Tunnocks Tour of Mull

Tunnocks Tour of Mull

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

It's Been A While - So Time to Post an In-Car Video With Callum Duffy

It's been a while since I last posted here.  Good to see the successor Mull Rally seems to be doing OK - will be keeping an eye on it again in 6 weeks time.  Good luck to the organisers and competitors.

Meanwhile, here's and excellent in-car video of Calum Duffy in the Escort along Gribun in 2010.

Some points to note:

- a big "moment" about 2 minutes in
- from 5:45 it gets really quick
- my favourite pacenote "flat to the phone box"
- from 6 minutes as we go flat to the phone box the car hits the rev limiter in 5th.  Gulp!
- although the earlier part of the stage doesn't look that quick, the car must be in the air about 20 times in 5 minutes, the road is incredibly narrow and bumpy, and just check out those corners over blind brows where a slight off will put you into a cliff or down into the sea.  Brave stuff, and clearly the car takes an enormous amount of punishment on this stage alone.

Love it!


Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Good News

The event has a new organiser and will be known as The Mull Rally.

Good luck to the new team - you have quite some heritage to both protect and enjoy.

Thursday, 18 March 2010

Very Bad News

In some very sad news, revealled over the past couple of weeks, first as speculation then as official news from the 2300 club, the Tour of Mull 2010 has been cancelled.

You can read the reasons at the 2300 club site - in summary it seems to be problems with a minority of what seem to be either protestors or people who just don't feel the need to co-operate with the event alongside some complaints about the organisation.

Whilst I can't say that I understand or have any visibility of these issues, what I can say is that this is a huge loss to UK motorsport. An icon event seems to have been lost to enthusiasts, competitors and the island itsself. There are rumours of another organising team stepping up to take over the event, but that seems to be unlikely this late in the year. I hope they can, but it would be great to see the original team and all the organisational issues resolved to see the event back on the calendar for 2011.

Sunday, 11 October 2009


After another hard fought event, Calum Duffy came through from 24th after a puncture on Stage 3 to take a magnificent win on a cold and wet / damp 40th Tour of Mull this weekend.
Congratulations to the Duffy boys and to MacGillivray and Harper making an all 2 wheel drive top 3.
Wish we'd been able to be there, sounds like another classic.

For details check out Jaggy Bunnet's Mull Murmurs on the 2300 site: www.2300club.org.

Sunday, 9 November 2008

January 2009: The Epiblogue

Reflections on the event.

Firstly, thanks for those of you who have followed the blog, I hope it gave a feeling for the event - we were aiming for the atmosphere rather than the facts which can be found at the 2300club.org site.

Secondly, much detail has been added - more photos and videos - map references of the locations etc., so it may be worth a review, if you want to see more. Thanks to Simon Turner from the Davey Motors team for his contributions.

We were thinking of Donegal for 2009 or possibly 2010 (given economic conditions and the Euro exchange rate), but even that will have to be going some to equal or come close to Mull. Having been to Mull twice before (BK - before kids) I was concerned that the benefit of hindsight and nostalgia might have meant that the 2008 event would've turned out to be a bit of a disappointment. No need to worry, it was as great an event as ever. Atmosphere, action, giant killing performances (step up Mr Hall in 2008!), record breaking times, changes to the roads, friendliness of the islanders and the rally folk all equalling or bettering any other motorsport event I've been to. So you can compare it with Lombard RAC/Rally GB, Manx International Rally, MotoGP, Goodwood Festival of Speed (this one is a close second!), various kart meetings, Rallycross, Grasstracking, many road rallies which include the Motoring News championship, Rally Ireland, Rally Turkey etc.

Most importantly, thanks to those who didn't get to go to Mull - my wife and children. That they are OK with allowing to indulge in taking my time consuming car away to an event they'd all like to go to is just brilliant. If only Mull was in the school holidays. But then maybe it would become too popular and loose its charm.

So all the best to the 2300 Club, and long may they succeed in delivering "the best rally in the World".

Monday, 13 October 2008

13/10/08 - 21:30 - Back Home Again

What a fabulous weekend - Tour of Mull in a Sunbeam Lotus! Something I've wanted to do every since we got MEP just over 10 years ago.

Calmac Ferry at Craignure (click to enlarge)

Today was all about travel - getting to the ferry in good time, queuing with lots of bleary eyed rally fans and some of the competitor's cars - most in good shape, but Cope's Scooby missing a fair bit of the front end - some spanner and hammer work to be done there.

