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Galway International Rally - 6-7 Feb 10

Posted: February 24, 2010 12:02 PM - 62108 Hits

Safety Direct Galway International Rally
Round 1 - 2010 Tarmac Rally Championship
Round 1 - 2010 Citroen Racing Trophy Ireland
Round 1 - 2010 Fiesta SportTrophy Ireland

Watch RPM Motorsport's Galway Part I on UTV Player:

Posted: February 23, 2010 9:18 PM

Video Clips: Escort MK2 in Galway

Posted: February 13, 2010 8:59 AM

Even more Photos.....

Posted: February 13, 2010 8:54 AM

More In Car-

Posted: February 12, 2010 4:02 PM

Craig Breen & Gareth Roberts - Ford Fiesta S2000 - SS9




Daniel McKenna & Andrew Grennan - Stage 8

Breen/Roberts debut 'Kick Energy' Ford Fiesta Super 2000 to Second Overall

Posted: February 12, 2010 10:54 AM



Sunday 7th February Oranmore, Galway, Craig Breen and Gareth Roberts driving the “Kick Energy” Ford Fiesta Super 2000 have secured second overall on the Safety Direct Galway International Rally.
In front of a large crowd on the finish ramp Craig celebrated the great result stating,
“The result is unbelievable, the car only arrived a week ago, we did some testing but you never really know until you get competitive miles under you belt. Yesterday we were on the pace from the start and that gave Gareth and I a lot of confidence. Before the rally began we hoped to be up there with the Group N boys but now looking back over the two days to have set times and competed with the World Rally Cars is just unbelievable and on the final stage yesterday we claimed a fastest time which unreal for the car and ourselves. We were in a huge fight this morning with Tim McNulty but his gearbox cried enough on stage thirteen. It was hard luck on Tim as he suffered a puncture yesterday and lost time which elevated us to second place, we knew with only a thirty second gap this morning he would push hard and that’s what he did, it was tit for tat until he went out. I would like to thank all my team, as this is not just a one-man effort. Firstly my parents for purporting me and being 100% behind me when we decided to purchase the Fiesta S2000. Next Gareth and all the team who put in an unreal effort over the last week, I would also like to thank my sponsors, Kick Energy, Keltech Eng, Pirelli, Castrol and Suirway after deciding to purchase the Fiesta, the new event programme for 2010 would only be possible with their impute. Martin Pallot of Pirelli was influential yesterday as the road temperatures was very low but he was always on hand to give advice”.

Full Report:

Wright/McGee Win Round One of FST Ireland 2010

Posted: February 12, 2010 10:49 AM



Quality not quantity was the order of the day at the first round of the 2010 Fiesta SportTrophy Ireland championship.  The Safety Direct Galway International Rally (6 February 2010) saw four Fiesta crews competing over the nine stages, totalling 136stage km, used on day one of the full international rally.  Three stages made up day one with each stage visited on three occasions.  Of the four FST entries all but one would score a stage victory in what proved to be a closely fought contest.

  Mist and fog greeted the crews in service on Saturday morning, but as they headed off to the first stage reports indicated that it was already starting to lift away from the service park.  The first stage took crews to the 17km Bellville stage situated close to the town of Monivéa.  It was Stephen Wright and co-driver Paul McGee, the highest seeded returning crew from 2009, who took the first stage victory of FST 2010. The pair put their previous FST experience to good use to conquer the tricky conditions and come out almost eight seconds clear of newcomers Dara Leonard and Vinnie Boyd.  Stephen Baxter and co-driver Karl Atkinson, driving the new Fiesta R2 put in a steady run to make it through the first stage a further seven seconds behind Leonard.  With limited running in new the car prior to the event, Baxter’s aim was to stay on the road and get more closely acquainted with the R2.  FST 2009 returnees Desi Henry and John Rowan were also having a steady run through the first stage. Having not been in the car since the final round of 2009, Desi admitted to being a bit rusty prior to the start of the event.  

Stage two, Windfield, also went the way of Wright but it was the Fiesta R2 of Baxter who proved to be his closer challenger over the 13km stage, just seven seconds behind the Galway University student.  Desi Henry posted the third fastest time of the stage, having dusted off some of the cobwebs in the first stage. Dara Leonard posted was fourth fastest, just 1.5 seconds behind Henry but dropping him behind Baxter.  

First and second seeded Fiesta drivers Stephen Wright and Dara Leonard were held up by a recovering car in the 14km Colmanstown stage and were therefore granted a nominal time by the stewards. This allowed Stephen Baxter, who benefited from a clear run to post the first FST Ireland stage victory for the R2.  Baxter closed the gap to leader Wright from 22 seconds to under 20 seconds.  Desi Henry had problems of his own, a spin in the stage losing him around 20 seconds and keeping him in fourth place.  

As the crews returned for the first service Stephen Wright held the FST lead from newcomers Stephen Baxter and Dara Leonard with Desi Henry ready to pick up the pieces should any of the leaders slip up. All four were happy to still be running and reported the stages to be treacherous in the damp conditions.  Of the 110 crews that started the event, 20 failed to make it through the first loop.

Stage four saw the two FST debutants come into their own. County Fermanagh man, Stephen Baxter put in a blistering time of nine minutes 47.9seconds to close the gap to leader Wright to just 6.5 seconds. Seventeen year old, Dara Leonard also continued to impress posting the second fastest time just two seconds shy of Baxter’s pace.  Desi Henry posted the fourth fastest time, just over three seconds behind FST leader Wright.   

A third consecutive stage victory, in stage five, for R2 driver Stephen Baxter and co-driver Karl Atkinson saw them leap frog Stephen Wright and co-driver Paul McGee at the end of stage five. However with a slender, two second, lead and little over 16 seconds to third placed Dara Leonard and co-driver Vinnie Boyd, Baxter couldn’t afford to relax as the first round of FST Ireland passed the half way point.  Desi Henry still struggled to match the pace he had shown in 2009 with the tricky conditions and a lack of seat time slowing his progress.  

The Galway International Rally stages are renowned for punishing the cars and their drivers, and the 2010 edition was no exception. After three consecutive stage victories, in a new car, Stephen Baxter’s charge ended in retirement on the road section after stage six. Baxter clipped a bank during the stage, damaging the front left suspension and steering. Despite the best efforts of the crew, they were unable to return to service for the necessary repairs and were forced to retire.  Young charger Dara Leonard also encountered problems on stage six, thanks to a broken driveshaft, but such is the strength of the transmission, he still managed to complete the stage but dropped some 30seconds to rally leader Wright. All the drama behind, left they way clear for Stephen Wright to complete his own hat-trick of stage victories and pull out a 45second lead over new second place man Dara Leonard.   

