Keith Cronin and Mikie Galvin finished Saturday’s Grampian Forest Rally in Scotland just one second shy of the podium places in their Hankook Tire Ford Fiesta Rally 2. The Killarney & District Motor Club crew went into the final stage level on time with Rhys Yates and James Morgan, but it was the latter who prevailed by the smallest of margins in their M-Sport Fiesta.
The Aberdeenshire event was the third round of the 2021 British Rally Championship, and it marked Cronin’s second outing since he returned to the series following a three year absence. The route consisted of three separate stages, each repeated during the course of the day, and the second run on each test saw the four-time champion record times closer to the ultimate pace, as the Hankook Tire programme continues to progress.
The rally was won by M-Sport’s development driver, Matthew Wilson, ahead of Osian Pryce, who was co-driven by Killarney’s Noel O’Sullivan. Yates’ third place result moves him to the head of the championship standings following the late retirement from the Grampian of erstwhile leader, Matt Edwards, with mechanical problems.
Speaking at the finish of the final stage, Cronin outlined how he pleased he was to be mixing with the championship’s leaders so soon. “I didn’t really expect to be in the battle with any of them but we were getting closer. That stage felt good. We tried a few things with the Hankook tyres, overall it was good, I’m happy with the day”.
The British Rally Championship action resumes at Trackrod Rally Yorkshire on September 24th & 25th. It will be the first two day event of the season, with a twelve mile stage in darkness opening the rally on the Friday evening, followed by a further 45 miles of competition on the Saturday.
Keith Cronin is supported by Hankook Tire, M. O’Brien Group of Companies, Rentokil Initial, Cremin Coaches, Cronin’s Centra, Cronin’s Homevalue and M-Sport.
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