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Birr Forestry Rally - 11 Oct 09

Posted: October 14, 2009 4:15 PM - 16793 Hits

Abbey Court Hotel and Slattery's of Puckane Nenagh Forestry Stages Rally 2009
Round 5 - 2009 National Forestry Championship
Round 7 - 2009 Southeast Rally Championship
Round 14 - 2009 National Junior Rally Championship

Event Report

Posted: October 14, 2009 4:15 PM

Birr & District Motor Club hosted the final round of the Petro Systems Irish National Forestry Championship on Sunday 11th October and with 3 crews all vying for the honour of been crowned the 2009 forestry champions a spectacular day of rally action lay ahead. Trevor J Harding and co driver Andrew Purcell held a 5 point advantage over the similar Mitsubishi Evo 9 of Pat O’Connell/Mark Wiley while the Toyota Corolla WRC crew of John Reid/Enda Shiels lay 16 points in arrears of the championship leaders, but were still in with a fighting chance if their two main rivals failed to score points in the championship finale.

54 crews left the start ramp at the Abbey Court Hotel in Nenagh for the 8 stage event and it was on the opening stage that John Reid/Enda Shiels showed that they were still a force to be reckoned with setting fastest time of 4.24, 3 seconds ahead of Harding while Mark Sheehan/Jonathan McGrath were 3rd quickest with a time of 4.38. Such was the pace of the 2 wheel drive cars that three crews were tied for 4th place Brian Lawlor/Peter Kavanagh, Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts and Shane McGirr/Niall Connolly all were just 1 second behind Sheehan. John McLaughlin/Ray Fitzpatrick (Mitsubishi Evo 8) were in 5th place with Frank Kelly/Liam Brennan lying just outside the top 5. Pat O’Connell/Mark Wiley saw their championship hopes take a severe blow as they dropped nearly 50 seconds which saw them drop down the leader board to 28th overall. Reid once again set fastest time on the stage 2 to extend his lead over Harding to 15 seconds with Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts now on a blistering pace to move in to 3rd ahead of Mark Sheehan with Brian Lawlor dropping to 5th. Pat O’Connell/Mark Wiley set second fastest time through stage 2 and were now up to 9th place. Enda McNulty/Ronan O’Kane (Subaru Impreza) were another crew who moved up the leader board and were now in 6th overall just 2 seconds ahead of Frank Kelly/Liam Brennan. Mallow sisters Sarah Moynihan/Amy Moynihan (Mitsubishi Evo 8) were also on a charge and held 8th place.

Stage 3 was a repeat of stage 1 and once again Reid and Shiels once again set fastest time equalling their time of 4.24 through the second pass to move a further 5 seconds ahead of Harding. Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts were 4th quickest and held their 3rd place position whilst also dominating the junior category by over a minute. Pat O’Connell/Mark Wiley who were now on a full attack after their early stage 1 woes and were just 1 second slower than Reid through the stage moving them up to 7th overall.

After heavy rain fall over night it was decided that stage 4 would be cancelled due to the forestry track incurring big ruts after the earlier pass through the stage and a scratch time as giving to the competing crews. Stage 5 saw Pat O’Connell remain on his charge up the leader board setting fastest time 10 seconds quicker than Reid’s Corolla WRC and was now up to 3rd place. Trevor Harding’s Mitsubishi begin to suffer gear box trouble and was only able to set 11th fastest time but still managed to hold on to his second place overall but lay only 6 seconds ahead of his nearest championship rival O’Connell. Craig Breen dropped one place to 4th but still remained top two wheel drive competitor ahead of Brian Lawlor/Peter Kavanagh and with the retirement of Frank Kelly/Liam Brennan, Michael Cuddihy/Richie Coady now moved into the challenge fight for two wheel drive honours.

John Reid once again topped the time sheet on stage 6 with a time of 7.36 with Pat O’Connell just a mere 1 second adrift. Craig Breen regained his 3rd place position as Harding’s gear box trouble continued. Mark Sheehan was now up to 4th with Harding a further 19 seconds adrift in 5th place. Only 14 seconds separated the rest of the top 10 with Enda McNulty/Ronan O’Kane in 6th, John McLaughlin/Ray Fitzpatrick 7th, Brian Lawlor/Peter Kavanagh 8th, Hans Matthia/Tom Maguire 9th and Sarah and Amy Moynihan in 10th.

After the final service halt in Nenagh it was back for a repeat of stages 5 & 6. O’Connell was once again fastest out of the blocks with a time of 5.22, four seconds quicker than his previous run through the stage and 11 seconds quicker than rally leader John Reid who was now only 35 seconds ahead. Trevor Harding was second quickest having sorted his mechanical problems in service but still could not improve his 5th overall position. The battle for the remaining podium place was down to the final stage as Mark Sheehan closed the gap to Craig Breen who now only had a 1 second advantage over Sheehan’s Mitsubishi.

