Callum Devine plotting back-to-back victories in Donegal

Former National and Tarmac champion Sam Moffett is his chief rival, the Monaghan driver will pilot the Ford Fiesta WRC he took to second place on the Donegal International Rally last June. The duel also provides an interesting comparison. 
Callum Devine plotting back-to-back victories in Donegal

Derry’s Callum Devine (VW Polo GTi R5). Picture: Martin Walsh.

Top seed and defending champion Callum Devine (VW Polo GTi R5) will try to reap consecutive victories on the Donegal Harvest Rally that brings the Triton Showers National Rally Championship to a conclusion tomorrow in Gortahork. 

“The rally wasn’t easy last year and it will be the same this time, it’s a strong entry.” said Devine. 

Former National and Tarmac champion Sam Moffett is his chief rival, the Monaghan driver will pilot the Ford Fiesta WRC he took to second place on the Donegal International Rally last June. The duel also provides an interesting comparison. 

Devine added, “I have never driven a World Car competitively. While that car was strong on the International, I don’t think the Harvest stages will suit the car, but he (Sam) won’t be far away either. The Polo R5 has proved a very good car and handles the Irish terrain very well.” 

Triton series runner-up Dubliner Robert Barrable (Ford Fiesta Rally2) will use the rally as a barometer of his pace while Donegal’s Declan Boyle (VW Polo GTi) is aiming to end a troubled season on a positive note. Previous Triton round winner Gareth MacHale, also in a Polo, continues to gain seat time ahead of a full season in 2023. 

Tyrone’s Seamus Leonard (Fiesta Rally2) along with Donegal drivers Aaron McLaughlin (Ford Fiesta WRC), Joe McGonigle and newly crowned British Junior Rally champion Eamonn Kelly (VW Polo GTi R5) are also in the top ten start list.

With 101 World Rally Championship events under his belt, Killarney rally-co-driver Paul Nagle will retire after the penultimate round Rally Spain in two weeks’ time. 

He made his WRC debut with his Cork born Donie O’Sullivan on the Spanish event in 2004 before stints with Gareth MacHale, Andreas Mikkelsen, Kris Meeke and Craig Breen. All his five WR wins came with Kris Meeke and Citroen - including his maiden success in Rally Argentina (2015) and Rally Finland (2016). 

In recent years he has partnered Craig Breen on partial WR campaigns with Hyundai before they joined the M-Sport Ford WRT as lead crew in the new hybrid Rally1 era. With a third place finish on Rallye Monte Carlo, they were second in Rally Italia Sardegna where he informed Breen on his intention to stand down - a decision made public earlier this week. Meanwhile, Hyundai Motorsport and Oliver Solberg have announced their contract will not be renewed after its natural conclusion at the end of the year.

Irish Tarmac champion Josh Moffett has lost his appeal to the FIA requesting a review of the Stewards’ decisions of the Circuit of Ireland International Rally on April 16/17 last. Moffett finished second to Alastair Fisher on the event, submitted a petition requesting a review of “decisions made by the Stewards of the Circuit of Ireland International Rally including multiple organisational failings by the Clerk of Course plus the signing of Final Results.” 

In an announcement, the FIA International Court of Appeal declared the appeal inadmissible leaving Mr. Moffett to bear the costs. The ICA decided that the appeal deposit will be kept in full but that that no additional costs will be charged to Mr. Moffett.

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