Afton Glen Meats Galston Kames Summer Stages Preview

18 J1000 Ecosse crews will head to Kames Motorsport Complex for the Afton Glen Meats Galston Kames Summer Stages this Sunday.

The 3 crews who’ve taken wins in 2023 top the seeding. Jack Ryan and Robin Nicolson were the winners at Kames earlier in the year but come off a bit of a disappointing Machrihanish.

Championship leaders Oliver Phillips and Barry Young have been the most consistent crew, finishing on the podium at every round so far in their Citigo and putting together a very strong championship campaign.

Rian Walker and Stuart McBride come into this round fresh from a double win last time out at Machrihanish. Out of the top 3 they seem to have adapted the quickest to the Toyo Tyres which could stand them in good stead for Kames.

Thomas Milne and Neil Jeffrey have hounded the top 3 on almost every event in the venerable Micra, taking advantage if any of them slipped up. Their pace at Mach 1 was mightily impressive and the tight confines of Kames should suit the Nissan.

Meanwhile, Ruan Lowry and Ian McRae have been slowly getting closer to the top times in their Citigo in 2023. Ruan, ever competitive, is always striving to do better.

Ollie Forrester and George Myatt have slowly been developing their own Citigo, improving the car on every round. Mach 1 was good, particularly on the Saturday, taking a strong 4th overall.

Battling with Forrester and Lowry at Mach 1, Lauchlan Hunter and Richard Simmonds have been the only Yaris in the series in 2023 up to this point. The car has been quick but they’ve suffered with small issues on some of the events.

Alfie Letham and Craig Wallace have been getting quicker with each event in their Citigo. They enjoyed an excellent battle on the Sunday at Mach 1 with

William Paterson and Mark McCulloch in the 2nd Micra. The 2 crews separated by only 5 seconds at the end of the Sunday last time out.

Thomas Babb and Paul Gribben had battled with the Paterson Micra on the Saturday at Mach 1, Thomas having his best run so far. The Sunday was dogged with brake issues and a big spin that knocked his confidence. Hopefully he can get that back quickly at Kames.

Lucy Cree and Chloe Fleming were another crew to take a bit of time to adapt to the Toyo Tyres last time out, finding the early stages to be quite lacking in grip. The big issue at Mach 1 was a gearbox problem late on Saturday while they battled Paterson and Babb.

JJ Jutley and Ted Runciman were another crew producing their best run at Mach 1 until they put the 107 onto it’s side on the last stage of Saturday. JJ’s pace is getting better all the time and he’ll be pushing hard again at Kames.

Freddie Johnson is reunited with Tom Hynd for this round. Mach 1 was his best event so far as he continues to learn the rallying game, although his Dad will be hoping he doesn’t quite as many wing mirrors this time out.

Daniel Campbell-Hill and Chris Hamill made their series debut at Machrihanish. Despite an off on the 2nd day it was an excellent start for Daniel with Chris praising his abilities right from the off.

Missing since Crail, Jamie Findlay makes a return in his 107. The big news for the Findlay camp is the arrival of a new navigator, Tom Middlemiss stepping into the hotseat. Jamie will be hoping for more luck than he experienced the last time he was at Kames.

3 drivers make their debut at this round. Gregor Beatson has Stephen Graham in the hotseat in the 2nd Toyota Yaris on the entry. Gregor well familiar with Kames having been involved with helping Marc McCubbin in the past. Marc has also had him out in the car already at the circuit to gain some valuable experience.

2 more Micras join the fray. Rhys Purvin has Gordon Reid in the navigator’s seat, a name very familiar to the Juniors having sat with Johnnie Mackay. It’s a family affair for Rhys with his Dad Thomas navigating for Ross Pringle on the senior event. Rhys has some strong backing, SRC front runner John Wink supporting the Nissan driver.

Micra number 4 is campaigned by William Thomson. William recently competed at 63 car club’s autotest and is joined in the hotseat by former J1000 front runner Andrew Blackwood. Andrew’s vast experience of Kames will come in handy for his young pilot.

16 stages make up the event on Sunday 20th August. As always keep an eye out for the J1000 live coverage on Facebook throughout the day.

Image courtesy of Becksport Media

About the author

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Rhona Dickie

Rhona is our Discipline Representative for the J1000 Ecosse Challenge.

She has always had a passion for motorsport and as teenager could be seen out spectating on the rally stages. She first became involved with the J1000 Ecosse Challenge when it was first launched back in 2012, as her son was one of the very first competitors in the championship. Initially Rhona took on the roles of Safeguarding Officer and Membership Secretary. In 2021, she became the Coordinator of the Championship. When time allows, Rhona can also be seen marshalling. She is a member of RSAC Motorsport and is also their Club Safeguarding Officer.