Locals All Set For Mayo Stages Rally
No fewer than twenty-five Mayo & District Motorsport Club competitors will be taking part on their home rally this week-end, all hoping for a successful and safe rally.
Heading the local runners at number 33 is the class 12 Ford Escort of brothers Colin and Michael Loughney. Sponsored by Hillside Service Station, CBE, Griffiths Garage Claremorris, West Fest, Carnival Marquees, McEllin Plant Hire and Group 4 Fabrications, Ballyhaunis based Colin and Michael from Killala are likely to be locked in battle with the car directly behind them, the similar class 12 PC Plastering, Waldron & Associates Claremorris and Scanbitz sponsored Escort of James Culliney from Bekan at number 34.
At number 55 is the black Toyota Corolla of Foxford’sAmbrose Gaughan and Derek Molloy from Lahardane who will be hoping to continue their class 9 winning form from last year’s Border Rally Championship. They carry sponsorship from TreeCare, DM Tyres, Kennedy Motors Belmullet and Gusclad Steel Sheet Profilers, Boyle.
Another class winner last year on the Border Championship was Fergal Loughney, and the Kilfian man is again co-driving for Pauric McGee from Donegal in a class 2 Honda Civic at number 63. At 65Ciaran Walsh from Ballinrobe will be putting his accident on last year’s event behind him as he aims for a top finish in his class 2 Civic which is sponsored by David Walsh Jetting Services, Moran Butchers Belcarra, Brian Rodgers Car Sales, Enda Loughlin Truck and Car Repairs and Corrib Oil.
Another class 12 Escort joins the fray at number 75,Padraic Roche from Killala and Chrystal Culkeenfrom Castlebar competing in the Max Tyres, Killala Motors, Merricks Ballina, Carr’s of Ballina and Fortknox Security sponsored machine. At 76 is the West Tyres Ballinrobe and Shrule sponsored class 11 Corolla ofMatthew and Noel Murphy.
Brendan Corcoran from Castlebar and Jared Gillfrom Bofeenaun are next up at number 77 in a class 2 Civic, while Niall Morley from Knock wheels out his class 9 Escort at number 85. Crossmolina’s John Duffy and John Egan will be gunning for the Honda Challenge prizes at 87 in their class 7 Integra, while behind them Derek Bolton and Trevor O’Connellfrom Ballaghadereen have a class 15 Subaru Impreza in action.
At 95 is Mayo Motor Club’s Young Driver ChampionJustin Ryan from Headford who has Ballinrobe’sAndy Walsh co-driving in the Solar Signs Ireland, Flynn’s Pharmacy Claremorris and Arrabawn Fresh Milk sponsored Honda Civic. 96 is Padraig Mullenfrom Ballymote who is driving a class 6 Peugeot 206. At 102 Ballinrobe’s Adrian and Aidan Fahy wheel out their trusty class 13 Escort, while number 109 sees Liam Devaney from Enniscrone and Ray Carroll from Killala competing in a class 10 Peugeot 205 sponsored by John Munnelly Haulage Killala.
Not competing but providing the important role of course cars which run ahead of the main field to warn of the approaching competitors are Tubbercurry’s Pat McGuinness and Paul Kennedy, and Tony Langdon andEddie Quinn from Ballina, while also taking part in the rally is Gerry Ronan from Bekan who runs at number 32 in his class 8 Mitsubishi Evo 6.
Large Crowd Turns Out For Launch of 2011 McWilliam Park Hotel Mayo Stages Rally
Photo by Michael Donnelly
Pictured at the launch of the Mayo Stages Rally 2011 at The McWilliam Park Hotel, Claremorris, from left: Aaron McHale RSA and Assistant CoC; Richard Finn, Mayo Co.Co.; Neil Sheridan, County Enterprise Board, Mayo Co.Co.; Finbarr Burke, Liam Elwood and Donal Byrne of West Fest; Killian Duffy, Danny McHugh, Supermacs and Costcutter; Noel Brett, CEO RSA; Cathal Doyle M&DMC PRO; Kathleen Kennedy, Mayo Stages Rally Secretary; Sean McHugh CoC Mayo Stages Rally; Eugene Waldron, President Claremorris Chamber of Commerce; Joe Corcoran, President Motor Sport Ireland; Tom Walsh M&DMC Club President and Steward for Mayo Stages Rally; Jimmy Flynn, Flynn Pharmacy; Brendan Mellett, Claremorris Credit Union; Tadhg Buckley, EPS and Seamus Coffey Asst, COC
Press Release for Mayo Stages Rally Launch 2011 – Click Here
RSA and Motorsport Ireland Team Up Promote “Keep the Race in its Place” At Mayo Rally
Road Safety Authority (RSA) and Motorsport Ireland, organisers of the Mayo Rally event which is being staged on Sunday 13 March 2011, have issued a joint safety message to fans attending the sporting event to “Keep the Race in its Place”
RSA and Motorsport Ireland are running a safety campaign around the event to convey life-saving road safety messages to the public and to the high-risk target audiences viewing the event.
“We are getting involved because we want to talk directly to the predominantly young men who follow the sport,”explained Noel Brett, Chief Executive, RSA. “We want to remind them of the need to drive safely – hence our “Keep The Race In Its Place”message.”
“We’re expecting thousands of fans to attend the Mayo Rally,”explained Alex Sinclair, Chief Executive, Motorsport Ireland. “And by teaming up with the RSA we want to emphasise the importance of safety, both on the rally course and on the open road. And anyone attending the rally will be getting the message that ‘safety wins’ loud and clear.”
“Keep the Race in its Place”campaign reminds people to only watch the Special Stages from safety zones, never to enter prohibited areas, and between stages and afterwards, to follow the rally drivers’ lead by staying within the speed limits, by staying belted-in, and by never ever drinking and driving.
this example is well known rally driver Aaron McHale, Board Member of the RSA, successful rally driver and son of rallying legend Austin McHale. Aaron is helping to get across these important safety messages to the public as part of an advertising campaign.
“As a rally driver I am acutely aware of the need for safety,”explained Aaron McHale, “It is the top priority for all rally drivers and it should be the top priority for all road users. You simply cannot drive on open roads the same way that professional Rally drivers do on closed roads with a co-driver warning you of upcoming obstacles and hazards. Ordinary drivers just don’t drive under the same strict health and safety requirements and when driving on public roads must obey the rules of the road.”
travelling to and from the Mayo Rally on 13 March are urged to heed the message from the rally drivers – to ‘Keep the Race in its Place’, slow down, don’t drink and drive and always wear a seatbelt.
