Home   Sport   Article

Inverness co-driver Paul Beaton looks for successful Speyside Rally title defence with Finlay Retson of Blairgowrie

By Will Clark

Register for free to read more of the latest local news. It's easy and will only take a moment.

Click here to sign up to our free newsletters!
Paul Beaton and Finlay Retson alongside their Ford Fiesta Rally which won them the Speyside Stages in 2023 Picture: Daniel Forsyth
Paul Beaton and Finlay Retson alongside their Ford Fiesta Rally which won them the Speyside Stages in 2023 Picture: Daniel Forsyth

CO-Driver Paul Beaton says he hopes a successful defence of the Speyside Stages title can give him and driver Finlay Retson the perfect start to the Scottish Rally Championship.

The duo have paired up again to get behind the wheel as they look to win the Speyside Stages in Elgin for the second year running.

Beaton from Inverness will navigate Blairgowrie driver Retson around the course at Elgin as over 90 cars will be challenging them for the title.

Beaton (43) teamed up with Retson (23) for the first time last year and says their victory in the Speyside Stages showed a lot of promise that they could form a successful partnership.

Beaton says both men are confident they can successfully defend their Speyside title this weekend and see where that takes them for the season.

“I fancy our chances to be honest,” he said.

“The stages are quite short and if we can get out of the blocks quick we could do well. Last year, we went fast during the night stages and defended our lead the next day.

“This year we are straight into it in the morning at Cooper Park, so we will see how it goes.”

The duo will be getting behind the wheel of a different car this year as they will be in a Volkswagen Polo and have also signed a deal to run with MRF tyres.

Tests will be carried out on the car and tyres in Dumfries on Thursday to ensure it is ready to compete in rally driving this weekend.

The duo have secured a number of sponsorship deals, including from television show Bangers and Cash, to enable them to compete this year.

The Speyside Stages is unusually the opening round of the Scottish Rally Championship after the Snowman Rally in Inverness and Ross-shire was moved to October after being forced to cancel its original date in March.

Beaton says they are looking forward to taking on their rivals for the first time this season and seeing what they are up against in the Championship.

“We want to have a really good go at the Scottish Championship this year,” said Beaton.

“Last year, we finished fourth in the Snowman and then we won Speyside, and I thought that Finlay had a bit of talent.

“After that he had a bit of bad luck, as it didn’t go his way with punctures. But he has a lot of talent so I wanted to jump back in the car with him this year.

“Hopefully we can get on the top step, not just for the rally, but also the championship.”

Do you want to respond to this article? If so, click here to submit your thoughts and they may be published in print.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies - Learn More