Damage, But It Could Have Been Much Worse! (click to enlarge)

The 'beam scraped its exhaust again on the ferry ramp, it's still attached but I suspect its a few mil thinner than it used to be. The twin 45s and the exhaust echoed really well inside the ferry, so a bit of immature revving there I'm afraid.

Ah, The Views Just Keep On Coming (click to enlarge)

In Oban, straight into the Esso station for a filling of Super Unleaded (didn't mention it earlier but we took a tank of unleaded in Salen on Saturday afternoon - used Nitrox additive and the motor seemed to be fine on that mixture). The A82 wasn't much fun - too many trucks,coaches and rain but progress was steady. More Tesco 99 in Glasgow and again in Carlisle.

The worst part of the journey was the 90 minute hold up around J10 on the M74. Here the Sunbeam hit its first problem of the whole weekend - the temperature gauge was rising rather high. We pulled over and quickly diagnosed a corroded cable connection for the fan over-ride switch. 5 minutes of freshening up of the joint and we were back underway with the over-ride switch on so the fan was running full time. No problems from then onwards.

Andy's encyclopedic memory for song lyrics meant much singing on the rest of the journey as we plundered the iPod's extensive choice of music. Having said that, we've been back 1.5 hours now and my ears are still ringing! We also shared some thoughts on the pros of the weekend and what we would like to be different if we did this another time.

The whole atmosphere of the event on the island
The warm welcome
Marshalling at scruitineering - it might seem a menial job lining cars up to get into the scruit bay, but what better way to get up close to the cars and chat with the crews?
The Malcolm Davey Mk1 Escort crew - in the hotel, in the Mishnish and on the stages. The guys didn't finish, but were still grinning after their retirement
A Mk2 Escort at 150mph on a single track road in the dark and in the mist
A deafening Toyota Starlet
The Sunbeam taking us there and bringing us home again, in fine style and creating a talking point for anyone to chat with us
The blog making the news on the 2300 club home page
Meeting Calum Duffy
Paul MacKinnnon's maturity, humility and fabulous drive
The big welcome home from the kids - Callum's even done a welcome home picture of the Sunbeam - very sweet

Sunbeam By A Five Year Old (click to enlarge)

Errm, a tough one this, but probably the minor access problem at Loch Tuath - I hope the event can keep its good relationship with the locals
The Sunbeam's too stiff and too low for the roads on Mull - it needs smoother surfaces!

Just now, sleep is the main requirement!

Oh, and here's a picture just for Callum (Hallworth that is, not Duffy!).

Wheels, Details, Close-Ups (click to enlarge)

Sunday, 12 October 2008

Read Again!

If you've been keeping up with the blog over the weekend, it's probably worth going back through it again as we've added pictures to some of the posts at a later date.

Here's a blog listing the results at Rallybuzz

Thanks for reading!

12/10/2008 - 21.30 - Trophies and Fireworks

Not really an early start today. Good breakfast again at the Glenforsa hotel, got us up and running, eventually.

Glenforsa (click to enlarge) Location

Coffee and cake in Tobermory (healthy lunch!) whilst we waited for the winners' parade.

Tobermory Main Street (click to enlarge) Location

It's official, Paul MacKinnon won the event from Callum Duffy. 9 seconds being the closest margin for many years and a testament to the battle at the front of the field.

MacKinnon, Duffy and Bonniwell parked the cars up in front of the Aros Hall and the whole of the harbour front was full of folk. Whilst all the cars attracted attention, it was Duffy's Mk2 Exocet that created the most interest. Carbon everywhere, sequential shift, JRE motor, perfectly crafted alloy components etc. When is a Mk2 no longer a Mk2? Don't care really, as long as it goes like stink and can take the fight to the Scoobies.

Duffy's Motor (click to enlarge)

Neil Molyneux (Chairman) Chats to Paul MacKinnon (Winner) (click to enlarge)

In traditional style, the cars were lead along the main street by a piper and the Tunnocks old fashioned van to the winners ramp in the car park.

Champagne followed in equally traditional fashion.

(click to enlarge) Location

Whilst waiting for the presentations we headed for the traditional meeting point - the Mishnish pub. It used to be the yellow building in the Tobermory / Balamory pictures, but its black now. Its a really traditional pub with a great atmosphere and always seems to be involved with sponsoring a few crews on the rally. There were plenty of motorsport fans in there so the big screen TVs were showing the F1 GP (why was Hamilton given a penalty for a fine overtaking move?) and the British Superbikes from Brands.