Programmes are now on sale
at the following locations:
Higgins Topaz Service Station
Hillside Service Station (Paul Hunt)
O’Dea’s Costcutter Express
Esso (24hour) N17
McManus Corner shop
Burkes corner shop/pub
Looking for Accommodation for the Mayo Stages Rally 2011?
Our Main Sponsor Mc William Park Hotel.
Contact: Tel +353 (0)94 9378000
Clar Ird Claremorris have a database of accomodation in the Claremorris and surrounding area.
Contact: Tel: +353 (0)94 9371830
Office hours 09.00 – 17.00hrs
Mayo Competitors Win Junior Section of Galway International Rally
Ciarán Walsh and Aidan Gannon have started their motorsport year in some style. The Ballinrobe / Tubbercurry pairing claimed overall victory on the Junior section of the Galway International Rally at the week-end. It was a superb result for the Honda Civic crew who finished 9.7 seconds ahead of their nearest challengers after six challenging stages.
The traditional season opener, the 2011 running of the Galway International Rally may have been faced with a significantly smaller field of entrants compared to recent years, a reflection of the economic gloom in the country at present, but despite that, and extremely wet weather conditions over the week-end, those that did make it out onto the stages enjoyed a well-run two day event.
Tim McNulty put in a polished drive in his Subaru Impreza WRC to claim his first Galway win, the Meath man and co-driver Paul Kiely always in control from the first stage onwards to finish over four minutes ahead of the similar car of Kevin Barrett and Sean Mullally.
Other Mayo competitors also recorded top results. Padraic Roche from Killala and Fergal Loughney from Kilfian finished 9th overall in the National Category and second in class 12 in their Ford Escort, while David Carney from Aughagower completed the International section of the rally in 12th overall and 2nd in class 2 in his Citroen C2.
And behind Walsh and Gannon, Headford’s Justin Ryan and Andy Walsh from Ballinrobe brought their Civic home in fourth place in the Junior category. retirements included co-driver Paul McGee from Carrowmore-Lacken who retired on the first stage with differential problems in the Mistubishi of Stephen Wright, while Seamus Coffey from Ballyhaunis co-driving for John McGettrick had to call it a day after special stage three with damage sustained with a puncture.
All attention now turns to the Mayo Stages Rally which takes place on March 13th, with entries already coming in rapidly for the Claremorris based event.
Mayo Motorsport Club
Celebrates Successful Year
With the motorsport year drawing to a close, members of Mayo & District Motorsport Club gathered at the Gateway Hotel in Swinford on Friday last to commemorate another successful year, and to present club members with awards for their achievements throughout the season.
A busy 2010 saw the club run the highly successful Mayo Stages Rally in March, as well as five Autocross events between May and October. Held at Harrington’s Quarry near Swinford, Mayo & District Motorsport Club’s Autocross venue is widely regarded as one of the best loose surface circuits in the country, and compére for the evening Willie Durcan thanked Frank and Brian Harrington and their staff for their ongoing support and use of the facility.
Among those to be honoured was James McGreal from Foxford who retained the Frank Harrington Trophy for overall Mayo Loose Surface Autocross Champion for the second successive year against stiff opposition from all over the country. Accepting the award James, who has been a club stalwart since its founding days back in 1976, said he was proud to be a member of Mayo Motorsport Club and – much to the dismay of his fellow competitors – promised to be back in 2011 to defend his title.
Award winners with Mayo and District Club committee members.
Also receiving an award for the second year was Justin Ryan from Headford who retained the Mayo Autocross Young Driver Championship title he won last year. He didn’t have it all his own way though, Alan Moran from Foxford pushing all the way to the finishing flag. Designed to encourage young drivers looking to get started in motorsport, the Young Driver Championship has been a huge success, attracting large numbers of local competitors each year.Awards were also presented to the top three club competitors within the overall Autocross championship. Matthew Murphy from Shrule was the top placed finisher ahead of Brendan Doherty from Castlebar and Sean McHugh from Bekan.
Of course it takes a huge amount of work to organise and run these motorsport events, and in recognition of their work behind the scenes two special presentations were made to individuals who had worked tirelessly on behalf of the club all year. Marshal of the Year was awarded to David Jordan from Aughagower, while the Mayo & District Motorsport Club Person of the Year award was presented to Kathleen Kennedy from Tubbercurry. In 2010 Kathleen took on the onerous responsibility of being secretary for every event the club organised – from the Mayo Stages Rally to the five Autocross events, yet still found time to help out on events run by other clubs, as well as compete on selected sprint events.
The club is already looking forward to 2011 with planning for the Mayo Stages Rally in March in full progress, while a full Autocross season is also scheduled to be held commencing in May.
The Mayo Stages Rally 2010 proved to be extremely tough for all competitors, especially for all the local crews. Out of the twenty six local starters only sixteen made it back to the McWilliam Park Hotel. A testament to how challenging the event was.
First Mayo crew home were Mervyn & Derek Deane from Williamstown in there class 13 Ford Mark 2 escort. They finished the day in 13th overall and 3rd in class. An excellent result considering the stiff competition. Mervyn also picked up the coveted Eddie O’ Hora memorial for the fastest Mayo modified crew home.
Gerry Ronan was next up in his Mitsubishi Evo 6. The Bekan man put in a sterling drive to finish in an excellent 23rd overall and 3rd in class eight. He also had the honor of taking home the “Best in Bekan Award”(For the fastest crew from the Bekan Area). As the rest of the Bekan challengers fell by the way side Gerry coasted to victory.
In an incredible 40th overall Fiachra Moran & Shane O’Brien from Castlebar brought their pristine Ford Escort Mark 2 home 3rd in class 12. This was an astonishing achievement for Fiachra as it was his first time ever competing in a rear wheel drive rally car. He slowly beaded himself into the car over the first 2 stages and found himself in 80th position and seventh in class. Stage 3 was a turn around for the books though the Castlebar man really put the foot to the floor as he climbed 30 places in the overall standings to be in 50th and 5 places in the class to be in second. He finished the rally 10 places higher in 40th position.
Just one place behind was Fergal Loughney from Killala. Fergal was navigating for Donegal man Pauric McGee and ably guided him through the Mayo Stages. The pair finished in 41st overall.
Walter Burke from Williamston entertained his way to 46th overall. His sideways driving style in his Mark 2 Escort was a real crowd pleaser.
