HERO Scottish Malts Classic Regularity Event is the premier classic car event in Scotland. ‘The Malts’ as it has become affectionately known is a classic blend of regularities and driving tests set in the beautiful scenery Scotland provides. 2018 will see the 16th running of the event, starting from the spectacular and world-renowned Gleneagles Hotel, The Malts has something for everyone. The social side is another reason the event is so popular, we always aim to have everyone back for dinner and to swap stories of the day’s action.
Scottish Malts 2018
In the closest ever finish the 16th running of the Scottish Malts turned out to be a classic that will go down on rallying history for one of the closest finishes in the events history.
After 5-days and nearly a thousand miles around the many whisky distilleries, the top two were tied exactly on the same penalty.
A count back system was used on the ‘furthest cleanest’ rule, and that gave victory to the Lotus Elan of Graham Walker and Sean Toohey as they had a clean run through the first regularity section, the eventual second place crew of dan Gresly and Elise Whyte had dropped just one second – but it was enough.
80 crews started the event from all across the world, including teams from America, Switzerland, Holland, Germany, Ireland and France. The spectacular Gleneagles Hotel would provide the perfect back drop for the start and finish locations.
The first day was supposed to ease competitors into the event, visiting Dunning the village where golfer Colin Montgomerie once lived, and Auchtermuchty which is the home of the Proclaimers.
A visit to St Andrews and this is where the rally started to turn with a few surprises put in by the organisers the majority of the field had already used there ‘joker’ designed to allow crews one mistake without being heavily penalised. Walker and Toohey took the wrong road and the mistake cost them 55 seconds reduced to 5 by the end of the day.
The only crew not to have a joker applied to their times eventually finished in third place overall and was truly a magnificent achievement for the 1934 Bentley 3/4.5 of Bill Clyndert and Jacqui Norman who received a standing ovation at the prize giving from fellow competitors and organisers.
Day one finished back in Creiff Hydro which would be the first of two nights here with a route that would take in more of Perthshire’s rolling countryside. Day two was a lot simpler with more concentration needed on timings rather than map reading. It was extremely tight at the top with twenty seconds separating the top 8 crews, after a circular route taking in Perth and Forfar, before returning back to Creiff Hydro via Dundee and back to Perth. Competitors would also have there first chance at opening up the throttle on the first special tests of the event. This was made even more spectacular as the pre-war cars rumbled round in front of a Spitfire on display there.
As we headed to Inverness, via Glencoe, Fort William and Loch Ness the strains and rigours of the previous days were taking their toll with a number of crews finding themselves parked up on the side of the road needing assistance from the on event service crew. Unfortunately, we would also see the demise and retirement of Paul Bloxidge and Ian Canavan who had worked their way up to second overall being very consistent after a messy day one, however the Porsche 911 would drop a cylinder making it virtually impossible to get up some of the steep hills. With a podium place gone and more possible damage done if they continued they decided to pull out.
77-cars started day four with more distillery visits on the schedule including; Glen Ord, Glenmorangie and Balblair, as we hit the furthest point north of the rally Boanr Bridge before heading south again.
It was another turning point in the overall rankings as the gaps between the top three extended to it’s biggest margin of the event, all three covered by a huge 18 seconds.
The last day would also figure a number of private estates and controls in lay-bys to catch out those thinking the run back to Gleneagles would be an easy one. Graham Walker and Sean Toohey looked nervous as they headed into the first regularity and by their standards they didn’t have a good days. Zeros and ones suddenly turned into threes and fours. For the chasing pack there was hope and so it proved with Dan Gresly and Elise Whyte going the other way, the gap was tightening, and others were also closing in.
By the time the crews reached the finish line there were 5 crews all in with a chance of taking the overall win, it was nail biting as the results crew crunched the numbers with the champagne on ice until the moment of truth. The final result was decided on count back after two crews finished with exactly the same penalty. One second is all that would separate them after 5-days of intense competition.