At the final service of the day Stephen Wright and Paul McGee still held the FST rally lead from Dara Leonard and Vinnie Boyd with Desi Henry and co-driver John Rowan promoted to third after Stephen Baxter’s retirement.  A new drive shaft was fitted to Leonard’s car in service allowing him to continue into the final loop of stages.   Wright was a picture of composure during service, and with a 45second lead knew all he had to do was keep a steady pace and not make any mistakes in the final three stages of the event to claim victory.  

Dara Leonard took a debut stage victory on stage seven, putting the previous stage’s drama behind him to claim a narrow 1.3second victory from rally leader Wright.  After giving the car a full check over, Henry opted to treat the final loop of stages as a test to try and improve the feeling he had with the car ahead of round two of the championship.  

Stephen Wright and Paul McGee cruised to victory in the final two stages; their fourth and fifth fastest stage times of the day, to take the rally win by over 50seconds from Dara Leonard and Vinnie Boyd. Leonard put in a mature drive through stages eight and nine to finish the rally and claim second place in his first FST Ireland outing.  As the third and final FST finisher, Desi Henry completed the podium after what had proved a challenging day.  All three finishers were in the prize money – effectively winning their entry fee back.  

Following his success, Stephen Wright was the only FST competitor to continue onto the second day and complete the full international event. He held up FST honours with 19th overall and 7th 2wd car.  

Event Winner Stephen Wright said:
“It's great to finally get my first fiesta win under my belt, the car never missed a beat all weekend, the Pirelli tyres performed brilliantly in the treacherous conditions and Paul did a top job on the notes. I was fortunate that Stephen and Dara had problems on the 6th stage as I'm sure it would have been a close race. Hopefully we can carry this form into round 2 and come away with another good points haul."

Crew-by-Crew Report

Stephen Wright/Paul McGee
Five fastest stage times and no problems meant Wright cruised to a comfortable 50second victory. Didn’t have it all his own way however as Newcomers Stephen Baxter and Dara Leonard ran him close before encountering problems.  
FST – 1st  

Dara Leonard/Vinnie Boyd
17 year-old Dara Leonard showed maturity beyond his years with a steady run to second in his first FST event.  His co-driving experience from 2009 held him in good stead and he managed to set the fastest time through stage seven.  Would have been closer to winner Wright had he not suffered a broken driveshaft on stage six.  
FST – 2nd  

  Desi Henry/John Rowan
After the dramas of 2009, Desi was pleased to make the finish of the first event in 2010.  However he had hoped to give rally winner Stephen Wright a run for his money and will be looking to improve the performance of his car’s engine ahead of round two.   
FST – 3rd

Stephen Baxter/Karl Atkinson
Fiesta R2 debutant Stephen Baxter had looked most likely to challenge Wright for victory in the early stages. A hat trick of fastest stage times saw him take a two second lead going into stage six.  However a brush with the Galway countryside meant his charge ended in retirement before the second service.  Stephen will hope to resume where he left off on the Circuit of Ireland and begin his championship charge there.  
DNF

Position Driver/Co-Driver Time Diff. to First Prize Money
1 Stephen Wright/Paul McGee 1hr 24min 08.9sec   €750
2 Dara Leonard/Vinnie Boyd 1hr 25min 05.5sec 56.6sec €600
3 Desi Henry/John Rowan 1hr 27min 11.0sec 3min 2.1sec €450
DNF Stephen Baxter/Karl Atkinson - -

Mark Cunningham - EARS Motorsport / Kumho Tyres €1000 Winner

Posted: February 12, 2010 10:10 AM


Winner of the EARS Motorsport / Kumho Tyres €1000 prize in Galway was Mark Cunningham, Car No.123 Honda Civic.

BARRABLE’S BRILLIANT MAIDEN VICTORY, AFTER McCormack’S DEFLATIONS IN CITROEN SPECTACULAR

Posted: February 12, 2010 10:10 AM



The new 2010 Citroen Racing Trophy Ireland kicked off in style on the Citroen Irish Tarmac Rally Championship, with round one the Galway International Rally. A record fifteen of Citroen’s 1600cc C2 rally cars, including R2 Max’s, R2’s and one Super 1600 crossed the ceremonial start ramp in Oranmore on Friday evening.

But the action kicked off early on Saturday morning, with 9 special stages for the crews to tackle, three stages repeated three times, and weather conditions were tricky, a cold foggy day, and plenty of mud and slippery tarmac for the Citroen drivers to contend with. Nevertheless the Citroen C2 R2 Max’s were very impressive in the slippery conditions with Andrew Hockridge the fastest Citroen driver on stage one, 14th fastest overall and just half a second ahead of Marty McCormack. Andrew’s rally however was soon over with an unfortunate throttle pot failure on stage 2, causing retirement, but Draperstown driver Marty McCormack soon took over the mantle, a stunning time on stage two taking him into tenth place overall in the event and leading the Citroen challenge. Another good time on stage three put McCormack over a minute ahead into first service.

Perhaps a surprise second was C2 R2 Max newcomer Robert Barrable. The Dublin former Formula Ford racer was loving his new Citroen, with the experienced Damien Connolly on the pace-notes. At this stage defending Citroen Racing Trophy Ireland champion Adrian McElhinney was third just 11 seconds behind Barrable, with another C2 newcomer Cork’s Shane Buckley setting some impressive times in the C2 R2 he acquired from Barry Evans. The former Irish Fiesta ST front runner was really enjoying his C2 and changed little on the cars set up, and it would be very interesting to see how he would go with a Max upgrade fitted to his C2 R2.

Early dramas in Galway included the retirement of young Omagh charger Mark Donnelly. Tipped to be a star of the future, he was learning his newly acquired ex Jason Pritchard machine, but a gearbox problem forced his retirement on stage one. With a replacement fitted Mark rejoined on the Sunday, but an off on the second test curtailed the young drivers learning process. Another young Omagh driver, Declan Leonard was also making his first foray with C2 R2 Max hired from DJ Motorsport but a stage one excursion in the fog dented his hopes, and he too rejoined on the Sunday for valuable mileage in the car, and set some good stage times, after changing his pace-notes back to supplied notes.

Graham Colfer had hired a Citroen C2 R2 from Sean Agnew and had driver turned navigator Seamus O’Grady in the co-driver’s seat. The Dublin driver and former 205 Challenge front runner was setting some very impressive stage times in his R2 machine before engine mounting failure caused retirement on day one. However with that repaired he also rejoined on day two to set more promising times, and Graham may be a future contender if he acquires a Max specification machine.

