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EMC Clubman Stages Rally (St Angelo Airfield) - (Sat) 6 Oct 12

Posted: November 11, 2016 3:31 AM - 4915 Hits

In Car

Posted: November 11, 2016 3:31 AM

Darren McKelvey & Aaron Johnston. (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 6) SS2

Frank Wray & Joe McNulty (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 6)

Connor Woods & Kris Farrell (Nissan Micra) SS3

Video Clips

Posted: November 11, 2016 3:31 AM

McGrady Insurance Junior 1000 Rally Challenge Ireland - Kyle White wins at St. Angelo

Posted: November 11, 2016 3:28 AM

St. Angelo Airfield near Enniskillen produced another winner in this season's McGrady Insurance Junior 1000 Rally Challenge Ireland. This time it was 16-year old Kyle White from Belfast who completed the Clubman Rally's six stages fastest, to take his first ever rally victory by a margin of 8.8-seconds. He battled all day with Ben Crealey, the 14-year old from Portadown's second place seeing him retain his series lead.

In stark contrast to the juniors' previous visit to this former World War II airbase, the weather was dry and bright all day, which meant speeds were higher and the six 14?16-year old drivers taking part could push their 1000cc cars to their limits. The first two stages took competitors on a clockwise loop of the old runways and perimeter tracks that make up the venue. First to shine was Ben, taking his Nissan Micra and co-driver Liam Regan through the timing beam 0.8-second ahead of Kyle and his co-driver Alan Purdy in their Peugeot 107.

It was close for third place too, when Adam Bustard ? the winner when the junior series visited St. Angelo in May ? completed SS1 just 2.8-seconds ahead of Connor Woods. Adam, who's from Castlederg, was joined in his Chevrolet Spark this weekend by his cousin Brian Bustard, whilst Nissan Micra driver Connor, who's from Derrygonnelly, was accompanied by new co-driver Jonny Leonard.

In fifth was James Partridge, the 15-year old from Moira getting quicker event-by-event in his Nissan Micra, partnered by Phil Cherry. However, for Newry's Eoghan Bogue, things were not going to plan. Right from the start his Micra's engine began misfiring and losing power, a trait that was to hamper his and Wendy Blackledge's ? who stood in as co-driver at the last minute ? progress throughout the day.

SS2, a repeat of SS1, saw Kyle turn the tables on Ben and he emerged from the stage in the lead by 0.4-second. However, for Adam something wasn't quite right: although he'd driven well, his stage time did not reflect the performance and, although disappointed, he decided to do his best to make up the 15-second deficit during the four remaining stages.

His grasp on third place was helped on SS3 ? an anti-clockwise run of SS1 and SS2 - when Connor clipped one of the bales that marked the entry and exit of the various chicanes and lost around 10-seconds. Although still not 100%, Eoghan's car was running a little better at this point and he managed to get through the stage just 0.2-seconds from that of James' time.

Stage four, a re-run of three, saw the times between the competitors get even closer, which meant that the slightly re-configured stages of five and six were to make the drivers try even harder to gain an advantage over their rivals. James gave it his best shot on SS6, but perhaps tried a little too hard and spun backwards into another of the bales, removing his car's rear bumper and re-adjusting the suspension in the process. Thankfully, he was still able to make it to the finish.

Up-front it was till tight, but Kyle kept his cool and went quickest through the final two stages to make it five fastest times out of six, his lead finally adding up to 8.8-seconds. Ben accepted that he was unlikely to be able to close the gap on the final stage and was happy to consolidate his second place and retain his lead in the series standings.

Putting the issues of stage two behind him, Adam drove impressively for the rest of the rally and was right on the pace of the two drivers ahead of him. Connor and James continued to battle for fourth place, with the Derrygonnelly teenager just taking the advantage by 2.2-seconds in the end. Eoghan also did well by getting his poorly Micra to finish.

After an impressive and mature drive, understandably Kyle was delighted to have scored his first ever rally win and to have put himself in a mathematical position to be able to challenge for the title on the final round, which takes place at Kirkistown on 27th October.

The 2012 McGrady Insurance Junior 1000 Rally Challenge is supported by Yokohama tyres and SuperDrive Motorsports Centre.

Regulations / Details

Posted: September 25, 2012 11:57 AM

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