Conlon & Kelly 2017 Sligo Pallets Border Champions
The 2017 Sligo Pallets Border Rally Championship has been won by Michael Conlon and Darragh Kelly. Castleblayney’s Conlon has made regular appearances in the Border Championship over the years but more recently has focused on the Irish Forestry Championship where he has enjoyed considerable success. He has been campaigning his faithful black Escort for many seasons and 2017 was his most successful yet as he claimed overall honours in the Sligo Pallets Border Rally Championship and also took victory in the 2wd and Mk2 categories in the National Rally Championship.
Ciaran McPhillips was his navigator for the year but he missed the opening Border round in Mayo and had to settle for 2nd overall in the navigator’s category. Martin Byrne stood in for McPhillips in Mayo where he and Conlon took class 13 honours. Conlon/McPhillips then scored class wins in Cavan, Sligo and Galway with 2nd places in Monaghan and Donegal.This demonstrated both speed and consistency throughout the year.
Shane Maguire & Darragh Kelly also teamed in the Border Championship for the first time. They began their campaign in Monaghan with a class win on home ground. They also secured class wins in Sligo, Galway and Donegal giving them a 100% win rate from the four rounds they contested. Maguire matched Conlon’s tally of 40 points but lost the championship on a tie-break. Shane also won the Group N category in the National Championship this year. Darragh’s total of 40 points saw him secure the overall navigator’s category in the Border Championship by just one point.
3rd overall driver went to Martin Geraghty who dominated class 1 throughout the year while Ryan Brennan secured 3rd overall navigator as he pushed his driver Michael Brennan hard in class 10 securing two class wins and two third places.
Class 1 Champions Stephen Reynolds & Conal Doherty
Reynolds had a solid season in class 1 with his navigator Derek McCarthy who took 2nd navigator. Conal Doherty just missed out on an overall placing on a tie-break. Doherty had sat with Martin Geraghty for most of the season.
Class 2 Champions Ronan Denning & Karl Egan
This pair were the sole registered crew in class 2 and secured the championship after a string of class successes on the opening rounds.
Class 3 Champions Roger Kennedy & Wendy Blackledge
One of the great supporters of the Sligo Pallets Border Rally Championship, Roger & Wendy notched up another class 3 success in their Peugeot. Adrian Cannon was runner-up in the driver’s category.
Class 10 Champions Michael Brennan & Ciaran Carr
Class 10 involved a tight battle between the Nova’s of the Brennans of Monaghan and the Carrs of Donegal. Michael & Ryan took class wins in Mayo & Monaghan with 3rd places in Cavan & Galway. Two retirements resulted in Shane & Ciaran closing within one point after taking top points in Galway & Donegal.
Class 11F Champions Ciaran & Aine Phelan
The Phelan’s took a dominant class 11F win with Chris Brennan/Martin Hughes coming home in 2nd and Philip Hamilton 3rd driver.
Class 11R Champions Seamus Connolly & Gary McCrudden
Seamus & Gary’s defence of the Border title began well with victory in Mayo but retirements in Monaghan and Sligo dented their title aspirations. They still secured class 11R thanks to another class win in Galway and 2nd in Cavan. Donegal’s Gerard Gibbons/Aodhan Gallagher finished as runners-up with Declan Hall/Chris Corr in 3rd.
Class 12 Champions Bill Armstrong & Philip Armstrong
Bill and Philip maintained the Armstrong name in the Border championship with success in class 12. The pair edged out the similar Escort of Darrell Quinn/Michael Laverty by just a single point.
Class 13 Champions Daniel Conaghan & Terence McGee
The Donegal pair have been regular supporters of the Border Championship. They started well with 2nd in class in Mayo and 3rd in Monaghan. Their next finish wasn’t until Donegal where they finished 9th in class.
Class 14 Champions David Armstrong & Paul Mulholland
David Armstrong made a return to the Border Championship this year with navigator Paul Mulholland. Consistent scoring throughout the year left them clear at the top of the class.
Class 15 Champions James McGreal & Chris Mitchell
The Mayo pair notched up another success in class 15 thanks to another consistent season.
Class 18 Champions Malcolm Pedlow & Ivor Ferguson
The sole Historic crew to compete in the championship. Malcolm and Ivor piloted their beautiful BMW 2002 around the stages to another class success.
Class 20 Champions Declan McCrory & Graham Henderson
Declan & Graham dominated class 20 throughout the year scoring top points in Mayo, Cavan and Galway.
