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West Cork Rally
RALLY NEWS No.8 - Finish - Sunday @ 16:00:35

RALLY NEWS 8 Finish/Clonakilty/Sunday

1st (4) Donagh Kelly/Kevin Flanagan (Focus WRC)
2nd (1) Denis Cronin/Coleman Hurley (Impreza WRC)
3rd (8) Declan Gallagher/Ryan Moore (Starlet rwd)
4th (12) Phil Collins/Derek Brannigan (Escort)
5th (14) Wesley Patterson/Johnny Baird (Escort)
6th (25) Stephen Carey/Breda O`Driscoll (Civic)
7th (132) Gary Kiernan/Niall Tierney (Escort)
8th (36) Cal McCarthy/Eamonn Dullea (Civic)
9th (37) Andrew Mahon/Andrew Donoghue (Escort)
10th (17) Jason Ryan/Tadgh O`Sullivan (Starlet)

This is Donegal man Donagh Kelly`s first visit to the West Cork Rally and he certainly made it significant by taking a marvellous start to finish victory. Co-driven by Kevin Flanagan in his Ford Focus WRC Donagh has not put a wheel wrong throughout the 13 special stages. Donagh won the Circuit of Kerry and the Sperrins Rally last year in his Subaru and then won Clare in this Focus. However, this West Cork win is probably the most significant one. Denis Cronin and his co driver Coleman Hurley in their Subaru pushed hard all weekend and scored a few fastest stage times, but throughout the rally Donagh Kelly was the man to beat. The winning margin was 34s. There was cruel luck towards the end for Midleton man Daragh O`Riordan as his Fiesta WRC was comfortably ensconced in 3rd place until a broken drive shaft at the end of stage 11, Ardfield, brought an end to his, and his co driver Tony McDaid`s rally.

It is an ill wind of course and O`Riordan`s retirement brought Declan Gallagher/Ryan Moore into 3rd o/a with their Toyota Starlet. Declan, who is like the overall winner is also from Donegal, has taken maximum points in the Clonakilty Blackpudding Tarmac Championship Modified category. This increases his overall lead in the series. Phil Collins has finished 4th o/a and 2nd best of the Modifieds which is quite something for the Hereford man. Wesley Patterson made his trip from Lisburn also worth while by taking 5th place following a great drive today. Stephen Carey/Breda O1Driscoll have won the Group N category in their Honda Civic. Stephen drove brilliantly today. Brian O`Keefe was in the running for the GpN honours but his Subaru retired with a blown engine.

Finally for now, massive congratulations are due to Martin Godfrey and the hard working team from Cork Motor Club, as well as other volunteers from clubs around the country, the kind people of Clonakilty and lots more for their hard work in putting together such a great rally. The organisation of the event was second to none and even on stage 11, Ardfield, when a resident took ill and the rally ambulance swung into action there was hardly a blip in the timetable. Many thanks to everyone who has helped us and supported our RallyNews service.
BRIAN & LIZ PATTERSON www.rallynews.net *Follow RallyNews on Twitter @Pacenotes or @Real_RallyNews

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