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TRITON SHOWERS ROUND 7 PREVIEW GALWAY SUMMER RALLY


 GALWAY SUMMER TO SHINE AMONGST TRITON SHOWERS SERIES


Preview courtesy of Triton Showers - proud sponsors of the Irish National Rally Championship.

 

he Triton Showers National Rally Championship reaches the penultimate point (Round 7) on Sunday next with the nine-stage Lady Gregory Hotel Galway Summer Rally that is based in Gort.  The organisers, the Galway Motor Club with Mark Parsons as clerk of the course, have attracted an entry of 140 crews all of whom will be hoping to finish the event that takes place over the classic stages like Lough Cutra, the Black Road and Brady?s Yard.  Servicing is in the mart complex in Gort.


Three times national champion and last year?s winner Monaghan?s Niall Maguire (Subaru WRC) heads the entry.  The national championship regular is currently third in the Triton series and in line for yet another top three finish.


Outgoing champion Clonmel?s Roy White (Ford Fiesta WRC) will be keen to get that inaugural victory in a round of the series.  There is also a sub-plot to his participation and while he has seen his own title and the Vard Memorial Trophy taken by Sam Moffett on the last round, the Sligo Rally, White?s co-driver James O?Brien will be determined to hold on to the Noel Smith Trophy for the top co-driver.


Opposition for that award comes from Sam Moffett?s co-driver Karl Atkinson, like O?Brien, he also hails from Cork.  Atkinson missed Moffett?s opening round win in Nenagh and as Moffett is not competing on Sunday, Atkinson will co-drive for another Monaghan driver - Stephen Wright (Ford Fiesta R5) - his own brother-in-law.  For Atkinson to deny O?Brien the co-driver?s title, he needs a top five finish in Galway and on the final round in Bantry (Fastnet Rally) at the end of October, irrespective of what O?Brien achieves with Roy White.


Sandwiched between White and Wright in Galway is former champion, Warrenpoint?s Peadar Hurson (Ford Fiesta WRC), who won the national championship title all of 25 years ago and will certainly be a contender for outright victory in Galway an event he won two seasons ago, driving a Subaru WRC.


The top ten also includes a plethora of Ford Escorts in the hands of Gary Kiernan, Brian Brogan, Frank Kelly and Wesley Patterson along with Shane Maguire (Mitsubishi) and the Subaru WRC of title sponsor Kevin Barrett.


Kiernan took second overall in last year?s rally; Donegal man Brogan was a contender for the rally.ie award and the Mk. 2 Champions Trophy very early in the season but a non-finish in Monaghan put an end to both bids.  That should allow a strong contest between the quartet with Tyrone?s Frank Kelly and Lisburn?s Wesley Patterson all seeking a top finish.



Meanwhile, the Motorsport Safety Team Group N title rests between Monaghan?s


Shane Maguire and Cork?s David Guest, both in Mitsubishi Evo IX?s.  That award is based on the highest placed overall finisher with the best six from eight events to count.  Having dominated during the opening three rounds, Guest, who had a non-finish in the Circuit of Munster, now trails the ever improving Maguire by twelve points.  However, with dropped scores taken into consideration, there certainly is a window of opportunity for Guest, who must finish ahead of Maguire in the Galway Summer to keep the series within his own grasp.  Fellow Group N drivers Maynooth?s Paul Barrett (Subaru) and Dubliner Neil Tohill (Mitsubishi) could play a part in the destiny of the title.


 

Maynooth?s Kevin Barrett, in the Triton Showers liveried Subaru WRC has made only limited appearances in the current series as he concentrated on the efforts of his son Paul, on Sunday he will be aiming to finish higher than his seeded position of No. 10.  The aforementioned David Guest occupies the number eleven berth.


Elsewhere, Ballylickey?s Daniel Cronin (Mitsubishi EvoIX), double Motorsport Safety Team Group N champion, Aidan Wray (Mitsubishi EvoIX) from Tyrone and Galwegian Tom Flaherty (Ford Escort) are also on the entry list.


Flaherty is the highest seeded local driver and will be co-driven by Martin Flynn, they will be aiming to win the coveted Conroy Cup, for the best Galway Motor Club crew, an award they won two years ago.  Last year the award went to Paul Curley/Jason Ollernshaw.  On this occasion, Pat Kelly/Jonathon Kelly (Subaru) and Ross Forde/Paul Horan (Ford Escort) are amongst the contenders.

 


Meanwhile, former Irish Forest Rally champions Pat O'Connell/Mark Wiley (Mitsubishi EvoX) are also competing.


In the Mk. 2 Champions Trophy, the top four, Eamonn McGuigan, Thomas O?Connell, Barry Morris and Mickey Conlon are all in action and with the series based on the best five results, there is still much to play for.

 


The Triton Showers Junior title is finely poised with Meath?s Brian Brady leading from Donegal?s Michael Boyle and Monaghan?s Johnny Treanor, all in Honda Civics. Brady is the current leader. The trio are amongst the nine crews that will start the Junior category of the Galway Summer Rally.


EVENT DETAILS:


Organising Club: Galway Motor Club


Clerk of the Course: Mark Parsons.


Rally Headquarters: Lady Gregory Hotel, Gort. Tel: 091 632333.


First Car Away: 09.45.


S.S. 1, 4 & 7:   Lough Cutra (9.29km) 10.33, 13.03 & 15.33.


S.S. 2, 5 & 8:   Black Road (18.88km) 11.00, 13.30 & 16.00.


S.S. 3, 6 & 9:   Brady?s Yard (11.50km) 11.41, 14.11 & 16.41. 


Service: 9.55, 12.15, & 14.45.


Finish Ramp: Lady Gregory Hotel. Gort. 17.15.


Top 10 Starters:


1 Niall Maguire/Enda Sherry (Subaru WRC).


2 Roy White/James O'Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC).


3 Peadar Hurson/Damien Connolly (Ford Fiesta WRC).


4 Stephen Wright/Karl Atkinson (Ford Fiesta R5).


5 Gary Kiernan/Ryan Moore (Ford Escort).


6 Brian Brogan/Damien McGettigan (Ford Escort).


7 Frank Kelly/Martin Brady (Ford Escort)


8 Wesley Patterson/Johnny Baird (Ford Escort).


9 Shane Maguire/Darragh Kelly (Mitsubishi Evo IX).


10 Kevin Barrett/Sean Mullally (Subaru WRC).


Provisional Championship Positions after Round 6:


1. S. Moffett 124 points (Champion); 2. R. White 93pts; 3. N. Maguire 71pts; 4. S. Maguire 65pts; =5. D. Guest & D. Kelly 53pts; 7. L. Hastings 45pts; 8. D. Boyle 34pts; 9. M. Kelly 32pts 10. B. Cumiskey 31pts.


2017 Triton Showers National Rally Championship Diary Dates:

1.         Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh Rally      S. Moffett/J. Fulton (Fiesta WRC)


2.         Midland Rally (Longford)                  S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Fiesta WRC)


3.         Four Seasons Hotel Monaghan Rally S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Fiesta WRC)


4.         Circuit of Munster                              S. Moffett/K. Moriarty (Fiesta WRC)


5.         Raven?s Rock Rally (Waterford)       S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Fiesta WRC)           


6.         Sligo Rally                                           S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Fiesta WRC)


7.         Galway Summer Rally (Gort)         August 27


8.         Fastnet Rally (Bantry)                                   October 29


Media Co-Ordinator,


Triton Showers National Rally Championship.



 


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TRITON SHOWERS EVENT REPORT FOR ROUND 7 GALWAY SUMMER RALLY 

 

HURSON SHINES IN GALWAY SUMMER RALLY

 

Report courtesy of Triton Showers - proud sponsors of the Irish National Rally Championship.

 

Warrenpoint?s Peadar Hurson (Ford Fiesta WRC) and his Monaghan co-driver Damien Connolly took a start to finish victory in the Lady Gregory Hotel Galway Summer Rally, the penultimate round of the Triton Showers National Rally Championship that was based in Gort.

