For the second year in succession, Monaghan’s Josh Moffett (Hyundai i20 R5) won the Abbeyleix Manor Hotel Rally, this time finishing 27.1 seconds ahead of the similar car of Antrim’s Desi Henry. Sheffield driver Ollie Mellors (Proton Iriz R5) was third.
Having narrowly missed out on winning the Triton National Rally Championship last year Monaghan’s Josh Moffett (Ford Fiesta WRC) can clinch the title and the Vard Memorial Trophy on Sunday’s penultimate round, the Lady Gregory Hotel Galway Summer Rally in Gort.
Mountmellick driver Anthony Culleton (Semog Buggy) extended his lead in the 5 Star Catering National Loose Surface Autocross Championship with an impressive victory in yesterday’s Skibbereen and District Car Club’s Loose Surface Autocross at Derryleigh.
The Joule Donegal International Rally ended in tragic circumstances early yesterday when Manus Kelly, who won the event for the last three years, lost his life after his Hyundai i20 R5 crashed and left the road on Stage 15, Fanad Head.
In front of one of the biggest crowds of spectators in recent times, Waterford’s Craig Breen and his Killarney co-driver Paul Nagle took their Ford Fiesta R5 to victory in the Corrib Oil Galway International Rally, the opening round of the Irish Tarmac Rally Championship.
The outcome of a thrilling Rallye Monte Carlo, the opening round of the World Rally Championship, went all the way to the end of the final stage as Citroen returnee Sebastien Ogier fended off a terrific challenge from Belgian driver Thierry Neuville (Hyundai i20 WRC) to win by 2.2 seconds.
From a season-ending World Rally Championship victory being a distinct possibility, on the Kennards Hire Rally Australia, Craig Breen (Citroen C3 WRC) saw the prospect undone ever so quickly. Midway in the second leg, he was down in tenth place, due to a series of incidents. Aided by some late retirements, the Waterford driver eventually finished seventh.
As the curtain falls on the already decided Valvoline Irish Forest Rally Championship in tomorrow’s McKelvey Asbestos Bushwhacker Rally in Omagh, the outcome of the McGrady Insurance Northern Ireland Rally Championship could also draw to a close should series leader Derek McGarrity (Ford Focus WRC) secure a top four finish.
Although Monaghan’s Josh Moffett (Ford Fiesta WRC) won the Clare Rally, the penultimate round of the Triton Showers National Rally Championship, he faces an uphill battle to win the series after his main rival Donegal’s Declan Boyle, co-driven by James O’Reilly came home in fifth.
The Four Seasons Hotel Monaghan Rally ended in dramatic fashion as the Donegal/Monaghan pairing of Donagh Kelly/Conor Foley guided their KN Group liveried Ford Focus WRC to a final stage victory to deny long time leaders, the Monaghan/Cork duo of Sam Moffett/Karl Atkinson (Ford Fiesta R5).
Cork driver and four-time British Rally Champion Keith Cronin will campaign the new generation Hyundai i20 R5-N in this year’s British Rally Championship that includes rounds of the World Rally Championship (Wales Rally GB) and the European Rally Championship (Rally Ypres).
After a dramatic opening on the final leg of the Easter Rally in Antrim, when the Subaru WRC of overnight leaders Derek McGarrity/Paddy Robinson failed to start after transmission troubles, Monaghan’s Josh Moffett (Ford Fiesta R5) and his Wexford co-driver Andy Hayes took the spoils and consolidated their lead in the Irish Tarmac Rally Championship.
Taking the lead on the sixth stage, Monaghan’s Josh Moffett (Ford Fiesta R5) and co-driver Stephen Thornton won the Silvermines-based Treaty Plant Hire Limerick Forest Rally, the second round of the Valvoline Irish Forest Rally Championship.
Clare’s Pádraig Egan (Subaru) won the head-to-head in the four-wheel drive category of the Herospec Rallysprint in Mondello Park yesterday, while Wexford’s Jason O’Keeffe (Peugeot 205) netted the two-wheel drive class and Cavan’s Russell Woods claimed victory in the Buggy class.
Second fastest through yesterday’s shakedown stage for RallyRACC Catalunya - Rally de Espana, round 11 of the World Rally Championship, Irish pair Kris Meeke/Paul Nagle spearhead Citroen’s challenge for the three-day encounter.
Time was when the micro-mini segment was populated with cars which between them were equipped with little more technology as could be seen on, say, a wheelbarrow. Dodgy plastics, terrible seats, appalling designs, poor chassis, and absolutely no kit was the order of the day.