Ciaran Kennedy Co driven by Paul McGinnis, brought his red Honda Civic across the line in 48th overall and 4th in class. The crew thoroughly enjoyed the day. Hot on his heals was David Carney. The young Aughagower man piloted his Citroen C2 R2 to a fine 49th overall only 7 seconds behind Ciaran Kennedy. This was only David’s second time using the little French pocket rocket his first being the Galway International Rally in February where he finished 22nd overall. At the finish David said “It’s all a learning process .We are getting there! I am feeling much happier with the car and my driving now”. David had a relatively trouble free day his only setbacks were two overshoots on stages 1 & 3.
Chrystal Culkeen from Castlebar was co-driving for Ruairi Maguire from Strabane they finished in 52nd overall and 7th in class 6.
Niall Morley from Bekan was to be the next man home and was to be given the honor of being runner up in the Bekan Challenge. Niall was speechless at the finish and was overjoyed to have been runner up to Gerry Ronan. He finished the rally 53rd overall and 5th in class.
Marcus Molloy & Damien Cleary from Foxford had mixed day. It started well with a clean run over stage 1 but things rapidly deteriorated on stage 2 with a spin and an overshoot. This was to set a trend for the remainder of the day. But the biggest moment was to come on stage 8. Marcus takes up the story “ We came around a tight left corner and the car broke away from me. There was drain on the outside and we slipped down” “Luckily we were carrying enough speed to get out with minimal time loss and damage but it was a big moment!”
Eoin McGreal with co-driver Jonathan Rice from Castlebar had a great day’s rallying. Eoin in his Vauxhall Chevette utilized every horsepower under the bonnet of the car to finish in 63rd overall. He drove the door handles off it all day and was a crowd favourite as the Chevette usually came into view going sideways!
Ballinrobe Mathew Murphy had John Burke shouting the notes. They were very happy with the result at the finish the event 65th overall and 7th in class. At the end of the event they were asked: Did you have any moments or incidents on the stages? “John quickly pointed out that every corner was an incident!”
Padraic Roche & Co driver Paddy O’Hora from Killala came home in 68th overall and 8th in the very competitive class 12 on a welcome return to the stages.
Coming home in 71st place was Kenneth MacHale from Knockmore he swapped his drivers seat for the navigators on the day and sat beside. But what he didn’t swap was his winning ways. Himself and driver Eamonn McCafferty took a start to finish victory in class 5. They completed the rally with no back breaks and with two broken suspension units! Just to show how hard they were pushing! Two places behind them in the class was Otto Gropler & Paul McGlinchey the Killala man brought his beautiful Ford Ka home in 83rd overall.
Otto was closely followed by Justin Ryan, who only on his second rally put in a great controlled drive to finish in 84th overall. Justin’s co-driver for the day was his father John Ryan. John kept him on the straight and narrow and the pair were delighted at the finish saying “It was an excellent event! Great stages and a great atmosphere, thoroughly enjoyed it”
Unfortunately it wasn’t all good news for the Mayo competitors as many of them fell by the wayside early on.
One of them was Sean McHugh. The Bekan man driving his distinctive BMW M3 Compact broke a driveshaft and was forced to retire thus relinquishing any chance he had at winning the “Battle of Bekan”. Another man’s rally who ended very early on was James Culliney his event ended not even a mile into the first stage with a sensor problem. James was very disappointed but he said he was happy he wasn’t beaten by Sean McHugh to the “Battle of Bekan”! James and his team worked tirelessly the day before the event to replace the clutch on the car which had broken. This made his early retirement even worse.
After the demise of McHugh & Culliney it was all down to Colin Loughney to bring the fight to Gerry Ronan, and that is what he did…. for a while. After stage one Colin was lying in an excellent 34th overall and thirteen seconds ahead of Gerry Ronan. Due to the second stage being much quicker Gerry pulled back seven seconds leaving the gap at five seconds going into stage three. But unfortunately that was to be as far as Colin could bring his challenge. Midway through stage 3 Colin cut a corner clipping a rock. This bent the steering arm and sent him into the ditch. The car suffered damage after the impact and their rally was over. An unfortunate end to a great run.
Barry Cuffe from Belcarra was to suffer a blown engine in his Ford Escort only two km into stage one.
Crossmolina man John Duffy driving his Honda Integra had to park up for the day on stage 4 as a broken driveshaft halted his progress.
One mans rally to end in spectacular style was Ciaran Walsh from Ballinrobe. Ciaran maybe took the rally phrase “Win it or bin it too literally” and unfortunately after leading his class for most of the morning he chose the latter. Ciaran Takes up the story “ The back just got light over a crest and at that stage I was a passenger. We ended up hitting a tree and that was it”
Well mixed fortunes for the competitors on there local rally.
Mayo Stages Rally Is Go!
The months of preparation are almost at a close. Officials are checking paperwork one final time, Stage Commanders are conducting last-minute spot-checks, marshals are gathering their bibs and all-weather gear for a day out in the elements, and competitors are fastening bonnet clips and loading their rally cars onto their trailers. It’s time for the McWilliam Park Hotel Mayo Stages Rally 2010.
The sense of excitement is palpable as officials, spectators and competitors alike eagerly wait for 9am Sunday morning when the leading cars will be flagged away from rally headquarters The McWilliam Park Hotel. It is no exaggeration to say that this Mayo Stages Rally is one of the most eagerly anticipated motorsport events in this country for a long time.
A new location and rally headquarters, huge support from local businesses in Claremorris and surrounding regions, a host of innovative ideas, and, to top it all, a mouthwatering entry list. Combine that with the Mayo Stages Rally being the subject of two separate television programmes. Is it any wonder that anticipation is sky-high?
And what an entry! Since it was revealed last Thursday night, the rally community has been abuzz with the sheer quality and quantity of the field that is coming together to compete in Mayo. More than one observer has said that a finer entry list will not be seen anywhere this year in Ireland. Testament indeed to the hard work of Clerk of the Course Eamonn Walsh and his team at Mayo & District Motorsport Club.
Six World Rally Cars, a new Super 2000 Ford Fiesta making its debut on the National Rally Championship, a plethora of top Group N machinery and a significant overseas contingent are mouthwatering enough, but it is the modified entry list that has everyone drooling, with what is truly the finest line-up of competitive Escort Mark 2 rally cars seen for a long time.
