THIS time last year, Kevin Rae navigated driver David Bogie and himself to a third straight Scottish Rally Championship win with a fourth consecutive win at the annual event on Speyside.
Next week, Rae will be going for five-in-a-row at the Gleaner Oil and Gas Speyside Stages in Elgin in an attempt to secure his fourth successive national title.
The Chesters-based co-driver reckons victory in Moray will be sufficient to clinch the title as he and Bogie would open up a sizeable lead at the summit of the overall standings.
“We never like to count our chickens, but if we get that win it’d be more or less it,” said Rae. “We have five wins from eight events, and points-wise another win would be enough to clinch it. But, anything can happen.
“It’s a good event up in Elgin. The first stage is at Cooper Park in the middle of the town and attracts a lot of folk. We’ve won it each of the last four years, and for some reason things have gone well there.”
Despite his confidence, Rae retains a healthy awareness of the dangers that could befall his and Bogie’s bid for continuing dominance of the Scottish rallying scene.
“There’s always something crops up, but to be honest we’ve always done well enough,” he said. “We’ve had bits and pieces go wrong, accidents that have made it harder for us and that have had us scrambling for points. If it doesn’t happen in this event, we still have another two to go.”
The final two events of the season are at Perth and Newton Stewart, but a Scottish title win next weekend would bring Rae a third title in fewer than 12 months after he and Bogie swept to British and Scottish success in 2011.
The UK scene is one Rae misses, but he hopes to revisit the British Championship again in future should finances permit.
“We’d definitely like to be doing more events,” he admitted. “This year, the British Championship changed to two-wheel-drive only and we weren’t keen on going back to that.”