Lurgan Park Rally - (Sat) 28 Jul 12

Posted: August 2, 2012 8:11 PM - 16387 Hits

Orchard Motorsport Lurgan Park Rally 2012

In Car

Posted: August 2, 2012 8:11 PM

Kenny McKinstry / Lesley McGaffin (Subaru Impreza WRC S10)

Kevin and Paul Barrett (Subaru Impreza WRC S11)

Video Clips

Posted: July 31, 2012 8:34 PM


Posted: July 31, 2012 3:41 PM


Posted: July 31, 2012 2:04 PM

Dungannon's Kris Meeke and his co-driver Gerry McVeigh from Cookstown took their McGeehan Motorsport Mini WRC to a clear win on last Saturday's Orchard Motorsport backed Lurgan Park Rally. They surged into the lead on stage 2, thereafter dominating the timesheets. Eleven times Lurgan Park winner Kenny McKinstry, who was driving John McGaffin's Subaru this time, and indeed had John's daughter Lesley co-driving, was a clear 2nd at the end. The race for 3rd place was a lot closer. Garry Jennings (Subaru 555) just shaded first stage leader Derek McGarrity (Mini WRC) for the final podium place.

At the finish, Kris Meeke, who has spent very little time in a rally car of late due to budget cutbacks, and indeed who had spent the previous week on his pushbike chasing after the Tour de France, commented. 'As well as a good challenge, it was a great day out. The biggest test was the changeable conditions. However the Mini WRC is a really precise car to drive, especially in the steering. The car was well fit for it.'

The opening stage was damp, green in places, a little greasy. Derek McGarrity was fastest from Kris Meeke with Kenny McKinstry 3rd. Just 2s covered the three cars. Stage 2 was a repeat of the first one. Meeke was 5s quicker than his first run to move into the lead. The former Intercontinental Rally Challenge Champion finished the stage with a broad grin on his face and commented. 'That was a lot better.' Indeed it was. From then on he never looked back, and showed all the flair that took him into the World Rally Championship arena.

Not so happy was Derek McGarrity. He made a small mistake on the stage, and on the following one, which saw him relegated to 3rd and then to 4th following another slip-up. Kenny McKinstry on the other hand didn't make a mistake all day in maintaining his 2nd place. The Banbridge man commented at the end. 'We had a good day, but I was always going to be up against it with Kris Meeke. We were best of the rest, which wasn't so bad.'

An unknown quantity before the start was just how well Garry Jennings would go in his old model Subaru 555. He bought this car earlier in the year for a bit of fun in the forests, and indeed has won a few rallies. The Fermanagh man drove well in the Park, but found the car simply outgunned in the fast sections. Still 3rd place, ahead of Derek McGarrity's Mini WRC wasn't such a bad result at all.

Maynooth's Kevin Barrett, who had his 19-year-old son Paul co-driving, had a steady run to 5th. Derek McGeehan, with Laurie Smith co-driving, rounded off the top six. Derek was driving the first right hand drive Mini WRC built by Prodrive. The car was delivered just two days before the rally, which left little time for 'set-up'. The car performed immaculately. Indeed, it was quite something to see three Mini WRC's together in the beautiful environment of Craigavon Borough Council's Lurgan Park. It certainly broke the Subaru dominance of recent years.

Outside the top six Kinallen's Stuart Biggerstaff took 7th place in the family's classic Metro 6R4. The car's only hiccup was a broken power steering pipe in stage 4, as a result of clipping a bale. Former NI Rally Champion Stuart had Danny O'Carroll, a star of the TV show 'Mrs Brown's Boys' co-driving. Not only did they have a good rally; they had a great laugh as well!

Norfolk's Ray Brammer took 8th in his Subaru. Ray set some good times, despite a few small overshoots in the slippy conditions. John McKeown, despite feeling a bit rusty following a break from rallying, did well to bring his newly constructed Escort WRC into 9th. Alan Carmichael struggled a little on his first competitive run in a left hand drive Subaru and finished 10th.

Gilford's Mark Doyle slipped out of the top ten when his Celica slithered into the scenery at one point. His brother nipped home for a couple of wet weather tyres, and with those fitted Mark battled back to 11th. Martin Teggart, who had his nephew Ben co-driving, finished the day 12th overall and won the best Escort accolade for his efforts. There was an enthralling battle in the FIA Historic category and seven times Circuit of Ireland winner, Jimmy McRae, came out tops in that one. McRae was driving Lisburn man Wesley Patterson's Escort RS1800.