They finished 31.4 seconds ahead of the Fiesta WRC of Clonmel?s Roy White and Cork co-driver James O?Brien, who took maximum points in the Triton series.  Monaghan?s Niall Maguire/Enda Sherry (Subaru WRC) were 38.9 seconds further behind in third.

Hurson (Fiesta WRC) and Wright (Fiesta R5) were the only drivers to break the five minute barrier on the opening stage, Lough Cutra with the former taking an impressive 13.7 second lead.  Top seed Niall Maguire (Subaru WRC) was nine tenths of a second further behind in third and 2.3 seconds ahead of outgoing Triton Champion Roy White (Fiesta WRC).

An impressive Shane Maguire (Mitsubishi) occupied fifth ? 16.6 seconds ahead of his Motorsport Safety Team Group N rival David Guest, who was fortunate to have contested the test stage as his Mitsubishi developed a throttle problem that was sorted overnight.  Cork?s Daniel Cronin, who switched to the Fiesta R5 belonging to his brother Keith, was sixth.  The second stage was cancelled due to organisational issues.  Hurson and Wright set the best times on the third stage and Hurson arrived at the Gort service park with a lead of 21.2 seconds with Wright in second - 4.9 seconds ahead of Niall Maguire.  Leader Hurson admitted he had a major moment on the third stage when his Fiesta got out of line at high speed while Wright opined that he was taking things steady.

Maguire in third found it difficult to get the best out of his Subaru due to the greasy nature of part of the stages.

Kiernan led the Modified section but was concerned about a whine from the rear differential at high speed.  Cronin continued in sixth - he reckoned he was braking far too early for the junctions, but he retired with differential woes on the fourth stage. .

Shane Maguire continued to hold the advantage in Group N where he was 15.8 seconds ahead of title rival David Guest whose Mitsubishi suffered a misfire.  The Escorts of John McQuaid, Mickey Conlon and Frank Kelly completed the top ten.  Elsewhere, Tom Flaherty in twelfth spot was the top Galway driver.

Out on the second loop Hurson extended his advantage to 42.2 seconds, despite being on an intermediate tyre instead of a soft slick.   Roy White, who was on the correct tyres punched in the best time on S.S. 4, he was 21.3 seconds ahead of Niall Maguire.  

Wright slipped to fourth after he was caught out on a junction during the fourth stage that took part of the front right bumper away.

A composed Kiernan remained at the head of the Modified section where he was 32.8 seconds clear of the Escort of Frank Kelly.

Shane Maguire held seventh, importantly, he was a minute and 42.2 seconds ahead of David Guest, who lost time on S.S. 6 with rear differential problems.  The Mitsubishi?s of Aidan Wray and Pat O?Connell rounded out the top ten.  Flaherty was eleventh.

Hurson went on to claim the spoils, he lost time on the penultimate stage when he overshot and stalled his Ford Fiesta WRC.  White was quickest on the Power Stage to claim a total of twenty-one Triton points.  Maguire and Wright completed the top four and untroubled Kiernan scooped the Modified award ? 40.2 seconds ahead of Frank Kelly.

Shane Maguire took a decisive step towards the Motorsport Safety Team Group N award, he netted sixteen points and provisionally, he leads Guest by ten points.  

The Conroy Cup for the top Galway Motor Club crew was won by Tom Fkaherty/Martin Flynn (Ford Escort). 

The Triton Showers Drive of the Day was won by Vincent Collins/Fintan Kilroe (Ford Escort).

Meanwhile, Jason Black (Toyota Starlet) won the Junior category as the Triton Showers Junior title remains finely poised between Meath?s Brian Brady Donegal?s Michael Boyle and Monaghan?s Johnny Treanor, all in Honda Civics.

 

1. P. Hurson/D. Connolly (Ford Fiesta WRC)  51m. 12.3s.

2. R. White/J. O'Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC) 51m. 43.7s.

3. N. Maguire/E. Sherry (Subaru WRC) 52m. 22.6s.

4. S. Wright/K. Atkinson (Ford Fiesta R5) 52m. 52.7s.

5. G. Kiernan/R. Moore (Ford Escort) 53m. 27.2s.

6. F. Kelly/S. Hayde (Ford Escort) 54m. 07.4s.

7. S. Maguire/D. Kelly (Mitsubishi EvoIX) 54m. 54.6s.

8. P. O'Connell/M. Wiley (Mitsubishi EvoIX) 54m. 54.7s.

9. T. Flaherty/M. Flynn (Ford Escort) 55m. 00.9s.

10. K. Barrett/A. Nestor (Subaru WRC) 55m. 01.7s.

 

Provisional Championship Positions after Round 7: 

1. S. Moffett 124 points (Champion); 2. R. White 101pts; 3. N. Maguire 89pts; 4. S. Maguire 74pts; 5. D. Guest 64pts.

 

 

 

Media Co-Ordinator,

Triton Showers National Rally Championship.

 

 

 

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Preview of Round 6 Sligo Stages Rally
Preview courtesy of Triton Showers - proud sponsors of the Irish National Rally Championship.

With five straight wins in the Triton Showers National Rally Championship, Monaghan?s Sam Moffett (Ford Fiesta WRC) can clinch the title on Sunday?s sixth round, the FAAC Simply automatic/Sligo Park Hotel Rally that has attracted an entry of some 112 crews.
Moffett has won the events in Nenagh, Longford, Monaghan, Rathkeale and Waterford and has racked up all but one of the 105 available points.  The series awards twenty points for a win plus an additional point for setting the fastest time on the Power Stage ? the final stage of each event.
On Sunday?s nine-stage encounter, round six of the eight round campaign, he needs just nine points to claim the prestigious Vard Memorial Trophy and his first major rally championship victory.
A former Billy Coleman award winner, Moffett has been virtually untouchable all season long, his only glitch came in the last round, the Raven?s Rock Rally in Waterford when he lost the lead for a few stages due to a broken driveshaft.  However, that was replaced at the subsequent service and within two stages he was back in the lead and went on to claim another strong victory.
His closest rival is reigning Triton champion Clonmel?s Roy White, also in a Ford Fiesta WRC.  Realistically, White is now the only driver that can deny him the title and even if he (White) were to claim the maximum scores on all three remaining rounds including Sligo, that nine-point haul will still be sufficient for Moffett.
Sunday?s entry also includes two former national champions ? both of whom have won in Sligo ? Donegal?s Declan Boyle and Monaghan?s Niall Maguire.
Boyle (Fiesta WRC) won two years ago when fellow Donegal driver Donagh Kelly clinched the Triton title in Sligo, Boyle?s quest to win this year?s series has been blighted with non-finishes in Longford and Rathkeale, previously he won the Sligo Rally in 2013 in a Subaru WRC en-route to the first of his two national titles.
Meanwhile, triple national champion Maguire (Subaru WRC) last won the Sligo Rally all of thirteen years ago, the national regular is currently equal third in the series.
Derry driver Desi Henry makes a rare appearance in the Triton series and should be a force in his Skoda Fabia R5.  Another Skoda campaigner is Dundalk?s Brendan Cumiskey, he was fourth in the last round in Waterford and a similar result ? given the quality of the entry - would be deemed impressive.  Fellow Ulster driver Jonny Greer will compete in a Citroen DS3 R5.
One of the best-known drivers in the country, Kenny McKinstry from Banbridge will compete in a Subaru WRC and will occupy the number eight berth in Sligo.
A formidable top ten also includes Tyrone?s Martin Cairns in a Fiesta WRC and top two-wheel drive contender Cavan?s Gary Kiernan (Ford Escort).  
The modified entry also features Roscommon?s Cormac Phelan (Honda Civic) and the Escorts of Davy Armstrong, Tom Flaherty, Connor Watters, Tim Enright and Mickey Conlon and Sean Liston (BMW E30).
 
