Mackarel Wins Junior Class in Antrim

Posted: November 8, 2016 in Uncategorized

Stonebridge driver Derek Mackarel notched up another class win at the Glens of Antrim Forestry Rally on Saturday last 5th November. Derek, ably navigated by Cork man, Daire Hayes, survived numerous problems to claim the win.

The Glens of Antrim rally consisted of three stages repeated twice in the North Antrim forests. Despite suffering two stage maximums due to a broken rotar arm on stage 1 and a broken wheel on stage six, Mackarel still edged out James Driver’s Peugeot 206 to take the class win and 32nd overall. Castleblayney’s Michael Conlon/Ciaran McPhillips put in a solid drive to take 9th overall and 3rd in class 13.

Local driver Desi Henry in the Skoda R5 was fastest on stage one, but it was Clontibret’s Josh Moffett, navigated by Stephen Thornton who took the lead in his Fiesta R5 after a superb run through the famous Slieveanorra stage. Indeed Josh was to hold a narrow six second lead over the Antrim driver arriving at first service. Josh’s brother Sam had already slid off the road and out of the rally on the third Ballypatrick stage. It was one of those days for the Monaghan team however as next it was Josh’s turn to retire on the second run over Slieveanorra, after sustaining two punctures. That left Henry with a comfortable advantage which he held to the finish to win the rally and the championship.

Michael Carbin/Darragh Kelly also retired on a tricky event for the crews which caught out many competitors.

Connolly & McCrudden Collect Border Championship Trophies 

Seamus Connolly & Gary McCrudden collected their trophies as overall champions of the 2016 Sligo Pallets Border Rally Championship on Saturday night last. The gala Prizegiving was held in the Sligo Park Hotel.  

The Monaghan duo have been regular challengers for overall honours over the past few years and in 2016 they had a near-perfect year to finally clinch the overall title. Their exciting driving style and commitment has made them and their iconic red Corolla very popular with spectators.

They dominated class 11R right from the opening round in Mayo and further class wins in Monaghan, Cavan & Galway secured the overall title with a round to spare. The pair also won their class in the National Rally Championship in impressive fashion to complete a fabulous year for the Monaghan men.

John & Niall Kelly put another Monaghan Toyota in the overall honours thanks to their exploits in class 10. The former Border champions took class wins in Monaghan, Galway & Donegal. They were also 2nd in class in Mayo. John claimed the 3rd overall driver award with Niall 2nd overall navigator.

Shane Maguire/Mac Kierans were the class 4 champions, Niall Maguire/Enda Sherry won class 7, Padraig Connolly was 3rd driver in class 10 & Gary McPhillips/Paul Sheridan were runners-up in Class 14.

Drumlin Navigation Trial 

All eyes turn to Tyholland Community Centre for this weekend’s Drumlin Navigation Trial. COC Martin Connolly has planned a 100 mile route which is sure to be a test for all crews. The event is a counting round of the National & Border Night Navigation Championships. It is also the final round of the Gary Nesbitt & Trader’s Trophy Championships. Martin Tynan leads the Trader’s Trophy points table but he has Ciaran Tynan & Damien Connolly also in the hunt for honours.

Marshals are required for this event and those available are asked to attend at Tyholland Community Centre at 8pm.


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