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Donegal International Rally
RALLY NEWS No.8 - After SS9 - Saturday @ 12:48:52
RALLY NEWS NO.8 Service/Saturday
1st (1) Garry Jennings/Neil Doherty (Impreza WRC) 51.24.4
2nd (5) Darren Gass/Enda Sherry (Impreza WRC) 51.30.0
3rd (8) Sam Moffett/James O`Reilly (Impreza WRC) 52.06.5
4th (3) Derek McGarrity/James McKee (Focus WRC) 52.34.1
5th (6) Donagh Kelly/Kevin Flanagan (Focus WRC) 53.09.1
6th (7) Seamus Leonard/Paul McLaughlin (Impreza WRC) 53.34.3
1st (17) Gary McPhillips/Paul Sheridan (Escort) 54.05.0
2nd (16) Manus Kelly/Donal Barrett (Escort) 54.18.7
3rd (11) Craig Breen/Karl Atkinson (Escort) 54.55.8
4th (19) Frank Kelly/Stephen Quinn (Escort) 55.03.0
5th (34) Adrian Hetherington/Gary Nolan (Escort) 55.14.7
6th (21) Damien Gallagher/Mac Walsh (Escort) 55.17.1

Rally leader Garry Jennings had a very big moment on stage 9, the 2nd running of Garrygort. Garry had in his notes that the approach to a chicane was OK but it turned out to be exceptionally slippy and rather than hit the bales he pointed his Subaru into the hedge. The front bumper was damaged and a couple of seconds were lost, but disaster was averted. Darren Gass was fastest through the stage and said the stage finish. `It went well`. Sam Moffett was 3rd fastest and Donagh Kelly 4th. Moffett said that he was not pushing and Kelly seems a lot happier in his left hand drive Focus than he was yesterday.

Derek McGarrity was talking about pulling out of the rally because of gearbox troubles but he is still going. He had a decent time through stage 9. The gearbox behaved itself but Derek is still having problems with the car`s dash readout. Seamus Leonard is maintaining his pace to hold 6th. Darragh O`Riordan is in 7th in his Fiesta WRC and he said. `The suspension is still not great but at least we are only dropping 1s per mile as opposed to 3s per miles yesterday`. John O`Donnell is 8th and has throttled back ever so slightly and said himself is hitting a `comfortable pace`. The rear suspension of his Subaru was straightened at service.

Stephen Wright had another fastest GpN time and nicked 6s off category leader Martin Doherty. This leaves 11s between the two. Shane Maguire has got back into 3rd GpN as Seamus Heron has dropped a couple of places this morning.

In the National Rally Craig Breen was fastest through stage 9 and said he is now on a big push. Craig is 50s behind leader Gary McPhillips. Frank Kelly had a better time on that stage but Frank is not making any real impression on the 3 cars in front. Rodney Wilton dropped over 5m in stage 8 when he damaged a wheel on his Escort and he dropped from 3rd to 35th in the National classification. Conor Harvey has now got ahead of John McQuaid, Conor 8th and 2nd in cl.13. John is 9th and Paul Reid 10th, 3rd in cl.13.

The Historic category started this morning and Wesley Patterson is the early leader from Seamus O`Connell with Donal Connolly 3rd. All in Escorts. Wesley reckoned he made a wrong tyre choice in the conditions. Seamus O`connell had some wiper troubles and also brake fade with his Escort. John Keatley in the Porsche is 6th, one place behind fellow 911 driver John Spiers. John Keatley said that on a left hand corner in stage 7 he landed his red Porsche on top of a nicely trimmed hedge, with not too much damage to either! Ian Millar in the Mk1 Escort got a bit enthusiastic at the start of the opening Historic stage and 4 corners in clipped a stone and got a puncture.
More news later: BRIAN & LIZ PATTERSON www.rallynews.net (with thanks to Michael & Zoe Patterson) *Follow RallyNews on Twitter @Pacenotes or @Real_RallyNews

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