Meanwhile, the Motorsport Safety Team Group N title is set to go down to the wire and the Sligo event could be a key event in deciding the destiny of the title.  Principally, it involves former Sligo Rally winner, Monaghan?s Shane Maguire and Cork?s David Guest, both in Mitsubishi EvoIX?s.
Maguire has local co-driver Paul McLaughlin calling the pacenotes and over the last two events he has shown great consistency and an increased turn of speed to move ahead of his Cork rival.  Guest, the current Irish Tarmac Group N champion is well aware that he needs to finish ahead of Maguire on Sunday to keep his title hopes alive, like the overall Triton series, the Group N award is based on the best six results from eight events.  Maynooth?s Paul Barrett (Subaru) and Dubliner Neil Tohill (Mitsubishi) could play a part in the destiny of the title especially if they were to split the leading duo.  Others in the category are the Mitsubishi duo of reigning champion Tyrone?s Aidan Wray and Gary Cairns (Mitsubishi)

Tyrone?s Barry Morris (Escort) can extend his lead in the Mk. 2 Champions Trophy and also improve his position in the rally.ie series given the absence of current leader Adrian Hetherington (Escort). 

Local drivers in action include UK based Coolaney native Anthony O?Brien (Mitsubishi), Enda Haran (Escort), Jason Currid (Escort) and the vastly experienced Dominic McLoughlin (Peugeot 205).



EVENT DETAILS:

Organising Club: Connacht Motor Club
Clerk of the Course: Robert Lyttle. 
Rally Headquarters: Sligo Park Hotel. Tel: 091 9190400.

First Car Away: 09.45.
S.S. 1, 4 & 7: Woodfield (10.76km) 10.26, 13.05 & 15.44. 
S.S. 2, 5 & 8: Geevagh (12.85km) 10.54, 13.33 & 16.12. 
S.S. 3, 6 & 9: Drumbeg (15.85km) 11.24, 14.03 & 16.42. 

Service: 9.58, 12.22, & 15.01.
Finish Ramp: Sligo Park Hotel. 17.33.

Top 10 Starters: 

1. Sam Moffett/Karl Atkinson (Ford Fiesta WRC)
2. Declan Boyle/Brian Boyle (Ford Fiesta WRC)
3. Roy White/James O?Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC)
4. Niall Maguire/Enda Sherry (Subaru WRC S12B)
5. Desi Henry/Liam Moynihan (Skoda Fabia R5)
6. Brendan Cumiskey/Ronan O?Kane (Skoda Fabia R5)
7. Jonny Greer/Kirsty Riddick (Citroen DS3 R5)
8. Kenny McKinstry/Kenny Hull (Subaru WRC)
9. Martin Cairns/TBA (Ford Fiesta WRC)
10. Gary Kiernan/James Fulton (Escort) 

Provisional Championship Positions after Round 5: 1. S. Moffett 104 points; 2. R. White 77pts; =3. D. Kelly & N. Maguire 53pts; 5. S. Maguire 52pts; 6. D. Guest 42 pts; 7. L. Hastings 37pts 8. D. Boyle 34pts; 9. M. Kelly 32pts 10. A. Hetherington 23pts.

2017 Triton Showers National Rally Championship Diary Dates:

1. Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh Rally S. Moffett/J. Fulton (Fiesta WRC) 
2.   Midland Rally (Longford) S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Fiesta WRC) 
3. Four Seasons Hotel Monaghan Rally S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Fiesta WRC)
4. Circuit of Munster S. Moffett/K. Moriarty (Fiesta WRC)
5. Raven?s Rock Rally (Waterford)       S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Fiesta WRC)
6. Sligo Rally July 9
7. Galway Summer Rally (Gort) August 27
8. Fastnet Rally (Bantry) October 29

Martin Walsh,
Media Co-Ordinator,
Triton Showers National Rally Championship.

Telephone: 086  8212023 (Not for publication).

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Report of Round 6
Report courtesy of Triton Showers - proud sponsors of the Irish National Rally Championship.

With victory in the Dooley?s Hotel Raven?s Rock Rally, round five of the Triton Showers National Rally Championship, Monaghan?s Sam Moffett (Fiesta WRC), who was co-driven by Cork?s Karl Atkinson, is just one event away from outright victory in the Triton Showers National Rally Championship following his fifth straight win of the campaign.
They finished 18.1 seconds ahead of the similar Fiesta WRC of defending champions Clonmel?s Roy White and his Cork co-driver James O?Brien.
Citroen?s World Rally star, Waterford?s Craig Breen and co-driver Patrick Croke in a Mk. 2 Ford Escort were two minutes and 37.3 seconds further behind in third.
On the opening stage near Portlaw, Moffett opened up a four second lead over the defending Triton champion, Roy White with former triple national champion Niall Maguire seven seconds further adrift in third.
Citroen WRT driver Craig Breen was fourth overall ? three seconds behind Maguire - as he set the pace in the two-wheel drive category.  Brendan Cumiskey (Skoda Fabia R5) and late entry Frank Kelly (Escort) completed the top six.
In Group N, David Guest, eighth in general classification led the similar Mitsubishi of Shane Maguire by three seconds followed by Neil Tohill (Mitsubishi) and Paul Barrett (Subaru).
Moffett was also quickest through the second stage but broke the rear driveshaft following a heavy landing over a jump on the third stage and lost time and the lead. 
Reigning Triton champion Roy White arrived at the Waterford service park with an 11.8 second advantage. The Clonmel driver was untroubled and remarked that his driving was of a much better standard than on the previous Triton rounds.  Moffett in second had intercom issues on the entire loop as co-driver Karl Atkinson had to shout so as his notes could be heard.
Meanwhile, Breen, who was enjoying a blast through the county Waterford countryside slotted his 2.5 Millington engined Escort into third ? 39.8 seconds behind Moffett and five ahead of Niall Maguire.
Maguire had an overshot on the second stage and found stage three slippery and greasy.  Brendan Cumiskey (Skoda Fabia R5), who overshot on S.S. 3, was next followed by the Escorts of Enda O?Brien and Frank Kelly, both untroubled.
Shane Maguire (Mitsubishi) led Group N and was eighth overall, his rival David Guest, also in a Mitsubishi, was 3.9 seconds behind, Guest had a moment on S.S. 2 where he also had an overshoot that dented his confidence for the third stage.  John McQuaid (Escort) completed the top ten.  Elsewhere, Cormac Phelan (Honda Civic) slid off the road on the second stage.
Out on the second loop Niall Maguire retired his Subaru WRC from fourth place with a broken driveshaft.  Meanwhile and with three fastest stage times Moffett was back in front at the final service where he led White by 7.8 seconds.  ?I?m doing what I have to do,? commented the rally leader.  The front of White?s Fiesta WRC bore the impact of a high-speed 360-degree spin on S.S. 6, luckily, the damage was just cosmetic - a broken front grill and spoiler.  Breen continued to entertain as he retained third ? a minute and 31.4 seconds behind.  Cumiskey changed the brake pads in his Skoda Fabia and was more satisfied as he occupied fourth from O?Brien and Kelly.  
Maguire in seventh held sway in Group N ? 20.8 seconds ahead of Guest, who damaged the front left wing on a square right S.S. 5, he reckoned that he had chosen a tyre compound that was too soft.  
Mick McQuaid (Escort) was trouble free in eighth followed by Guest and Class 11R leader Richard Harney (Escort).  Class 11F pacesetter Jason Ryan (Honda Civic) was eleventh.
Out on the final loop, Moffett with another trio of fastest times and victory in the Power Stage sealed his fifth win and only needs a maximum of twelve points from his next round to clinch the title.  White took second and Breen was third.
The top six was unchanged.  Shane Maguire (Mitsubishi) won Group N and also netted the Triton Showers Drive of the Day award, he finished 11.6 seconds ahead of showroom rival David Guest.  Declan Boyle (Ford Fiesta WRC) was a non-starter.

Meanwhile, the Junior category was won by Carrick on Suir brothers Killian O'Sullivan/Conal O'Sullivan (Honda Civic) they finished 14.2 seconds in front of the similar car of Cork?s Aaron Browne/Daniel Hanratty.  Meath?s Brian Brady/Leonard Tuille (Honda Civic) took maximum points to move into the lead of the Triton Junior Championship.

