Daniel McKenna Takes British Rally by Storm

Posted: October 1, 2010 in Uncategorized

Scotshouse driver Daniel McKenna, partnered as ever by Andrew Grennan made an unfamiliar trip to England last weekend to contest the infamous Trackrod Rally in Yorkshire, the final round of the British Rally Championship. Following a sterling drive, the pair finished a superb 4th overall on what was their first ever time to compete on a British Championship round.

Based in the seaside town of Scarborough on the North East coast, this gravel rally takes competitors through the best forest stages England has to offer. Daniel surely threw himself in at the deep end for this event, competing in a hired left hand drive Mitsubishi Evo 9 from Clarke Motorsport in Scotland but this was also his first time to compete on a gravel surface. To make matters even more difficult the first stage of the event on Friday night was the epic sixteen-mile Langdale stage ran in total darkness. The lads threw caution to the wind and emerged a creditable 9th overall, albeit with intercom problems.

At the front Waterford man Craig Breen in his S2000 Fiesta held the overnight lead from Gwyndaf Evans with Cork man Keith Cronin holding third. Keith was driving conservatively as a top six finish was all he needed to retain the British Rally Championship. Monaghan navigator Damian Connolly was in his regular seat with Dubliner Robert Barrable as they held 14th overall and more importantly were leading the Citroen C2R2 category.

Saturday brought a further seven stages through the Yorkshire forests as Daniel and Andrew set about closing the gap to the leaders. Indeed his stage 2 time was 6th fastest and it was evident that Daniel was finding his comfort zone as through each stage he became a little more confident and climbed up the leader board. Rally leader Craig Breen ended his chances of a win on stage 4 as a long right hand corner caught out the Waterford man when he slid wide and rolled his Fiesta. Indeed had it not been for the travelling Monaghan fans Craig would have been there for the day and eventually recovered to finish 9th overall. This paved the way for Welshman Gwyndaf Evans to take the rally lead, where he would remain to the finish. Barrable & Connolly were out on their own throughout the day in the Citroen Trophy category and a finish was all they needed to take the title.

Daniel continued to turn heads throughout the afternoon stages, as his times came within a few seconds of the experienced leaders. It was evident from spectating that Daniel had mastered the driving style of this car within six stages as he slid the Evo through junctions as if he were in his familiar Scanbitz Escort. His stage 4 time was 3rd fastest and stage 6 time was 2nd fastest, a true reflection of the pace he had found.

Cronin Crowned British Champion


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