On Saturday evening, a ceremonial start for the leading rally crews will bring glamour and excitement to Claremorris town centre. With live music from 8pm, the first cars are scheduled to arrive at the start ramp at 8.40pm, for what is a great opportunity for families to see these powerful machines up close.
All New Rally Route
Nine stages featuring three tests each run three times make up the 2010 McWilliam Park Mayo Stages Rally. The opening test Woodstock in the Ballindine / Irishtown area gets underway at 9.30am on Sunday morning. It is immediately followed by the opening Logboy stage near Brickens and Bekan at 10.10am and The Five Crossroads stage near Barranacarroll at 10.45am. Competitors then return for service in Claremorris before repeating the loop a further two times. The leading rally cars will return to rally headquarters The McWilliam Park Hotel at 5pm. Full details of the rally route and stage times will be available on the official rally programme which goes on sale in selected newsagents and service stations in the area from Friday evening, price €5.
A small army of volunteers is needed to ensure a safe running of the Mayo Stages Rally. If you would be interesting in lending your support to help out on the day, please contact Chief Marshal David Doherty on 087 2323113 – your assistance would be greatly appreciated.
The meeting points and times for marshals on Sunday morning are as follows:
Stage 1 Woodstock: Meeting at Costcutters Ballindine at 7.30am.
Stage 2 Logboy: Meeting at Costcutters Ballindine at 8.00am.
Stage 3 The Five Crossroads: Meeting at Hillside Service Station (Hunts), Ballyhaunis Road, Claremorris at 8.20am.
The Mads Ostberg Challenge
Before the main field comes through, watch out for course car 002, a Ford Escort driven by World Rally Star Mads Ostberg. The Norwegian has a special co-driver alongside him, Mark Kilgannon from Kiltimagh. Mark was selected by country music star Mick Flavin in a prize draw to sit alongside one of the best drivers in the world. He is certain to have the day of his life!.
The overall winner will probably come from the leading half dozen cars which are lead away by Mayo & District Motorsport Club member Aaron McHale, a former National Rally Champion and winner of this event in 2008. Recently Aaron has been concentrating on the Irish Tarmac Championship, but will have his work cut out to take a second win in Mayo against the quality opposition lined up against him.
Welsh visitor Melvyn Evans makes his first trip to Mayo, but the Subaru WRC driver is the man to beat at the moment, having taken victory on the Dunlop National Rally Championship’s opening round in Birr a fortnight ago. Can he make it two from two?
At three and four are championship stalwarts Niall Maguire and Kevin Barrett in their matching Triton Showers sponsored Subarus. Runner-up last year, Niall is a former multiple national champion and winner here, while Kevin has also achieved national success in the past year.
Seeded five is former Irish Tarmac Champion Derek McGarrity who has a busy week-end, competing on the Bishopscourt Stages Rally in Northern Ireland on Saturday, before heading to Mayo for Sunday’s event.
The outside bet for victory could well be car number six, the Fiesta S2000 of Kilkenny’s Craig Breen. This car forms the basis for World Championship Rallying from next year, and despite being less sophisticated and cheaper compared to the current batch of World Rally Cars, in the hands of young Breen it has been flying, beaten only by the Focus WRC of Gareth McHale on last month’s Galway International Rally. Will we see it claim its first national win on Sunday?
Kevin Kelleher from Cork leads the Group N challengers, and will face stern opposition from the likes of Danny McBride, Sean Flanagan and Trevor Bustard. All of them though may struggle to beat the leading modified crews, with any of the top six crews in class 14 alone capable of finishing in the top five or higher. It is almost impossible to pick a favourite from the likes of Daniel McKenna, Manus Kelly, Maurice Moffett, Camillus Bradley, Damien Gallagher and Trevor Mulligan, while right down into the thirties and forties are competitors who would normally be seeded in the top twenty, such is the level of competition here this week-end.
Watch out also for the cars competing in the Gerry Ronan Transport Group A Challenge. Among those who will be in contention for the prize will be the Toyota Celica of Mark Courtney, the Subarus of Richard Burke and Gary McElhinney and the Escort Cosworth of Colin Flanagan.
Local Crews Ready For Action On Mayo Stages Rally
Once again, the Mayo Stages Rally has attracted a strong local entry, all of them hoping to make an impact on their home event.
Aaron MacHale is not only the highest placed Mayo & District Motorsport Club competitor but the number one seed. Can he repeat his win of two years ago?
Mervyn Deane from Williamstown wheels out the EMP Furniture sponsored class 13 Escort at number 33. Trevor Burke co-drives.
At 41 James Culliney and Eddie McLoughlin are the leading Bekan crew in the PC Plastering, Western Brand Chickens and Roachford Motors sponsored class 12 Escort.
The red class 12 Escort of brothers Colin and Michael Loughney is at 45 with support from JJ Griffith Car Sales, Hillside Service Station and PC Plastering.
Gerry Ronan and Connie Kirrane from Bekan wheel out the class 8 Mitsubishi Evo 6 at number 58.
From Ballisodare, husband and wife pairing Andrew Mullen and Elaine Doherty compete in another class 8 Mitsubishi, this one an Evo 8 at number 60.
At 61, Bekan’s Sean McHugh’s lines up his BMW M3 Compact in class 14.
Ambrose Gaughan from Foxford and Lahardane co-driver Derek Molloy achieved a number of giant-killing results last year in class 9, but face a race against time to fit a new engine and gearbox for this week-end. Starting at number 69, their Toyota Corolla is sponsored by TreeCare.ie, DM Tyres and TDP.ie.
Barry Cuffe from Belcarra wheels out the Elverys Sports and Cuffe Car Sales sponsored class 12 Escort at number 80, while Fiachra Moran and Shane O’Brien from Castlebar are at 84 in another class 12 Escort, carrying sponsorship from Moran Butchers of Belcarra, Corrib Oil, Express Windscreens, James Doyle Tyres, and APM Alarm Systems.
At 87 and 88 are the Crossmolina contingent, the Class 11 Honda Civic of Marcus Molloy and Damien Cleary with support from Murphy’s Garage Ballina and Headford, Derek Molloy Tyres and Judges Honda Ballina just ahead of the class 7 Honda Integra of John Duffy and John Egan.
Ballinrobe’s Ciaran Walsh and Aidan Gannon from Tubbercurry are at number 91 in their class 2 Honda Civic which is supported by D. Walsh & Sons Jetting Ballinrobe, Moran Butchers of Belcarra, Corrib Oil, Enda Loughlin, Murphy John Deere and Brian Rodgers Car Sales. After a class win on last year’s Border Championship, a good result in Mayo may see another championship assault in 2010.