1. S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Ford Fiesta WRC) 56m. 13.3s.
2. R. White/J. O'Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC) 56m. 31.4s.
3. C. Breen/P. Croke (Ford Escort) 59m. 08.7s.
4. B. Cumiskey/R. O'Kane (Skoda Fabia R5) 59m. 23.8s
5. E. O'Brien/J. Butler (Ford Escort) 59m. 29.3s.
6. F. Kelly/L. Kelly (Ford Escort) 59m. 52.3s.
7. J. McQuaid/T. Treanor (Ford Escort) 1h. 00m. 58.7s.
8. S. Maguire/P. McLaughlin (Mitsubishi EvoIX) 1h. 01m. 17.1s.
9. D. Guest/P. Robinson (Mitsubishi EvoIX) 1h. 01m. 28.7s.
10. A. Evans/M. Henry (Ford Escort) 1h. 03m. 08.7s.

Provisional Championship Positions after Round 5: 1. S. Moffett 104 points; 2. R. White 77pts; 3. S. Maguire 55pts; =4. D. Kelly & N. Maguire 53pts; 6. D. Guest 44pts; & 7. L. Hastings 39pts.


   
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TRITON SHOWERS READY TO ROCK IN WATEFORD

Preview courtesy of Triton Showers - proud sponsors of the Irish National Rally Championship.

Having won all four rounds of the first half of the Triton Showers National Rally Championship season, Monaghan?s Sam Moffett (Ford Focus WRC) will be aiming to retain his unbeaten sequence on Sunday?s Waterford city based Dooley?s Hotel Raven?s Rock Rally.  The fifth round of the series is organised by the Carrick on Suir Motor Club and features a loop of three stages repeated three times with the service park at the splendidly appointed Waterford Institute of Technology on the western suburb of the city.
With the exception of the last round where he lost the lead for three stages, Moffett has led from start to finish in the other three rounds and is favourite to continue his fine vein of form.  In Waterford, regular co-driver Cork?s Karl Atkinson will return to call the pacenotes. 
For former back-to-back champion Donegal?s Declan Boyle (Ford Fiesta WRC) ?The Rock? is a key event given that he has two non-finishes from the opening four rounds.  The Lettermacaward driver has netted 34 points from his outings in Nenagh and Monaghan and could still win the title but he needs to finish ahead of Moffett - another non-finish would virtually end his title bid.
Reigning Triton Showers National Rally champion Clonmel?s Roy White, also in a Fiesta WRC, is currently Moffett?s closest rival ? he is 24 points in arrears as he continues to seek that maiden win in a round of the Triton series.
The top quartet also includes former triple national champion Niall Maguire (Subaru WRC), who is six points further behind in equal third with the non-competing Donagh Kelly.
Meanwhile, Dundalk?s Brendan Cumiskey will campaign a Skoda Fabia R5 and is seeded at number five.
Citroen?s World Rally Team driver Craig Breen is shown on the entry list, currently, no other details such as co-driver or type of car are available.
Carrick club member and Kilkenny native Enda O?Brien (Ford Escort) fresh from his victory in the recent Heartland?s Rally in Portlaoise is also in the top ten that?s completed by the Group N trio of David Guest (Mitsubishi), Shane Maguire (Mitsubishi) and Paul Barrett (Subaru).
Monaghan?s Maguire heads the standings in the Motorsport Safety Group N category after he took a strong haul of points form the Circuit of Munster where Cork?s Guest retired and is now nine points in arrears.  Barrett and Dubliner Neil Tohill (Mitsubishi) also retired from the last round and need good finishes to get back in the title hunt.
Other entries are Tyrone?s Barry Morris, Cork?s Barry Meade and Welsh ace Adrian Evans, all in Escorts.
In the popular Class 11 that is split in two sections, Waterford?s Richard Harney (Escort) is the leading light in the rear wheel drive (Class 11R) section and Cork?s Jason Ryan (Honda Civic) is the top seeded entry in the front wheel drive category (Class11F). 
Local drivers in action include Kilmacthomas driver John Dagge (Peugeot 306) and Gemma Kerley (Mitsubishi).
The Junior category includes the leading Triton Showers trio of Donegal?s Michael Boyle, Meath?s Brian Brady and Monaghan?s Johnny Treanor, all in Honda Civics.

EVENT DETAILS:

Organising Club: Carrick-on-Suir Motor Club
Clerk of the Course: Terence Kearney. 
Rally Headquarters: Dooley?s Hotel, Merchants Quay. 051 873531.

First Car Away: 08.00.
S.S. 1, 4 & 7: Beallough (8.94km) 9.03, 12.05 & 15.07. 
S.S. 2, 5 & 8: Mothel (17.75km) 9.36, 12.38 & 15.40. 
S.S. 3, 6 & 9: Carrickphilip (8.96km) 10.25, 13.27 & 16.29. 

Service: Waterford Institute of Technology 8.15, 11.02 & 14.04.
Finish Ramp: Dooley?s Hotel, Merchant?s Quay, Waterford. 17.08.

Top 10 Starters: 

1. Sam Moffett/Karl Atkinson (Ford Fiesta WRC)
2. Declan Boyle/Brian Boyle (Ford Fiesta WRC)
3. Roy White/James O?Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC)
4. Niall Maguire/Enda Sherry (Subaru WRC S12B)
5. Brendan Cumiskey/Ronan O?Kane (Skoda Fabia R5)
6. Craig Breen/TBA (TBA)
7. Enda O?Brien/John Butler (Ford Escort)
8. David Guest/Paddy Robinson (Mitsubishi Lancer EvoIX)
9. Shane Maguire/Paul McLaughlin (Mitsubishi Lancer EvoIX)
10. Paul Barrett/Declan Tumilty (Subaru N14)
Provisional Championship Positions after Round 4: 1. S. Moffett 83points; 2. R. White 59pts; =3. D. Kelly & N. Maguire 53pts; 5. S. Maguire 39pts; 6. D. Boyle 34pts; 7. M. Kelly 32pts; 8. L. Hastings 31pts; 9. D. Guest 30pts & 10. A. Hetherington 23pts.

2017 Triton Showers National Rally Championship Diary Dates:

1. Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh Rally S. Moffett/J. Fulton (Fiesta WRC) 
2.   Midland Rally (Longford) S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Fiesta WRC) 
3. Four Seasons Hotel Monaghan Rally S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Fiesta WRC)
4. Circuit of Munster S. Moffett/K. Moriarty (Fiesta WRC)
5. Raven?s Rock Rally (Waterford) June 25
6. Sligo Rally July 9
7. Galway Summer Rally (Gort) August 27
8. Fastnet Rally (Bantry) October 29


Triton Showers National Rally Championship.



---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 PREVIEW ROUND 4
   
 MOFFETT TOPS MONSTER MUNSTER

Preview courtesy of Triton Showers - proud sponsors of the Irish National Rally Championship.

As the Triton Showers National Rally Championship reaches the halfway mark with the Rathkeale Hotel Circuit of Munster Rally on Sunday next, the main question is who can stop the Moffett march to the national title for the Vard Memorial Trophy?  There?s a fascinating entry for the nine-stage event that will be contested over a three-stage loop just off the N21 around Newcastle West and Abbeyfeale.
Monaghan ace Sam Moffett has virtually been invincible in the current series.  On-board his Ford Fiesta WRC, he has won all three rounds to date ? taking 62 of the 63 Triton points that were available. Last time out ? on what was his home event - he won by a margin of 26.8 seconds, the smallest margin of all three rounds with former Triton champion Donagh Kelly (Ford Focus WRC) his nearest rival.  Moffett, who won the Circuit of Munster three years ago ? is in a rich vein of form at the moment and his rivals will need to be at their very best to break his dominance.  However, a fourth win for Moffett will put him in a very strong position to land the series.
Former national champions Kelly (2015) and Declan Boyle, who won the series in 2014 and 2013, know what?s needed and they must break Moffett?s dominance to have any chance of success.
In addition to his Triton title bid, Kelly, who won the Circuit of Munster two years ago, will also be using the rally as a shakedown for his home event, the Donegal International in a few weeks time.  Indeed, many of the others in the top ten are on a similar mission including fellow Donegal driver Declan Boyle (Ford Fiesta WRC) and Monaghan?s Josh Moffett, who will be on his first event since crashing on the last Triton round in Monaghan.
Boyle, who won last week?s Cavan Rally, will be in buoyant form as he too tries to stop the Moffett express and secure his own third national title. 
The top quality entry also features Fermanagh?s Alastair Fisher (Ford Fiesta R5), who is also on a test ahead of Donegal while Cork?s Keith Cronin will use his own Ford Fiesta R5 as he gets in some tarmac experience ahead of his BRC outing in the Ypres Rally.    
Meanwhile, reigning Triton champion Roy White (Ford Fiesta WRC) occupies the number seven berth as he concentrates on the national campaign where he is second overall ? 17 points behind Sam Moffett.  Donegal?s Manus Kelly (Subaru WRC), who was third on the Midland Rally returns to the series, he too is on a Donegal shakedown while its unlikely he can make up ground on his Triton rivals.