Junior Champions Jason Black & Jack McKenna
The Armagh/Monaghan duo put in some scintilating times throughout the year notching class wins in Mayo and Galway with 2nd in Sligo and 3rd in Cavan securing the title. Jonathan Treanor and Michael Carr took 2nd in class with Keith Jacob in 3rd.
Team Champions Armstrong Motorsport
Armstrong Motorsport were crowned Team Champions with a comfortable advantage over Border Busters.
The 2017 Sligo Pallets Border Championship was once again a huge success. Despite a drop off in entries and registered crews, there was still plenty of competition thrrough the year with the overall placings going right down to the wire.
Sligo Pallets have become synonymous with the championship in recent years and we hope this partnership will continue for many years to come. The prizegiving’s have become bigger and better each year with a total of €17, 536 raised over the last six years. The Border Championship committee would like to thank Andrew Mullen for his continued commitment to the series.
2017 saw another pair of first time champions crowned for the fifth year in succession. Congratulations to Michael Conlon & Darragh Kelly. We look forward to seeing them defend their respective titles in 2018.
Mayo & District Motorsport Club had a very successful weekend which started at the Sligo Pallets Border Championship prize giving which took place in the Sligo Park Hotel on Saturday evening.
Well done to Ronan Denning & Karl Egan who came 1st in class 2; James McGreal & Chris Mitchell who came 1st in class 15; and to Keith Jacobs who came 3rd in the Border Junior championships (class 16) and his navigator Michael Carr who came 2nd.
Well done to all Mayo Motorsport Club members who were competing at the Midlands Autocross in Ballyfeeney on Sunday. Congratulations to Steven Cafferty who won class 1 & was also fastest saloon car; Noel Murphy who was runner up in class 1; Walter Burke took the honours in class 4; Lorcan Moore who came 2nd in class 3; Jason Murphy who won class 8.
Motor club report October 2017
On the 7th October at the Donegal Harvest Rally Brian Lavelle and Darren Curran driving a Honda Civic came 3rd in class 11F and 25th overall.
James McGreal and Chris Mitchell came 1st in class 15 and 56th overall in their Mitsubishi Evo 6.
(Also 7th Oct) at the Hemicuda Rally in Belgium, Aidan Gannon from Tubbercurry who was navigating for Anthony
O’Brien came 5th overall and 1st in the FIRC (Flanders International Rally Challenge). Crossmolina’s Lorcan Moore
navigating for John Reddington came 1st overall in the FIRC championship 2wd and they became the first Irish crew
to ever win a Belgian Championship outright. Congratulations and well done to all.
On the 22nd October Jared Gill navigating for Ray Cunningham won the Mini Sport Mini Cup championship in the UK.
Last weekend (29th Oct) at Wales Rally GB Killian Duffy navigating for Brendan Comiskey in a R5 Fiesta came 29th
overall, well done Killian.
Sligo Pallets Border Championship/National Championship
The club have a number of winners in the Sligo Pallets Border Championship this year. Well done to James
McGreal & Chris Mitchell who came 1st in class 15; and to Keith Jacobs who came 3rd in the Border Junior
championships (class 16) and his navigator Michael Carr who came 2nd. Well done to Ronan Denning & Karl
Egan who came 1st in class 2 in the Border Championship and also 2nd in class in the Triton Shower National Rally
The Sligo Pallets Border Championship prize giving takes place in the Sligo Park Hotel this Saturday night. The
Triton Shower National Rally Championship prize giving takes place in Athlone on Saturday 18th November.
2nd Annual Margaret McGreal Fuel Economy Drive
Last Monday 30th October the 2nd Annual Margaret McGreal Fuel Economy Driver took place. The route driven
was the same as last year – Ballina to Belmullet along the wild Atlantic way via Killala, Ballycastle and Blacksod
before heading back to Ballina via Bangor. The weather was more favourable than last year and everyone enjoyed
the day. The overall winner was Finnian McManamon, Joe Dolan (Connacht Motorclub) took the honours in the
Vintage class and Mick Noone won the motorbike class. Brian Harrington used the least amount of fuel (2.32
litres). Well done to all the winners, to the organisers and to all who supported the event.
Club meeting Friday 3rd November 9pm in Aughagower Community Centre.
