Ryan has it easy in Mondello


He was best of the 100 plus entry and finished 30.8 seconds ahead of the Ford Fiesta R5 of US based Monaghan driver Pauric Duffy, who managed to just fend off a late challenge from Stephen McCann (Mitsubishi), a second further adrift in third.

Ryan was double driving Eddie Power’s Corolla WRC and, on the first run over the Kildare course, was almost 4.7 seconds better than the Escort of Terence Taggart, with Peugeot Sport Academy driver Craig Breen campaigning the Escort of James Coleman — a further 4.3 seconds behind in third.

Ryan also dominated the second run but Duffy posted the best time on the third to move into second — 19.5 seconds behind Ryan. McCann slotted into third with Breen occupying fourth spot. Punching in the best times on the final two runs Ryan ran out a comfortable winner while Duffy managed to hold off a late charge from McCann. Breen finished fourth while the car’s owner James Coleman was tenth after he spun on the penultimate run.

Elsewhere, Ovens ace Owen Murphy completed the festive season double when he won the Cork Loose Surface Autocross at Coachford on Saturday that attracted over 60 entries. Fresh from his victory in the St. Stephen Day event at Midleton, the double Irish Forest champion was quickly into the groove in Coachford.

On the first of three timed runs he set the pace with a time of one minute and 59.35 seconds and led Limerick’s Matt Shinnors (Subaru) by over two seconds. On the second run Murphy clocked a time of one minute and 57.64 seconds as Nenagh’s Whitby Moynan (Ford Special) was his nearest rival with a time of one minute and 59.66 seconds. On what was a very slippery surface Murphy had the best traction and posted a winning time of one minute and 56.20 seconds on his final run. Moynan failed to beat his own time and had to be content with second. Carrigaline’s Steven O’Donovan (Subaru) was third.

The Cavan Autocross at Latton Quarry near Cootehill was won by Chris Snow (Honda Civic). From an entry of 65 competitors he finished 1.82 seconds ahead of the Escort of Joseph Smith with Alan Pickens (Vauxhall Nova) third. Rally specialist Gary McPhillips failed to start after his Escort suffered steering problems during the reconnaissance run. The Buggy class (not eligible for the overall awards) was won by Monaghan’s Josh Moffett (Xtreme Buggy).

Meanwhile, Derek McGeehan (Mini WRC) is the top seed for today’s Turkey Run Rally at the Shackelton complex in Ballykelly, Co. Derry. Opposition includes Donagh Kelly (Ford Focus WRC), Desi Henry (Subaru WRC), Alan McGeehan (Toyota Corolla WRC) and Joe McGonigle (Skoda Fabia S200). The first of the six stages gets underway at 10am.

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