Donegal driver Joe McGonigle is another new to the Citroen C2’s in 2010, having contested the British Championship in his Honda last year. With Niall Burns in the co-driver’s seat, Joe was having a decent run in the ex Shaun Gallagher R2, now upgraded to Max specification. A front wheel puncture on leg two cost valuable time, but he ended the event 24th overall and 5th C2 home, ahead of Co. Tipperary’s Mark Kane who had a topsy-turvy event! With his car just completed after an upgrade to Max specification before the event, Mark was adapting to the new mount, but a simple roll on stage 4, when he clipped the inside of a tight corner was the start of a weekend of niggles which included brake troubles. Amazingly despite rolling the car into a field on stage 4 he lost just 25 seconds on the stage, and he finished 25th overall proving his C2 was tough enough to take him to the finish.
Limerick’s Keith Lyons had hired a R2 Max from Mark Gamble of JAM Motorsport in England, and after a long lay-off Keith really enjoyed his return to rallying, with Trevor Payne reading the all important pace-notes. A trouble free run ensured he finished 42 seconds ahead of Mayo’s David Carney in his immaculate new C2 R2 Max. David with co-driver Ray Fitzpatrick bedded himself in with his new car, and picked up the pace stage by stage, on what was very much a learning event. Andrew Bushe was contesting the event in his C2 S1600, and eventually finished 20th overall after dropping almost two minutes with power steering failure, but he had a difficult run as he tried to set up and adapt to his car in the slippery conditions.

Back to battle out front and at the end of the first leg Marty McCormack and his Welsh co-driver Dai Roberts were placed 11th overall and leading all the more powerful 2 litre class R3 machines, with Conor Harvey in his R3 Civic just two seconds behind.
“The car was performing really well and I was happy with our times which were the main thing. We lost a little time on the second loop with a cut slick when a lot of our rivals went on a wet tyre, but we took the wet’s for the evening runs and things went well for us, so it was generally a very good day.” Robert Barrable ended the day almost two minutes back, but still an impressive 16th overall. “On the first day I had a lot to learn with the new car, and at times I was over driving the car and suffered a few overshoots, but I was really enjoying the car.”

Adrian McElhinney over a minute behind him in 20th overall. Day two brought six special stages, two repeated three times including the famous Black Road mountain stage near Loughrea. The fog had lifted for the second day and generally the conditions had improved for the faster second days stages, but the dramas started early. On the first Black Road stage, leader Marty McCormack crippled to the end with two front wheel punctures, dropping over two and half minutes and out of the Citroen Racing Trophy lead.
“I think I know where I got the first puncture when we caught the side of a stone, but I don’t understand the second one” quipped Marty.
“We got a small road penalty as we changed the wheels for the next stage, and then we got back into the lead of the Citroen’s, but collected another puncture on the penultimate stage. Again I don’t know where I picked this one up but it cost another 30 seconds and that was it. Fair play to Robert though he was driving well and his pace had really picked up all event.”

At the finish it was a delighted Robert Barrable who on his maiden Citroen Racing Trophy event took the honors.
“Maybe it was beginners luck!”Joked Robert “The car ran perfectly, and a big thanks must go to Gary and Geoff and the team. We went for a conservative tyre choice for day one, but took a few more risks with slicks on day two, and it started to pay off. On the last loop we had a real good attack and we took a second off Marty on the last stage, and I have to admit I didn’t expect to be anywhere near the front positions. To collect 4000€ for second in class R is also a fantastic bonus and a credit to Citroen Racing for their efforts in organizing this new trophy.”

Round two is on the Circuit of Ireland Rally at Easter.

Gareth MacHale/Bryan Murphy claim victory at round one of the Citroën Irish Tarmac Rally Championship!

Posted: February 12, 2010 9:56 AM

Gareth MacHale jump-started his bid for a maiden Citroën Irish Tarmac Rally Championship title with victory at last weekend's Safety Direct Galway International Rally!

The event marked round one of Ireland's premier rally championship, and a total of 66 competitors have registered for this year's series. That marks a 20 percent increase in Championship registrations, which bodes well for an excellent 2010 season.

MacHale and navigator Brian Murphy secured the Galway International Rally spoils with an emphatic victory over the Ford Fiesta S2000 of Craig Breen and Gareth Roberts. Aaron MacHale and Eugene O'Donnell finished third in their WRC Focus after a weekend long tussle with the overall Group N winners, Alistair Fisher and Rory Kennedy.

MacHale just pipped Fisher on the last stage to gain the final place on the podium alongside his brother Gareth. This was the first time that two brothers finished in the top three of an International rally - another first for the MacHale dynasty!

Championship Manager, Don Wilmont, said:
"The performance of Craig Breen in the Super 2000 car, as well as Keith Cronin and Alistair Fisher in their Group N cars, clearly showed that they are very close to the World Rally Car pace. All Group N cars are now permitted to run with larger restrictors, and I think we can look forward to a very close battle for the overall Championship title."

Craig Breen's and Gareth Roberts' second overall was a very impressive finish in what was the Ford Fiesta S2000's debut on Irish soil. And with bonus championship points on offer for the first three non-WRC finishers, Breen leaves the event only one point adrift of MacHale in Championship terms. Fourth placed Alistair Fisher and sixth placed Alan Ring, who was navigated by Adrian Deasy, also received bonus points.

The event also marked the opening round of the Citroën Racing Trophy series, with Marty McCormack and Dai Roberts leading the category throughout most of the event. However, they suffered a puncture late on Sunday afternoon, allowing Robert Barrable and navigator Damien Connolly to take the victory. McCormack finished second while Shane Buckley and Thomas Maguire were third.

Meanwhile, in the Modified Challenge category, Daniel McKenna and Andrew Grennan sealed victory after a stunning drive in their Ford Escort, while Ray Cunningham and Adrian Cusack took the Historic category in their Mini Cooper. Aidan O'Connor and Ian Regan won the award for Classic cars while Martin and Linda Ward won the Post-Historic category.

With round one of the Citroën Irish Tarmac Rally Championship completed, all eyes are now looking towards round two, the Circuit of Ireland Rally. The event will take place over the Easter weekend, and more details are available from

MacHale/Murphy Shine in Galway

Posted: February 12, 2010 9:31 AM

Gareth MacHale capped off a faultless weekend by taking the 2010 Safety Direct Galway International Rally. MacHale was consistently quick all weekend and managed to hold off the 20 year old sensation Craig Breen, who set some astonishing times in the brand new Ford Fiesta S2000. Aaron MacHale finished third to give the MacHale Family two podium finishes. Aaron went into the last stage trailing Alastair Fisher by 9 seconds, but a hard charge saw Aaron take a whopping 15 seconds from Alastair to beat the young Fermanagh man by 6 seconds. Kevin Barrett had a good showing to round off the top 5.

Saturday morning’s opening stages threw frost and fog at the competitors. British Rally Champion, Keith Cronin, was first out of the traps to take the first stage, but his rally ended on stage two when his lancer left the road. To the delight of the Galway spectators, Keith returned to action on the Sunday run, and set some stage winning times. Cronin was not the only high profile name to retire early on Saturday Morning. Fellow Mitsubishi drivers Jonny Greer and Gary Jennings also saw their rally end on day one, but like Keith, both returned for the Sunday Run. The Overnight Lead was held By Gareth MacHale. The Dubliner had a comfortable cushion of over a minute from Craig Breen, with Tim McNulty a further 30 seconds back. However Tim’s Charge ended on stage 13 when his gearbox broke. It was hard luck for Tim who was enjoying a good battle with Breen for second place. Sunday’s stages saw little change in the leader board with most crews happy to keep their cars between the stonewalls.

