This weekend will see the culmination of hard work and planning over the past six months come to fruition for CoC Brendan Flynn and his dedicated team as the chequered flag is lowered for the 2014 Hillgrove Hotel Monaghan Stages Rally. Saturday will see all competitors converge on the Hillgrove Hotel to sign-on for recce and each crew is allowed three passes over the loop of three stage to make their pace notes. Then on Saturday evening scrutiny will take place at McElvaney Motor’s where all cars are meticulously checked for safety features. Then at 9.30 pm on Sunday morning last years winners Sam Moffett and James O’Reilly will lead off a bumper entry of 131 cars to tackle the 9 stage event which boasts 140km of stages and just under 60km of road section. 2nd seed is Niall Maguire and Conor Foley followed by midlands stages winners Paddy McVeigh and Gary McElhinney, both crews in subaru WRC’s. 4th seeds are Kevin Barrett and Sean Mullally with Peader Hurson and Damien Connolly rounding off the top 5 in an escort cosworth WRC. Josh Moffett will head the Group N challenge in 6th, followed by a plethora of escort men which is sure to be a crowd pleaser. Daniel Mc Kenna and Stephen Hagan return to their home event in the Scanbitz escort and are seeded 7th. Gary McPhillips and Paul Sheridan are next up in 8th with Cavan’s Rodney Wilton and Conor McMahon in 9th. Manus Kelly has James McCarville on the notes and they round off a splendid top 10 with Dessie Keenan and Enda Sherry making a return to the stages in a class 13 escort and seeded in 11th.

Shane Maguire and Martin Mc Garrity are at 12, ahead of Donegal’s Trevor Bustard and John McCafferty. Raymond Conlon and Darren McCague are at 15 in the twin cam with Richard Moffett rounding off the top 15 in his class 13 starlet. Jim Mc Kenna and Thomas Treanor are at 20 in their escort. Incredibly there are 16 entrants into the highly powerful class 14 so the stakes are high. Enda McNulty will have Stephen Thornton on the notes and are at 23 with John McQuaid and Seamus O’Connor returning to the stages after a short lay-off and are sure to be back on the pace, seeded at 25. Michael Carbin and Emmet McCooey will be hopeful that they can continue there goo pace of late in class 20 as they run 27th on the road.

Class 12 will see Justin Smyth and Sharon Clarke head the field at 35, followed by Martin Toner and Martin Swinburne. Class 11R is the biggest of the event with 18 entrants set to battle it out over the South Westerly Monaghan stages. Kevin Eves and Chris Melly head the class 11R brigade in their twin cam, followed by Kevin Bradley and Graham Henderson in an escort. Barry Treanor and Colm Connolly start at 32 with David Moffett and Fintan Sherry at 33. Seamus Connolly and Gary McCrudden should also be in the hunt for class 11R honours as will Martin McPhillips and Ciaran Tynan, seeded at 45 in the McPhillips Engineering backed twin cam. Other locals to feature in class 11R include David Smith and Aidan Coyle at 60 and brother/sister pairing of Ryan and Nicola McKenna. Sean McCaul and Lorcan Kennedy make their long awaited return to the Monaghan stage’s to compete in class 11 also.

Class 10 will be headed by the Kelly brothers, John and Niall seeded at 86. Stephen Rushe and Conor Hagan will also be vying for class 10 honours as will Cathal Sheridan and Evin Hughes in the newly built Nova. David and Aaron Dixon also compete in class 10along with Martin McGuigan (119) and Padraig Connolly (124). Gene McDonald and Kevin Reilly head the class 9 brigade ahead of Laurence Sherry and Mark Sheridan (98) with Aaron Duffy and Thomas Wedlock at (99) Mickey Brennan and John McKenna are at 110 followed by Jonathan Treanor and Adrian Foley at 111.

With a bumper entry and an action packed weekend in store lets hope the weather Gods are looking down favourably for the upcoming weekend. Service area has moved from recent years and is located at the back of the courthouse in the new carpark which is sure to keep the town busy for one of Monaghan’s biggest sporting events of the calendar.

Finally for now the CoC Brendan Flynn would like to wish all involved in this event a happy, safe and enjoyable weekend of motorsport action and no matter whether your, spectating, competing or marshalling always remember that your safety is paramount and please keep the Race in its Place.