The top ten also features BRC regular Derry driver Desi Henry (Skoda Fabia R5) and former triple Irish national champion Monaghan?s Niall Maguire (Subaru WRC), who is third in the current Triton campaign.
Elsewhere, there are places for Maynooth?s Kevin Barrett (Subaru WRC) and two-wheel drive exponents, Frank Kelly, Ed O'Callaghan, Ed Synan, Colin Byrne, Tom Flaherty and Tim Enright, all in Ford Escorts - local driver O?Callaghan will fancy his chances on home ground. 
While the leader of the Triton Mk. 2 Escort Trophy series, Adrian Hetherington is not amongst the seeded list, his closest rivals, Roscommon?s Vincent Collins and Tyrone?s Barry Morris are set to gain.

 
Motorsport Safety Group N leader, Cork?s David Guest (Mitsubishi) heads the Group N contingent that also includes Shane Maguire (Mitsubishi), Paul Barrett (Subaru) and Neil Tohill (Mitsubishi).  Last time out in Monaghan, Maguire denied Guest of a third major score, the battle in Limerick could also see Tohill come into the frame as Barrett continues to build his confidence after crashing on the non-championship Circuit of Kerry Rally.
A late entry is that of former national champion and local driver Colm Murphy in a Subaru, he hasn?t competed in some three years.  Five years ago he won the Circuit of Munster - driving the same Subaru he will use on Sunday, he finished eleven seconds ahead of Donagh Kelly (Subaru WRC) with Roy White (MG ZR) 49 seconds further behind in third.
Aside from Ed O?Callaghan, Ed Synan and Colm Murphy other local drivers looking to impress include Frank Sweeny, Sean Moran, Stephen Bawn, John Danagher and Kenneth Ryan all in Escorts and Eamonn Daly (Mitsubishi).

In the Junior category, Donegal?s Michael Boyle (Honda Civic) is the top seed with opposition emanating from fellow Honda Civic drivers Brian Brady (Meath), Jonny Treanor (Monaghan), Tom Holton (Meath), Shane Norris (Tipperary) and Patrick Naughton (Limerick).


EVENT DETAILS:

Organising Club: Limerick Motor Club
Clerk of the Course: Kieran Ambrose. 
Rally Headquarters: Rathkeale House Hotel. 069 63333. 

First Car Away: 09. 39.

S.S. 1, 4 & 7: Dromade (12.30 km) 10.24, 12.55 & 15.26. 
S.S. 2, 5 & 8: Caherbeg (15.20 km) 11.01, 13.32 & 16.03. 
S.S. 3, 6 & 9: Strand (12.40 km) 11.40, 14.11 & 16.42. 

Service: Desmond Business Park, Newcastle West 12.10 & 14.41
Finish Ramp: Rathkeale House Hotel, Rathkeale. 17.26.

Top 10 Starters: 

1. Sam Moffett/Keith Moriarty (Ford Fiesta WRC)
2. Donagh Kelly/Conor Foley (Ford Focus WRC)
3. Declan Boyle/Brian Boyle (Ford Fiesta WRC)
4. Josh Moffett/James Fulton (Ford Fiesta R5)
5. Alastair Fisher/Gordon Noble (Ford Fiesta R5)
6. Keith Cronin/Mikey Galvin (Ford Fiesta R5)
7. Roy White/James O'Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC)
8. Manus Kelly/Gareth Doherty (Subaru WRC) 
9. Desi Henry/Liam Moynihan (Skoda Fabia R5)
10. Niall Maguire/Enda Sherry (Subaru WRC) 

Provisional Championship Positions after Round 3: 1. S. Moffett 62pts; 2. R. White 45pts; 3. N. Maguire 40pts; 4. D. Kelly 35pts; 5. D. Boyle 34pts; 6. D. Guest 30pts; 7. S. Maguire 27pts. & 8. A. Hetherington 23pts.

2017 Triton Showers National Rally Championship Diary Dates:

1. Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh Rally S. Moffett/J. Fulton (Fiesta WRC) 
2.   Midland Rally (Longford) S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Fiesta WRC) 
3. Four Seasons Hotel Monaghan Rally S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Fiesta WRC)
4. Circuit of Munster  (Rathkeale) June 4
5. Raven?s Rock Rally (Waterford) June 25
6. Sligo Rally         July 9
7. Galway Summer Rally (Gort) August 27
8. Fastnet Rally (Bantry) October 29



Media Co-Ordinator,
Triton Showers National Rally Championship.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

ROUND 4 REPORT

MOFFETT MOPS UP IN MUNSTER

Report courtesy of Triton Showers - proud sponsors of the Irish National Rally Championship.

Monaghan?s Sam Moffett (Ford Fiesta WRC) continued his domination of the Triton Showers National Rally Championship with victory in the Rathkeale House Hotel Circuit of Munster Rally, round four of the campaign.
In what was the closest contest of the series to date, Moffett and local co-driver Keith Moriarty finished 12.4 seconds ahead of the Ford Focus WRC of former Triton champion Donegal?s Donagh Kelly and his Monaghan co-driver Conor Foley. 
Ulster pair Alastair Fisher/Gordon Noble (Fiesta R5) were one minute and 39.4 seconds further behind in third.
The Group N category was won by Limerick?s Colm Murphy (Subaru) and his Cork co-driver Don Montgomery.  Tyrone?s Vivian Hamill/Denver Rafferty (Escort) were the top two-wheel drive exponents.

Triton series leader Sam Moffett (Fiesta WRC) was quickest through the opening stage near Barnagh where he extricated a 3.1 second advantage over the Ford Focus WRC of Donagh Kelly with Declan Boyle (Fiesta WRC) a further 9.4 seconds adrift and just 1.8 seconds ahead of the Fiesta R5 of Alastair Fisher, Desi Henry (Skoda Fabia R5) and Manus Kelly (Subaru WRC) completed the top six.
In showery conditions tyre choice proved crucial, Donagh Kelly was quickest through second stage and fellow county man Declan Boyle was best on the third and final stage of the loop. 
At the Newcastle West service park, rally leader Kelly expressed satisfaction with his pace. Moffett, 3.1 seconds behind wasn?t happy with his performance through the second and third stages, the Monaghan man admitted to having a few moments on S.S. 3.  
Boyle was 19.7 seconds further adrift in third, he lost time in the rain on the opening stage and he reckoned the set-up of his Fiesta WRC wasn?t right through S.S. 2, however, he made adjustments and it performed much better on the third stage.  
Alastair Fisher in fourth was the leading R5 car and was followed by the Subaru WRC of Manus Kelly, who decided to back off a little on the third stage as he had chosen the wrong tyres.
Seventh on the opening stage, Keith Cronin (Fiesta R5) slotted into fourth a stage later but a massive overshoot on the third stage dropped him to sixth.
Elsewhere, seventh placed Desi Henry slid his Skoda Fabia R5 into a ditch on the third stage and lost over thirty seconds and had to rely on spectators to get him back on the road.
The top ten was completed by Roy White, Josh Moffett and Niall Maguire.  White picked the wrong tyres for his Fiesta WRC, Moffett (Fiesta R5) had a half spin on the third stage, he was on a confidence building exercise after his accident on the last round in Monaghan.  Maguire stalled his Subaru on the opening stage.
In Group N, Athea driver Colm Murphy (Subaru) on his first rally in some three years, led the way, he was eleventh in general classification.  Shane Maguire and Neil Tohill were next in the showroom category as Motorsport Safety Team leader David Guest (Mitsubishi) lost several minutes on the second stage where he slid into a drain and required the help of several spectators to re-join the action.