As the crews made their way to the start of the final stage the championship was still there for the taking. With rally leader John Reid set to score maximum points O’Connell or Harding could not afford to make any mistakes. The atmosphere was electric through the stage as Harding made his way to stage finish stopping the clocks with a time of 7.42. Next up was O’Connell who once again put in a stunning fastest time of 7.33 followed by John Reid who matched Trevor Harding time of 7.42 and claimed his 1st outright victory of the 2009 championship. But the battle for the final podium was still up for grabs. Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts (Ford Fiesta R2) entered the stage with only a 1 second lead over the Mitsubishi Evo 9 of 4th placed crew Mark Sheehan/Jonathan McGrath. Breen stopped the clocks with a time of 7.41 with Sheehan’s time 2 seconds slower. Breen had set the 2nd fastest time through the stage, secured the final podium place and also won the Junior Championship.

It was a memorial day at the finish ramp for John Reid/Enda Shiels as they claimed their first victory of the 2009 championship and also for Trevor Harding and his co driver Purcell who won the 2009 Petro Systems Irish National Forestry Championship. The drive of the day had to be Pat O’Connell and co driver Mark Wiley who recovered from 28th overall after stage 1 to finish 2nd overall and also finish 2nd overall in the 2009 championship.

Craig Breen wins the 2009 National Junior Rally Championship

Posted: October 14, 2009 3:19 PM

Craig Breen clenched the National Junior Rally Championship title with an incredible performance at the Birr Forestry Junior Rally yesterday as he strolled to the Junior Rally win by beating his nearest rival Jonathan Cunningham (Second Overall) by over four minutes. Craig’s result was made event more astounding as he brought his Fiesta R2 home in third place overall in the rally. The final standings reflect Craig’s dominance over the 2009 season as his points tally puts him on 48 points with Jonathan Cunningham finishing the year on 38 points and third on the table John Byrnes on 34 points.

Going into the final weekend of the season, three drivers were still in with a shout of the title. John Byrnes was in third place but still had an out side chance if results went his way. Second on the table Jonathan Cunningham was two points behind Breen. Breen stood at the top of the table with 38 points from his four outings, three wins on forestry events and a second place at the ALMC stages where he was the highest NJRC finisher and picked up eight points. In reality both Byrnes and Cunningham needed Breen to not reach the finish to give them a fighting hope. In the lead up to the final weekend’s action all the major contenders had entered the Birr event (round fourteen) based in Nenagh, Co. Tipperary. From Co. Monaghan Vincent McAree was travelling down for his first event since the Cork forestry rally in August. Vincent was in third place overall at that point but had been overhauled by Co. Limerick’s John O’Connor who had taken victory at the Clare Stages. John was also entered with his younger brother Kevin making a return to the championship after his crash in Clare. Kevin had no pressure as he had already tied up class F but still wanted to finish off the year on good note.

The final weekend was made more interesting as on Saturday round thirteen was taking place in the north of the Country at the Donegal Harvest Rally. None of the NJRC driver decided to make the trip up north choosing to take to the forests instead. On Thursday before the Birr event Vincent McAree had to pull his entry as the engine in his Peugeot 206 wasn’t going to be ready. This had a knock on effect as it eliminated John Byrnes from the title race as he could not score enough points. Then late on Saturday evening we lost Kevin O’Connor as he could not complete the repairs to his Peugeot 205 RWD. This brought down the amount of NJRC drivers on the start line to four.

Breen laid down an early marker on the opening stage by setting 4.39. and was fast enough to be placed in sixth overall. Second in the championship Jonathan Cunningham was next on the time sheets and was sixteen seconds down. John O’Connor in the RWD G3 Escort completed the top three in the junior category with a time of 4.58. John Byrnes in fourth just a second behind O’Connor with 4.59 but was happy with his time in wet conditions. On stage two Craig again topped the time sheets but Byrnes raised his game and set the same time as Cunningham. It could have been event better for the Limerick man as he got held up over the last three Kilometres by another crew and lost some valuable seconds. We sadly lost John O’Connor at the end of the stage as his gearbox expired.

