Happy Birthday, Colin McRae!

Every once in a while, someone comes along with the talent, charisma, and that little extra something that not only makes them a champion, but a star. All silliness aside, here is my humble tribute to a man I admire and respect: Colin McRae.

He can be both genial and fiery, without being uncivilized. It’s that dynamic that sets him apart from the field.

His driving style is aggressive, sometimes over the limit, but always thrilling. He has mastered the his craft so well, it’s an art. He can be tidy and lightning quick. He can throw the car sideways to entertain. He can downshift gears in an upside-down car mid-roll. It’s a thing of beauty.

Speaking of his 2006 (and 2007) X Games roll, he has raised the profile of rallying in the US to a level that no PR event could ever reach. Who knew that a Scotsman and a lanky daredevil from Maryland would be the greatest proponents of American rallying?

He’s incredibly ambitious. As a WRC driver, he scored 25 victories and became the youngest ever world champion. But after an unexpected ouster from the WRC, he didn’t beg for anyone’s scraps. In this past year alone, he’s debuted his own R4 race car, entered the Paris-Dakar Rally, spiced up the X Games, drove for Citroen in the Rally of Turkey, released another landmark video game, and will cap it off with the Race of Champions. And he’ll still take the time to chat with a very star-struck rally fan (moi).

And let’s face it–the Scottish accent doesn’t hurt.

So while this little fan tribute can’t rival the world championship title or even the MBE he’s received from the Queen of England, it’s sincere. Seeing Colin McRae in person left me awestruck and even more enamored of one of rallying’s true legends.

Colin and Nicky Grist    2005 RAC Rally From McKlein - greatest rally photographers ever


August 7, 2007. Appreciation, Motorsport, Rally, Rallying, WRC.


  1. The Passing of Colin McRae « What in the World Rally? replied:

    […] My recent birthday tribute to the departed legend. […]

  2. hristoitchov replied:

    Nice read, I can only imagine how devastated you must have been just a little more than a month after writing this article…

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