Out on the second loop and although Kelly extended his lead over Moffett to 6.4 seconds on S.S. 4, the Monaghan man responded in perfect fashion and regained the lead courtesy of two fastest stage times.  At the final service, the event was finely poised with Moffett 2.1 seconds ahead of Kelly.  On the fifth stage Declan Boyle (Fiesta WRC) retired after he lost over five minutes with a puncture.
His demise promoted Fermanagh?s Alastair Fisher into third spot albeit over a minute behind Donagh Kelly.
Manus Kelly (Subaru) occupied fourth from Keith Cronin, who made some adjustments after his Fiesta R5 suffered some steering issues.
Roy White in sixth remarked that the tyres he used for the second loop would have been better for the first loop and vice versa.
Desi Henry (Skoda Fabia R5) was seventh, Josh Moffett continued his confidence building, he was eighth as Niall Maguire and Group N leader Colm Murphy completed the top ten.

Moffett went on to secure his fourth win of the Triton campaign, he also picked up a bonus point from the Power Stage and for good measure, won the Triton Showers Drive of the Day.  Kelly took second to remain in the title equation while Fisher was third.  The remainder of the top ten was unchanged with tenth placed Colm Murphy (Subaru) winning Group N ? Monaghan?s Shane Maguire (Mitsubishi) moves into the lead of the Motorsport Safety Group N category, pre-event leader David Guest retired with transmission problems soon after he completed the seventh stage.  Neil Tohill (Mitsubishi) and Paul Barrett (Subaru) also failed to finish.

Monaghan?s Jonny Treanor/Stephen McElroy (Honda Civic) won the Junior category from Meath?s Brian Brady/Leonard Tuite and Donegal?s Michael Boyle/Dermot McCafferty, also in Honda Civics.


1. S. Moffett/K. Moriarty (Ford Fiesta) 1h. 06m. 14.8s.
2. D. Kelly/C. Foley (Ford Focus WRC) 1h. 06m. 27.2s.
3. A. Fisher/G. Noble (Ford Fiesta R5) 1h. 08m. 06.6s.
4. M. Kelly/G. Doherty (Subaru WRC) 1h. 08m. 12.7s.
5. K. Cronin/M. Galvin (Ford Fiesta R5) 1h. 08m. 35.0s.
6. R. White/J. O'Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC) 1h. 08m. 52.2s.
7. D. Henry/J. Rowan (Skoda Fabia R5) 1h. 08m. 53.1s.
8. J. Moffett/J. Fulton (Ford Fiesta R5) 1h. 10m. 02.5s.
9. N. Maguire/A. Nestor (Subaru WRC) 1h. 10m. 59.5s.
10. C. Murphy/D. Montgomery (Subaru) 1h. 12m. 39.8s.


Provisional Championship Positions after Round 4:
S. Moffett 83points.
R. White 59points; 
=3. D. Kelly & N. Maguire 53points.
5. S. Maguire 39points. 

Martin Walsh,
Media Co-Ordinator,
Triton Showers National Rally Championship.




Round 3 Report
                                            SAM,S MONAGHAN FROM START TO FINISH
 
Report courtesy of Triton Showers ? proud sponsors of the National Rally Championship
 
Monaghan?s Sam Moffett (Fiesta WRC) and his Cork co-driver Karl Atkinson took a start to finish victory in the Four Seasons Hotel Monaghan Rally, round three of the Triton Showers National Rally Championship.  They finished 26.8 seconds ahead of the Ford Focus WRC of Donegal?s Donagh Kelly and his Monaghan co-driver Conor Foley.  Donegal cousins, Declan and Brian Boyle in a Fiesta WRC were 15.5 seconds further behind in third.
 
On the opening 14.9 kilometre Stranooden stage Sam Moffett (Ford Fiesta WRC) set the pace and while the results showed another local driver, Stephen Wright in second spot ? 3.7 seconds behind, he reckoned that his stage time should have been some 20 seconds slower.  Boyle and Kelly were next.
Moffett continued to power through the stages and by the end of the opening loop he was 21.5 seconds ahead as Kelly slotted into second 5.8 seconds ahead of Boyle.  Unfortunately, last year?s winner and top seed Josh Moffett (Fiesta WRC) crashed heavily some two kilometres into the second stage.  On the first stage Brendan Cumiskey hit a chicane and damaged the steering rack of his Skoda R5 and retired.
At the Monaghan service park Sam Moffett stated that he pushed hard over the three stages but needed to soften the suspension set-up.  Second placed Kelly was untroubled unlike Boyle, who remarked that his Fiesta WRC was well down on power. 
Wright occupied fourth from Niall Maguire and reigning Triton champion Roy White.  Maguire admitted he was driving as hard as possible unlike White, who reckoned he lacked commitment.
The top ten was completed by the Escort quartet of Gary Kiernan, Jonathan Pringle, Damien Toner and Damien Gallagher.  Kiernan adopted a steady pace but almost got caught out on a jump on the third stage that he hadn?t made provision for during reconnaissance.  Pringle on his first outing in some eight months was adapting to the pace ? 18.2 seconds behind Kiernan.  Toner reckoned he was off the pace on the third stage while Gallagher had concerns about a vibration emanating from a rear wheel.  Gary McPhillips (Escort) lost time on the opening stage with a gearbox issue and broke a half-shaft on the second test, he re-joined under Rally2.   Brian Brogan (Escort) failed to start the opening stage due to a gearbox issue.  Another driver that failed to get to the first stage was Peadar Hurson - he withdrew as he felt unwell.
Meanwhile, a close contest developed in the Motorsport Safety Group N category where David Guest led the similar Mitsubishi of local ace Shane Maguire by a mere nine tenths of a second.  Neil Tohill, also in a Mitsubishi was a distant third followed by the Subaru of Paul Barrett, who was getting back into the grove after his accident on the recent non-championship Circuit of Kerry Rally.  Guest had a few moments on the opening stage and a slight altercation with a chicane bale on the third stage.
 
On the repeat loop of stages Moffett kept his composure and he edged further in front on S.S. 4; Kelly was quickest on the remaining pair of stages to trail Moffett by 24.4 seconds.  Boyle?s power issue continued and he was 6.1 seconds adrift of Kelly.
Wright Maguire and White completed an unchanged top six, the latter had no intercom through S.S. 5 and opined that he was slow on S.S. 6.
Kiernan retired with an oil leak as Pringle took up the lead role in the Modified category and by S.S. 6 he was 7.2 seconds ahead of Gallagher with Toner and Adrian Hetherington following behind, the latter improving his performance after stiffening the suspension.
It was honours even in the Motorsport Safety Group N category with Guest and Maguire on equal time, however, the former lost time when he had to take evasive action on S.S. 4 when he had to go off road to avoid hitting a car that had stopped on the stage, the impact damaged the front right wing.  Tohill and Barrett retained their positions.
On the closing loop and as Moffett went on to secure his third straight win in the Triton series and also claim the bonus point for the Power Stage albeit by two-tenths of a second from Kelly, a heavy shower caused the latter to temporarily lose second but he regained the spot on the penultimate stage and finished 15.5 seconds ahead of Boyle.
 
Pringle won the Modified section 9.2 seconds ahead of Damien Gallagher (Escort).  
Maguire took the spoils in the Motorsport Safety Group N category finishing 9.8 seconds ahead of Guest. 
The Triton Showers Drive of the Day was won by Donegal?s John Bonner/Rory Kennedy (Ford Escort).
Meath?s Brian Brady/Leonard Tuite (Honda Civic) won the Junior event, they finished 7.3 seconds in front of Donegal?s Michael Boyle/Dermot McCafferty (Honda Civic).
 