The roads of Scotland are quiet away from the cities, they provide us with some of the best driving and scenery in the United Kingdom, we guarantee that you will enjoy the experience of these stunning lanes. The Malts gets its name from the whisky distilleries we visit along the way, traditionally we try and site some driving tests at these venues, but we also visit castles, stately homes and attractions en route, the variation is wonderful. The 16th Scottish Malts, one of HERO’s most popular events, will once again take you through some of the UK’s most spectacular scenery for this Introductory Level five day regularity event. Driving during daylight hours you’ll visit bonnie glens & lochs, stately homes & castles across the whole of Scotland from our start and finish at the magnificent Gleneagles Hotel, with the only 2 Michelin Star restaurant north of the border. During the event we’ll only be using three hotels meaning you won’t be packing your case every morning; so you’ll feel more relaxed whilst reflecting over dinner and taking a wee local dram at the end of the day. Quiet country lanes that afford stunning vistas – sometimes dreaming that you’re the only car around for miles. Keep a look out for streaming waterfalls, majestic Stags on the hills and the occasional soaring Osprey. From breath-taking mountains to the rugged coastline, you’ll take in the best of our Scotland-only event. All this combined with just 180 miles per day using straightforward tulip style road books means entries will fill quickly for this hugely enjoyable rally. Some of the highlights: St Andrews with the world’s most famous golf course, a visit to Balmoral after it was ‘snowed off’ on the 2016 event, tackling a compact version the infamous ‘Loch Ness Monster’ regularity section, whilst collecting miniatures from the distilleries en route & enjoying hospitality at some great venues. The basic tests revisit some old favourites and some new locations as well as ‘spinning around the barrels’ at a couple of the distilleries. The Malts is aimed at a wide range of competitors, the navigation and route are designed to allow those who have never competed before enjoy the challenge and excitement of a truly international event, but still able to test the experienced crews who compete on the event.
On Sunday 15th April
Easy maps, supplied.
Sunday the 15th of April will be documentation and scrutineering day.
Monday heralds the start of the event into a not-too-demanding regularity and a test or two as you traverse the leafy lanes and smile at road-signs you could only ever see in Scotland – Yetts o’ Muckhart, Auchtermuchty et al. The Kingdom of Fife and beautiful St Andrews are yours for lunch, followed by the trip into Perthshire and the Crieff Hydro Hotel for the first of two nights there. With a great history and established in the 19th century for the ‘Cold Water Cure’, the only cure you may wish to take is a drop or two in your dram!
Tuesday is deep in the heart of Perthshire, with its rolling tree-covered hills and grand stately homes. You’ll see the mythical Glamis Castle, previously a Royal Household and the setting for Shakespeare's 'Macbeth', with the mountains for the next day’s drive in the distance. Another warm welcome beckons for your return to the Crieff Hydro.
Wednesday starts with a regularity that passes the Cultybraggan Camp, the eerie looking Historically Listed WWII Army Camp before driving the banks of Loch Earn and into the mountains. The spectacular and atmospheric Glencoe awaits, the most recent of its legends being where James Bond paused with his DB5 during the ‘Skyfall’ film. There will be a few whisky barrels to avoid rubbing at the Ben Nevis Distillery before continuing to the previously mentioned light version of the Loch Ness Monster regularity and the run down to the luxurious Kingsmill Hotel in the heart of old town Inverness.
On Thursday you’ll get even further north, on the opposite side of Loch Ness amongst the impossibly tall conifers and winding single track roads. The Cromarty Firth, full of slumbering North Sea oil rigs, gives you the first of the day’s distilleries before heading over the hills past one of Scotland’s finest views above the Dornoch Firth. A picturesque regularity on the edge of the northerly Sutherland Mountains marks the turn south-wards finally as you still need to squeeze in a couple more distilleries in the afternoon. Views of the Moray Firth will precede the run in to Inverness again, but keep an eye out this time for the dolphins that live near the Kessock Bridge.
Your departure on Friday takes in a little bit of Macbeth country to the east of Inverness, following the river Findhorn south as you head for a test at a whisky distillery that’s turned production to gin. There may still be some snow on the peaks as the route takes you through bleak heather moors “o’er the top” to The Scottish holiday home to the Royal Family, Balmoral Castle. Here the cars will line up right in front of the castle for that unforgettable picture and then it’s onwards via Royal Deeside towards Perth as the distilleries & regularities aren’t finished yet! The finish line at Gleneagles and a glass of celebratory bubbly awaits…
HERO Standard Regulations 2018
Scottish Malts 2018 - ASR's
Entry List in Number order
Scottish Malts 2018 Results Book
Scottish Malts 2018 - Event Report - End of Leg One
Scottish Malts 2018 - Event Report - End of Leg Two
Scottish Malts 2018 - Event Report - End Of Leg Three
Scottish Malts 2018 - Event Report - End Of Leg Four
Scottish Malts 2018 - Event Report - End Of Leg Five