Clonakilty Park Hotel West Cork Rally Day One – Kerry crews report

Clonakilty Park Hotel West Cork Rally Day One – Kerry crews report

Clonakilty Park Hotel West Cork Rally Day One – Kerry crews report

Callum Devine/ Noel O’Sullivan
The Derry/Kerry crew sit third overall after today’s eight stages. They are 28 seconds behind rally leaders Josh Moffett and Andy Hayes and 9.4 seconds behind second-placed Meirion Evans and Jonathan Jackson.
The Volkswagen Polo Rally2 crew enjoyed the day’s tight racing – 8.1 is their buffer to fourth-placed Robert Barrable and Gordon Noble.
Killarney and District Motor Club member Barry Meade and his co-driver are 20th overall and seventh in the two-wheel drive rally. A misfiring engine hampered progress all day.
Colm Murphy from Athea and his Cork co-driver Don Montgomery had a difficult day in the office – a faulty cut-out switch on their Subaru Impreza cost a lot of time on stage one and a broken right-front driveshaft in cost even more time in the afternoon.
Mark Murphy and Damien Fleming are enjoying their first run out since the Kerry Winter Rally last October. The same can’t be said for Conor Murphy and Sean Collins who heavily crashed their Esort on stage four.
Brian Doherty and Tara Duggan were the only crew to say they enjoyed the extremely muddy and slippery opening four stages.
It was the opposite for Vincent O’Shea and Eoin O’Donoghue who were struggling to find the grip in their Darrian on the muddy roads.
John McCarthy and Kieran O’Donoghue were happy after setting the fastest time in class 13 on SS5. It was John first ever stage win.
Ray O’Neill has a debutant co-driver Jason O’Connor from Ballyhar on the notes for the first time.
Mike Nelligan and John Hurley felt they were very rusty after a long lay-off.
Ian Horgan had an engine misfire in his Toyota Corolla and admitted that he was driving with the Rally of the Lakes in the back of his mind and does not want to risk big damage.
Amy Burke, home from Australia for the rally, had clutch problems in her Ford Fiesta and failed to finish the day
Billy McCarthy, also home from Oz and co-driver John Falvey are hoping to fit in both the Circuit of Kerry and the Rally of the Lakes on Billy’s extended trip home from Brisbane.
Sam Leach had a scary moment during the afternoon loop when a wayward bottle of water found itself jammed in the pedal box. He failed to finish the final loop.
Kerry Motor Club members Pat and Amy Calnan were having trouble with gears in their Peugeot 106.
Bob Moran retired with alternator problems, and KDMC co-driver Meabh Griffin also retired after the engine in Donal Dineen’s Ford Fiesta failed to start for no reason. They re-joined under Super Rally rules later in the day.
Thomas Randles and Pat Cashman had to rely on Super Rally rules to get them back into the main event – unfortunately, we did not catch up with the Ford Escort crew to get a reason. Gearoid Moynihan and Kieran Doherty are also on the extensive retirement list.
A “rusty” Mark Falvey and Ronald O’Riordan are the top Kerry crew in the historic rally in eighth place
Craig Breen and Paul Nagle retired from third place with a mechanical issue related to the fuel system in the Ford Sierra.

Fergus O’Meara and Declan Casey were worried about spongy brakes early in the day.
Todd Falvey wrote his own notes for the first time in a long rally career.
Tommy Commane and his driver Phillip McKibbin also had fuel issues in their Escort.

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