1. S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Ford Fiesta WRC) 1h. 01m. 52.0s.                   
2. D. Kelly/C. Foley (Ford Focus WRC) 1h. 02m. 18.8s.
3. D. Boyle/B. Boyle  (Ford Fiesta WRC) 1h. 02m. 34.3s.
4. N. Maguire/E. Sherry (Subaru WRC) 1h. 04m. 56.9s.
5. S. Wright/A. Kierans (Ford Fiesta R5) 1:04:57.8   3:05.8  0:00.9
6. R. White/J. O'Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC) 1h. 05m. 04.8s.
7. J. Pringle/P. Sheridan (Ford Escort) 1h. 07m. 06.6s.
8. D. Gallagher/M. Walsh (Ford Escort) 1h. 07m. 15.8s.
9. D. Toner/D. Rafferty (Ford Escort) 1h. 07m. 31.7s.        
10. R. Conlon/D. McCague (Ford Escort) 1h. 07m. 55.4s.
 
 
Provisional Championship Positions after Round 3: 1. S. Moffett 62pts; 2. R. White 45pts; 3. N. Maguire 40pts; 4. D. Kelly 35pts & 5. D. Boyle 34pts.
 
 
Round 3 Preview

MOFFETT ON HOME TERRITORY IN MONAGHAN
 
Preview courtesy of Triton Showers
Proud sponsors of the Irish National Rally Championship.
 
Having won the opening two rounds of the Triton Showers National Rally Championship, Monaghan?s Sam Moffett (Ford Fiesta WRC) is on home ground for Sunday?s third round ? the Four Seasons Hotel Monaghan Rally.
Aside from protecting his lead in the series, he also renews the great family rivalry with his brother Josh, who is the top seed courtesy of his victory in last year?s rally where he finished forty seconds ahead of Sam.   Between them, the Moffett?s have won their home rally since 2013. Sam won in 2013 and 2014 while Josh has won for the last two years.
On Sunday, Josh will drive his own Fiesta R5 while Sam will campaign the Fiesta WRC he has driven on the opening Triton rounds in Nenagh and Longford and indeed on the recent Munster Moonraker Rally where he finished third ? 4.3 seconds behind Josh, who actually campaigned Sam?s Fiesta R5 on that event.  Interestingly, Sam has stated his preference for the R5 car as he reckons it?s a nicer car to drive as opposed to the World Car. 
Former champion Declan Boyle (Fiesta WRC) needs to get back to winning ways if he has designs on a third national victory.  He crashed out of the last round in Longford and really needs to secure a strong haul of points from the nine stages around Monaghan town.
Reigning champion Roy White (Fiesta WRC) is nine points behind Moffett in the current campaign as he chases that elusive event win, however, he is also very aware that consistency is the hallmark of any championship win.
Meanwhile, having missed the last round in Longford due to business commitments, Donegal?s Donagh Kelly (Ford Focus WRC) returns to the series as he eyes up a second National crown - he won the series in 2015.  His battle with Sam Moffett should be intense.
Former triple champion and local hero, Niall Maguire is seeded at number six in his S12B Subaru WRC.  Fourth last time out in Longford, Niall is third in the Triton series and is a multi winner of his home event that he last won in 2010.
 
For 1992 National champion Peadar Hurson, the rally will mark his first appearance in the current series where he will drive a Ford Fiesta WRC, he will have local co-driver Damien Connolly calling the pacenotes.
In the past two years Monaghan?s Stephen Wright (Ford Fiesta R5) has finished fifth on both occasions, given the quality of the opposition, he could find it difficult to achieve a better result.
Title sponsor Kevin Barrett in the Triton Showers liveried Subaru WRC makes his first appearance in the present series, on the recent non-championship Circuit of Kerry he finished third overall.  Dundalk?s Brendan Cumiskey (Skoda Fabia R5) completes the top ten.
 
The Modified entry features a plethora the Escorts in the hands of Gary McPhillips, Jonathan Pringle, Gary Kiernan, Brian Brogan, Adrian Hetherington, Damien Toner and Damien Gallagher along with local hero David Moffett (Toyota Starlet).  That should be a fascinating contest, Hetherington leads the Triton Mk. 2 Challenge Trophy and the rally.ie series.   
 
Current leader of the Motorsport Safety Group N series David Guest (Mitsubishi) has opposition from the Mitsubishi trio of Shane Maguire, Aidan Wray and Neil Tohill along with Paul Barrett (Subaru). 
 
Aside from the aforementioned, other locals include Ballinode?s Maurice Moffett (Toyota Starlet), Micky Conlon (Escort) from Castleblayney, Tydavnet?s Jim McKenna (Escort) and Raymond Conlon from Clones in a Ford Escort ? all of whom will be seeking to impress. 
 
In the Junior category, Scotstown?s Johnny Treanor (Honda Civic) will be aiming to build on his success on the last round where he beat current series leader Donegal?s Michael Boyle (Honda Civic).
The organisers, the Monaghan Motor Club have seeded 124 crews in the main event and nine in the Junior category.
 
 
EVENT DETAILS:
 
Organising Club: Monaghan Motor Club
Clerk of the Course: Thomas Treanor.
Rally Headquarters: Four Seasons Hotel. 047 81888.
 
First Car Away: 09. 30.
 
S.S. 1, 4 & 7:   Stranooden (14.90 km) 10.07, 12.36 & 15.05.
S.S. 2, 5 & 8:   Scotshouse (14.50 km) 10.53, 13.22 & 15.51.
S.S. 3, 6 & 9:   Killeevan (9.50 km) 11.24, 13.53 & 16.22. 
 
Service: Monaghan Town. 11.56 & 14.25
Finish Ramp: Four Seasons Hotel, Monaghan. 16.55.
 
 
Top 10 Starters:
 
1. Josh Moffett/Stephen Thornton (Ford Fiesta R5).
2. Sam Moffett/Karl Atkinson (Ford Fiesta WRC)
3. Declan Boyle/Brian Boyle (Ford Fiesta WRC)
4. Roy White/James O'Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC)
5. Donagh Kelly/Conor Foley (Ford Focus WRC)
6. Niall Maguire/Enda Sherry (Subaru WRC)
7. Peadar Hurson/Damien Connolly (Ford Fiesta WRC)
8. Stephen Wright/Arthur Kierans (Ford Fiesta R5)
9. Kevin Barrett/Sean Mullally (Subaru WRC)
10.Brendan Cumiskey/Ronan O'Kane (Skoda Fabia R5).
 
Provisional Championship Positions after Round 2: 1. S. Moffett 41pts; 2. R. White 32pts; 3. N. Maguire 26pts; 4. A. Hetherington 23pts; 5. D. Guest 19pts; 6. D. Boyle 18pts; 7. D. Kelly 17pts; 8. M. Kelly 16pts; 9. S. Maguire 15pts. & 10. M. Donnelly 13pts.
 
2017 Triton Showers National Rally Championship Diary Dates:
 
1.         Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh Rally      S. Moffett/J. Fulton (Fiesta WRC)
2.         Midland Rally (Longford)                  S. Moffett/K. Atkinson (Fiesta WRC)
3.         Four Seasons Hotel Monaghan Rally                         April 23
4.         Circuit of Munster  (Rathkeale)                                 June 4
5.         Raven?s Rock Rally (Waterford)                                June 25
6.         Sligo Rally                                                                   July 9
7.         Galway Summer Rally (Gort)                                      August 27
8.         Fastnet Rally (Bantry)                                                 October 29
 
 

Media Co-Ordinator,
Triton Showers National Rally Championship.
 
.
 