Another class 2 Honda Civic at number 95, that of Belmullet’s Ciaran Kennedy and Paul McGinnis from Ballina. The pair have already opened their National Championship challenge with fifth in class in Birr two weeks ago.
Sponsored by West Tyres Ballinrobe and Shrule, Matthew Murphy from Shrule takes to the Mayo Stages in his class 11 Toyota Corolla after a long break from competitive action. John Burke co-drives.
At 100 David Carney from Aughagower wheels out his Citroen C2R2 Max competing in class 6.
At 101 Kenneth McHale from Knockmore forsakes his usual driving position in his Toyota Yaris to co-drive for Donegal’s Eamonn McCafferty in a class 5 Ford Puma, while at 103 Westport’s Ed Muldoon co-drives the Citroen C2R2 of English visitor Joe Shrimpton.
Padraic Roche and Paddy O’Hora from Killala are at number 107 in their class 12 Escort which is sponsored by Fortknox Security, Max Tyres and Carr’s Ballina. Meanwhile Castlebar’s Eoin McGreal has last year’s Clerk of the Course Jonathan Rice co-driving at number 109 in a class 10 Vauxhall Chevette supported by Castlebar Tool & Plant Hire.
Niall Morley’s Escort is at 111, the Knock / Bekan man with Simon McGuinness co-driving. One place behind are Otto Gropler and Paul McGlinchey from Killala in a class 5 Ford Ka.
Chrystal Kulkeen from Castlebar co-drives for Ruairi Maguire from Strabane at number 115 in a Honda Civic, while Killala’s Fergal Loughney does similar duties in another Civic driven by Pauric McGee from Ballybofey at number 117.
Adrian and Aidan Fahy from Ballinrobe wheel out their class 11 Escort at number 121.
At number 126 Mayo & District Motorsport Club Young Driver Justin Ryan from Headford starts just his second tarmac rally in a class 11 Honda Civic. Dad John Paul Ryan co-drives.
And at number 133, Tom Jordan from Ballinrobe is out in his class 2 Honda Civic.
Best of luck and a safe day’s rallying to all the local competitors.
Entry List Mayo Stages Rally 2010
Ford Focus WRC
Two TV Programmmes On Mayo Stages Rally
The McWilliam Park Hotel Mayo Stages Rally is set to receive unprecedented coverage with the news that the rally will be the subject of two separate television programmmes.
As part of the Dunlop National Rally Championship series, the well-established motorsport programme On The Limit Sports will feature a half-hour review of the Mayo Stages Rally. This programme will be shown on Setanta and other satellite channels such as Motors and Men & Motors.
Additionally, the Mayo Stages Rally will become the first event to be featured as part of a new series on terrestrial television channel TG4. Focusing on the HASS Border Rally Championship, the programme is set to be shown at the prime viewing time of 11.30 am on a Saturday morning a few weeks after the rally, and will be repeated later in the same week.
It means the Mayo Stages Rally will be one of the most widely covered rallies ever, great news for Mayo as well as sponsors, competitors and rally enthusiasts alike.
Mayo & District Motorsport Club Launches McWilliam Park Hotel Mayo Stages Rally 2010
At the official launch of the 2010 McWilliam Park Hotel Mayo Stages Rally, Mayo & District Motorsport Club outlined information about the event and some of the exciting innovations planned. These include a ceremonial start on the Saturday evening, a special competition for Group A cars from 1987 to 1997, and an opportunity to win a prize to co-drive World Rally star Mads Ostberg on the Mayo Stages Rally.
The club also outlined details of its collaboration with the Road Safety Authority (RSA) to promote road safety around the event. The RSA is bringing its Interactive Shuttle to Claremorris and will be open to the public over the rally weekend….
Speaking at the rally launch Mayo & District Motorsport Club Chairman Sean McHugh said, “It is great to welcome the rally to my own local area. Many thanks to the McWilliam Park Hotel which has provided us the opportunity to move to this location. With fresh stages for competitors to sample, it’s a new era for the Mayo Stages Rally”.
Clerk of the Course for the 2010 McWilliam Park Hotel Mayo Stages Rally, Eamonn Walsh said “Tonight’s press launch has set a precedent for the Mayo Stages Rally, and we look forward to running a successful event on March 14. Many thanks to all our sponsors who have made the running of the 2010 Mayo Stages Rally possible”.
Welcoming the rally to the Claremorris region John Cribben, Chairman of Mayo County Council said “I would like to thank Mayo & District Motorsport Club for inviting me to the launch of the 2010 Mayo Stages Rally. This is the first time the event has been held here in Claremorris. It is a huge event for Mayo and for the West of Ireland, bringing thousands of people here over the rally week-end, and will be a major boost to local businesses.”
Sales and Marketing Manager of title sponsors The McWilliam Park Hotel David Glynn said “We are delighted to be associated with the 2010 Mayo Stages Rally. There has been great enthusiasm for the event so far as evidenced by the large turnout here tonight. Congratulations to Eamonn, Killian and their team for their ambition and hard work in bringing this event to this area. We look forward to welcoming all our visitors to Claremorris and the McWilliam Park Hotel on rally week-end.”
Joe Corcoran, President of Motorsport Ireland said “It is wonderful to see a big crowd here tonight for the launch of the Mayo Stages Rally. With a young organizing team and some great sponsors in The McWilliam Park Hotel, Supermacs and Costcutters on board, the 2010 rally is shaping up to be an excellent event. The Mayo club has been to the forefront in promoting initiatives such as road safety in recent years, and having the Road Safety Authority Interactive Shuttle in Claremorris for the rally week-end, will continue to highlight this important message. I would also like to acknowledge Dunlop and Henderson Auto Sport & Spares for their continued contribution to the sport of rallying”.
Speaking on behalf of the Road Safety Authority (RSA), leading rally competitor and RSA Advocate Aaron MacHale said “It is encouraging that there has been a reduction in road deaths in Ireland recently. However a lot of deaths are still related to speed and we need to continue to get the message across to drive carefully on public roads. I would like to thank Mayo & District Motorsport Club and Fleet Transport Magazine for inviting the RSA Interactive Shuttle to the Mayo Stages Rally, and for working with local schools and communities to promote the road safety message”.