Big cheers for Duffy at the presentations, but louder and longer for the achievement of Paul MacKinnon - hopefully this is the start of a successful career for Paul - a really appreciative audience. Plenty of cheering for MacCrone in the 205 - a fantastic result in an the ageing car.

Following a healthy lunch, we celebrated the end of the event with a marginally more healthy (there were at least some vegetables involved) with a curry in Back Brae, just off Main Street. Very welcome.

Ending with the day with a bang, fireworks reflecting in the calm waters of the harbour bring the event to close for another year.

(click to enlarge)

12/10/2008 - 11:00 - Saturday Night/Sunday Morning - Andy

So Saturday afternoon ends and its now into the final 5 stages of the rally. There are one or two brief showers but not really enough to dampen either the roads or the spirits and by the time the cars are due through the first night stage the sky is clear and the landscape illuminated by the moon.

Fed and watered at the Balachroy in Dervaig, where we received a tradition Scottish welcome reserved only for the English, we headed out to the first stage of the evening. This was a very long stage and the record has been held for sometime by Neil MacKinnon. The stage record was smashed by a hard charging Duffy who, for the first time in the event, seemed to be pushing really hard to overcome Paul MacKinnon, beating the previous record by 12 seconds. Can you imagine his disappointment at the time control when he sees that Paul had also beaten his Dad's record.....but by 20 seconds.

With 3 stages to go then Paul leads Calum by 40 seconds and we are off to the last stage of the event, walking in to the stage from the finish for about a mile up the Glen Aros road. This is a fully flat out section with sweeping rights and lefts, crests and bumps. To make matters trickier for the drivers the temperature has dropped and a fog has decended through the forest making for a very mystical vista for the hardy few spectators.

MacKinnon is still first through, giving the Subaru everything through this last section and looking a little ragged.....and no wonder, he is closely followed by Duffy, no 1 minute interval here approaching the end of this 14 mile stage. Duffy is flat in his Escort, validating his claims of gearing to top out at 150mph!!!!.

Duffy at 150 in the Fog Heading Towards Salen on the Glen Road (click to play) Location

Many drivers are taking it fairly easily towards the end of this final stage as they nurse their cars to a finish. However, I have mentioned him before and he is getting a final mention now, McKenna in his Starlet is astonishing through this section, his exhaust note wailing throught the foggy valley and echoing off the trees like some sort of demented banshee. Its a fine end to the event.

As we walk from the stage we stop to find out the times of Mackinnon and Duffy from the final time control and find that Duffy has taken 31 seconds out of the youngster on that final stage.....but is it enough?

A couple of points of interest, the crew of car 103 that we have been following are already back at the hotel when we arrive at about 3am. Unfortunately they have broken their diff on the first stage of the night so were forced to retire...so thats bad luck.

Another shout goes out to the two lads stood with us on the last stage who were servicing for car 130, a white Astra GSI. The two of them and the driver and co-driver have been sleeping in the service barge all weekend makieng their achievement of getting to the finish even more remarkable.

Luxury Accommodation

So its Sunday lunchtime now and the sun is shining on Mull, we will be going into Tobermory tonight for a curry and to watch the fireworks.

What are my impressions of the Tour of Mull as a first timer?

This is rallying as it should be, enthusiasts spectating and competing and a real sense of community. Its the atmosphere that I remember from the halcyon days of the RAC rally when they toured England, Scotland and Wales in a marathon 5 days driving day and night and exactly what the current Rally GB can never be again. Its changed forever, not necessarily for the better. Its important that TOM doesn't get too big for its boots and retains its clubmans feel. It could, no doubt, be a much higher level event than it is but then it wouldn't be the 'Best Rally in the World'.

I would recommend anyone with a genuine interest to come to this event and experience the atmosphere. I will be back...certainly.

11/10/2008 - 15:53 - Gribun

Stunning coastal views highlighted by the sunshine. Breathtaking, even without Duffy on full chat.

(click to enlarge) Location

Here we can see about 1 mile of the stage as it skirts along the coast. Sweeping corners, blind crest, a narrow hump back bridge and constant crests and dips make for great viewing. MacKinnon had a moment on a crest just after the bridge, Duffy smooth and getting some air (with the Ecca looking a little under damped) but the flying Fiesta of Hall jnt took the yumping distance award. I guess you need to make up for less power by being a bit braver.