Posted: July 31, 2012 2:00 PM

1 Kris Meeke/Gerry McVeigh (Mini WRC) 16.09.1
2 Kenny McKinstry/Lesley McGaffin (Subaru Impreza WRC) 16.39.4
3 Garry Jennings/Kerry McCarter (Subaru Impreza 555) 16.47.7
4 Derek McGarrity/Kieron Graffin (Mini WRC) 16.49.6
5 Kevin & Paul Barrett (Subaru Impreza WRC) 17.02.8
6 Derek McGeehan/Laurie Smith (Mini WRC) 17.03.4
7 Stuart Biggerstaff/Danny O'Carroll (Metro 6R4) 17.14.6
8 Ray Brammer/Damien Fleming (Subaru Impreza WRC) 17.16.1
9 John McKeown/Tommy Speers (Ford Escort WRC) 17.29.1
10 Alan Carmichael/Neil Doherty (Subaru Impreza WRC) 17.42.7

Class Winners CL1 Andrew Mullan/Elaine Doherty (Lancer):
CL2A Ronan Lynn/Niall McKeegan (Civic):
CL2B Martin & Ben Teggart (Escort):
CL4 Garry Jennings/Kerry McCarter (Impreza 555):
CL5 Kris Meeke/Gerry McVeigh (Mini WRC):
CL6 Gary Owens/Denver Rafferty (Escort):
CL7 Jimmy McRae/Eamonn McGarrity (Escort).

Orchard Motorsport Lurgan Park Blooms into Rally Action this weekend.

Posted: July 24, 2012 2:26 PM

Just after 10 o'clock this Saturday morning the Orchard Motorsport Lurgan Park Rally will roll into action. Once again the Armagh Motor Club has attracted a high calibre invited entry, with World Rally Cars, four wheel drive machines and champion drivers dominating the top ten. There will be lots of action throughout the fifty strong entry, including the exciting Mk2 Escort Challenge, plus a really interesting Historic entry contributing to the mix.

Former Intercontinental Rally Champion Kris Meeke, two times Tarmac Champion Derek McGarrity and Derek McGeehan will drive Mini WRC cars. It is quite remarkable to have three Mini WRC's in the Park. McGeehan, who runs the model Meeke will drive, is taking delivery of a new right hand drive, latest evolution Mini WRC from Prodrive this week, just in time to debut the car in Lurgan Park.

The benchmark for all the drivers will be eleven times Lurgan Park winner Kenny McKinstry in his Subaru Impreza WRC. Kenny always maintains that to win in the high pressure of Lurgan Park. 'You have to get the first of the eight stages just right, and then you have to get the next seven just right as well!' McKinstry's Banbridge rally preparation business will also be looking after the Subarus of Maynooth's Kevin Barrett, Norfolk man Ray Brammer and Alan Carmichael. Darren Gass, who has won in the Park for the past two years, and was hoping to make it a hat trick, will unfortunately not be competing. Darren's Subaru sustained a cracked gearbox casing on the recent Donegal Rally, and a replacement is proving difficult to source.

Fermanagh's Garry Jennings could be the dark horse of this year's Lurgan Park. He has his partner Kerry co-driving and has had great success in Lurgan Park over the years in GpN cars. Donegal Rally winner Garry switches this time to a Subaru 555 which he bought earlier this year for a bit of fun on forestry rallies. The 'bit of fun' has translated into a string of wins for Garry in this older model Impreza, so watch this space on Saturday! Another young driver who could feature strongly is Kinallen's Stuart Biggerstaff. Former NI Champion Stuart has been entrusted with his father Denis' famous Metro 6R4 for this special occasion. A driver with loads of top Lurgan Park form is Mark Doyle, and he is very capable of a top placing in his fabulous Toyota Celica GT4.

In the GpN division former Irish Forestry Champion Pat O'Connell in his Lancer makes a welcome return to the Park. Opposition to Tipperary man Pat in GpN is likely to come from Paddy McVeigh in an Impreza N12b. Top Escort drivers include James Kennedy, Martin Teggart, John Waring, Adrian Hetherington and Viv Hamill. Three drivers, John Marshall, Tom Morris and Hugh Murdoch, are making the trip from Scotland to compete in their Escorts.

Another driver making the trip from the land of the heather is rally legend Jimmy McRae. Seven times Circuit of Ireland winner McRae will drive a Wesley Patterson Escort in the new FIA 'Appendix K' Historic division. This recently introduced historic category has really upped the speeds of the historics, and McRae could surprise a few drivers in more modern machinery. Also competing in that section is Killarney man Todd Falvey in his Porsche 911.

