Rally cancelled after death of driver

A motor rally was cancelled after a driver was killed and his navigator injured during the event.

Jimmy Girvan, 56, a former Scottish rally champion from the Inverness area, was killed in a crash at the Colin McRae Rally in Perthshire yesterday.

He died at the scene after the car he was driving collided with boulders and left the road, crashing into trees.

The accident happened shortly before 1pm during the forest stages of the rally on a section of the course known as Griffin, to the east of Aberfeldy.

Mr Girvan's navigator and main sponsor, Mike Ramsay, was cut free from the vehicle and treated at the scene before being taken by ambulance to Ninewells Hospital in Dundee.

Police said his injuries were not serious.

Event organisers cancelled the rally immediately after the accident as a mark of respect.

The section of road where the crash took place was closed off to allow police investigators to examine the scene and safely remove the rally car.

A report will be submitted to the Procurator Fiscal, and the Health and Safety Executive was also informed.

Chief Insp Sandy Bowman, head of road policing in Tayside, said: "Our thoughts are with Jimmy's family, friends and wider motor sport community at this very sad time."

The rally is held in memory of Scottish rally champion Colin McRae.

He was killed in a helicopter accident in 2007, along with his young son, Johnny, and two friends.

Mr Girvan was a double Scottish rally champion and enjoyed a successful rallying career over the past 27 years, the event organiser said.

Coltness Car Club said: "He was an extremely popular, well-liked and respected motor sports personality and this tragedy has left fellow competitors and rally fans across Britain shocked at this unexpected loss.

"We are deeply saddened and shocked at this tragedy and wish to extend our heartfelt sympathy to Jimmy's wife, family and wide circle of friends.

"Jimmy was an ebullient and popular member of this close-knit sport and was regarded as a superb ambassador for motor sport. We'll all miss him terribly."