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The Ulster Rally
RALLY NEWS No.8 - Antrim service - Saturday @ 12:41:30

RALLY NEWS NO.8 Antrim Service Saturday

1ST (W3) Darren Gass/Enda Sherry (Impreza WRC
2nd (W2) Garry Jennings/Rory Kennedy (Impreza WRC)
3rd (W4) Darragh O’Riordan/Tony McDaid (Impreza WRC)
4th (W10) Robert Barrable/Paddy Robinson (Fabia S2000)
5th (W6) Sam Moffett/James O’Reilly (Lancer N)
6th (W5) Steve Perez/Paul Spooner (Focus WRC)
7th (W8) Stephen Wright/Martin Connolly (Lancer N)
1st (R1) Keith Cronin/Marshall Clarke (DS3 R3)
2nd (R4) Elfyn Evans/Phil Pugh (Fiesta)
3rd (R10) Osian Pryce/Iestyn Williams (DS3 R3)
4th (R9) Jonny Greer/Gordon Noble (DS3 R3)
5th (R2) Tom Cave/Craig Parry (DS3 R3)
6th (R7) Tommy Doyle/Liam Moynihan (DS3 R3)
7th (R6) Guy Wilks/David Moynihan (Twingo)
8th (R3) Mark Donnelly/Dai Roberts (Clio)
9th (R14) Matthew Cathcart/James Morgan (Fiesta)
10th (R12) Jukka and Mikael Korhonen (Fabia)

On the Ulster Rally Darren Gass set a scorching time over the Slieve Gallion stage. At 15.42 miles the test over the Sperrins is the longest of the rally. Afterwards he said. “It went well, but not well”. He went on to explain that he had had a good run but he really needed Derek McGarrity, who retired his Subaru with gearbox problems, to stay in the event and act as a buffer between himself and Garry Jennings in the race for Tarmac Championship points. Garry lost quite a few seconds in that stage when he ran over some rocks and punctures two tyres on his Subaru. Garry is now 1m24s behind the leader and with just 4 stages to go has little chance of catching the leader unless something unexpected would happen.

Both stages 9 and 10 were “power” stages and Daragh O’Riordan’s world rally car got ahead of Robert Barrable’s normally aspirated Fabia S2000. O’Riordan has taken the opportunity to try some new suspension set up in preparation for the Cork 20 Rally. His co driver Tony McDaid also said “We were doing a Hirvonen in there, cracked the windscreen on a big jump”. Steve Perez was another to suffer a puncture in stage 10. Sam Moffett said. “I’m just tipping around, trying to get to the finish”.

In Rally NI Keith Cronin commented when he came into service. “We were completely on the wrong tyres. I’m sure it was fun to watch. We have a good lead and I was covering my bases in case it did rain”. Elfyn Evans had a good run over the Slieve Gallion stage, second fastest behind Cronin. Jonny Greer recovered from his stage 9 spin and set 3rd quickest time. Jonny said. “On Lisnamuck it was a bit tricky. It was hard to see the standing water around some of the long corners. My tyres were not up to temperature when we put a rear wheel on the grass and round she went”. Alastair Fisher is setting consistently 4th fastest times and is now up to 12th o/a. Kevin O’Connor had a slow time through stage 8 and has lost the lead of the Irish Citroen Racing Trophy to Adrian McElhinney with David Carney 2nd and Kevin now 3rd.

In the National Rally Derek McGeehan still leads but Frank Kelly is setting some fastest times and has closed to within 1s of McGeehan with Camillus Bradley 3rd, Alistair Cochrane 4th, Fintan McGrady 5th and Pat Kirk 6th. Alan Carmichael was one of the fastest through his home stage, Tardree, and then his Impreza suffered a broken hydraulic pipe in the transmission and went on fire. He then had to retire.

A very interesting crew in the National Rally is Ian Graham, co driven by Liam Regan. Ian has competed on the Dakar Rally three times on his KTM motorbike but is relatively new to rallying. He has bought Liam’s Fiesta and last night more or less his first time on notes in the dark. Notes are of course are something that rally people take for granted. He found it a whole new experience getting called the intricacies of every corner and every crest. A bit different from the deserts on a motorbike! The top cars are now going out to tackle the Langford stage again. Clerk of the Course Lewis Boyd told us that there are some drivers who will receive a penalty for not attempting the chicanes there in the proper manner. Hopefully the 2nd run through will provide no further incidents.

More news later: BRIAN & LIZ & MICHAEL PATTERSON with thanks to Christel Patterson and Ciara Conlan www.rallynews.net

2020 Patterson Agencies

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