In overall terms, Lurgan Park, which is supported by Craigavon Borough Council as well as Orchard Motorsport, is about more than motorsport and rally action. It provides the opportunity for a great family day out in the lovely environment of one of the most beautiful parks in Ireland. The natural amphitheatre of the park with the lake, the rolling topography and the social central paddock makes for a unique day out. As sponsor Brian Stinson, from his Armagh based Orchard Motorsport business commented.
'The Lurgan Park Rally is special. I jumped at the chance to become involved four years ago, and I haven't regretted a moment of that involvement.'

Seeded Entry List

Posted: July 24, 2012 9:09 AM

1 Kris Meeke/Gerry McVeigh (MINI WRC)
2 Kenny McKinstry/Lesley McGaffin (Subaru Impreza WRC)
3 Derek McGarrity/Kieron Graffin (Subaru Impreza WRC)
4 Garry Jennings/Kerry McCarter (Subaru Impreza)
5 Kevin Barrett/Paul Barrett (Subaru Impreza WRC)
6 Derek McGeehan/Laurie Smyth (MINI WRC)
7 Stuart Biggerstaff/Danny O'Carroll "Buster Brady" (Metro 6R4)
8 Mark Doyle/Ruairi O'Dowd (Toyota Celica GT4)
9 Emma McKinstry/Kenny Hull (Subaru Impreza WRC)
10 Ray Brammer/Damien Fleming (Subaru Impreza WRC)
11 Alan Carmichael/TBA (Subaru Impreza WRC)
12 John McKeown/Tommy Speers (Ford Escort WRC)
13 Mark Massey/Paul McKenna (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 10)
14 Pat O’Connell/William Lawrence (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9)
15 Andrew Mullan/Elaine Doherty (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9)
16 Paddy McVeigh/Stephen O’Hanlon (Subaru Impreza N12B)
17 Keith White/David Lyness (Ford Escort Mk1)
18 Rodney White/Sam McMullan (Sunbeam)
19 Jimmy McRae/Eamonn McGarrity (Ford Escort RS1800)
20 Raymond Johnston/Marc Johnston (Ford Escort RS1800)
21 Todd Falvey/Peter Falvey (Porsche Carrera)
22 Drew Wylie/Harry Stinson (Ford Escort RS1800)
23 Bob Adamson/Johnny Baird (Ford Escort RS1800)
24 Clive Kilpatrick/Ian Johnston (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 5)
25 Gary Toner/Trevyn Spiers (BMW M3 Compact)
26 Mark McDonald/Robin Pitts (Ford Escort G3)
27 Gary Owens/Denver Rafferty (Ford Escort RS1800)
28 Raymond Nelson/Chris Nelson (Ford Escort Mk1 RS2000)
29 Jonny Leonard/TBA (Ford Fiesta ST)
30 Allan MacKay/Mo Downey (Ford Anglia)
31 Amy Cox/Emmet Sherry (Ford Escort G3)
32 Stanley McKeown/Mervyn Hawthorne (Toyota Corolla)
33 Ronan Lynn/Niall McKeegan (Honda Civic Type R)
34 Simon Gordon/Billy Regan (Vauxhall Nova)
35 Alan Smyth/Peter Thompson (Vauxhall Corsa)
36 Alan Cassells/Damien McGrath (Peugeot 106 S16)
37 Anthony Dolan/Ian McDonnell (Toyota Corolla)
38 Gerry Faloona/TBA (Vauxhall Astra GSI)
39 Paul Gray/Jim Smith (Ford Escort Mk1)
40 Robert Coulter/Olivia Coulter (Ford Anglia)
41 Adrian Hetherington/Thomas O’Callaghan (Ford Escort Mk2)
42 Viv Hamill/TBA (Ford Escort Mk2)
43 John Waring/Lorraine Reynolds (Ford Escort Mk2)
44 Martin Teggart/Ben Teggart (Ford Escort Mk2)
45 James Kennedy/Heather Kennedy (Ford Escort Mk2)
46 Barry McKenna/Kieran McEvoy (Ford Escort Mk2)
47 Alan Atcheson/Nigel Simpson (Ford Escort Mk2)
48 Tom Morris/Colin Harkness (Ford Escort Mk2)
49 John Marshall/Scott Crawford (Ford Escort Mk2)
50 Gary Price/Sharon McCarter (Ford Escort Mk2)
51 Hugh Murdoch/Ewan Murdoch (Ford Escort Mk2)
52 Brian Durnien/Martin Hanna (Ford Escort Mk2)
53 Ian Millar/Ronan O’Neill (Ford Escort Mk2)
54 Brian Davis/Ian Davis (Ford Escort Mk2)
55 Paul Killen/Barry Savage (Ford Escort Mk2)
56 James Wylie/Pam Irwin (Ford Escort Mk2)
57 Colin Lavery/Adrian Park (Ford Escort Mk2)