Duffy (click to enlarge)

Harper (click to enlarge)

Hall (click to enlarge)

A delay late in the running order delays us a bit, but it just means we'll be a bit later for dinner at the Bellachroy in Dervaig.

Basking 'beam (click to enlarge) Location

11/10/08 - 13:30 - Loch Tuath

The first daylight stage and we're catching the action on a very fast straight just up from the start. Officialdom a bit of a problem here - we've not encountered this before, but there's insistence we don't walk up the closed road. The marshals are only doing what they've been asked to do and there needs to be respect for the locals, but restricting access and not publishing this somewhere (e.g. in the programme) is something that needs to be sorted for next year. There's a fine line between local considerations and making life difficult for spectators who help to bring the financial benefits of the event to the island.

Anyway, its all very quick as the roads are pretty much dry in most places with only the occasional damp patch or mini stream crossing the road. Could catch out the unwary on slicks. Glorious sunshine but breezy.

Pye, Bardy and Harper were on it despite cold tyres with Duffy still looking a little restrained. Either way, the flock of canada geese didn't appear too impressed.

Duffy (click to enlarge)

Starlet (click to enlarge)

Geese (click to enlarge)

Sunbeam Suzuki (click to enlarge)

And the boys from Team Glenforsa (click to enlarge)

After being deafened again, Andy names the Toyota Starlet his car of the event.

Saturday, 11 October 2008

11/10/2008 - 10:30 - Friday Night / Saturday Morning Update

See also the update from Andy below. Sorry no pictures this time, too dark out there!

The TOM continues to shine - we were at the river bridge at Dervaig last night. I'm thinking Duffy's car might be getting too good - it sticks like glue so he doesn't look his usual flambouyant self, but no denying its quick. Before MacKinnon senior went out last night (overheating) Duffy was 2 seconds down over the Glen road - pretty good over a drying road which still had deep puddles in places.

Also watched at Mishnish Lochs at the big downhill right hand hairpin on the approach to Dervaig. The locals just seem to drive round it, but there was plenty of sideways / handbrake action elsewhere. James MacGillivray had a big overshoot(you could see it coming about 300m from the corner) but the wide run off meant he sees another day.

Car 92 Sunbeam Suzuki going really well - sounds sweet and looks nicely balanced and pretty quick for a 1300 too. Top marks to the Mk1 Escorts 103 and 104 who came through Dervaig about 20m apart and showing synchronised swimming potential with their sideways antics at the T junction.

A very vocal crowd outside the Bellachroy in Dervaig - big cheers for the local crews.

And in an off-rally update we've seen a few seals bobbing in Aros bay , a barn owl in flight and we didn't need an alarm clock this morning as a helicopter came into land next to the hotel.

Off to see what happens in the daylight now, and hopefully there'll be some photos to add.

Don't forget to check out the Mull Murmurs updates at www.2300club.org for more accurate info!

11/10/2008 - 10:00 - Saturday morning update - Andy

Just finishing breakfast after about 6 hours sleep. Eventually returned to hotel at about 03:30 last night following an action packed night of spectating in the Dervaig area. Unfortunately Dervaig was a wireless free zone...and I don't mean you didn't have to pay for it....there wasn't any, so we were unable to update directly from the stages.

The guys in car 103 failed us with the vatanen wave but they can be excused as they are progressing well and the car still looks mint in the hotel car park...keep it up fellas!

Forgive me a moment whilst I get a bit technical but prior to, but part of, scrutineering is the noise check. Rally cars are fired up and measured to make sure that they are within certain tolerances. Now I can only assume that the equipment wasn't working at noise when a certain Toyota Starlet turned up...either that or he had a block of wood under the accelerator to make sure he didn't give it full bifters. This car is quite the loudest rally car I have ever heard, even surpassing the halcyon days of the 6R4 through the forests. I imagine that living under the approach to Heathrow airport is preferrable to living next door to this guy. Whilst we can't accurately measure it we estimated we could hear this thing from 5 miles away....even though the Mull air is quite rarified. This is one loud motor.

This morning the weather is good, blue skies with aa bit of cloud but quite windy so should be a good day for spectating.The question is can young Paul McKinnon keep his lead with Calum Duffy breathing down his neck and drying roads. Should be a great battle.

Need to sign off now and get ready to brave the outside world and tour the island for a replenishment to our ever diminishing fuel level. Might struggle to find 99 octane here but I bet Duffy has some!!!

