One of Ireland’s best loved rally drivers, the late Rory Galligan, was fondly remembered at last weekend’s Killarney Historic Rally.
The Oldcastle, County Meath driver was destined for great things but was forced to retire from the sport in 2006 after being diagnosed with motor neuron disease.
Sadly he subbcumed to the disease in 2012 and died aged just 39.
He began rallying in 1993 but was most successful in the late 1990s in a Peugeot 205, later moving to Mitsubishi in the early 2000s. He mainly plied his trade in events associated with the British Rally Championship and the Mitsubishi Ralliart Evolution Challenge.
He was also a frontrunner in the Peugeot 106 and 206 Cups – Kerry’s Paul Nagle co-drove for him on two rounds of the 106 Cup, the Prodrive Banbury Rally and the Kumho Tyres Scottish Rally, on both occasions winning their class.
Galligan started rallying at the age of 19 in a Talbot Samba and on last Saturday’s Killarney Historic Rally Willie Mavitty and Andrew Browne swapped their usual Mitsubishi Evo for the very same Talbot Samba.
Mavitty along with a long list of helpers, including the team at BH Preparation in Enniskillen, rebuilt the Samba which was originally driven by Galligan after finding the shell in a sorry state.
It was only completed a few hours before the event but it went over the ramp in Killarney last Friday night
Despite struggling with a lack of brakes, Mavitty and Browne made it back to the Gleneagle Hotel finish ramp in one piece and were more than happy with their special tribute to a much-missed friend.
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