Barrett and Mullally Draw First Blood in Mayo

Posted: March 15, 2011 in Uncategorized

Mayo Motor Club kick started the 2011 Sligo Pallets Border Rally campaign in earnest on Sunday last with a compact 3-stage loop in the Claremorris area of Co. Mayo. With weather forecasts of freezing temperatures and a light scattering of snow on Friday night, tyre choice was a bit of a lottery and grip levels were virtually non-existent. The stages suffered throughout the day with rain leaving junctions very slippery. It was Maynooth’s Kevin Barrett and Sean Mullally who held their nerve in the tricky conditions to record a 51 second victory over close rivals Niall Maguire and Enda Sherry with Omagh’s Seamus Leonard in 3rd, all driving Subaru WRC’s. The two wheel drive category was a close affair with Camillus Bradley and Crawford Henderson taking a 17 second win from Donegal’s Declan Boyle with Trevor Mulligan in 3rd a further 3 seconds adrift. 

            No fewer than fourteen Monaghan crews made the trip west and it was a case of mixed fortunes with only five of these making it to the finish ramp. Adrian McElvaney and Damian Connolly started this event at number 4 in their Subaru WRC, this being Adrian’s first event in almost 2 years but their run was short-lived with gearbox trouble on the 4th stage forcing their retirement while lying 5th overall. 

Michael Conlon and Aidan Boyle had a good steady run to 10th o/a and 2nd in class 13. Jack Maguire with Emmett Sherry on the notes were 14th o/a and 4th in class 13. Local Mayo man James Culliney had Andrew Grennan on the notes and they finished 23rd o/a and 3rd in class 12 despite a 2-minute time loss on stage 3. Martin McPhillips and Nicola McKenna had a difficult day on the slippery stages and finished 55th o/a.

            Raymond Conlon and Darren McCague’s day ended at first service with gearbox trouble while Sean Agnew and Seamus Connolly retired within 3 miles of the start of stage 1 with mechanical issues. Aaron McQuaid’s season didn’t get off to the best start as he broke a drive shaft on ss1 while Michael Carbin and Evin Hughes’ engine gave up the ghost on the finish line of stage 8 whilst lying a comfortable 2nd in class 10. David Smyth and Austin Hamill battled the elements all day with a range of problems including a burst brake pipe but a visit to the scenery on stage 6 resulting in loosing a wheel was the final nail in their coffin while Ciaran King and Mickey Brennan left their Civic in the hedge on a square left corner with Barry Treanor and Colm Connolly not even making it out to stage 1 as mechanical gremlins set in. Stephen Rushe and Liam Fleming didn’t make it through ss8, again with mechanical trouble.

            Next up for the Border Championship is our own Monaghan Stages Rally on 17th April. Entries are now open and forms can be downloaded from the club website. www.monaghanmotorclub.net

 Autotest

 The recently postponed Monaghan Motor Club autotest has been re-scheduled for Sunday 3rd April at Wrights Quarry, Swann’s Cross. Entry forms available on club website.

 Cavan Motor Club Night Navigation Trial

 Saturday next sees the final round of the 2010/11 National and Squealing Pig Border navigation championships take place with HQ at the Errigal Country House Hotel in Cootehill. Monaghan’s Domnic McArdle has taken on the role of CoC assisted by Mervin Wedlock with entry forms available on the Cavan motor club website. There is a two way battle for the National title between Arthur Kierans/Ashley McAdoo and Michael Carbin/Evin Hughes with Ashley needing to finish in the top 8 to ensure he regains the title for a 4th consecutive year. The Border Championship is a much tighter affair with 4 crews in with a shout of winning once dropped scores are accounted for. Andy and Liam hold a small advantage but Michael and Evin, Chris Kelly and Sam Johnston, Michael and Ciaran Tynan are all in with a shout of an overall championship win and mathematically a host of other crews can also win should results go their way, so the competition will be fierce on Saturday night. Anybody willing to marshal should be at the hotel by 8 o’clock.

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