Sherry Shines as Monaghan Men Star in Donegal

Posted: June 21, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

The biggest event in the Irish Rallying calendar, the Joule Donegal International Rally was the motorsport centrepiece last weekend. This event is the only three day rally still running in Ireland and attracts the biggest crowds of the year. The rally was Round 5 of the Irish Tarmac Rally Championship. Once again, Monaghan Motor Club was well represented and club members achieved up some excellent results during the weekend. Enda Sherry followed the success of Daniel McKenna/Andrew Grennan and Gary McPhillips/Paul Sheridan in previous years by winning the National Rally with his Scottish driver, David Bogie. Enda who is a former Tarmac Champion now adds another major trophy to his list of achievements.

 

In the International section of the event, Conor Foley was co-driving reigning Tarmac & National Champion, Donagh Kelly. Clontibret brothers Sam Moffett & Josh Moffett were competing in their Fiesta R5s while Arthur Kierans joined forces with Newbliss driver Stephen Wright in another R5 Fiesta. The pace was intense from the word go. Kelly/Foley briefly led after going fastest on stage 2 but finished the opening day in a close 2nd place behind local aces Declan & Brian Boyle. Sam Moffett/Karl Atkinson finished the day 6th overall and 2nd R5 with his brother Josh & John Rowan 11 seconds behind in 7th. Wright/Kierans recovered from a Stage 1 delay to hold 11th overall and 6th in class. Castleblayney’s Pauric Duffy with Kevin Glynn co-driving made the trip home from Australia and held 13th overall in their Fiesta.

 

The battle between Boyle & Kelly continued on day two as they traded fastest times. After 10 stages Kelly/Foley were still just 10 seconds in arrears but it all came to an end as they went out of the rally on Stage 11. Moffett/Atkinson made good progress and climbed to 2nd overall after Alastair Fisher & Manus Kelly hit trouble. There was yet more drama as the Boyles retired with gear linkage failure on the last Saturday stage promoting Moffett/Atkinson into a surprise lead. The Monaghan man held a tiny 0.3 second lead from Seamus Leonard (Subaru WRC) with the recovering Keith Cronin (Citroen DS3) only 3 seconds further behind in 3rd. Josh Moffett, hindered by engine problems, slipped back to almost a minute behind his brother but still was a solid 5th overall. Wright/Kierans made steady progress to 8th overall while Duffy/Glynn were in 12th.

 

Conditions took a turn for the worse on the final with treacherous wet conditions causing plenty of problems. 4th placed Manus Kelly was the man on the move on the final day as he charged after the leaders in his Subaru WRC. Cronin took the lead on the opening Glen stage while Leonard passed Moffett for 2nd. Leonard retired on Fanad Head but Kelly moved up to 2nd with Sam a solid 3rd. In the end, Manus Kelly & Donall Barrett snatched an incredible 0.5 second victory over Cronin after a huge push over the final Fanad Head stage. Moffett/Atkinson bagged a fine 3rd overall and 2nd placed Irish Tarmac points after a strong drive all weekend. Moffett/Rowan came home in 4th overall to cap off a great weekend for the Moffett Family.

 

Wright/Kierans finished 5th overall on their first event together setting some good stage times along the way. Duffy/Glynn missed out on a top 10 finish after losing three minutes on Atlantic Drive. They still came home 11th overall and 5th in class.

 

Enda Sherry joined forces with David Bogie for the first time since 2011. The multiple Scottish Champion swapped his normal Skoda Fabia for a Mk2 Escort which he debuted on last year’s event. The pair held 6th overall after the opening day. Richard Moffett/Martin Connolly were 8th overall continuing their impressive pace from previous years. David Moffett & local navigator, Johnny Baird held 15th overall with Gerard McQuaid/Thomas Treanor 19th and Michael Carbin/Darragh Kelly 20th.

 

Day Two also saw plenty of drama in the National Rally with Brian Brogan & Jonathan Pringle both dropping out of the lead. Frank Kelly/Michael Coady charged to the front holding a nine second advantage over Bogie/Sherry. Bogie/Sherry put in an almighty charge over the Glen stage on Sunday morning taking over 20 seconds off Kelly. From there until the end, they maintained their advantage over the Tyrone man finishing 20 seconds ahead by the end of the final stage.