As the car return to first service all three drivers reported no problems. Cunningham and Byrnes were locked together in seventeenth and eighteenth on the same time of 10.46 but the biggest news was the position of Craig Breen has he held third place over and was ahead of Mark Sheehan in an EVO 9 and Brian Lawlor in his Mk11 Escort. Stage three was a repeat of the first test and Breen again had a fine run over the stage and held third overall and recorded the same time as Lawlor of 4.32 just eight seconds down on stage winner John Reid in the WRC Corolla. The junior field did make it through stage four with Breen setting fastest time number four of the day. During the stage John Byrnes did begin to feel something was a rye with his Citroen C2R2. Up on reaching service he reported an engine mount had become loose and his service crew would fit a new one. All was going well in the Cunningham and Breen respective camps and a large crowd had begun to appear to view the new little Fiesta as word got around about its overall position.

Next up was the afternoon loop of stages and Byrnes hit engine problems again. He was only two km into stage five when the new engine mount broke. He did manage to make it to the end of the stage but would go no further. There was sad news for Breen as he dropped to fourth as National Forestry battle heated up with Pat O’Connell regained third after loosing time on the opening test in the morning. The other factor for Breen was that the afternoon loop of stages was very fast with hairpins and uphill sections and the grunt of the Mitsubishi’s of Harding and O’Connell and the WRC Corolla of rally leader John Reid. Trevor Harding was faster than Craig in stage five but half way through he broke a drive shaft and this reflected in his time over stage six as Breen regained third overall. In service the attention moved from the junior championship as Jonathan Cunningham was having a trouble free run and was under no pressure. He knew he couldn’t compete with Craig, his second place in the championship was now secure with Byrnes exit and he had his respective class tied up before the start of the rally. The biggest questions now were could Craig hold on to third overall and would the service crew of Trevor Harding be able to repair the Mitsubishi EVO. Tom Gahan with Ray Breen working on Craig’s R2 only had basic maintenance, tyre selection and strategy to work out for the final two stages. Over at the Harding service area there was frantic work by the Derek Jobb mechanics pulling all the stops out to keep Trevor in the rally. All was to come good in the end for Craig as Trevor could only nurse the ailing Mitsubishi over the two stages. Craig still had a fight on his hand as Mark Sheehan in a similar car to Harding was only three seconds away from him. On the penultimate stage Sheehan closed the gap to just one seconds with a time of 5.34 with Craig on 5.36 and the overall time now standing with Craig on 48.23 and Mark on 48.24. Trevor Harding was fastest on the stage but was a further eleven back and had his own championship aspirations to worry about. This set up the final stage to be a corker. Breen was first to enter the test as he was part of the junior field. He set a time of 7.41 on the stage and it was now a waiting game until Sheehan’s time came in. There was a gap of five minutes between the juniors and main field but as Sheehan’s time came through it was clear that Craig was two seconds faster and took third overall by three seconds.

This performance from a junior competitor caps one of the most impressive drives on any rally this year and shows the potential of both the talent of the young man from Waterford and the potential of the new Fiesta R2. It also brings down the curtain on the 2009 National Junior Championship with Craig Breen taking the title in fine style with four victories and the third overall on the final round as a polishing touch, making him a very worthy WINNER.

On reflection the 2009 season has gone through a very tough time in Irish Rallying. 2008 proved a great success and at the beginning of the year it was hoped that the championship would build on this. What the championship coordinator Motorsport Ireland didn’t expect was the major downturn in the economy and the knock on effect that would not only have on the NJRC but on all aspects of Motorsport. Motorsport Ireland were quick to step in after the opening three forestry rounds and introduce revisions to the regulations with the hope of enticing more drivers to register, plus adding more rounds. On a better note the Championship has seen four different drivers taste victory over the season and the championship has been welcome by clubs all over the Country. To finish the next phase of the NJRC now kicks into place as over the coming weeks the individual class winners, plus the selected wide card nominations will be announced with a date for the selection of the 2009 Billy Coleman award.

Posted: October 12, 2009 4:42 PM

2009 National Junior Rally Champions: Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts
Photo: Trevor McGrath

Posted: October 12, 2009 4:39 PM

2009 Forestry Champions: Trevor J Harding/Andrew Purcell
Photo: Trevor McGrath


Posted: October 12, 2009 4:31 PM


Posted: October 12, 2009 4:30 PM

1 John Reid/Enda Shields (Toyota Corolla WRC) 54m 58s,
2 Pat O’Connell/Mark Wiley (Mit. Lancer Evo 9 Gp N) 55m 24s,
3 Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts (Ford Fiesta R2) 56m 04s,
4 Mark Sheahan/Jonathan McGrath (Mit. Lancer Evo 9 Gp N) 56m 07s,
5 Trevor Harding/Andrew Purcell (Mit. Lancer Evo 9 Gp N) 56m 17s,
6 Enda McNulty/Ronan O’Kane (Subaru Impreza Gp N) 56m 45s,
7 John McLaughlin/Ray Fitzpatrick (Mit. Lancer Evo 8 Gp N) 56m 55s,
8 Sarah Moynihan/Amy Moynihan (Mit. Lancer Evo 8 Gp N) 57m 07s,
9 Hans Matthia/Tom McGuire (Mit. Lancer Evo 7 Gp N) 57m 09s,
10 Brian Lawlor/Peter Kavanagh (Ford Escort Mk II) 57m 28s.

