Kerry Motor Club members prepared for the forthcoming Rose Hotel Circuit of Kerry by scoring impressive results on Sunday’s Nenagh Rally in County Tipperary.
The Birr and District Motor Club organised rally was the opening round of the locally sponsored Top Part West Coast Rally Championship.
April’s Circuit of Kerry is round two of the popular series as well as being the second round of the Triton Showers National Rally Championship.
First Kerry Motor Club members over the finish line on Sunday were former Kerry Winter Rally winners Mike Quinn and Tony Healy. The Ford Escort Mk2 crew finished an impressive 13th overall and were second in the over two-litre class. Their performance earned them the Top Part drive of the day awards.
Circuit of Kerry deputy clerk of the course Eoin Duffin and Kerry Motor Club PRO Mike Cleary were 18th overall and fourth in the same class as Quinn.
Tralee’s Darren Young and with Ardfert’s Pat Lawlor on the notes scored an impressive win in the 1600cc front-wheel drive class in their Honda Civic.
The Abbeydorney / Tralee pairing of Ger O’Brien and John Liston were fourth in their class in another Ford Escort MK2.
Local co-driver Denny Greaney was second in his class alongside Cork based driver DJ Browne in a Citroen C2.
Former Kerry Winter Rally clerk of the course, Jakes Kelly, acted as Motorsport Ireland safety officer on the event.
The Rose Hotel Circuit of Kerry Rally takes place on April 8 and entry forms and regulations will be issued in the coming days.
Roads in West Kerry that have not been used in seven years form the backbone of the rally, with the addition of another valley stage that has not been used since the late 1990s.
A unique rolling loop system means some of the stages will be visited two or three times, as a result competitors will face 11 special stages, a record number of tests for national rallies in recent years.
In total the route will comprise of 110kms of timed stages over classic and demanding Dingle Peninsula roads .
Photo by Dermot Kelleher:
Mark Parsons (championship registrar), Mike Quinn (driver), Tony Healy (co-driver), Ray Bent (championship committee)