Fire Up The Quattro. Again.

If, by any chance, you find yourself in Scotland around the middle of next month and are at a loss as to what to do as half the population will have descended upon Westminster, then there’s a brilliant automotive day out in store.

Former World Rally Champion Hannu Mikkola along with a number of rare and exotic Audi quattro rally cars are heading to Knockhill racing circuit next month (16-17 May) where you can see mad Group B machines, the ones that changed rally sport in the 1980s for ever.

The “Flying Finn” and long standing co-driver Arne Hertz will be in attendance with the four-wheel-drive “supercars” that are part of demonstrations and displays at the McRae Rally Challenge, a special two-day rally event celebrating the 20th anniversary of Colin McRae’s World Rally Championship win.

Mikkola, who celebrates his 73rd birthday next month, was active in rallying between 1973-93 and two years after joining Audi, won the 1983 Driver’s World title achieving four wins and three second places in the revolutionary Audi quattro with Hertz.

Mikkola commented: “It’s always nice to get back behind the wheel of an Audi quattro rally car and never fails to bring back special memories for me. Scotland has always been a favourite place of mine to rally in the UK, and I have been fortunate enough to do really well there too. It’s also great to support this event and celebrate a fantastic achievement in British motor sports and remember what Colin accomplished in the sport.”

Mikkola won the 1981 and ‘82 RAC Rallies, that swept through Scotland, and also claimed victory, with Phil Short, on the 1982 Scottish International Rally in an Audi A2 quattro. He missed out on the “world” crown to fellow Audi driver Stig Blomqvist that year – the Swede also claiming the British Open Championship title in 1983. Various derivatives of the Audi quattro were also victorious in Scotland in the hands of Blomqvist (1983), Malcolm Wilson (1985) and David Llewellin (1987).

The original Audi quattro rallycar debuted in 1980 while the Audi Sport quattro S1 E2 that Mikkola drives at the Colin McRae Anniversary event was rallied in 1985. Between 1981-85, the quattro won 23 WRC events and netted two WRC Manufacturers’ titles (1982/84).

Knockhill’s a great circuit and the home track of BTCC legend Gordon Shedden. So if you’re up that way why not give it a go. Details here.

Geoff Maxted