1 Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts,
2 Jonathan Cunningham/Martin Cunningham (Honda Civic) 60m 20s,
3 Christopher Snow/Thomas Melia (Honda Civic) 64m 27s.

Leaders After:
SS1-8 John Reid/Enda Shields (Toyota Corolla WRC)

Stage Winners:
SS1 John Reid/Enda Shields (Toyota Corolla WRC)
SS2 John Reid/Enda Shields (Toyota Corolla WRC)
SS3 John Reid/Enda Shields (Toyota Corolla WRC)
SS4 Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts (Ford Fiesta R2) - Stage Cancelled for Main Field
SS5 Pat O’Connell/Mark Wiley (Mit. Lancer Evo 9 Gp N)
SS6 Alan Dineen/Tony Dineen (Vauxhall Nova)
SS7 Pat O’Connell/Mark Wiley (Mit. Lancer Evo 9 Gp N)
SS8 Pat O’Connell/Mark Wiley (Mit. Lancer Evo 9 Gp N)

Petro Systems Irish National Forestry Championship Final Round Preview

Posted: October 8, 2009 5:10 PM

The 2009 Petro Systems Irish National Forestry Championship reaches its finale this weekend as Birr Motor & District Club host round 5 of this prestigious championship, the Abbey Court Hotel/Slattery’s of Puckane Birr Forestry Rally. After beginning back in February with the Sean Conlon Forestry Rally the overall championship title has been a fierce battle and this weekend will see 3 crews fight it out to be crowned the 2009 champions.
Leading the 80 strong entries away from the start ramp on Sunday morning will be the Mitsubishi Evo 9 of championship leaders Trevor J Harding and co driver Andrew Purcell. The crew have scored 2 outright victories so far this year and hold a 5 point lead over their closest rivals Pat O’Connell and co driver Mark Wiley who will be running second on the road Sunday in a similar Mitsubishi Evo 9. O’Connell and Wiley have put in some fantastic top 3 finishes so far this year and are still in with a major chance of lifting the 2009 title. Running at number 3 is the Toyota Corolla of John Reid and Enda Shiels. Reid was last year’s championship runner up while his co driver Enda Shiels was crowned championship winning co driver and although they are currently 15 and 16 points respectively off the championship leaders in 3rd overall they can still technically win the championship. At number 4 is Jeremy Drislane/ Liam McLaughlin (Mitsubishi Evo 6 Grp A) followed at number 5 by the first two wheel drive competitors of Frank Kelly/Liam Brennan (Ford Escort MK11). Kelly and Brennan have had mixed fortunes this year and even though they currently lie 3rd overall in the two wheel drive championship they are still in the hunt for the top two wheel drive honours. At number 6 are another of the top two wheel drive competitors Brian Lawlor and Peter Kavanagh (Ford Escort MK11). Brian Lawlor currently leads the two wheel drive standings while his co driver Peter Kavanagh is in 2nd place just 2 points off Richard Coady. Mark Sheehan/Jonathan McGrath (Mitsubishi Evo 9) are at 7 and will be aiming for a top Group N finish. Shay Power/Martin Croke will be another crew aiming for top two wheel honours in their pristine Ford Escort. Enda McNulty/Ronan O’Kane are at 9 in a Grp N Subaru Impreza with John McLaughlin/Ray Fitzpatrick hoping to seal victory in class 8 after a good season in the forests.

Some of the other top forestry crews competing for honours on Sunday include James Coleman/Michael Haley (Ford Escort), Arthur Kierans/Andrew Grennan (Ford Escort), James Foley/Andrew Cullen (Mitsubishi Evo 8), John Reddington/Stephen Quinn (Mitsubishi Evo 8), Christy Carey/Mark Bowens (Mitsubishi Evo 8), Gerard Lucey/James Lucey (Toyota Celica), Michael Cuddihy/Richard Coady (Ford Escort), Jimmy Deane/TBA (Ford Escort),Pat Price/Stephen Price (Mitsubishi Evo 6), Mark Murphy/Carol O’Keefe (Subaru Impreza), Sarah Moynihan/Amy Moynihan (Mitsubishi Evo 8) and Michael Nevin/Des Moran (Ford Escort).