In the end it was left to Gareth to bring his Focus WRC back to Oranmore in one Piece and bag maximum points in the Citroen Irish Tarmac Rally Championship. With both Craig Breen and Alastair Fisher receiving overall awards, the Group N trophy went to Alan Ring and Adrian Deasy in their Munster Joinery Lancer. The national rally was a one-horse show all weekend with the young Monaghan duo of Daniel McKenna and Andrew Grennan winning by almost 3 minutes. Galway also held the first round of the lucrative Citroen Racing Trophy. Current British C2 champion Marty McCormack was the early leader, but a series of punctures on Sunday handed Dubliner Robert Barrable the win. In the Fiesta Sporting Trophy, Stephen Wright and Paul McGee never put a wheel wrong all weekend and took a comfortable win. Stephen and Paul also finished 19th overall to round off a great Weekend. The Historic’s was won by Local man Ray Cunningham while veteran Martin Ward took the Post Historic prize. Damien Whoriskey took the junior prize.

After Galway, the focus switches to the legendary Circuit of Ireland rally over the Easter Weekend where Gareth will look to extend his lead in the Championship.

More Video Clips

Posted: February 12, 2010 9:27 AM







Results

Posted: February 8, 2010 11:55 AM

1 Gareth MacHale/Brian Murphy (Ford Focus WRC) 2h 13m 55s,
2 Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts (Ford Fiesta S2000) 2h 15m 38s,
3 Aaron MacHale/Eugene O’Donnell (Ford Focus WRC) 2h 17m 16s,
4 Alastair Fisher/Rory Kennedy (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 Gp N) 2h 17m 22s,
5 Kevin Barrett/Sean Mullally (Subaru Impreza WRC) 2h 19m 39s,
6 Alan Ring/Adrian Deasy (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 Gp N) 2h 23m 02s,
7 Mike Bird/Kevin Keane (Subaru Impreza WRC) 2h 25m 43s,
8 Eamon Daly/Anthony O’Connaill (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 Gp N) 2h 26m 33s,
9 Sam Moffett/James O’Reilly (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 Gp N) 2h 27m 19s,
10 Conor Harvey/Ger Callaghan (Honda Civic R3) 2h 27m 58s.

Class winners:
David Quigley/Des Sherlock (Honda Civic),
Stephen Wright/Paul McGee (Ford Fiesta),
Robert Barrable/Damien Connolly (Citroen C2R2 Max),
Daragh O’Riordan/Tony McDaid (Renault Clio),
Conor Harvey/Ger Callaghan,
Alan Ring/Adrian Deasy,
Mike Bird/Kevin Keane.

NATIONAL EVENT:
1 Daniel McKenna/Andrew Grennan (Ford Escort) 2h 22m 01s,
2 Barry Meade/Johnny Hickey (Ford Escort) 2h 24m 49s,
3 Pat Kelly/Noel Lambert (Subaru Impreza N11) 2h 28m 28s.

HISTORIC/POST-HISTORIC RALLY:
1 Martin Ward/Linda Conroy (Opel Manta) 2h 05m 14s,
2 Ray Cunningham/Adrian Cusack (Mini Cooper S) 2h 13m 04s,
3 Aidan O’Connor/Ian Regan (Ford Escort) 2h 15m 04s.

JUNIOR RALLY:
1 Damien Whoriskey/Michael McClafferty (Ford Escort) 1h 13m 13s,
2 Josh Moffett/Jason McKenna (Peugeot 106) 1h 13m 33s,
3 Kieran Feeney/Stephen Greaney (Honda Civic) 1h 15m 03s.

Stage Winners:
SS1 Keith Cronin/Barry McNulty (Mitsubishi Evo 9 GpN)
SS2 Gareth MacHale/Brian Murphy (Ford Focus WRC)
SS3 Tim McNulty/Paul Kiely (Subaru Impreza WRC)
SS4 Tim McNulty/Paul Kiely (Subaru Impreza WRC)
SS5 Gareth MacHale/Brian Murphy (Ford Focus WRC)
SS6 Gareth MacHale/Brian Murphy (Ford Focus WRC)
SS7 Tim McNulty/Paul Kiely (Subaru Impreza WRC)
SS8 Gareth MacHale/Brian Murphy (Ford Focus WRC)
SS9 Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts (Ford Fiesta S2000)
SS10 Tim McNulty/Paul Kiely (Subaru Impreza WRC)
SS11 Gareth MacHale/Brian Murphy (Ford Focus WRC)
SS12 Keith Cronin/Barry McNulty (Mitsubishi Evo 9 GpN)
SS13 Gareth MacHale/Brian Murphy (Ford Focus WRC)
SS14 Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts (Ford Fiesta S2000)
SS15 Gareth MacHale/Brian Murphy (Ford Focus WRC)

Leaders After:
SS1 Keith Cronin/Barry McNulty (Mitsubishi Evo 9 GpN)
SS2 Gareth MacHale/Brian Murphy (Ford Focus WRC)
SS3-4 Tim McNulty/Paul Kiely (Subaru Impreza WRC)
SS5-15 Gareth MacHale/Brian Murphy (Ford Focus WRC)

Photos - Day 1

Posted: February 8, 2010 11:53 AM

2010 Fiesta SportTrophy Ireland kicks off

Posted: February 6, 2010 11:17 PM

The 2010 Fiesta SportTrophy (FST) Ireland season kicks off in style this weekend at the Safety Direct Galway International Rally. 2010 sees the start of a new era for FST Ireland with the introduction of the Fiesta R2. Competing alongside the tried and tested production class Fiesta ST, drivers in both cars are eligible to score championship points and win a share of the prize fund.

Launched in the FST International series in 2009, the R2 is based on the highly successful, latest generation Fiesta 1.6 Zetec S. Featuring a naturally aspirated 1.6 litre engine, the car is built to the new Group R regulations, allowing the designers more freedom than was available with the Group N Fiesta ST. This has allowed the use of a five-speed sequential gearbox manufactured by Sadev and four-piston AP brake callipers as well as the removal of any non-essential panels and brackets to ensure the car is a step forward from the ST. Having hosted the first Irish Tarmac Championship event in 1978, the Safety Direct Galway International Rally has a long history as the Irish rallying season opener. 2010 is no exception, as the event not only sees the start of FST Ireland but also of the TROA Irish Tarmac Championship.