 

David Moffett/Johnny Baird finished 8th overall and 4th in class 13 after a good steady run all weekend. Michael Carbin/Darragh Kelly also put in a strong run to take 12th overall and a very close 2nd in class 20. Richard Moffett/Martin Connolly suffered last minute heartbreak as they slipped from 5th to 13th overall after losing over five minutes. Gerard McQuaid/Thomas Treanor were pleased with their run to 14th overall and 7th in class 13. Emmet Sherry guided Tommy O’Connell to 22nd overall and 10th in class 13 after getting quicker and quicker during the event.

 

Damien Connolly had the privilege of sitting with the great James Cullen. Cullen who was competing on the 25th anniversary of his first Donegal win competed in a class 14 Escort with local sponsors enabling him to compete. Much to their delight, he brought it home in 27th overall and 4th in class. Gerard & Gavin McGivney from Carrickmacross finished 52nd overall and 20th in class 13 in their Escort.

 

In the Historic Rally which was contested over the Saturday and Sunday stages, Brendan & JP McAree took 6th overall in the Porsche. David Wright, father of Stephen, made a return to rallying also in a Porsche. He and co-driver, Ashley McAdoo took 8th overall. Paddy Brennan was competing in Donegal for the first time in 26 years when the late Gary Nesbitt navigated for him. His son-in-law, Damien Doherty, was on the notes and despite a small brush with a wall in Carn Hill they had an enjoyable run, winning their Historic class in the process. They extend thanks to their team for their help both before and during the event. In the Junior Rally which was contested over the Sunday stages, Jonathan Treanor/Stephen McElroy charged back from an early delay to take a fine 3rd overall.

 

There were plenty of tales of woe from the weekend. John McQuaid/Stephen Hagan had a very short run retiring on the very first stage. They re-started on Saturday only to retire again on Stage 8. Vivian Hamill/Andrew Grennan were pushing hard until they crashed out on stage 4. James McCarville & Gareth Doherty were putting in an impressive drive and were 33rd overall and 4th in class but were forced out on the penultimate stage. David Smyth/Loretta Kelly retired their Corolla on Stage 8.

JOULE DONEGAL INTERNATIONAL RALLY RESULTS

1 Manus Kelly/Donall Barrett (Subaru Impreza WRC) 2h 26m 53.1s,
2 Keith Cronin/Mikie Galvin (Citroen DS3 R5) 2h 26m 53.6s,
3 Sam Moffett/Karl Atkinson (Ford Fiesta R5) 2h 27m 32s,
4 Josh Moffett/John Rowan (Ford Fiesta R5) 2h 28m 49s,
5 Stephen Wright/Arthur Kierans (Ford Fiesta R5) 2h 30m 01s,
6 Alastair Fisher/Gordon Noble (Ford Fiesta R5) 2h 31m 30s,
7 Aaron MacHale/Paul McGee (Skoda Fabia S2000) 2h 35m 26s,
8 Aidan Wray/Kieran McGrath (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 10 Gp N) 2h 37m 47s,
9 David Guest/Paddy Robinson (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 Gp N) 2h 38m 42s,
10 Callum Devine/Keith Moriarty (Opel Adam R2) 2h 38m 45s.

NATIONAL RALLY:
1 David Bogie/Enda Sherry (Ford Escort) 2h 32m 04s,
2 Frank Kelly/Michael Coady (Ford Escort) 2h 32m 25s,
3 Damien Gallagher/Mac Walsh (Ford Escort) 2h 33m 16s,
4 Damien Tourish/Domhnall McAlaney (Ford Escort) 2h 33m 29s,
5 Declan Gallagher/James McNulty (Toyota Starlet) 2h 33m 56s,
6 Frank Wray/Joe McNulty (Subaru Impreza) 2h 36m 06s.

 

Border Navigation Championship Prizegiving

 

The Squealing Pig Border Navigation Championship Prizegiving takes place this Friday night, 24th June in the Squealing Pig Bar & Restaurant, Monaghan Town. Pakie Duffy & Evin Hughes won the 2015-16 Championship, completing a double following their National success. All welcome.

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