Mechanical Scrutiny will take place on Saturday at the NCT Centre in Nenagh from 3.30pm till 8pm with paper scrutiny located at rally HQ the Abbey Court Hotel between 4.30pm and 8.30pm. Parc Ferme will be at the rear car park of the Abbey Court Hotel and a secure trailer park will be provided beside Lidl at the rear of the hotel.

The rally will begin on Sunday morning from the start ramp at the Abbey Court Hotel at 08.31 with the of the 2 morning stages beginning at 09.01 with both stages in the Latteragh/Devils Bit area. Service 1 will follow with the first car due at 10.15 and will be on the old Dublin Rd between Dunkerrin and Moneygall. After service a repeat of stages 1 and 2 will follow before crews will head for the second service of the day at 12.22. When the 2nd service is finished service crews will than move to O’Connor’s Shopping Centre in Nenagh which is located next to rally HQ the Abbey Court Hotel. Stages 5 & 6 will be in the Silvermines/Burgess Beg area and will be followed by the final service of the day in O’Connor’s Shopping Centre in Nenagh. The competing crews will than repeat stages 5 & 6 before heading to the finish ramp at the Abbey Court Hotel at 17.30 where a champagne reception will await the rally winners and also the result of the 2009 Petro Systems Irish National Forestry Champions.

Entries Still Available

Posted: October 8, 2009 2:04 PM

Entries For Birr Forestry Rally this weekend are still open.

For Entries Please Contact

The COC on (086) 8179297 / +353 86 8179297
Events Secretary on (087) 9117707 / +353 87 9117707

Marshall’s Meeting Points

Posted: October 8, 2009 2:03 PM

Morning Stages
SS1+3 Caseys (Texaco) Filling Station in Toomevara @ 7.15am.
Stage commander Robert Lewis.

SS2+4 Templemore Arms Hotel Main Street Templemore @7.30am.
Stage commander Pat Nolan

Afternoon Stages
SS5+7 Eagles Nest (Filling Station) Dolla @11am.
Stage Commander Keiran O Brien.

SS6+8 Mulrooneys (Texaco) Filling Station Ballywilliam ,main Limerick- Dublin Rd N7(4Miles from nenagh) @ 12pm.
Stage Commander Mike Helebert.

CHIEF MARSHALL Telephone: (087)9638602 / +353 87 9638602.

Programme Outlets For Birr Forestry Rally This weekend.

Posted: October 8, 2009 2:00 PM

Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh,

Costello Oil Silvermines Rd Nenagh,

Mulrooney’s Texaco Service Stations, Borrisokane Rd, & Ballywilliam Nenagh ,(Main Limerick Rd N7)

Casey’s (Texaco)Service Station Toomevara,

Donovans shop Main Street Moneygall,

The Templemore Arms Hotel.

Final Round Showdown for NJRC

Posted: October 8, 2009 1:59 PM

The NJRC returns next Sunday to where it all began for the final round in 2009 championship. The Tipperary Forestry Rally got the season under way and now The Birr Forestry Rally brings the curtain down. The penultimate round is just the day before in the north of the Country in Co. Donegal as the Donegal Harvest plays host to round thirteen but as not registered drivers are making the trip the focal point of the action will move to the town of Nenagh, Co. Tipperary. A blanket of snow covered the stages near Mitchelstown in February as Craig Breen grabbed an early lead and now the young man from Co. Waterford lies only one step away from claiming the National Junior Rally Championship Title. Apart from Breen however there are two other drivers in the mix for the championship crown, Craig Breen leads the way on 38 points, Jonathan Cunningham on 36 points and John Byrnes third on the table with 34 points. Breen has the cards stacked in his favour as he has only contested four events with Cunningham and Byrnes with five scores on the table and the best five points total counting towards the championship. Cunningham’s 36 points come from his five best point’s totals to date; he has competed on six events but has dropped the six points awarded from the ALMC Stages.

As we reach this part of the season the focus will also turn to the coveted Billy Coleman Award. The NJRC is the only route through to the interview process. The winner of each class, along with the drivers from within this series who will be nominated by expert competitors selected by Motorsport Ireland to get wild cards to the interview process. Over the years some of the biggest names in Irish Rallying have had the honor of winning the prize.

2000 Rory Galligan
2001 Stuart Darcy
2002 Shaun Gallagher
2003 Dessie Keenan
2004 Eamon McElvaney
2005 Gareth MacHale
2006 Owen Murphy
2007 Keith Cronin
2008 Ross Forde
2009 ????

This year has shown the rallying talent we have on our shores. The 2007 award winner Keith Cronin is after having an amazing season in the BRC (British Rally Championship). The 23 year old clenched the title on the final round and in doing so bridged a 35 year gap to the last Irish man to have claimed the British Rally Championship, who was BILLY COLEMAN.

