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RALLY NEWS No.2 - Service - Friday @ 15:02:39

RALLY NEWS NO.2 Friday/Service

1st (3) Declan & Brian Boyle (Fiesta WRC) 17.17.7
2nd (2) Donagh Kelly/Conor Foley (Focus WRC) 17.19.2
3rd (10) Manus Kelly/Donal Barrett (Subaru S12) 17.24.8
4th (7) Keith Cronin/Mikie Calvin (Citroen DS3 R5) 17.32.5
5th (8) Sam Moffett/Karl Atkinson (Fiesta R5) 17.41.8
6th (11) Seamus Leonard/John McCafferty (Subaru S14) 17.43.0
7th (6) Alastair Fisher/Gordon Noble (Fiesta R5) 17.48.5
8th (9) Josh Moffett/John Rowan (Fiesta R5) 17.49.6
9th (16) Jonny Greer/Kirsty Riddick (Citroen DS3 R5) 18.16.4
10th (15) Joe McGonigle/Ciaran Geaney (Fabia S2000) 18.24.0

1st (20) Brian Brogan/Damien McGettigan (Escort) 18.11.9
2nd (24) Damien Tourish/Domhnall McAlaney (Escort) 18.14.7
3rd (17) Jonathan Pringle/Alan Keena (Escort) 18.18.6
4th (18) Declan Gallagher/James McNulty (Starlet RWD) 18.19.1
5th (26) Vivian Hamill/Andrew Greenan (Escort) 18.24.6
6th (22) Damien Gallagher/Mac Walsh (Escort) 18.27.9

Through stages 2 and 3 it was very close between the top drivers. Declan Boyle led initially from Garry Jennings, who subsequently retired with a blown engine on his Subaru. At the end of stage 2 Donagh Kelly led from Declan Boyle by 0.8 of a second. Declan dropped 5s to the flying Focus on that stage and told us that he had some mud marked in his notes and he backed off too much as a precaution. The mud had dried! In stage 3 Declan Boyle was fastest to regain the lead. Just 1.5s separate the top two and the flying Manus Kelly is a further 5s back. Manus commented. ‘We kept it nice and tidy. Like many of the other top drivers we were on too soft a compound tyre’. Donagh Kelly told us his Focus was moving around a lot as he also had picked too soft a compound tyre. The weather seems to be improving by the minute and the drivers seem to be opting for a harder compound tyre in the 2nd loop of stages.

Keith Cronin leads the R5 division and that is despite his Citroen DS3 R5 having a recurrence of the sticking brakes that afflicted the car in Killarney. The David Greer Motorsport team is going to change a brake cylinder, and hopefully that will cure the problem. Sam Moffett reported a good run but maybe a bit cautious on the first stage. Stephen Wright had a problem with a cylinder at the back of his Fiesta R5 that disengages the rear drive when the hand brake is applied. This meant that his car was in front wheel drive only for most of the 3 stages. Stephen is currently 14th and has dropped close to a minute. Alastair Fisher’s co driver Gordon Noble told us. ‘We are getting on grand. This is a 3 day rally and we are going as fast as is comfortable’

In the National Rally local man Brian Brogan moved into the lead when early pace setter Adrian Hetherington crashed his Escort out of the rally at the big jump near the start of stage 3. Frank Kelly told us. ‘I am driving my nuts off but still not there. Everything is working well, maybe I lost a few seconds when I could see oil or slurry on the road, but we cannot go much harder’. Visiting Scottish driver David Bogie said. ‘The car is too soft and is sliding about a lot. I had forgotten how big the competition is here. I am not too disappointed. I know my pace can be improved’

More news later: BRIAN & LIZ & MICHAEL & ZOE PATTERSON *Follow Rally News on Twitter and Facebook @Pacenotes or @Real_RallyNews

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