Please also respect peoples land and property when out spectating and bring your litter home!

Programmes are widely available throughout Monaghan town and surrounding areas.

Finally best wishes to all competitors and hope to see everyone back at our main sponsors, the Hillgrove Hotel on Sunday night for prize giving at 8pm sharp.

 

As ever the Easter Bank holiday weekend has long been associated with the running of the Circuit of Ireland Stages Rally and this year is no different. All roads lead to Belfast this weekend with the idealic surroundings of the Titanic Quarter proving an excellent backdrop for the running of this titanic event spread over two days. After a ceremonial start on Thursday evening at Belfast City Hall the action on the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland will start on Friday morning. Over Friday and Saturday the crews will cover 18 stages before they arrive back at the Belfast finish ramp on Saturday evening.

            This years event has the added bonus of being a counting round of the ERC (European Rally Championship) which has drawn entries from all over the world. Local interest will be firmly focused on the likes of Sam and Josh Moffett, with Sam and James O’Reilly seeded at number 6 in his Ford Fiesta RRC and following a steady maiden run on the recent Circuit of Kerry they will hope to be on the pace of the more experienced European Competitors. Josh is seeded at number 7 in the EVO 9 and following his 4th place overall on last weekends moonraker forestry rally they too will be hoping for a good battle amongst the top 10.

            Stephen and Susanne Wright are seeded right in the heat of the battle at number 20 surrounded by Italian, Polish, Dutch, Czech and Norwegian crews. The Newbliss siblings have a hectic schedule over a 21 day period having been in Belgium last weekend for the second round of the Belgium Championship where the finished second 208 and took the junior driver award. Once the circuit is over they Spanwright/Killyhevlin Hotel backed Peugeot makes a return to Belgium for the 3rd round on the following weekend.

            2014 Pirelli Star Driver Daniel McKenna and co-driver Arthur Kierans will make their long awaited competitive debut in the David Greer Motorsport Citroen DS3 R3T this weekend on the Circuit of Ireland Rally. In a departure from the usual black colour scheme, the Pirelli prize drive car will also sport a new, eye catching yellow colour scheme for the upcoming season. It will be an event of firsts for Daniel. It will be his first competitive drive in the Citroen, his first time tackling the Circuit of Ireland, his first taste of the European Rally Championship and it will also be the first time Pirelli’s 17 inch WRC tyre will be used in competition. It’s a lot to take on board but Daniel is looking forward to the challenge that awaits.

            Other locals to keep an eye out for include Mervyn Wedlock and Phillip Smith in a honda civic type R whilst Paul Sheridan will once again team up with Enda McNulty in the national section in their class 13 escort. Emmett Sherry will be navigating for Calvin Beattie in a Ford Fiesta R2. Best of luck to all crews competing and full report next week.

 

Monaghan Motor Club Annual Stages Rally

Monaghan Motor Club held a successful rally launch for their upcoming Stages Rally in the Hillgrove Hotel last Thursday evening. A large attendance gathered to get up close and personal with some of the cars and crews which will battle it out over the 9 stages on Sunday 27th April. CoC for the event is Brendan Flynn and with final preparations well under way and a bumper entry list being issued in the coming days its sure to live up to its billing as one of the biggest sporting events of the year for County Monaghan. As always marshals are needed so if you are available please make contact with any committee member. Full preview of the 2014 Hillgrove Hotel Monaghan Stages Rally next week.

 

Sligo Autocross

Well done to Derek Mackarel who finished 8th overall on the recent Sligo Autocross. Derek had been 4th overall before conditions dried up, allowing the more powerful car’s to use there advantage but 8th overall and 2nd in class still a great result in his trusty white Nova.

 

Donegal’s Paddy McVeigh and Gary McElhinney took the overall win on last weekend’s Abbey Hotel Midlands Stages Rally. The Tir Connell men had a battle royale throughout the day with Daniel McKenna and Arthur Kierans who returned to the Irish tarmac in their trusty Mark II escort after a years absence while competing in the BRC. In the end the WRC subaru of McVeigh/McElhinney proved too much and excelled in the mucky conditions to take a 10 second win from the trying Monaghan men. Local Longford man Tommy Doyle and Liam Moynihan were 3rd overall in a Renault Clio ahead of last years winner Chris Armstrong who was 4th. Monaghans Richard Moffett and Martin Connolly survived an early altercation with a chicane to round off the top five in their starlet.      