Apart from the fight between the top three there will be class battles and the hope of a wild card spot for the Coleman award. Class battles that have been decided already are Class D Winner Craig Breen, Class F Winner Kevin O’Connor and Class G Winner Jonathan Cunningham. These three drivers will automatically go through to the interview process for the Billy Coleman Award. There are three drivers that will be fighting for the wild card places, they are: John Byrnes, John O’Connor and Vincent McAree.

If the winner of the championship goes on to win the Billy Coleman Award, he will retain the National Junior Rally Championship title but he will forfeit the €5000 worth of prize money. This money will then go to the second place finisher in the championship. With only a few days to go to the Forestry Finale all the drivers are looking forward to the event.

Drivers Update as we enter the last week of the season.
Championship leader Craig Breen had a very eventful Rally Catalunya. He was troubled with electrical gremlins in the R2 over the three days and rolled the car on Saturday but was able to continue on Sunday under super rally rules. After all his problems he is still in contention for the title (Fiesta Sport Trophy International) with the final round on Rally GB to come. This week his attention will focus on the Pirelli Shootout. The action takes place in the Sweet Lamb complex in mid-Wales on Wednesday the 7th. Second on the table Jonathan Cunningham is still on a high after winning the Cork 20 Junior Rally on Sunday last. The event was undertaken in his brother’s Honda Civic and was to build his confidence after the big accident in Clare. The nature of his win far surpasses what Jonathan had set out to do. He had a major battle with David Guest over the six stages and took the victory by only six seconds at the finish. Third on the table John Byrnes was also to tackle the Cork 20 event but had to pull just before the start because his navigator could not take part. Speaking to John today however he states all will be ok for next Sunday. He was to use the Honda Civic belonging to John Collins in Cork but in Nenagh he will be back in his C2R2. Next we have John O’Connor from Limerick. John scored his first victory in Clare after Cunningham’s last stage accident and in doing so moved into fourth place overall in the championship and he now hopes to finish the season in fine style and grab one of the wild card places for the Coleman award. Also fighting for a wild card place is Vincent McAree. Vincent was last out in the Cork Forestry but suffered an engine blow up. It has taken some time to get the car repaired but Vincent will make it to Birr and hopes the forestry event in Nenagh will be as kind as that of the Moonraker where he took victory earlier in the season. Kevin O’Connor doesn’t have to worry about his class status as he has Class F already in the bag. Kevin will be hoping to finish the season on a good note as he crashed in Clare and is best result (The Ravens Rock Rally Win) was some time ago.