The event will utilise the same format as 2009 where FST competitors will compete on the first day of the Galway International Rally. Competitors wishing to do so will have the chance to compete on the full international rally, providing they have the correct licence, and therefore also score points towards the TROA Irish Tarmac Championship. With multiple 2009 FST champion Craig Breen graduating to a Fiesta S2000 for 2010, the scene has been set for talented newcomers to pit themselves against more experienced Fiesta drivers to be crowned 2010 Fiesta SportTrophy Ireland champion.

Stephen Wright (20) from Co. Monaghan returns for his second full FST Ireland season again partnered by Paul McGee, from Co. Donegal. After an unlucky three non-finishes from the first three rounds on 2009, Wright bounced back with two fourth place finishes to round off his season and secure sixth place in the final standings. As the highest seeded driver returning in 2010, Stephen will be looking to make the most of his experience in 2009 and put his run of bad luck behind him.

Another crew hoping to improve on their fortunes in 2010 is 20-year-old Desi Henry, from Port Glenone, Co. Antrim and co-driver John Rowan. After a steady start to the 2009 season with an eighth place finish in Galway, the pair impressed with some very competitive stage times over the course of the season. Despite impressive pace, they failed to finish on the next four rounds resulting in a lower than expected 15th place in the final standings.

Omagh based Dara Leonard is the youngest competitor competing in the FST Ireland championship in 2010 at just 17 years old. Leonard is no stranger to competition however, having won the 2007 Alltrack Championship, aged just 15. In 2009, Leonard navigated older brother Declan to victory in the 2009 Northern Ireland Junior Rally Championship. Leonard will be hoping to emulate his elder sibling's success in the same car the pair used in 2009. His co-driver, Vinnie Boyd, also makes his FST debut this year and will be looking to put his previous co-driving experience two good use.

The Fiesta R2 makes it debut in the 2010 FST Ireland championship in the hands of 28-year-old Co. Fermanagh based Stephen Baxter and co-driver Karl Atkinson. The pairing are also making their FST Ireland debut in 2010 and will be hoping to show the youngsters a thing or two.

With a much reduced registration fee and low entry fees, thanks to the single day format, FST Ireland is a cost effective way for competitors to gain experience on some of the toughest stages in Ireland. The championship also boasts a prize fund worth over €2,500 and is guaranteed to Fiesta SportTrophy competitors. Championship organisers M-Sport will be providing on-event technical and parts support at all 2010 FST Ireland events. Parts ordered with M-Sport can also be delivered to events.

Title sponsorship comes from energy drinks supplier Kick Energy. The company behind Kick Energy have supported the FST UK championship since 2006 and will also be supporting 2009 FST Ireland Champion Craig Breen in his new Fiesta S2000 as well as experienced national competitor Steve Perez in his Focus WRC. Tyre supply is once again taken care of by Pirelli, who will be represented at championship events by S.W. Adair Tyres.

NEW CITROEN RACING TROPHY IRELAND HEADS FOR ROUND ONE OF THE 2010 CITROEN IRISH TARMAC CHAMPIONSHIP!

Posted: February 6, 2010 11:11 PM

The new 2010 Citroen Racing Trophy Ireland, for Citroen C2 R2 and C2 R2 Max rally cars is taking off this weekend on the Galway International Rally with a record fourteen of Citroen’s little pocket rockets, and with Citroen now sponsoring Ireland’s premier rally series, it’s a massive commitment from the multiple World Championship winning car manufacturers. It’s a move welcomed by Citroen Racing Trophy Ireland co-coordinator, Raymond Moore. “Citroen has a very strong association with rallying, and now in Ireland they have really supported the sport, by sponsoring the Tarmac series and having the new Citroen Trophy as part of the series. With the big prize fund established by Citroen Racing, thanks to the help of Total and BF Goodrich and 14 C2’s in the Galway line up, Citroen are bringing a lot to the series, and I think it’s an exciting time for Citroen in Irish rallying.” Indeed Jean-Francois Liniere, the customer manager of Citroen Racing, and the founder of the Citroen trophies worldwide will be present in Galway to oversee the first round. Jean-Francois has worked with the great Citroen drivers including Sebastien Loeb, even back when he won the Junior World Championship in 2001 with a Saxo S1600. Philippe Bugalski, Kris Meeke, Dani Sordo, Simon Jean-Joseph, Sebastian Ogier are all drivers that he has also worked with. Along with Jean-Francois, two Citroen Racing engineers who will be on hand to help the C2 crews on the weekend with technical issues and set up.

The C2’s will have their own championship scrutineering at Kenny Citroen, City North Business Park, Tuam Road, Galway from 10am to 2 pm, and the entire Citroen Trophy line up will be present at the ceremonial start in Oranmore at 8pm. That line-up includes in the C2 R2 Max specification cars, reigning British C2 Champion Martin McCormack, reigning Irish C2 Champion Adrian McElhinney, Irish front runner Mark Kane who has just upgraded his R2 to a Max, and rapid main land C2 Max driver Andrew Hockridge in his Geoff Jones prepared car. Also listed in the entry with Max specification C2’s are new recruit’s Mayo’s David Carney with a new Max, young Omagh driver Declan Leonard who is hiring the DJ Motorsport car, Donegal’s Joe McGonigle in the ex Shaun Gallagher R2 now upgraded to Max and former Fiesta front runner Dubliner Robert Barrable who purchased a new Citroen Racing built Max. Former Fiesta front runner Omagh’s Mark Donnelly has acquired Jason Pritchard’s Max this week, and this will be run by Robbie McGurk of MSS Motorsport. In the older R2 models Tipperary’s Paul Manton is a familiar C2 runner, whilst Graham Colfer is new to C2 power, ex Fiesta runner Shane Buckley has purchased the ex Barry Evans C2 R2, whilst Limerick’s Keith Lyons, son of former rally driver Ken, has hired a C2 R2 Max off JAM Motorsport in England.

Former Irish Tarmac 1600 Champion Andrew Bushe will be using his C2 S1600, and is eligible for Citroen Racing prize money if he finishes in the top 15 overall, and if he scrapes into the top ten of an Irish tarmac round in 2010, is eligible to receive 4000€ from Citroen Racing.

The new prize fund really offers the C2 Max and R2 crew’s serious rewards for their overall position in class R. First place in class R for a C2 R2 Max on each round will receive €5000, €4000 for 2nd, €3000 for 3rd, scaled down to eighth place, representing serious cash rewards totalling a staggering potential €19,600 on each round! Added to this the best 5 of 6 rounds count for the Citroen Racing Trophy series, with the champion receiving €10,000 of Citroen Racing parts vouchers, €6000 for second and €3000 for third in the series, it stacks up to the biggest prize fund ever offered in Irish rally-sport. Opposition in Group R for the Citroen’s will come from the more powerful 2 litre R3 cars, with Donegal’s Conor Harvey in an R3 Honda Civic, and Longford’s Tommy Doyle in a Renault Clio R3, and it will be interesting to see how the R2 Max’s compare on the event.