            As always local Monaghan crews were in the hunt for many class awards with Michael Carbin and Emmett McCooey finally getting the result they deserve in 6th overall and a class 20 win. Jim McKenna and Thomas Treanor finished 15th overall and 3rd in class 14, ahead of Jack Maguire and Andy Hayes. Barry Treanor and Colm Connolly had an excellent run in their new escort to take the highly competitive class 11R win and 24th overall. David Smith and Mark Deery had a troubled opening loop when they got road penalties after loosing oil pressure but recovered well to take 44th overall. Declan Connolly and Alison Hughes won class 1 in the civic.

            As with every event their will always be non-finishers and unfortunately Midlands Stages was no different for the travelling Monaghan men. Damian Hagan coaxed Ciaran McGorman out of retirement to call the notes but their rally ended on stage 3 when the gearbox packed in. David Moffett and Fintan Sherry’s luck ran out on the last loop of stages when lying 3rd in class with alternator and fan belt issues. Martin McPhillips and Ciaran Tynan were also forced into retirement on the 4th stage when they broke a half shaft. Kevin Cleere and Michael Donnellan crashed out on the 6th stage.

            So that’s it from Roscommon and the Abbey Hotel Midlands Stages Rally. Killarney Rally of the lakes is on this weekend and we wish all the travelling local crews the best of luck.

 

Monaghan Motor Club Annual Stages Rally

With just under a month to go until Monaghan’s biggest event of the Motorsport calendar, CoC Brendan Flynn and his team are hard at work with the final preparations for this hugely popular event. Keep free the weekend of 26th/27th April and be a part of the action as all help is needed and greatly appreciated. Once again the Hillgrove Hotel will be the Rally HQ with stages to the South West of Monaghan town. Entries will be open in the coming week and keep an eye on this space over the next month for more updates.

 

Club Notes/PRO Details

Monaghan Motor Club have set up a new e-mail account solely for the purpose of receiving information from competitors and club members on their exploits throughout the year in all forms of motorsport competition. All competitors are urged to e-mail action photos (no watermarks) and a short note on how they got on in any event throughout the year. We need these details for weekly reports and Facebook news. The e-mail address is rallynews1@gmail.com Obviously we cannot guarantee everything will be published but your input would be greatly appreciated to try and cover all members and their endeavours.

 

Midlands Duo Complete Treble

Posted: March 26, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Midlands duo of Colin Duffy and Sam Johnston led the field home once again last Saturday night in the final round of the National and Squealing Pig border night navigation championship to record a clean sweep of Munster, National and Border Navigation championships for this season. The Longford men proved a force to be reckoned with from the off as they won the Drumlin Navigation in November and never looked back with wins in Cork and Midlands setting them up for the unique treble ahead of last Saturday nights event where they finished on a clean sheet to add the Border crown to there well decorated trophy cabinet for 2013/14. Richard Cassidy and Paul Phelan finished the night in 2nd overall which confirmed their 2nd overall placing in the National Championship. These were another crew to travel the length and breath of the country for the National campaign and their consistency paid off with a well deserved podium. Sean McKenna and Gary Farrelly ended their navigation season on a high with 3rd overall on the night, a great end to a year which saw them run a mammoth Drumlin event back in November as CoC’s.

            Cassidy and Phelan’s 2nd overall handed them the expert class win, ahead of a three-way tie for 2nd in class with Michael/Ciaran Tynan, Packie Duffy/Evin Hughes and Trevor Farrell/Noel Hall all finishing on 15 penalties with no tie break ruling able to separate them. These expert crews all picked up a wrong approach on a plot and bash section. 3rd expert on the night went to number 1 seeds Martin Tynan and Stephen Thornton.

            With McKenna/Farrelly taking 3rd overall and top semi-expert crew it was Ashley McAdoo and Laurence Keenan who took 2nd in class. Indeed this crew were on a clean sheet and coasting to overall victory but a wrong approach at the final control knocked them back to 4th overall. Wayne Feely had Damian Hagan on the maps and they had a great run on home soil to take 3rd in the semi-expert class. Donal McArdle had Cavan CoC Ruaidhri Nash in the hot seat and they too rounded off their season in style to take the novice class win ahead of Trevor McConnell and Eoghan McCarthy. Father and son team of Peter and Shane Farrell took 3rd in the novice section, this team showing great improvements throughout the year also.