Report from October Autocross:
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Lannon Wins Mayo Autocross, McGreal Takes Championship Title
James Lannon from Boyle in Co. Roscommon achieved a long-held ambition on Sunday by claiming his maiden victory on Mayo & District Motorsport Club’s final Autocross of the year. In doing so he became the fifth different winner of the popular loose surface series in as many events, in what has been an enthralling season of motorsport at the challenging 2.7 km circuit at Harrington’s Quarry near Swinford.
It was also a successful day for local hero James McGreal whose third place finish was enough to ensure he retained the Frank Harrington Trophy for Overall Autocross Champion for the second successive year.
Winner of Mayo Autocross on Sunday, James Lannon negotiates the watersplash.
Once again an exciting day’s action saw an incredibly close finish, with Lannon taking victory over the similar car of Peter McCullagh of Maynooth by a mere 0.08 seconds. Indeed after two runs, McCullagh had eased his way to the top of the leaderboard by over a second, but a determined effort from Lannon on the final test saw him take the win by the slimmest of margins. A regular at Mayo Motor Club’s autocross events, the Roscommon man was delighted to have finally achieved the top podium position, after coming close on previous events.
For once James McGreal was unable to match the pace of the leading protagonists, finishing nearly four seconds adrift in third. However another consistent season which has included a win, two seconds and a fourth has ensured the Foxford man in his trusty Subaru Impreza has once again clinched the overall Autocross Championship ahead of Lannon and the winner of the previous round, Walter Burke.
Fourth place on Sunday went to Martin Tynan from Clones in another Mitsubishi, while in fifth was the leading two-wheel drive competitor Benny Quinn from Omagh, who also took the award for winning class 4 in his Escort. Clones man Michael Tynan was sixth ahead of the fabulous sounding JB Buggy of Jason Harron from Kesh who won class 6.
In 8 overall was one of the drivers of the day, Padraic Cawley from Coolaney beating a host of more powerful cars to win class two in a Peugeot 205. The Escort of Williamstown’s Walter Burke suffered gearbox problems on his final run, finishing ninth and second in class 4, while Brian Dunlop from Clogher in Tyrone rounded out the top ten, taking third in class 4 in the process.
Other competitors picking up class awards included Ryan Donnelly from Beragh and Ciaran McCullagh from Maynooth, second and third respectively in class 2. Leroy and Nigel Mills from Trillick in Tyrone were first and second in class 1 in their shared Vauxhall Corsa ahead of Sean Mullervy from Drumlish. On her first visit to a Mayo Autocross, seventeen-year-old Amy Cox from Omagh impressed with her speed in an Escort and collected the ladies award. The Mayo & District Motorsport Club award for the leading club member was presented to Derek Bolton from Ballaghaderreen.
Click here for full results for Frank Harrington Challenge
Report from August Autocross
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Burke Wins Mayo Autocross By A Whisker
An extraordinary close finish saw Walter Burke from Williamstown take victory on Mayo & District Motorsport Club’s Loose Surface Autocross event on Sunday. The Ford Escort driver defeated James McGreal from Foxford by the smallest possible of margins – a mere one hundredth of a second!
A healthy field of forty competitors had assembled for round four of Mayo Motorsport Club’s popular autocross series held at Harrington’s Quarry near Swinford, with all eyes on James McGreal to see if the Subaru driver could repeat his victory of the previous round. The Foxford man wasn’t long getting into his stride, setting a fastest time of 4:26.07 on the first of three timed runs. He was less than half a second up on nearest challenger Andrew Mackarel from Fermanagh, with the class 2 Vauxhall Nova of Maynooth’s Ciaran McCullagh an incredible third overall – this despite breaking an engine mount, and up against much more powerful machinery.
Walter Burke languished in eighth place at this point, but things were to get worse for the Williamstown man. Clipping a bank, he failed to set a time on the second run, pulling out with damaged steering. McGreal meanwhile was on a mission, taking a whopping fifteen seconds from his first effort. Nobody could live with his pace, the Mitsubishi of Martin Tynan from Clones now the nearest rival, but nearly six seconds behind – a lifetime in motorsport terms.
On to the final run, and when McGreal pulled another two and a half seconds out of the bag to set a time of 4:08.24, most assumed that victory was his. That was to ignore former winner Burke however. Fired up after the disappointment of his second run, and with the Escort now back to full health, Walter positively flew around the course, stopping the clocks at 4:08.23, nearly twenty three seconds faster than his opening attempt. Victory was his, but it couldn’t have been closer.
Andrew Mackarel took third in his Mitsubishi albeit over four seconds adrift of the leading duo, with James Lannon from Boyle in another Mitsubishi fourth. Martin Tynan was fifth ahead of the leading class 6 buggy of Joe Cullen from Wexford.
The top ten was rounded out by Michael Sweeney from Boyle in another Mitsubishi followed by the leading class 2 car – the Peugeot 205 of Padraic Cawley from Coolaney. Behind him Ciaran McCullagh had failed to set times on either the second or third runs, but his effort from the opening test was still good enough to net ninth overall and second in class 2. Another Mayo competitor was tenth, Shrule’s Matthew Murphy putting in a fine drive in his Toyota Corolla to win class 3 in the process.
Other award winners included Ballinrobe’s David Walsh and Mervyn Fahy, first and second in class 4 double-driving the same Opel Astra, while in class 1 Sean Mullervy beat his Drumlish team-mate Eamonn Brady by just over half a second in their shared Honda Civic. The Chris Culkeen award for highest placed Mayo Motorsport Club competitor went to Justin Ryan from Headford.
After a period of domination of Mayo autocross events by four-wheel-drive cars, Walter Burke proved on Sunday that a well driven rear-wheel-drive Escort is still a force to be reckoned with. The final round of the 2010 series takes place in October – will the 4WD men bounce back then? Cathal Doyle
Click here for results after round 3 in the Frank Harrington Challenge
Report from July autocross:
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McGreal Returns to the top
Foxfords James McGreal returned to winning form at Harringtons Quary for the 3rd round of the Mayo & District Loose surface autocross 2010. It was the penultimate round of the 2009 championship when James last won. Since then he has been pipped to the post by Eamon Mimnagh twice and Mark Donnelly once but there was nothing that Eamon could do to reel in the Mayo man on the 4th of July event. James took the event by a convincing two second margin to his nearest rival.
That rival was Damian O’Hagan from Omagh in his Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 6. Damian set consistant 2 fastest times all day netting him second place overall. Next up was Andrew Mackarel in his older Mitsubishi Evo 5 gaining the last place on the podium by a scant .6 of a second from Eamon Mimnagh from Omagh.
