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Sam Moffett & James O’Reilly took overall victory on last weekend’s Jim Walsh Cork Forestry Rally, Rounds 5 & 6 of the Irish Forestry Rally Championship.

The two day event is the only two day forestry event in the country with each leg counting as a separate round of the championship. It proved to be a big battle between three crews each with Monaghan men on board! Sam Moffett & James O’Reilly came from behind to fend off American-based Monaghan driver Barry McKenna and his Wexford co-driver Andy Hayes. 3rd overall went to Billy Coleman Award Winner James Wilson with Aghabog’s Arthur Kierans navigating.

McKenna & Hayes were fresh from competing on the New England Forestry Rally the previous weekend set the pace on the opening Mount Hilary stage to take a slender 0.1 second lead from Sam Moffett who was reunited with former navigator James O’Reilly. By the end of the opening loop McKenna/Hayes led by 5.3 seconds from Moffett/O’Reilly. Both crews were in R5 Fiestas. James Wilson/Arthur Kierans were putting in a storming drive in their Hyundai R5 to hold 3rd which was only their second event in the car.

After another blast through those three stages. McKenna/Hayes led at the overnight halt by 3.5 seconds from Moffett/O’Reilly. Wilson/Kierans were 3rd 10.5 seconds off the lead. Donagh Kelly/Conor Foley were making a rare forestry appearance for the first time in several years and held 5th overnight in their Skoda R5. Brendan Cumisky/Liam Moynihan were 7th with championship leaders Michael Carbin/Conor Mohan in 10th. David Condell, navigated by Paul Kelly held the two wheel drive lead. Derek Mackarel/Muireann Hayes were debuting an Opel Adam R2 on this event and clinched Saturday’s Junior class honours by just 2 seconds from the similar car of Jordan Hone.

Day two featured a loop of four stages repeated twice. Moffett/O’Reilly put in a stunning time on the Mountain Barracks stage, 11 seconds faster than anyone else, to snatch the lead from McKenna/Hayes. McKenna/Hayes snatched it back on the very next stage only for Moffett/O’Reilly to squeeze back in front after Stage 10 to lead by 0.5 seconds. Wilson/Kierans were contented in 3rd, 24 seconds off the lead.

Moffett/O’Reilly put the hammer down in afternoon. They pulled 6 seconds out of McKenna/Hayes on Stage 11, 7 seconds on the Stage 13 and 8 seconds on Stage 14 to secure the win. McKenna/Hayes settled for 2nd for the second consecutive weekend after another big battle. Wilson/Kierans finished an impressive 3rd. Donagh Kelly/Conor Foley finished in 5th place. Brendan Cumisky/Liam Moynihan took 7th, Mac Kierans guided Vivian Hamill to 8th place. Michael Carbin/Conor Mohan finished in 9th.

Paul Kelly guided David Condell to victory in the modified section. Derek Mackarel/Muireann Hayes were on course for another Junior category win until dropping five minutes on Stage 13 demoted them to 2nd in class. Mickey Conlon/Martin Byrne had to revert to Rally 2 following their retirement on Saturday but they recovered to 36th overall.

The Irish Forestry Championship concludes with the Lakelands Forestry Rally in September.

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American based Club Member Barry McKenna scored a fine 2nd place finish on last weekend’s New England Forestry Rally. The event was based across the Maine and New Hampshire states in North-East United States.

Barry was partnered by Wexford’s Andy Hayes on this occasion and they were delighted with their result in their Fiesta WRC.

Another club member Arthur Kierans also made the trip and he guided Northern Irish driver Mark Donnelly to 6th overall on the event.

Mackarel Mayo Mastery

Derek Mackarel took overall victory on last weekend’s Mayo Autocross. Derek has been very successful at the popular Autocross venue over the years and it was the ideal warm up for next weekend’s Cork Forestry Rally. Derek shared his father Andy’s Lancer for the event and emerged victorious by four seconds from Mike O’Conner. Andy himself made the podium in 3rd place.

Wright 2nd in Down

Stephen Wright continued his pursuit of the Northern Ireland Rally Championship on last weekend’s Down Rally. The event was also a counting round of the British Asphalt Championship and attracted a quality entry of oversees crews in addition to the Irish regulars. Wright had Cork’s Liam Moynihan in the navigator’s seat for this event.