            Emmett McCooey and Michael Carbin also had some great results throughout the season as Michael adapted well to the navigators seat and finished the year on a high, taking another beginner class win, their only fault was a missed time point on the night. Gerard Greene and Michael McElwee were 2nd beginner on the night, ahead of Patrick Murphy and Aaron O’Regan.

            So that’s it for another navigation season, well done to CoC Damien Connolly and his team of Gary McElhinney, Martin Connolly and all his many helpers. Damien would like to thank Threemilehouse GAA complex, Pat McQuaid’s Garage, marshals, residents, results teams and everyone else who helped in any way. Keep and eye out over the coming weeks for dates on the Squealing Pig Border Navigation Prize giving Night, as well as the National Navigation awards night. Full run down on all class awards will be issued when final standings are available.  

 

Monaghan Motor Club Annual Stages Rally

With just over a month to go until Monaghan’s biggest event of the Motorsport calender, CoC Brendan Flynn and his team are hard at work with the final preparations for this hugely popular event. Keep free the weekend of 26th/27th April and be a part of the action as all help is needed and greatly appreciated. Once again the Hillgrove Hotel will be the Rally HQ with stages to the South West of Monaghan town. Entries will be open in the coming week and keep an eye on this space over the next month for more updates.

 

Club Notes/PRO Details

Monaghan Motor Club have set up a new e-mail account solely for the purpose of receiving information from competitors and club members on their exploits throughout the year in all forms of motorsport competition. All competitors are urged to e-mail action photos (no watermarks) and a short note on how they got on in any event throughout the year. We need these details for weekly reports and Facebook news. The e-mail address is rallynews1@gmail.com Obviously we cannot guarantee everything will be published but your input would be greatly appreciated to try and cover all members and their endeavours. 

Quality Hotels West Cork Rally 2014

Cork Motor Club hosted their annual West Cork Rally over the Saint Patricks Weekend, based in the West Cork town of Clonakilty. As always this popular two day event attracted a bumper entry to tackle some of the infamous West Cork stages like Ring and Sam’s Cross. Donagh Kelly and Kevin Flanagan survived the thirteen stages to take the overall win from Denis Cronin and Coleman Hurley by just over half a minute. Donegals Declan Gallagher and Ryan Moore made their long journey home a lot sweeter taking an excellent 3rd overall in their class 13 starlet.

            In what was ultimately a finishers rally the dry cor stages claimed a lot of casualties which include the likes of James Stafford, Darragh O’Riordan, Frank Kelly, Adrian Hetherinton, Pat Donegan and Robert Barrable with upcoming navigation CoC Damian Connolly on the notes only getting two stages after their long haul South.  Paul Sheridan was on the notes for forestry expert Vivian Hamill but their escort cried enough over the last loop of stages whilst fighting for a top 10 finish. Jim McKenna and Thomas Treanor also made the trip South and were also showing great pace but a fuel supply problem dropped them almost 9 minutes and they eventually went on to finish 3rd in class. Stephen and Suzanne Wright also brought their Peugeot 208 to the West Cork countryside where they picked up a class win/13th overall and more importantly some tarmac road mileage ahead of their next rally in Belgium.

 

Monaghan Motor Club Navigation Trial

All roads lead to Threemilehouse on this Saturday night where Monaghan Motor Club will host the final round of the National and Squealing Pig Border Navigation championship’s. CoC, Damien Connolly and his team are hard at work with their final preparations for the event which will be based in Sean McDermotts GAA centre, Threemilehouse. As always marshals are needed in great numbers so please be at the threemilehouse complex no later than 8 o’clock Saturday evening if your available to help in any way.

 

Club Notes/PRO Details

Monaghan Motor Club have set up a new e-mail account solely for the purpose of receiving information from competitors and club members on their exploits throughout the year in all forms of motorsport competition. All competitors are urged to e-mail action photos (no watermarks) and a short note on how they got on in any event throughout the year. We need these details for weekly reports and Facebook news. The e-mail address is rallynews1@gmail.com Obviously we cannot guarantee everything will be published but your input would be greatly appreciated to try and cover all members and their endeavours.