Time and Distance Schedule

Posted: October 6, 2009 4:02 PM

Final Instructions

Posted: October 6, 2009 3:59 PM

Entry Lists

Posted: October 6, 2009 3:03 PM

No Driver/Navigator (Make/Model) [Class]
1 Trevor J Harding/Andrew Purcell (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9) [8]
2 Pat O'Connell/Mark Wiley (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9) [ 8]
3 John Reid/Enda Shiels (Toyota Corrolla) [6]
4 Jeremey Drislane/Liam McLaughlin (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 6 GpA) [ 6]
5 Frank Kelly/Liam Brennan (Ford Escort) [ 5]
6 Brian T Lawlor/Peter Kavanagh (Ford Escort Mk2) [ 5]
7 Mark Sheahan/Jonathan McGrath (Mitsubishi Evo 9) [ 8]
8 Shay Power/Martin "chopper" Croke (Ford Escort mk2) [ 5]
9 Enda McNulty/Ronan O'Kane (Subaru Impreza GpN) [ 8]
10 John McLaughlin/Ray Fitzpatrick (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 8) [ 8]
11 James Coleman/Michael Haley (Ford Escort) [ 5]
12 Hans Matthia/Tom Maguire (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 7) [ 8]
14 Arthur Kierans/Andrew Grennan (Ford Escort) [ 4]
15 James Foley/Andrew Cullen (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 8) [ 6]
16 John Reddington/Stephen Quin (Mitsubishi Evo 8) [ 8]
17 Christy Carey/Mark Bowens (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9) [ 8]
18 Sarah Moynihan/Amy Moynihan (Mitsubishi Evo 8) [ 8]
19 David Long/June Long (Escort G3) [5]
20 Connie Delaney/Ray Grace (Subaru Impreza GpN) [ 8]
21 Alan Commins/Paul Collins (Ford Escort Mk2) [ 4]
22 Kyle Orr/ TBA (Ford Fiesta ST) [ 4]
23 Gerard Lucey/James Lucey (Toyota Celica) [ 6]
24 Moss Fitzgerald/ TBA (Toyota Corolla GT) [ 3]
25 Shane McGirr/Niall Connolly (Toyota Starlet) [3]
26 Michael Cuddihy/Richie Coady (Toyota Starlet) [ 3]
27 David Dunne/Michael Feeney (Ford Escort Mk2) [ 5]
28 Mark Nangle/Brian Miller (Subaru Impreza N10) [ 8]
29 Pat Price/Stephen Price (Mitsubishi Evo 6) [ 8]
30 John Hickey/TBA (Subaru Legacy) [7]
31 Jimmy Deane/ TBA (Ford Escort) [ 3]
32 Ray Benskin/Keith McCarthy (Ford Escort Mk2) [ 4]
33 Raymond Benskin Jnr/Ollie Kierce (Ford Escort RS2000) [ 4]
34 John Fleming/Donal Mullins (Ford Escort Mk2) [ 3]
35 Michael Nevin/Des Moran (Ford Escort) [ 2]
36 John Cavanagh/Diane Clarke (Ford Escort) [4]
37 Mark Murphy/Carol O'Keeffe (Subaru Impreza) [ 6]
38 Andy Poole/TBA (Mitsubisi ) []
39 Declan Cuddy/Nigel Moody (Subaru Impreza) [ 6]
40 John O Connor (snr)/Sinead O'Connor (Ford Escort Mk2) [ 4]
41 James Culliney/Niall Morley (Ford Escort Mk2) [ 4]
42 Andrew Slattery/Alan Higgins (Peugeot 205 GTi) [ 2]
43 Noel Wade/Eamon Touhy (Ford Escort) [2]
44 Martin Cullinane/Derek Butler (Ford Escort) [ 2]
45 Alan Dineen/Tony Dineen (Vauxhall Nova) [ 3]
46 Jack Doolan/ TBA (Honda Civic Type R) [ 5]
47 John Brennan/Pierce J Doheny (Opel Astra) [ 5]
48 Anthony Masterson/Gary McNamee (Honda Integra Type R) [ 4]
49 David Quinlan/ TBA (Talbot Sunbeam) [ 2]
50 Gerard Hodgins/Aidan Kelly (Peugeot 205 GTi) [ 2]
51 Thomas Leonard/Kevin Lyons (Honda Civic ) [3]

101 Sam Leech/Robert Leech (Ford KA) [ 1]
102 David Laddin/Martin O'Riordain (Mazda 323) [ 1]
103 Paul Driver/Fiona Cullen (Suzuki Swift) [ 1]
104 Tristan Horan/Ronan Shanahan (Ford KA) [ 1]
105 John Quill/Caroline Kearney (Peugeot 206) [ 1]
106 Enda McLoughlin/Declan Tynan (Ford Escort Mk2) [ 1]
107 Andrew Fanning/Derek Gibbs (Ford KA) [ 1]
108 Emmet Cronin/Joe Fitzgibbon (Ford Escort Mk2) [ 1]

201 Tom Murphy Jnr/Colin Moynihan (Peugeot 205 GTi) [ 9]
202 Steven McCabe/ TBA (Peugeot 106 Cup Car) [ 9]
203 Paul McMahon/Kieran Brennan (Honda Civic) [ 9]
204 Timothy Lowry/James Lowry (Honda Civic) [ 9]
205 Graeme Colfer/Jack Newman (VW Polo) [ 9]
206 Ian Downey/Brian Daniels (Opel Corsa) [ 9]
207 John Byrnes/Kenneth Sheil (Citroen C2 R2) [ 9]
208 John O'Connor/Carrie Moroney (Ford Escort G3) [ 9]
209 Kevin O'Connor/Donal Balfe (Peugeot 205 RWD) [ 9]
210 Vincent McAree/JP McAree (TBA TBA) [ 9]
211 Jonathan Cunningham/Patrick Cunningham (Honda Civic) [ 9]
212 Craig Breen/Gareth Roberts (Ford Fiesta R2) [ 9]

Rally Programmes

Posted: October 6, 2009 2:44 PM

Maps and Programmes for the rally will be available to purchase in the following outlets: Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh,

Costello Oil, Mulrooney’s Service Stations Borrisokane Rd & Ballywilliam Nenagh ,
Casey’s Service Station Toomevara,
Donovans shop Moneygall,
and the Templemore Arms Hotel.


Posted: October 6, 2009 2:43 PM

This Sunday 11th October sees the Birr & District Motor Club host its annual forestry rally. Headquarters and main sponsors for this prestigious rally will be the Abbey Court Hotel in Nenagh and our other main sponsor is Slatterys of Puckane main Peugeot & Subaru dealers. Over 80 Cars will contest the rally which is the concluding round of the the Petro Systems Management National forestry, Triton Showers South East, and Motorsport Ireland National Junior Championships.

