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Galway International Rally
RALLY NEWS No.2 - Ballinasloe - Sunday @ 09:54:25

RALLY NEWS NO.2 Ballinasloe Service/Sunday 10.00am
1st (13) Eugene Donnelly/Mark Kane (Mini WRC) 8.17.5
2nd (7) Declan & Brian Boyle (Impreza WRC) 8.30.1
3rd (2) Derek McGarrity/James McKee (Impreza WRC) 8.30.2
4th (3) Keith Cronin/Marshall Clarke (Impreza WRC) 8.36.5
5th (6) Donagh Kelly/Kevin Flanagan (Impreza WRC) 8.41.7
6th (5) Thomas Fitzmaurice/Fionn Foley (Impreza WRC) 8.45.2
7th (4) Garry Jennings/Neil Doherty (Impreza WRC) 8.57.8
8th (11) Alan Ring/Adrian Deasy (Lancer N) 9.00.1
9th (8) John JOe Fleming/Robbie Ward (Focus WRC) 9.01.4
10th (12) Tom Flaherty/Patrick Curley (Escort) 9.04.3

The big news in from the opening 16.9.km stage, Bellevile, is that last year’s winner, Darren Gass, has slid his Subaru off on a square right corner almost within sight of the finish line. Reportedly his Impreza is undamaged but stuck and it may take him a while to get going. As can be seen above the fastest was Eugene Donnelly. The former Tarmac Champion remarked at stage finish that it was quite slippy, a sentiment echoed by most of the other top drivers. Eugene went on to say that he was a bit dubious about his tyre choice for the first few miles, and was fairly cautious. Derek McGarrity had intercom problems in his Subaru that cost him some time. Triple British Champion Keith Cronin suffered a spin in his Subaru that cost him perhaps 20s and has left him with a bit to do to catch the leader.

Two drivers from Donegal, Donagh Kelly and Declan Boyle, both reported good clean runs. Declan did have some last minute worries over a misfire in his Impreza but that seems to be sorted. Garry Jennings must have been disappointed with his time on that first stage. It appears that his Impreza is suffering a gear change mechanism problem, the car shifting up and down the ratios of its own accord. Thomas Fitzmaurice is having his first run in the ex Darragh O1Riordan Subaru. The car has been re-liveried in matte black with theTLI logo in silver and it all looks fairly dramatic. Thomas was pleased enough with his first stage in the car.

Alan Ring was fastest of the Group N drivers. Sam Moffett reported a slight misfire in his similar Lancer which is slight worrying for the Monaghan man as his engineer Gerry McGarrity had a huge last minute rush to fit new pistons to the engine. Hopefully it is a minor problem. Tom Flaherty was way fastest of the Escort men. Young Chris Armstrong had a big overshoot in his Escort and co-driver Martin Brady said. “It was a very big moment”. David Armstrong is running his Escort with 96 on the doors but has started just outside the top 20 and he had intercom problems on the first stage.
Some further times – all unofficial. Josh Moffett recorded 9.13.4. Stephen Wright 9.13.2. Fergus O`Meara 9.19.2. Jim McKenna 9.19.6. Shane Maguire 9.24.4. More news later: BRIAN & LIZ PATTERSON & MICHAEL www.rallynews.net *Follow RallyNews on Twitter @Pacenotes or @ Real_RallyNews

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