From my archive………….Colin McRae the 1995 World Rally Champion

Flying Subaru Impreza

Colin McRae and co driver Derek Ringer driving a Subaru Impreza flat out over a 'yump' at Chatsworth House on their way to victory in the 1995 Network Q RAC Rally.

Colin McRae and co driver Derek Ringer (Subaru Impreza) celebrate victory in the 1995 Network Q RAC Rally.

I always used to look forward to an often cold and wet week in mid November, the week of the RAC Rally!

My favourite rally driver for photographs had to be Colin McRae. He was so exciting to see, always driving hard on whichever rally and whatever type of stage he was on be it loose forest gravel or grippy tarmac. Colin would always give it his best, sometimes, and often in his early driving years, disastrously!

I caught the top photo of Colin flying through the Chatsworth House stage on the first day of the 1995 Network Q RAC Rally. Colin, with Derek Ringer in the co-driver’s seat, started the rally on equal points in the World Rally Championship with Subaru team-mate Carlos Sainz. Colin was at his best, fully focused on winning this rally and with it the WRC Championship. Colin stunned everyone right from the start. Spurred on by a partisan local crowd and one of the biggest ever seen on the RAC Colin outpaced Carlos on nearly every stage to win the rally and become the first British and youngest ever World Rally Champion.

Colin continued to entertain the crowds on the world scene with works drives for Citroen, Ford, Skoda and of course Subaru until his untimely death in 2007 in an helicopter crash.

From my archive……….Mid Air Collision between RAF jet fighter and light aircraft

On the 22nd January 1999 whilst riding her horse around the field’s of Mattersey in North Notts my sister in law heard a loud bang and looked up to witness the aftermath of an RAF Tornado jet colliding with a Cessna light aircraft. Wreckage was strewn around a large area of the countryside which also fell dangerously close to the village and the local Primary School. Four people lost their lives in the aircraft but luckily no one was hurt on the ground!

I had a very early call on this and got to the scene within 45 minutes of the accident. This was pre digital camera day’s so everything was shot on film, processed and scanned for transmission to the newspapers using some ‘very slow’ technology!

Here’s how The Independent reported the accident

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/four-killed-as-raf-jet-hits-plane-1075366.html

More images at:  www.shaunflanneryphotography.com

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