Leading Entries confirmed for Sunday’s rally Trevor J Harding (Mitsubishi), Pat O Connell (Mitsubishi) John Reid (Corolla WRC), John Reddington (Mitsubishi), Connie Delaney (Subaru), Ger Lucey (Celica), Pat Price (Subaru), Jeremy Drislane (Mitsubishi) and John McLoughlin (Mitsubishi). The Moynihan sisters Sarah & Amy who hail from Mallow are also among the entries received.

Leading 2WD entries include Frank Kelly, Enda McLoughlin, Shay Power, Arthur Kierans, James Coleman, Brian Lawlor, Ray Benskin and Sean Benskin in Ford Escorts. Also Nenagh bound this weekend will be Wicklows Barry Driver in a Suzuki Swift.

Local crews entered include:

Andrew Slattery/Alan Higgins Nenagh Peugeot 205
Timmy & James Lowry Killaloe Honda Civic
Mick Nevin/Des Moran Tullamore Ford Escort
Paul O’Brien/John Kinahan Templemore Peugeot 206
Eoin Fogarty/Timmy England Roscrea Mitsubishi Evo
Gary Higgins/Keith Murray Birr Ford Escort
Tristan Horan/Ronan Shanahan Borrisokane Ford Ka
Christy Carey/Mark Bowens Sixmilebridge Mitsubishi Evo 6
Gerard Hodgins/Aidan Kelly Tynagh Peugeot 205
Declan Cuddy/Nigel Moody Mountmellick Subaru Impreza
Andy Poole/ Pike of Rushall Mistsubish Evo 6
John Mc Ilwraith/Brendan Mc Cullagh Laois Ford Escort
Hans Mathia/Tom Maguire Cashel Mitsubishi Evo 7
Pat O’Connell/Mark Wiley Cashel Mitsubishi Evo 8
Trevor J Harding/Andrew Purcell Cashel Mitsubishi Evo 9

Top Junior Entries include Craig Breen (Ford Fiesta R2) John Byrne (Citroen C2 R2), Patrick Cunningham (Honda Civic), Ian Downey (Opel Corsa), Vincent McAree (Peugeot 106), John O Connor (Escort) and Kevin O Connor (Peugeot 205).

Mechanical Scrutiny for all cars takes place in the NCT Centre Nenagh on Saturday 10th October from 3.30pm till 8pm. First Car leaves the start which is located in the Abbey Court Hotel on Sunday Morning at 8.31am. The Service Area will be located in Dunkerrin on Sunday Morning with the opening stages in the Latteragh/Devils Bit area done twice in the morning while the action in the afternoon takes place in the Silvermines/Burgess area with service in Nenagh. The Stages will be utilising the Coillte Forestry Treks in Devils Bit, Latteragh, Silvermines & Burgess Beg and these forests are closed on Sunday 11th October. It is anticipated that traffic in these areas will be busy and all motorists travelling in this area should allow extra time to complete their journeys. The First car is due at the finish ramp in the Abbey Court Hotel at 17.30pm.


Posted: September 6, 2009 5:19 PM

The Birr and District Motor Club are delighted to announce details of their upcoming forestry stages rally to be held on the week-end of the 10/11 October 2009. Title sponsors of this years event will be the Abbey Court Hotel, in Nenagh.

Eoin Longworth, Clerk of the Course is delighted to have the event back in the Nenagh region once again. The Club are also delighted to have Slattery’s of Puckane main Peugeot & Subaru dealers as associate sponsor. Slattery’s are synomonysis with motoring in Tipperary as being trading for 42 Years in the picturesque village of Puckane.

Previous Birr Forestry Rally winners include Kevin O’Kane, Kenny McKinstry, Ray Breen, Gareth McHale, Hugh Dunne, Hal Lewis, Stephen Harron and Niall Driver. The 2009 event will consist of 4 stages run twice around the Nenagh area with servicing between each 2 stages.

The rally is a once again a round of the final round of the Petro Systems National, Triton Showers South East Stages and the Motorsport Ireland National Junior Championships.

This years route will take in the classic forest Stages in North Tipperary similar to the stages ran last year which received great praise from all competitors as being the best stages in the 2008 National Championship.

On Line Entry

Posted: August 23, 2009 2:12 PM

Regulations / Entry Form

Posted: August 13, 2009 10:00 PM

Event Flyer / Details

Posted: June 9, 2009 9:11 PM

H.Q: Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh Co Tipperary.

Regs will be available in Mid July.

Club Website

Posted: January 1, 2009 12:01 AM

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