deal with, and we’ve had good luck with traffic on the regularities so far, hopefully that continues tomorrow.
Their lead is 9 seconds from Nick Maris and Ian Canavan in second, just three seconds ahead of Dick and Harry Baines in third place. Ian also praised the marshals for their endeavor in the rain and praised his driver, Nick, as well, who hasn’t competed since London to Lisbon last year. Despite the weather everyone seems to be enjoying the rally, Malcolm Dunderdale described how navigator Anita has laughed the entire way around, particularly when he has been sliding his big yellow Merc around on the tests, and the mood was jovial at the afternoons coffee halt as everyone enjoyed fresh ice creams in the rain.
The spirit of the rally is at least alive and well in Lincolnshire, even if the summer sun has gone for a holiday elsewhere. Tomorrow there is just half a day left to consolidate performance or seize victory, time will soon tell who will win out in the rain.