The 2010 Citroen Irish Tarmac Rally Championship will be full of the French flyers on its six round season, with the second round being the prestigious Circuit of Ireland Rally at Easter.

Posted: February 6, 2010 1:07 AM

Final Countdown to Safety Direct Galway International Rally

Posted: February 2, 2010 3:08 PM

Final preparations are underway for this weekends Safety Direct Galway International Rally. The event, which is the first round of the Citroen Irish Tarmac Rally Championship, kicks off on Friday evening with a ceremonial start in Oranmore village. The first car is due to leave the ramp at 8pm, so spectators are advised to get there in plenty of time as a large crowd is expected.

The meat of the actions begins on Saturday morning with the first of nine stages in the Monivea area starting at 8.50am. Centralised service is again in the Oran Pre-Cast premises in the Deerpark Industrial estate Oranmore The first car is due into service on Saturday at 11.00am and will be returning at 2.00pm. Sunday will see the crews tackle six stages in the Loughrea area, with the action getting underway around about 7.45 am. Service times for Sunday are 10.50am and 1.50pm. The finish ramp celebrations will conclude the weekend’s action on Sunday evening at 4.45pm, again in Oranmore Village. Headquarters for the rally will be the Clayton Hotel in Ballybrit.

A fantastic entry list has been assembled by the Galway Motor Club with Dubliner Gareth MacHale leading the field of the ramp at number one seed. Gareth is one of two Ford Focus mounted MacHale’s, with brother Aaron seeded at number four. Other WRC runners include Meath’s Tim McNulty in a Subaru Impreza S12B, Patrick Elliot in a similar S12, and Kevin Barrett in an S11. There will be massive interest in the group N battle that features the new British Rally Champion, Keith Cronin. Keith, who will be driving a Mitsubishi Evo 9, will face stiff competition from the likes of Alastair Fisher, Gary Jennings, Alan Ring and Craig Breen, who will be giving an Irish debut to the brand new, Monte Carlo winning Ford Fiesta S2000. Top Galway Crews this weekend are Mike Bird and Kevin Keane in a Subaru Impreza WRC who will be pushed hard by JJ Fleming and Robbie Ward in another Subaru.

The Galway Motor Club, Safety Direct and the Eyre Square Shopping Centre will be running a competition all this week to raise awareness for the Galway Hospital Project for Cystic Fibrosis, which is the chosen charity partner for the 2010 Safety Direct Galway International Rally. A number of Rally cars will be on display in the Eyre Square Shopping Centre throughout the week, along with collections for the charity. A rally car will be filled with balloons and each person who guesses the correct quantity will be put into a draw on Thursday to win rally Merchandise. Galway Bay FM will be covering the draw live from the Shopping Centre.

The new Rally Merchandise is now on sale. It can be viewed all weekend in the Safety Direct truck in Oranmore or in the Safety Direct Retail Store in the Riverside Commercial Estate Galway. The full range can also be ordered online on the rally website,

A full list of programme selling outlets can also be found on the website.

2010 Citroën Irish Tarmac Rally Championship is GO!

Posted: February 1, 2010 5:13 PM

The 2010 Citroën Irish Tarmac Rally Championship gets into full swing this weekend with round one of Ireland's premier rally series taking competitors to Oranmore, County Galway!

The Safety Direct Galway International Rally is the traditional season opener, and the event has received a top class entry with more than 100 crews set to commence battle on Galway's challenging closed roads.

The 2010 Citroën Racing Trophy also forms part of the Citroën Irish Tarmac Rally Championship, and almost 20 crews have entered the opening round. They will be tussling for prize money totalling almost €20,000!

However, missing from the entry is last year's Galway winner and reigning champion, Eugene Donnelly. The Maghera man, who holds a record equalling five Irish Tarmac Rally Championship titles, is struggling to put a deal together to contest this year's series.

"I don't really know what I'm going to do yet," Donnelly commented. "I'm not going to Galway but I'll take stock of things over the next couple of months and see if I can put something together for the Circuit of Ireland. I'd say it's going to be a difficult year to get something sorted."

With Donnelly missing from the entry, Gareth MacHale and Brian Murphy are the number one seeds in their Ford Focus WRC. Last year saw MacHale claim his maiden Tarmac Championship victory, and he will be hungry to add more wins to his tally during the 2010 season.

At number two, Tim McNulty and Paul Kiely will provide stiff opposition in their Subaru Impreza WRC, while County Cork's Keith Cronin, who is the reigning British Rally Champion, also intends to contest this year's Citroën sponsored series. He starts at number three in Galway, ahead of Aaron MacHale, Patrick Elliott and Kevin Barrett.

Cronin is among the leading lights in Group N, and with bonus championship points up for grabs for all non-World Rally Car entrants, the showroom category might well spring a surprise or two. Kenny McKinstry is the only driver to have sealed the overall honours in a Group N car, and that was back in 1991. Could there be a repeat performance this year?

Cronin will certainly be trying his best, along with fellow Group N contestants Alastair Fisher and Garry Jennings. Meanwhile, Craig Breen will give the Ford Fiesta Super 2000 its competitive debut on Irish soil, and the reigning Fiesta SportTrophy Ireland, UK and International champion could give the series regulars a run for their money.

The Safety Direct Galway International Rally, which also incorporates a round of the Historic Championship and Modified Challenge, gets underway this Friday evening with a ceremonial start in Oranmore. Competitors will tackle stages on Saturday and Sunday, and the winner will be crowned on Sunday afternoon.

More details can be found online at

Change of Co-Drivers for Keith Cronin and Alastair Fisher

Posted: January 30, 2010 7:02 PM

Rally Launch Night a Major Success

Posted: January 29, 2010 1:08 PM

The launch of the 2010 Safety Direct Galway International Rally was held on Friday night last, in the Clayton Hotel Ballybrit. A number of special guest drivers were in attendance including newly crowned British Rally Champion, Keith Cronin, Tim McNulty, Gareth MacHale and Gary Jennings. MC for the night was Michael Lyster.

With the event launch now passed, and the ceremonial start less than two weeks away, excitement is building rapidly. The Galway Motor Club are delighted to have over 130 entries for the February event which is the first round of the newly announced Citroen Irish Tarmac Rally Championship. Top seeds are last year’s championship runners up Gareth MacHale and Brian Murphy in their 2006 Ford Focus WRC. The Dublin pair can expect stiff competition from number two seed, Tim McNulty, who has multiple champion co-driver Paul Kiely on board, and also current British Rally Champion Keith Cronin, who starts at number three. The event will also see the Irish debut of the new Ford Fiesta S2000, which will be driven by Billy Coleman Award winner Craig Breen.