00 Ian Carson (Bowler Wildcat)
0 Liam Regan (Peugeot 206)
0 Demo Philip Greenlee (Ford Escort Mk2)
Offical Trevor Turkington (Ford Escort RS2000)
Official Eugene Donnelly (Ford Escort Mk2)
Official Alan Simms (Ford Escort Mk2)
Official William Hamilton (Subaru Impreza WRC)

World’s first RHD WRC to debut in Ireland

Posted: July 24, 2012 9:09 AM

New Event Website

Posted: July 17, 2012 12:16 PM

Regulations and Entry Form

Posted: July 12, 2012 12:55 PM

No Sallying for Meeke in Lurgan

Posted: July 11, 2012 2:07 PM

World Rallying star Kris Meeke is to drive one of the iconic Mini WRC machines at this year’s 28th July Orchard Motorsport backed Lurgan Park Rally. Over the years the Rally has enjoyed an unrivalled reputation for attracting star names and drivers. With the addition of Kris Meeke, along with Darren Gass going for his hat-trick of wins this year’s event could be one of the best ever. Kenny McKinstry, long dubbed ‘The King of the Park’, will certainly not be out of the reckoning either as he bids for his 12th Lurgan Park victory.

Indeed when Kris Meeke was presented with the opportunity of driving the state of the art McGeehan Motorsport Mini WRC, he didn’t hesitate. Kris commented,
“I grew up with the Lurgan Park Rally. I remember hiding in the bushes to watch Michael Sundstrom in a Peugeot 205 T16, and so many other great drivers over the years. I’ve only competed there once. That was in a Mk2 Escort. It won’t be a case of sallying round this time. I’ll definitely be trying to win. It’s a difficult proposition – it’s in between a rally and an autotest, specialised. Making the pace notes on a bicycle is a long way from a world rally stage. I’m happy enough to give it a go. I am looking forward to it.”

The Meeke drive is backed by event sponsor Brian Stinson’s Orchard Motorsport concern in Armagh, as well as the Rushmere Shopping Centre Craigavon, and McGeehan Motorsport themselves. Indeed Derek McGeehan hopes to enter and compete, with Laurie Smith co-driving, in a second Mini WRC. This is a new right hand drive car due to be delivered to McGeehan’s Draperstown workshop by Prodrive just in time for the rally. The car Kris Meeke will use is the left hand drive version, the same as he drove on the World Rally Championship. Gerry McVeigh Cars is also lending its weight to the Meeke entry, and indeed Gerry will co-drive.

The North Armagh Motor Club’s Rally, all within the environs of Craigavon Borough Council’s beautiful Lurgan Park, has a proud history of a family day out motorsport event. It first took place in 1980, when the late, great Bertie Fisher won in a Sydney Meeke prepared Escort. Kris Meeke’s entry this year marks another turn of the wheel.

Maestro McRae for Lurgan Park

Posted: June 10, 2012 11:26 PM

The ever-popular Lurgan Park Rally, again backed by Armagh man Brian Stinson’s Orchard Motorsport business, is well on track this year for Saturday 28th July. Even before the regulations are issued this week, 7 times Circuit of Ireland winner and ‘Tarmac Maestro’ Jimmy McRae has agreed to compete, driving Lisburn man Wesley Patterson’s fabulous Escort BDA.

The Lurgan Park Rally, in it’s 33rd year of running, will this year feature 8 special stages through the lanes of the beautiful Craigavon Borough Council Lurgan Park. With its natural amphitheatre layout and centralised paddock location, the Park is ideally suited for the rally and its family orientated ambience.

The fully televised rally will be open to fifty competing cars, including historics and the Escort Mark 2 Challenge. In addition there will be family entertainment of all kinds.

Further information can be had at

Posters / Details

Posted: June 7, 2012 12:07 PM

Club Website / Details

Posted: June 7, 2012 12:03 PM

Topics: Lurgan Park 

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