On the subject of the Sunbeam, it continues to go well but I don't think that the bumpy Mull roads agree with its low rear set up and the exhauist frequently bottoms out...but its hanging on in there.

Bye for now.

Friday, 10 October 2008

10/10/2008 - 17:00 - The Final Countdown

ok...Andy here....returned to the hotel following a long day in Tobermorey marshalling at scrutineering. I have to say that I retract my original comments about being a glorified NCP attendant, it was actually a very enjoyable day but a long time spent on my feet.

Highlights of marshalling were the people just stopping and chatting and the general atmosphere. A number of cars took the eye, especially a fabulous Mk2 Escort in blue with paddle shift gears and full digital dash...it was like a WRC car attending a fancy dress party.

In a couple of hours we will be heading out to stage 1 spectating at a junction over a bridge just outside Dervaig. The crew of the Mk1 Mexico on the previous post are out with the polish and they have promised to give us a Vatanen style wave on full opposite lock with one hand. They do freely admit to a liklihood of running out of talent during such a maneouver though.

Weather update is that it hasn't rained now since about 11am but its not warm enough to dry up the roads so should still make for a slippy night for the plethora of Escorts on show.

Neil....bless him...is catching 40 winks whilst I type this but he is getting on a bit so its only to be expected.

As I write this blog I am reminded of the scene from Apollo 13 when Tom Hanks as Jim Lovell is broadcasting live to the nation from his spaceship on its ill fated trip to the moon. He was completely unaware that no-one was really following their progress as he broadcast....which is probably exactly the same for this blog.

So this is Apollo 13 signing off and our next update should come from the stages tonight near Dervaig.....which again is probably quite like a moonscape!!!

10/10/2008 - 15:20 Live from Scrutineering

The rally forum went well last night. Much talk about the new tar on the glen road - it's going to be slippy and the huge step offs are going to stop some of the cutting that usually goes on.

Duffy, Cressey and Grindrod

Calum Duffy is packing 330bhp in his new Mk2 and it's geared for 150mph. He reckons that he'll hit the rev limited in top on the glen tonight...

Where do you hold scruitineering on a Scottish island rally? Not a trick question, as the answer is obvious - in the yard at the distillery of course.

Tiger or Malt In Your Tank? (click to enlarge)

Still's Eye View (click to enlarge)

There's a real buzz at scruit today and now everyone's had cuts put into their inters, the rain's even stopped. It's really warm here today too. Having pushed the cars in the queue we've decided the Lancers are the heaviest cars in the field and the Starlet's the lightest.

Had a good look at the Sunbeam Suzuki which is very nicely turned out and has the tiny 1300 pushed right back in the bay - should be nicely balanced - good luck car 92.

Here's the Sunbeam Suzuki with Motorsport News guy Matt Burt (click to enlarge)

And here's one for Lisa (click to enlarge)

Looking forward to the first stage now, due in about 5 hrs.

Thanks to 2300 club for featuring us on the news page, oh and the Sunbeam's been attracting attention on the quayside today.

More early tomorrow with piccies.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

09/10/2008 - 17.45 - Go North They Said

Hey, it's not that far really. 360 miles from North Wales to Mull in about 6.5 hours travelling and 7.5 hours in total. Visited Tesco at Carlisle and Glasgow to fill up with 99 Superunleaded and we seem to be doing about 24 mpg. However, no super at Tesco in Oban so Esso to the rescue.

The further north we got the worse the weather became - good sunshine to Carlisle, clouds to Glasgow then light rain to Oban. Heavy rain on Mull itsself.

Lunch on the shore of Loch Lomond where the view was limited by the clouds.

(click to enlarge) Location

We were in Oban way too early for the 18:00 ferry so we were into the wait queue for the 16:00. One cup of coffee later and we were on the earlier Isle of Mull Calmac ferry and smoothly over to Mull in 45 mins. Oh what joy - the sound of the twin 45s and straight through exhaust echoing around the inside of a ferry. :-) A Rover Mini, a couple of Evos and a Scooby on trailers joined us on board.

(click to enlarge)


The hotel is fine - like an enormous log cabin. Andy's made up - there's a Mk1 Escort rally car parked in front of the main entrance.

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

07/10/2008 20:00 A74(M)

Nope, plans have not changed, but due to the curious hand of fate I'm currently travelling South on the A74(M) having been to Edinburgh on business. So all the way back to North Wales in order to drive all the way back up again on Thursday.

Ho hum.