Pirelli/Honda Cup Ireland tyre deal for drivers

Posted: January 28, 2010 2:07 PM

Special offer for Honda Cup Ireland 2010 drivers using the Galway International Rally to "warm-up" before the first event in West Cork.

New Co-Driver for Keith Cronin?

Posted: January 28, 2010 12:24 PM

See Latest Team News on

Eugene O Donnell to Co-drive for Aaron McHale

Posted: January 28, 2010 12:21 PM

Eugene O Donnell will partner Aaron Mc Hale in car 4 on the Safety Direct Galway International Rally 2010 next weekend

Full Entry List available.

Posted: January 27, 2010 4:07 PM

Top 20

Posted: January 26, 2010 1:02 PM

1 Gareth MacHale/Brian Murphy (Ford Focus WRC)
2 Tim McNulty/Paul Kiely (Subaru Impreza WRC)
3 Keith Cronin/Greg Shinnors (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9)
4 Aaron MacHale/TBA (Ford Focus WRC)
5 Patrick Elliott/Paul Goodman (Subaru Impreza WRC)
6 Kevin Barrett/Sean Mullally (Subaru Impreza WRC)
7 Alastair Fisher/Barry McNulty (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9)
8 Garry Jennings/David Moynihan (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9)
9 Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts (Ford Fiesta S2000)
10 Mike Bird/Kevin Keane (Subaru Impreza WRC)
11 JJ Fleming/Robbie Ward (Subaru Impreza WRC)
12 Richard Cathcart/Martin Brady (Subaru Impreza N12B)
14 Alan Ring/Adrian Deasy (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9)
15 Jer O'Donovan/Sean Hayde (Subaru Impreza N12B)
16 Anthony O'Halloran/Charlie McEnery (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9)
17 Andrew Bushe/Richard Hyland (Citroen C2 S1600)
18 Jonathan Greer/Kirsty Riddick (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9)
19 Daniel McKenna/Andrew Grennan (Ford Escort Mk2)
20 Barry Meade/Johnny Hickey (Ford Escort RS)

Competition Winners:

Posted: January 24, 2010 11:31 PM

The Winners of the Safety Direct Galway International Rally Merchandise are:

    1) Kieran Murphy – JACKET
    2) Ronan Murphy – POLO & HAT
    3) Stephen Keaveney – POLO & HAT
Winners will be contacted on Monday 25th January 2010

Kumho Tyres Galway International Rally €1000.00 Draw

Posted: January 21, 2010 1:40 PM

EARS Motorsport Ireland in association with Kumho Tyres are delighted to announce a new scheme to reward their customers regardless of car, class or result. Beginning on the Galway International Rally, 1st Round of the Irish Tarmac Championship which takes place 5th-7th of February the new scheme will be introduced.

Entry is automatic to customers of EARS Motorsport Ireland once they purchase four of the Korean tyre manufacturer’s proven winning tyres on the Galway International Rally. With an extensive range of sizes, compounds and patterns ranging from 13” through to 18” it is sure to provide an option for every competitor. New for 2010 is a range of moulded wet weather tyres, which looks to strengthen the firms place as one of the leading manufacturers of rally tyres. The draw is open to competitors of the International, National, Historic and Junior events as both EARS Motorsport Ireland & Kumho Tyres see every crew in the event as important as the next and looks to reward all equally wherever possible.

The draw will take place at the final service on Sunday where the winning driver’s name will be announced. The prize of a voucher to the value of €1000.00 will then be presented as part of the official event celebrations at the finish ramp in Oranmore.

EARS Motorsport Ireland are delighted to be able to launch this scheme with the support of Gary Leonard and his hardworking team at the Galway International Rally.

Competition Closed

Posted: January 19, 2010 2:31 PM

The compeition to win some Safety Direct Galway International Rally Merchandise has closed.

Winners will be announced after the Launch

Rally Launch - Friday 22nd January

Posted: January 12, 2010 2:18 PM

The Launch of the 2010 Safety Direct Galway International Rally take place on Friday night 22nd January at the Rally Headquarters, Clayton Hotel in Ballybrit.

Rally Benefits Local Community

Posted: January 11, 2010 6:20 PM

The Galway Motor Club, Safety Direct, the Galway Hospital Project for Cystic Fibrosis and the Cystic Fibrosis Association of Ireland are delighted to announce an agreement that will see the Safety Direct Galway International Rally being used as a platform for the local Galway charity to raise both its profile, and also much needed funds, that will go a long way to providing life saving equipment, resources and facilities for people with CF in the west.

The Galway Hospital Project for CF has worked tirelessly in recent years to improve facilities for patients in the region. Until this year, University College Hospital Galway had no dedicated CF unit, and its patients had to be treated by a paediatric consultant in the paediatric unit of the hospital. Thanks to the Project and CFAI’s work, the hospital was able to open three brand new, state-of-the-art, dedicated CF rooms. These rooms have already made a massive difference to patients, who can now by-pass A&E, to avail of their treatment.

Speaking on the announcement of the agreement, Galway Motor Club secretary, Joan Vaughan commented; “On behalf of the organising committee of the Safety Direct Galway International Rally, we are delighted to have the opportunity to broaden the awareness of Cystic Fibrosis in our own local area and pay tribute to the dedicated Cystic Fibrosis Staff in UCHG. It is also a great opportunity for the club to give something back to the local community."

The news was also greeted with a warm reception in the political arena. Speaking in the lead-up to the Rally, Oranmore-based Senator Fidelma Healy Eames said 'I am delighted that the Safety Direct Galway International Rally has chosen Oranmore as its base this year. The Rally will be of massive benefit to Oranmore, generating in excess of 3.5m euro for the local economy, a very welcome boost for local business. In particular, I applaud the Safety Direct Galway International Rally's commitment to its chosen charity, Cystic Fibrosis (CF), and the manner in which it is dedicating this event to provide much needed services for the CF Unit in UCHG. I know the people of Oranmore and the surrounding areas will respond wholeheartedly. I wish the organising team every success with its preparations. Oranmore looks forward to welcoming you'

Collectors for the CFAI will be dotted around Oranmore over the course of the rally weekend. Any contribution you can make to this very worthy cause will be greatly appreciated. The Safety Direct Galway International Rally takes place on the 5th, 6th and 7th of February 2010, and is based around the village of Oranmore, with rally HQ in the Clayton Hotel in Ballybrit. Further information can be found on the event website

Full Steam Ahead for 2010 Safety Direct Galway International Rally

Posted: January 5, 2010 6:11 PM

With the 2010 Safety Direct Galway International Rally fast approaching, the village of Oranmore is preparing for an action packed first weekend in February. Preparations are progressing at a frantic pace with the date for the official launch to be announced shortly. As a result of the severe flooding that hit south Galway before the Christmas, rally officials have been busy over the festive period putting the finishing touches to route revisions and revised road closing applications in preparation for the big event.