Sligo’s James Lannon brought his immaculate Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 home in 5 after setting the fastest time on the 2 run but unfortunately he was left in the dark on the 3 run posting a time over ten seconds slower than James McGreal winning time. James lannon has shown great pace over the last few events, a podium finish surely must not be far away for the Boyle man.
Stephen Dixon was the first two wheel drive home in an incredible 6 place overall, It was Stevens first time in Harringtons quarry but he showed his sheer talent as he set a scintillating time on his last run just .7 of a second behind the four wheel drive machine of James Lannon. Right on Stephens heels was Conor Kelly from Tyrone in his Nissan Sunny finishing just .6 of a second behind.
Williamstown’s Walter Burke was next up in his Ford Escort Mark 2 as per usual Walter drifted his way around the 2.7km course in his tail happy car. He set his best time on his final run to net him 8 place overall. Over two seconds behind was Martin Tynan in his Mitsubishi Lancer.
Rounding out the top ten was Ciaran McCullagh the Meath man put in a stirling drive to clinch the final space inside the top ten.
Galway man Frank Byrnes swapped his single seater hillclimb machine and the tarmac of the hills for the gravel of Harringtons quarry and his Peugeot 206 Cup car. He finished the event in 12 place overall.
Second Mayo man home was Pat Higgins from Granard debuting his Subaru Impreza to a fine 13 place overall just .1 of a second behind Frank Byrnes.
Joe Cullen made the long trip from Wexford bringing his amazing motorcycle engined cart cross buggy. The buggy screamed its way around the track setting a time identical to Pat Higgins. Both drivers stopped the clocks at 4:26.77, Pat eventually finished one place in front after a tie breaker.
Next up in 15 place was Matthew Murphy from Shrule he was ahead of a host of Mayo Drivers: Derek Bolton finished 21 position, Alan Moran from Foxford had an incredible run in his class one Astra finished 22, Adrian Fahy from Ballinrobe was 23, Sean McHugh from Bekan had a torrid day being plagued by mechanical trouble in his Subaru and he finished 24. Mayo & Districts Motorsport Club young driver 2009 Justin Ryan was next in 25 after a bad day also.
Foxford’s Stephen Doherty was two places behind in 27 place. Coming home in 28 place was Jared Gill from Bofeenaun in his Peugeot 205, four places ahead of the similar car of Peter MCManamon from Achill.
Eoin McGreal was another four places behind as his day was cut short with mechanical problems. Aidan Fahy from Ballinrobe finished in 40 position overall.
But the day and the overall honours were to belong to one man, James McGreal. The Foxford man shone through with is flat out driving style rewarding him with victory over a very stong field of drivers.
Report from June autocross:
Donnelly Heads Tyrone Top Three Triumph On Mayo Autocross
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On his first visit to Mayo & District Motorsport Club’s Loose Surface Autocross at Harrington’s Quarry near Swinford, Mark Donnelly from Omagh in Co. Tyrone belied his inexperience to claim victory in his Mitsubishi Evo 8. In doing so he emulated the success of his name-sake and neighbour, that Mark Donnelly who is now forging a successful career in Citroen C2R2s having tasted victory on Mayo Autocross events in 2007.
Indeed it was a successful day all round for Omagh competitors as Eamonn Mimnagh and Damian O’Hagan, double driving the same Mitsubishi Evo 5 took second and third respectively.
James McGreal from Foxford in a Subaru Impreza was the highest placed local finisher in fourth after holding second for much of the day, with James Lannon from Boyle in an Evo 9 rounding out the top five.
Over 20 seconds off the pace on the opening of three runs, Mark Donnelly, fresh from his third place finish on the previous week-end’s Mourne Rally, rapidly got to grips with the challenging circuit, on a day when heavy rain showers made conditions difficult for competitors.
Mark Donnelly receiving his trophy for fastest drive of the day from Secretary Kathleen Kennedy and Clerk of the Course Brendan Walsh.
An improvement of over 19 seconds on his second run moved him into contention for a strong finish, but it was his final run of 4 minutes 19.24 seconds, taking another 8 seconds from his previous run that nobody could match. Eamonn Mimnagh, the winner of the opening Mayo Autocross last month, was the nearest challenger but his time was still over 1.5 seconds off the pace of his young rival.
With four wheel drive machinery dominating the leaderboard, another former winner Conor Kelly, also from Tyrone, was the top two wheel drive finisher in his class 2 Nissan Sunny ahead of the class 4 Escort of Williamstown’s Walter Burke.
Class 1 was won by Glen Irwin from Castlederg ahead of Foxford duo Alan Moran and Stephen Doherty. In class 2 Ciaran McCullagh from Maynooth and Brendan Corcoran from Castlebar claimed the runner’s up positions behind Conor Kelly.
Matthew Murphy from Shrule won class 3 ahead of the similar Toyota Corolla of Allen Higgins from Headford and Peter Conroy from Kilmaine. The class 4 runnner’s-up spots were filled by Benny Quinn and Sammy Hamilton, while Joe McHale was the sole representative in class 6 in his fabulous sounding buggy.
Achill’s Brian Lavelle claimed the award for Best Mayo & District Motorsport Club member for the second successive event.
With only three weeks to the next Mayo Loose Surface Autocross on July 4th, planning for the event is already well under way. With two different winners from two events, who will break the Tyrone stranglehold in 2010?
Brian Lavelle accepting his award as highest placed Mayo Club competitor from Chrystal Culkeen.
Photos from June 13th Autocross in Harrington’s Quarry Kilkelly 2010
Report from May Autocross 2010:
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Mimnagh Wins Autocross Opener
Eamonn Mimnagh from Enniskilen, Co. Fermanagh beat all challengers to claim victory on Mayo & District Motorsport Club’s Loose Surface Autocross on Sunday. Driving a Mitsubishi Evo 5, he had to do it the hard way, coming from behind on the final run to beat local favourite James McGreal.
A strong entry of 51 competitors had gathered at Harrington’s Quarry near Swinford for the first of five autocross events to be held this year. Clerk of the Course Brendan Walsh and his team had once again laid on a superb course, with each competitor getting three runs of two laps over the demanding route.
Mimnagh outlined his intentions from the start, setting a time two seconds faster than the Subaru of James McGreal on the opening run, with another Fermanagh visitor, Francis Fee, a further three seconds back. The tables were firrmly reversed on the second run however, with the Foxford man taking nearly ten seconds off his first attempt to lead the Fermanagh duo by two and three seconds respectively.