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

01/10/2008 - Info Available

Today all the details were downloaded from the web site (www.2300club.org) - entry list, timetable, route maps etc. - its all there (you need to register to get the entry list). It's good stuff. On the days leading up to the event there's a music quiz and Jaggy Bunnet's forum where there'll be a quiz and interviews with some of the competitors etc. And the main event of course, the Tunnock's Tea Cake eating competition!

The road closed times and route maps help you plan where and when to watch. Be careful - you can get trapped in between road closures and not be able to get to the stages you want to see.

We also got the call to marshal today - we'll be helping out getting the cars to queue in something like an orderly fashion (the bus turning circle has to be kept clear) and the into and out of the scrutineering bay. Where is scrutineering? Typically events do scrutineering in a local car dealership or leisure centre, but Mull being Mull, the obvious choice is the malt whisky distillery on the edge of the harbour. It's not ideal - there is only one way in and out of the courtyard so cars have to drive in and be pushed out rather than roll-in / roll-out, but that's the price you have to pay for such a unique and atmospheric place to scrutineer a Ecca Mk2 rally car.

Highlights from the entry list (a very personal interpretation - based on the driver or the car or both!):
Calum Duffy in a Mk2
Neil MacKinnon in a Scooby
James MacGillivray in a Mk2
Tony Bardy in the GTI-R
Daniel Harper and John Cressy in the BMW Minis
Eddie O'Donnell in a Mk2
Billy Bird in the old Astra
Grum Willcock in a Manta
Mike Storrar in an Anglia
Steven Ronaldson in a 6R4 (the sound echoing off the valley sides will be worth the trip to Mull)
Derek Carless in a 205
Donald Brown in a Talbot Sunbeam Suzuki (must take a close look at that one)
Andrew Tearle in an HSR
Martin Oglesby in an Impregacy RWD (???)
Damien Sherry in a RWD Corolla
Shug Rutherford in a RWD 205
Lee Jones in a Talbot Sunbeam
Gary Keenan in a Manta 400
Christopher Barker, Talbot Samba
Brian MacPhil in a RWD Corolla
Gerry Straube in a Lancia Fulvia

Hoping the following will make it from the reserves:
Beefy Fraser in an Avenger Tiger
Andrew Tait in an HS

Maybe you will have spotted my preference for RWD and the 70s and 80s. More action that way.

Tuesday, 30 September 2008

30 Sept 2008 - The First Post

The Best Rally in the World.

So they say about the Tunnocks Tour of Mull. Having been there twice already (BK - before kids), I find it difficult to disagree.

Having enjoyed the spectacle of Rally Ireland in 2007 (its first inclusion in the WRC), Andy and I are heading for Mull (in Argyll, off the West Coast of Scotland) for the 2008 Tunnocks Tour of Mull rally. 9th October 2008. Run by a car club from Lancashire, obviously, the island closes its challenging roads and 150 enthusiastic competitors thrash their machinery over 3 days. Its non-championship but is still over-subscribed every year. Why? Well I hope to capture some of the spirit of the event in this blog, to help you understand why. As a taster, just think of streaming wet roads where a local driver in a Mk2 Escort (Calum Duffy) can be quicker than a WRC spec Scooby - quite a sight.

For details of the event, go to the organiser's web site: www.2300club.org

Planning started at Christmas time, 2007 - getting accomodation is notoriously difficult for this event, with many competitors and spectators going every year and booking their rooms for the next year, as they leave after the event. 30 emails over 2 weeks left us with 2 choices - we chose a B&B on the coast not far from Tobermory and got booked in. The ferry was soon sorted from Oban to Craignure and we were all set, quite a good bit in advance.

You can check out my other blog via www.talbotsunbeam.co.uk for details about our transport - a 1982 Talbot Sunbeam Lotus. Entirely appropriate and right that we should go in this car, but I suspect we might be a bit deaf and have a few headaches by the time we get from Mold in North Wales up to Oban for the ferry.

The journey will be fairly straightforward - M56, M6, A74(M) to Glasgow and then up the A82 through the glens to Oban. Hopefully the weather will be good enough to enjoy the spectacular scenery north of Glasgow and smooth for the crossing. We'll be travelling most of the day on Thursday and arriving at our digs early evening. Plenty of stops are planned on route and centre around Tesco's 99 Super Unleaded! The route is 344 miles and should take us about 6 hours elapsed, so we're allowing 10 hours so we don't miss our ferry and we have plenty of time for coffee breaks.