Next Monday (bank holiday) 30th October, Mayo & District Motorsport Club’s second annual Margaret McGreal Fuel Economy Drive takes place in aid of Cancer Care West. This is a road event with a difference. Far removed from the annual Mayo stages rally which takes place every March, the Margaret McGreal Fuel Economy Drive is a family friendly road team event which takes place over approximately 240km of the scenic Wild Atlantic Way. In March 2015 Mayo & District Motorsport club lost one of their dearest members when Margaret McGreal sadly passed away and her club mates held the inaugural ‘Fuel Economy Drive’ in her memory in August 2016.
The objective of the event is to drive a set route in ordinary passenger cars under normal driving conditions. The event is open to all road worthy vehicles from pre-war cars to present day petrol or diesel models and motorbikes. Each competing vehicle starts with a full tank of fuel and on completion of the route they must refuel at a nominated filling station to calculate the fuel economy. Teams are required to check in at various check points along the route. Points will be added for fuel economy, early/late check in at check points, driving the wrong direction or missing a check point. At the end of the event the team with the least points are the winners. This is a fun event for all the family while at the same time raising funds for a worthy charity. The route was so popular last year the
organisers are running the same again and it takes competitors from the Great National Hotel Ballina through Killala, Ballycastle, Belmullet, Blacksod and back to Ballina. There will be a break in The Western Strands Hotel Belmullet for refreshments during the event. The day will finish with prize giving and an evening of entertainment for all in the Great National Hotel Ballina.
Entry forms will be available at registration which takes place from 9am on Bank holiday Monday 30th October in the Great National Hotel Ballina. The first car will leave at 10.45am and at 1 minute intervals thereafter. The cost is €50 per car, €30 per motorbike. This year the club are trying to encourage members of the motor industry to take part and support the event. This can be an opportunity for them to showcase their most fuel efficient vehicle or alternatively show off their most eye catching/desirable car.
You can contact the event secretary Rachel Rogers – 086 3670903 or by email email@example.com. All are welcome.
A great weekend for Mayo & District club members competing at a number of motorsport events.
At the Donegal Harvest Rally on Saturday, Foxfords James McGreal and navigator Chris Mitchell competing in a Mitsubishi Evo 6 dominated for most of the event and took 1st place in class 15. After running 2nd early in the day Brian Lavelle from Achill with navigator Darren Curran took 3rd place in class 11F in their Honda Civic.
Meanwhile further afield at the Hemicuda Rally in Belgium, Aidan Gannon from Tubbercurry who was navigating for Anthony O’Brien came 5th overall and 1st in the FIRC (Flanders International Rally Challenge).
Crossmolina’s Lorcan Moore navigating for John Reddington came 1st overall in the FIRC Championship 2wd and became the first Irish crew to ever win a Belgian Championship outright.
Congratulations and well done to all.
2nd September Lakeland Stages Rally.
Round 6 of the Valvoline Irish Forestry Championship took place in Enniskillen (Lakeland Stages Rally) Lorcan Moore navigating for Ashley Dickson in a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 came 22nd Karl Egan navigating for Colin Price came 51st in a Honda Civic.
16th September Manx Rally
Jared Gill navigating for Nary Cunningham came 1st in category 1 historic and 38th overall.
17th September – Clare Stages Rally
Aidan Gannon navigating for Anthony O’Brien came 1st in class 20 and 4th overall; Crystal Culkeen navigating for Mike White came 3rd in class and 37th overall
Midlands Auto cross results – Lorcan Moore came 1st in class 2 in his Citroen Saxo; Steven Cafferty was best newcomer in his Nissan Micra.
30th Sept/1st Oct – Cork 20 International Rally
Well done to Justin Ryan & Tommy Moynihan who came 2nd in class & 3rd overall in the Juniors at the Cork 20 International Rally this weekend. Justin finished the year in 2nd place in the IRTC Junior Championship,
Well done to Pauric Duffy & Kevin Glynn who finished 2nd overall in the national category; Darragh Mullen navigating for Paul Rowley came 6th in the International category and 3rd in class; and Sean Hassett navigating for Ed Twomey also in the International category came 9th overall and 2nd in class.
This weekend we have a number of members competing in the Donegal Harvest Rally is on Sunday (7th) Brian Lavelle and Darran Curran are out in their Honda Civic and James McGreal and Chris Mitchell are in action in their Mitsubishi Evo 6.
Lorcan Moore is navigating for John Reddington and Aidan Gannon is navigating for Anthony O’Brien in the Hemicuda Rally in Belgium. Best of luck to all.