After a steady start the pair made progress to take the lead by stage 7 following the retirement of long term leader Jonathan Greer. The Mini WRC of Jon Armstrong set a string of fastest times to take the lead on stage 9. Wright/Moynihan could not match this pace with their R5 car but still took an excellent 2nd place to keep them in the hunt in the Northern Ireland Rally Championship. Further down the field, Shane Farrell guided Quentin Park to 5th in class in their Escort.

Josh Moffett is just one event away from the 2019 Triton National Rally Championship after taking overall victory in last weekend’s Sligo Stages Rally.

Moffett and co-driver Andy Hayes led the event from start to finish. Their nearest pursuers were once again Roy White & James O’Brien who finished 23 seconds in arrears. Northern Ireland’s Johnny Greer & Kirsty Riddick took 3rd place.

Moffett was fastest on the opening stage at Glencar, five seconds up on White and the pair were already well ahead of the chasing pack. Moffett increased his advantage to 10 seconds by first service. Greer held 3rd from Cork’s Keith Cronin both in R5 Fiestas. Kevin Eves was the leading two wheel drive car in 5th place.

Moffett continued to gradually increase his lead with another trio of fastest stage times. White remained 16.7 seconds adrift in a solid 2nd. White shaded Moffett by 0.6 of a second on stage seven, the only stage in which Moffett was bested all day. The Monaghan-Wexford team were delighted to notch their fifth win in six events and now only require a top eight finish in Galway to secure the title. The top five was completed by Greer, Eves and the flying David Moffett & Martin Connolly. The Monaghan pair also won class 13 and the Sligo Pallets Border Rally Championship Drive of the Day.

Shane Maguire & Darragh Kelly took another convincing Group N win and 8th overall in their Lancer. Conor Mohan guided Eamon Kelly to 10th overall in their R2 Fiesta. Martin McPhillips/Paul Kelly finished 21st overall and 2nd in class 11R. Aisling McArdle guided Des Lyons to 33rd overall and 2nd in class 11F. Cathal Sheridan & Peter Deery won class 10 and were 46th overall. Peter & Shane Farrell were 66th overall and 2nd in class 10. Nigel & Ryan Brennan finished a fine 2nd in class 16 (Junior class).

The National Rally Championship resumes with the Galway Summer Rally in August where Josh Moffett hopes to seal the coveted National title completing his grand slam of Irish Rally Championships.

O’Donoghue & Hughes take Endurance Honours

Karl O’Donoghue & Evin Hughes won last weekend’s Wexford Endurance Trial based in Ballynboola, Co. Wexford. The Dublin-Monaghan duo emerged 15 seconds clear of Derek Butler & Oisin Sherlock after a gripping battle between the pair during the day.

Reigning Champion Peter Barrable & Kevin Fagan led after the opening loop but suspension damage and missed code boards would drop them back. O’Donoghue/Hughes & Butler/Sherlock were dead equal after 6 selectives and after Butler/Sherlock dropped 10 seconds on Test 7, only 1 second slip them over the next three selectives.

O’Donoghue/Hughes made good progress on the next loop to increase their advantage to 14 seconds. Butler/Sherlock put in a storming through the Quarry to trim 4 seconds back but a canceled selective worked against the crew and O’Donoghue/Hughes were able to increase their advantage on the final test to take a 15 second win.

Aaron McElroy guided Circuit Racer Nicole Drought to an impressive 5th overall in their 1 litre Micra, comfortably taking class honours. Emmet Sherry & Ben Kellett had a difficult day at the office with Jack McKenna suffering a hugely disappointing exit before the first selective with mechanical woes. James Kelly/Craig McPhillips & Aiden Sherry/James Sherry enjoyed their day in the Wexford Sunshine.

The Irish Endurance Championship heads next to Munster for the first time with the Regie Tilson Endurance Trial in Cork on Sunday August 4th.

Monaghan’s own Endurance event takes place two weeks later on August 18th.

Moffett Wins in Waterford

Posted: July 8, 2019 in Uncategorized

Josh Moffett & Andy Hayes secured overall victory on the Ravens Rock Rally, Round 5 of the Triton National Rally Championship.

Moffett continued his pursuit of the Triton title with a fourth win from five events and is odds on favourite for the championship.

The 9 stage Waterford based event attracted a smaller than usual National contingent. Moffett & Hayes emerged 18.3 seconds clear of Roy White/James O’Brien to increase their championship lead. 