The one thing that is for certain is that the village of Oranmore will be alive and kicking for the rally weekend. Friday night’s ceremonial start will take place in the heart of the village, while centralised service on both the Saturday and Sunday will take place in the Oran Precast grounds. Sunday evening will see the winning crews return to Oranmore village for the finish ramp ceremony.

Top entrants so far for the opening round of the Irish Tarmac Championship are Tim Mc Nulty and David Moynihan, in their Subaru S12B, Galway Summer Rally winners Kevin Barrett and Sean Mullally in their S11 and local crew JJ Fleming and David Hogan in another Subaru, while massive interest will be focused on multi award-winning Craig Breen, who will give the brand new Ford Fiesta S2000 its World debut on tarmac. This new car is the most important to be developed by M-Sport in recent years as it will form the basis of the works Ford WRC challenger for 2011.

The new Citroen Racing challenge is proving to be very popular with competitors. The series, which consists entirely of Citroen C2 R2s, is one of the premier single-make rally series in the country. The Galway entry is headed by 2009 British C2 champion, Martin McCormack.

The early Group N entrants include former national Group N champion Alan Ring and former works Peugeot driver, Gary Jennings, both in Mitsubishi Evo 9’s.

Early local Modified entries include Tom Flaherty and Patrick Curley, as well as Tommy Flanagan and Leanne Flanagan both in Ford Escort Mk2s. Interest is also high among Honda EK 4 drivers, who will all be keen to take home the Galway Motor Club Honda Challenge prize. With 10 entries being received within hours of the entries opening, it will make for an exciting competition.

The Safety Direct Galway International Rally will run from the 5th to the 7th of February, with rally HQ again being located in the Clayton Hotel Ballybrit. Further information can be found on the event website:

Time and Distance Schedules Available

Posted: January 5, 2010 5:57 PM

On the Competitors Page of:

Event Flyer / Poster

Posted: January 1, 2010 4:22 PM

It’s all go for the Galway International Rally 2010!

Posted: December 23, 2009 11:14 PM

Preparations are progressing at full speed for the Safety Direct Galway International Rally, which takes place over the weekend of 5th – 7th February 2010. A date for a formal Rally Launch will be advised shortly. Resulting from the severe flooding on south Galway before the Christmas, rally officials have been busy over the Christmas period putting the finishing touches to route revisions and revised road closing applications in preparation for the big event.

The “Early Bird” entry discounts are proving very popular, with entries pouring in daily.

Top WRC entrant to date is Tim Mc Nulty, with David Moynihan co-driving, in his Subaru S12B. The new Citroen Racing challenge is really taking off with six cars entered to date, three being the C2R2 Max versions. The early Group N entrants include Alan Ring and Gary Jennings, both in Mitsubishi Evo 9’s.

Early local Modified entries include Tom Flaherty/ Patrick Curley and Tommy Flanagan/ Leanne Flanagan both in Escort Mk2’s.

Interest is high among Honda EK 4 drivers keen to win the Galway Motor Club Honda Challenge, with 10 Honda’s entries received within hours of the entries opening.

However, the most interesting entry to date must be the Fiesta S2000 car of Craig Breen/ Gareth Roberts. This is believed to be the world tarmac debut of the car, probably the most important rally car to be developed by M Sport in recent years, as it will form the basis for it’s World Rally Championship car for 2011.

The “Early Bird” entry must close on Thursday 7th January, as indicated on the regulations. This date cannot be extended.

For full details of the event please log on to event website:

Regulations / On line Entry

Posted: December 23, 2009 10:26 PM

Competition for Galway International Rally Merchandise.

Posted: December 23, 2009 10:24 PM

rally.ie in association with Safety Direct, Ireland’s leading supplier of health and safety products, and sponsors of the 2010 Galway International Rally offer you the chance to win some Galway International Rally Merchandise.
Competition CLOSED

Safety Direct Galway International Rally 2010 to bring €3.6 Million to Local Economy

Posted: December 11, 2009 1:26 PM

Based on research carried out in a joint study of University of Ulster and the Sligo Institute of Technology, the average expenditure per overnight visitor and spectator of the Safety Direct Galway International Rally is €184, and €101 per day visitor. This is very significant in that the event takes place in February, well outside the tourist season.

More Details:

Honda EK4 Challenge

Posted: December 9, 2009 11:42 AM

Rally set to be a major success thanks to Safety Direct

Posted: December 4, 2009 6:29 PM

Christmas is almost here, which means the Safety Direct Galway International Rally is fast approaching. As is now traditional, the Galway Motor Club’s showcase event is the opening round of the 2010 Irish Tarmac Championship and takes place over the first weekend in February, 5th, 6th and 7th. Rally HQ is again the Clayton Hotel in Ballybrit.

There are some interesting changes on the way for this years rally. Oranmore village, on the outskirts of Galway city, is the new venue for both the Friday night Ceremonial start, and Sunday’s finish. In fact Oranmore will be a hive of activity all weekend, as the very successful centralised service and scrutiny in Oran Pre-cast is retained for 2010. The Galway Motor Club is extremely grateful to the people of Oranmore, and the local businesses, who have got behind the event. As well as being round one of the new, streamlined, six round, Tarmac Championship; the Safety Direct Galway International Rally also has the pleasure of debuting the new classes of the Tarmac Modified Challenge, and the all-new Ford Fiesta R2 Challenge which will run alongside the existing Fiesta Sporting Trophy. As per usual, the rally will also feature Historic and Junior classes.

The Galway Motor Club is conscious of the current economic climate, so have adopted a compact, cost efficient route of three loops of three stages on the Saturday, followed by three loops of two stages on the Sunday, meaning crews will have only five stages to recce. This route, coupled with the centralisation in Oranmore, will ensure costs are kept as low as possible for the competitors.

The Galway Motor Club and Safety Direct are also proud and excited to announce the launch of the new and improved Safety Direct Galway International Rally website, www.galwayinternationalrally.com. The new website is the best place to keep up to date with the latest news and information on the rally and also features a new 2010 rally screensaver, which is free to download. Along with an online merchandise store, the website also features links to the rally’s new social networking sites on Facebook and Twitter. Martin Fallon of the Galway Motor Club commented;
“The new website is a fantastic way for competitors and spectators to keep right up to date with the very latest news and information, and the social networking pages are a great way to connect with the thousands of, enthusiastic fans around the country. The club would also like to thank Safety Direct for their continued support this year. Without them the event would not be possible.”

In addition, entry fees for the event have recently been announced. Entries secretary, Eleanor O’Boyle, is delighted to offer a special discounted Early Bird fee to competitors who get their entries in early.
The fee’s are as follows.

    • International/ National €845
    • Historic €630
    • Fiesta €475
    • Junior €395 •
Further Details on Entries is available on the event website, or by contacting 087-3283802 / +353 87-3283802

Event Website

Posted: December 4, 2009 6:27 PM

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