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RALLY NEWS No.5 - After SS6 - Sunday @ 14:13:09
RALLYNEWS NO.3 Service/Sunday 11.30
1ST (2) Melvyn Evans/Patrick Walsh (Impreza WRC) 19.31
2ND (1) Niall Maguire/Barry Goodman (Impreza WRC) 19.51
3RD (3) Derek McGarrity/James McKee (Impreza WRC) 20.02
4TH (8) Declan & Brian Boyle (Escort) 20.46
5TH (9) Wesley Patterson/Martin McGarrity (Escort) 20.54
6TH (6) Alan Ring/James O'Brien (Lancer N) 21.03
7TH (23) Eugene Meegan/Sorcha Kelly (Lancer N) 21.06
8TH (29) Mark Sheahan/Anthony O'Connaill (C2R2 Max) 21.19
9TH (10) Sean Flanagan/Brian Duggan (Impreza N) 21.20
10TH (26) Lloyd Hutchinson/Kevin Flanagan (Mini Cooper) 21.21

Through the opening 3 stages of this SEPAM backed Stonethrowers Rally Melvyn Evans has been fastest. Derek McGarrity made a lacklustre start but was 2nd fastest through stage 3, 2s down on Evans and 1 up on Niall Maguire. When the cars came into service Niall Maguire reported that the 3rd stage, Russellstown, was very tough with a lot of dust, some of it seeping up through the interior of the Impreza. Indeed Melvyn Evans said the dust was so bad that he decided to back off and just try and maintain his lead rather than increase it. Derek McGarrity said that he felt that the last 2 stages were better but he knew that he had backed off too much on the first one when his Subaru had clattered over some stones on a square corner and he was fearful of having a puncture.

Eugene Meegan has lost the group N lead to Alan Ring, Meegan reckoned that his Evo 10 needs a new set of spark plugs as there is a slight misfire creeping into the engine. Alan Ring felt he was braking just a little too early which may be a symptom of Alan being away from rallying for a few months. Sean Flanagan holds 3rd in GpN, his Impreza is showing signs of a sticking throttle on the road section through Clonmel. Mark Nangle lost a few seconds when he spun his Impreza in stage 3.

Donegal man Declan Boyle continues to lead the charge of the Mk2 Escorts despite his example having an offset steering wheel. Wesley Patterson is still unhappy with the handling of his car. Mike Quinn has a fierce vibration coming up from the brakes of his Escort, it looks as if the front discs are warped. Ed Synan lost time through stage 3 when the exhaust on his Escort broke. Wayne Evans in the yellow Escort lost a few seconds when he spun the car. John Hickey’s Impreza lost turbo boost in stage 2 when a pipe came adrift. However John is happy and commented. “Sure it’s a lovely fine day and I’m cruising away!”
John McQuaid has woken up after a sleepy start and his Escort set some decent times through stages 2 and 3. Lloyd Hutchinson is setting a terrific pace as usual in his Mini, but is fearful that there may be a recurrence of a clutch problem. Mark Sheahan continues to lead his class but reckoned the Citroen was not suited to the tight nature of stage 3.
More news later: BRIAN & LIZ PATTERSON www.rallynews.net

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