Moffett was fastest on the opening stage but it was White who moved in front on stages 2 and 3 and arrived at first service with a 2.4 second advantage. The pair were well ahead of the chasing pack led by John Dalton in a Darrian. White hit problems on the second loop with a broken handbrake and losing 5th gear. Moffett surged in front to lead by 24 seconds after six stages. He maintained his advantage on the final loop to secure overall victory.

White took 2nd place with the Escort of Richard Moore in 3rd.
Shane Maguire/Anthony Nestor won the Group N category and finished 10th overall. Aisling McArdle guided Des Lyons to 27th overall and 2nd in class 11F. Michael Conlon/Damien Fleming finished 32nd overall after a troubled event.
Round 6 of the National Rally Championship is the Sligo Stages Rally on Sunday July 14th.
Top 10:
1st Josh Moffett/Andy Hayes (Ford Fiesta WRC) 1hr.06m.39.2s
2nd Roy White/James O’Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC) 1h.06.57.5s
3rd Richard Moore/John McGrath (Ford Escort) 1h.09m.53.1s
4th John Dalton/Gwynfor Jones (Darrian T90) 1hr.09.54.4s
5th David Guest/Jonathan McGrath (Skoda Fabia S2000) 1h.10m.34.6s
6th Daniel Harper/Chris Campbell (Mini WRC) 1h.11m.31.6s
7th Keith Power/Tommy Cuddihy (Mitsubishi Evo9) 1h.11m.50.9s
8th Tomas Davies/Eurig Davies (Ford Escort) 1h.12m.02.4s
9th Aaron McLaughlin/Darren Curran (Mitsubishi Evo9) 1h.12m.12.9s
10th Shane Maguire/Anthony Nestor (Mitsubishi Evo9) 1h.12m.52.4s

McCarra Tops in Autotest

The annual Monaghan Motor Club Autotest was held in ideal conditions on Sunday 30th June in the Maguire Transport Yard in Ballinode. As a counting round of the Traders Trophy club championship, it attracted the usual championship regulars. With this in mind, Clerk of the Course Brendan Flynn designed the tests to suit the limitations of the cars being used.
Oisin Sherlock got proceedings underway in his green Ford Fiesta followed by Craig McPhillips in his Toyota Starlet, the only two drivers competing in the saloon class. However, it was Kieran McCarra in his Starlet who topped the time charts with fastest time on 5 of the 8 tests to take overall victory on the day. Ciaran Tynan, sharing the same car, was runner-up following a consistent performance throughout the 8 tests.
At the conclusion, COC Brendan Flynn thanked Maguire International for the use of their premises, the Northern Standard for its support and the marshals and officials who worked to ensure a well-run event.
Top Six:
1st Kieran McCarra (Starlet) 326.8 seconds.
2nd Ciaran Tynan (Starlet) 338.6 secs,
3rd Martin Tynan (Starlet) 351.1 secs,
4th David McCrudden (Starlet) 382
5th Oisin Sherlock (Fiesta) 452.6
6th Craig McPhillips (Starlet) 471.6

The Motorsport Community was left shocked and stunned after the tragic death of Manus Kelly at the Donegal International Rally last weekend. Manus was widely regarded as a gentleman and an extremely popular and talented driver. He had won the event for the previous three years and was impressing again as he accustomed to R5 machinery in 2019. Unfortunately Manus sustained fatal injuries in an accident on Stage 15 of the event. His co-driver Donal Barrett was brought to hospital with minor injuries. The event was immediately cancelled as a mark of respect. The members of Monaghan Motor Club would like to extend their condolences to the Kelly family and friends at this time.

It was a sad end to what had been a classic event over the first two days. Sam Moffett & James Fulton were sensationally leading former WRC star Craig Breen in an identical Fiesta WRC. Josh Moffett/Keith Moriarty debuted an R5 Hyundai for the first time and held 2nd place in the R5 class. Niall Maguire/James O’Reilly also secured a top 10 finish in their Subaru. Paul Kelly guided David Condell to 9th overall in the National rally. Michael Carbin/Darragh Kelly also won their class.
Autotest

The annual Monaghan Motor Club Autotest is scheduled to take place on Sunday next 30th June. This will be a counting round of the Traders Trophy club championship but will not be a round of the Hewison championship. Clerk of the Course Brendan Flynn has designed a set of tests with the clubman in mind. The venue is the Maguire Transport yard in Ballinode. Competitors must attend at 12.30 for paper scrutiny, with the action getting underway at 1.30pm. Regulations are available on the club website http://www.monaghanmotorclub.net.