With hopes high for a home win, McGreal pulled out all the stops on the final run to improve his time by almost another four seconds. It was not enough though. Eamonn Mimnagh put in a dazzling final run in the white Mitsubishi to take almost eight seconds from his previous best, and record victory by two seconds. Behind the battling duo another local – Walter Burke from Williamstown – also reserved his best for last, not only taking third overall ahead of Francis Fee but also winning class four and finishing highest placed two wheel drive competitor in his Ford Escort.
Away from the leading protagonists, competition was just as fierce in the various classes. Behind Water Burke, Enniskillen pair Neil Harron and Ronnie Coulter took the remaining awards in class 4. Nobody could match Conor Kelly in class 3, but locals Matthew Murphy from Ballinrobe and Allen Higgins from Headford kept the Tyrone man on his toes throughout the day to claim the runner-up positions in the category.
Ciaran McCullagh from Maynooth claimed class 2 ahead of Lauris Zdanovics from Oldcastle, while Castlebar’s Brendan Corcoran recovered well from not setting a time on the opening run to take third in class. Of note was young Brian Lavelle from Achill who put in one of the drives of the day to finish fourth in class in his Toyota Corolla. In class 1 Glen Irwin from Tyrone took victory, with Alan Moran from Foxford and Andy Walsh from Ballinrobe maintaining local honour with second and third respectively.
A dramatic start then to the Mayo Autocross season. Last year, James McGreal took victory on three of the five events and claimed the Frank Harrington Trophy for overall Autocross Champion. The Foxford man clearly has carried that form into 2010, but with a host of challengers lining up to dethrone him, he faces a tough batte to retain his title. Round two awaits on June 13th.
McHugh Conquers Kerry
Bekan man Sean McHugh and Co-Driver Niall Morley took a respectable 38 place overall on the 2010 Banna Mini Stages Rally Co. Kerry. The two Mayo & District Motorsport Club members were the sole Mayo competitors to tackle the tough event on the Kerry coast.
After a long drive to Kerry and an uneventful recce of the stages on Saturday, the team took an early night in preparation for the gruelling rally the following day. A reasonable eleven o clock rise on Sunday morning allowed the more social competitors a sleep-in but Sean, Niall and the team were up early and ready for road.
This is the second time that Niall has navigated for Sean and the pairing seems to have really hit it off gaining confidence and speed with every stage. It has been an unlucky year for Sean who didn’t finish five out of seven events that he started due to mechanical issues, so he was really hoping for a good result in Kerry to finish the year on a high point.
Unfortunately Lady Luck was not on their side, as on the road section to the first stage the car developed a misfire. This was a disastrous occurrence. They crawled through the first eleven-kilometer test losing buckets of time on their rivals in the process.
The wounded BMW limped back to the first service in Ardfert where the team descended on it to try and rectify the problems. The short twenty-minute service was too short however and the team could not cure all the cars ailments.
Even though the car was slightly better the pair found themselves running well down the order among slower competitors and this further hampered them as they were held up. A reasonable time through the second and third stage saw them claw back some valuable places on the leader board. This was not helped by an uncharacteristic mistake by Sean that saw the pristine BMW mount a Kerry ditch, with minimal damage but some time loss.
They arrived at the second service halt in 40 place overall, a remarkable achievement in the face of great adversity. Luckily the team was able to diagnose the problem with the engine and rectify it inside the allotted time. It was all too late for Sean and Niall, with only one stage remaining they would not be able to make sufficient time back on their rivals.
But with the car now in perfect condition the Mayo men blasted off the start line of the final stage with a point to prove. Within a short number of kilometers they caught and passed a slower competitor. They pressed on as fast as they dared catching and passing another car before the end of the end of the stage. The glorious sounding BMW echoed between the Kerry hedgerows as Sean wrestled with the steering, the powerful car difficult to handle in the wet and slippery conditions.
The sterling drive on the final stage saw them climb another two places on the leader board to a admirable 38 overall considering all the mechanical maladies it begs the question what could have been?
Sean and Niall were quite happy at the finish of the event, relieved to have finished as it had been a tough day of rallying, “The stages were very slippery, it was a pity about the mechanical problems but that’s rallying!”
It was quite a successful trip for the Mayo men as they claimed 5 in class and 38 overall. Sean would like to thank his dedicated team, and Niall Morley who guided him excellently between the ditches on the stages.
Mayo Competitors Claim Class Awards On Sligo Rally
Ambrose Gaughan / Derek Molloy and David Carney / Ray Fitzpatrick upheld local honour on Sunday’s Sligo Stages Rally, both crews recording top finishes in their respective classes.
A large Mayo contingent descended on Sligo for the popular event, round 7 of the Dunlop National Rally Championship and round 5 of the HASS Border Championship. The rally was won by Welsh visitor Melvyn Evans to add to his success on the Mayo Stages Rally earlier this year. Niall Maguire and Kevin Barrett finished second and third respectively.
Driving a Toyota Corolla, Ambrose Gaughan from Foxford and his co-driver Derek Molloy from Lahardane were victorious in class 9 for their second successive event. The pair finished in 32nd place overall.
Young Augagower driver David Carney put in a very strong performance to finish 35th overall and take second in class 6 in his Citroen C2R2 Max. After problems on the opening stage where he dropped well over a minute to the class leaders, he recovered well to finish only seven seconds behind the eventual category winner, taking 35th place overall.
Despite having no brakes for the last few stages Derek Bolton from Ballaghadereen and his co-driver Trevor O’Connnell managed to bring their Subaru Impreza home safely in 70th place overall. Also recording a finish was Killala navigator Fergal Loughney who co-drove steered the Honda Civic of Pauric McGee to 66th overall and 5th in class 2.
Among those who failed to see the finish flag were Mervyn Deane and Trevor Burke from Williamstown who retired with propshaft problems on their Escort. A broken wishbone caused the demise of Sean McHugh and John Rowland after stage seven, but the Bekan / Crossmolina pairing were encouraged with their stage times up to that point. Marcus Molloy from Crossmolina and Aidan Gannon from Tubbercurry had been going well until an off on stage five, while other local retirements included Keith McFadden / Brian Harrington, Barry Cuffe / Jason Flynn, Adrian and Aidan Fahy and Kieran Kennedy / Paul McGinnis.