 










PREVIEW ROUND 2

            MOFFETT HEADS TRITON SHOWERS CONTINGENT IN LONGFORD
Preview courtesy of Triton Showers Proud Sponsors of the National Championship  

 
The Triton Showers National Rally Championship zooms in on Longford this Sunday for the Midland Moto Rally.   The nine-stage event in association with The Longford Arms Hotel, A Plus Skip Hire & Admore Air Conditioning Corp has just over 100 entries for what is the second round of the national series.
Opening round winner in Nenagh, Sam Moffett is the top seed in his Ford Fiesta WRC.  The Monaghan driver is certainly a real threat to the more established stars of the national series and has the ability to win the prestigious Vard Memorial Trophy.  On the last round, Moffett - a former winner of the Billy Coleman award - led from the start and finished almost a minute ahead of the Fiesta WRC of former double national champion Donegal driver Declan Boyle.
The terrain around Longford will certainly provide a tough challenge for all concerned with the organising Midland Motor Club under the baton of clerk of the course Sean Cahill, who has laid out a very demanding route of three stages that will be repeated three times. 
Boyle, who won back-to-back titles in 2013 and 2014, is hoping to be ultra competitive on Sunday, however, it will be a tough task especially with Moffett in such good form.
Winner of last week?s West Cork Rally in Clonakilty and the 2015 Triton Showers champion Donegal?s Donagh Kelly (Ford Focus WRC) will also have designs on outright victory and his battle with Moffett and Boyle should be intense.
Reigning champion Clonmel?s Roy White (Ford Fiesta WRC) is still searching for his inaugural win in the series and that will continue to be a difficult task given the quality of the entry.
The rally will also mark the first outing of the season for Donegal?s Manus Kelly, who will campaign a Subaru WRC.  Last year he made a stunning debut in a Subaru World Car winning the Carlow round of the Triton series, however on Sunday he may take time to acclimatise to the pace.  Tyrone?s Mark Donnelly (Ford Fiesta WRC) is in his debut Triton season and will be aiming to improve on his fifth place finish in Nenagh.
Former triple champion Monaghan?s Niall Maguire (Subaru WRC) occupies the number seven berth in Longford in a top ten that also features Australian based Pauric Duffy (Ford Fiesta R5), Tyrone?s Adrian Hetherington and Meath?s Pat Donegan, both in Ford Escorts.

The top local driver is Keenagh?s Tommy Doyle, who will campaign a Mk. 2 Ford Escort, how he compares with the likes of Hetherington and Donegan will be watched with interest.  Maynooth?s Ian Barrett in his nimble Darrian T90 is also competing in the two-wheel drive category.  Other entries are Blackburn driver John Stone in a Ford Fiesta, Kerry?s Ed Murphy (Escort) and Donegal?s Martin Doherty also in a Ford Escort. 

In Group N, Cork?s David Guest (Mitsubishi) took maximum points in Nenagh and in Longford he will renew rivalry Monaghan?s Shane Maguire in a similar car, Maynooth?s Paul Barrett (Subaru) and Dubliner Neil Tohill (Mitsubishi) as they chase top spot in the Motorsport Safety category of the Triton Showers series.  Carrick on Shannon?s Sean Gallagher (Mitsubishi EvoIX) is also in the Group N frame.  Meanwhile, the entry also features Meath?s Paul McCann (Skoda Fabia), Scottish ace Lee Hastings (Subaru) and Roscommon?s Cormac Phelan (Honda Civic).  

In the Junior category, Donegal?s Michael Boyle (Honda Civic) is the leading entry.  Reigning champion Gary McNamee (Honda Civic) will provide strong opposition that also includes Monaghan?s Jonny Treanor, Cavan?s John McCabe along with Kerry pair Mark Murphy and Kieran O'Donoghue, all in Honda Civics.

Local drivers amongst the entry list include Roscommon?s Colin Flanagan (Mitsubishi), Vincent Collins (Ford Escort) and Longford duo, Sam Johnston (Honda Civic) and Michael Shaw (Mitsubishi).  Elsewhere, Carrick on Shannon?s Gavin Gallagher (Mitsubishi), Pauric Sheridan from Prunty in a Ford Fiesta and the Lanesboro pair, Stephen Healy (Toyota Corolla) and Shane Healy (Peugeot 205) will all be aiming to make an impression.


EVENT DETAILS:

Organising Club: Midland Motor Club
Clerk of the Course: Sean Cahill. 
Rally Headquarters: Longford Arms Hotel & Spa. 

First Car Away: 08. 40

S.S. 1, 4 & 7: Killashee (9.50 km) 9.39, 12.18 & 15.03. 
S.S. 2, 5 & 8:  Newtowncashel (9.90 km) 10.13, 12.55 & 15.37. 
S.S. 3, 6 & 9:  Keenagh (18.70 km) 10.48, 13.30 & 16.12. 

Service: Mastertech Business Park, Longford. 11.38 & 14.20
Finish Ramp: Longford Arms Hotel & Spa. 16.54


Top 10 Starters: 

1. Sam Moffett/Karl Atkinson (Ford Fiesta WRC)
2. Declan Boyle/Brian Boyle (Ford Fiesta WRC)
3. Donagh Kelly/Conor Foley (Ford Focus WRC)
4. Roy White/James O'Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC)
5. Manus Kelly/Gareth Doherty (Subaru WRC)
6. Mark Donnelly/Barry McNulty (Ford Fiesta WRC)
7. Niall Maguire/Enda Sherry (Subaru WRC)
8. Pauric Duffy/Kevin Glynn (Ford Fiesta R5) 
9. Adrian Hetherington/Andrew Grennan (Ford Escort)
10. Pat Donegan/Alan Keena (Ford Escort)

Provisional Championship Positions after Round 1:  S. Moffett 20pts; 2. D. Boyle 18 pts; 3. D. Kelly 17pts; 4. R. White 14pts; 5. M. Donnelly 13pts & 6. N. Maguire 12pts.


2017 Triton Showers National Rally Championship Diary Dates:

1. Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh Rally S. Moffett/J. Fulton (Fiesta WRC) 
2.   Midland Rally (Longford) March 26
3.  Monaghan Rally           April 23
4.  Circuit of Munster  (Rathkeale) June 4
5.  Raven?s Rock Rally (Waterford) June 25
6.  Sligo Rally         July 9
7.  Galway Summer Rally (Gort)         August 27
8.  Fastnet Rally (Bantry) October 29
Media Co-Ordinator,
Triton Showers National Rally Championship.


---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Preview Round 1 
 
TRITON SHOWERS SERIES BEGINS IN NENAGH
 
Preview courtesy of Triton Showers
 Proud sponsors of the Irish National Rally Championship.
 
The Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh Rally kicks starts the Triton Showers National Rally Championship season on Sunday next with former champion Donegal?s Donagh Kelly (Ford Focus WRC) heading a competitive entry for eight-stage event in north Tipperary.
Commenting ahead of the new season, M.D. of Triton Showers Kevin Barrett said, ?This is our third season of involvement with the national series.  Irish rallying is in a difficult place right now with competitors finding it extremely hard to find the budget for a full season.  An entry of 90 crews is now seen as a good entry compared to over 130 we had a number of years ago.  It is very different times.  That said, it is great to see a good start to the series in Nenagh and we in Triton Showers are looking forward to our involvement with the series as it winds its was around Ireland between now and the end of October when it concludes in Bantry in west Cork.?
 
Top seed Kelly, who is chasing his third straight win in the Birr Motor Club promoted event has signalled his intentions to compete in the series that he last won in 2015.  Although he only had sporadic outings last season he will still be expected to set a strong pace and a hat-trick of wins is a strong possibility.  ?It?s been a while since I have been in the car (Donegal International Rally, June 2016).  I?m a bit apprehensive but that said I don?t see why I won?t be competitive.  The plan is to compete in the Triton series, we will take it event by event and see how it goes.? 
Reigning champion Clonmel?s Roy White (Ford Fiesta WRC) begins the defence of his title and the Vard Memorial Trophy in his native county.  ?It looks like a very competitive top ten.  Donagh?s car (Ford Focus WRC) is the ultimate and he will go hard as will Declan, no matter what, he is always very quick and then there is Sam Moffett, another very quick driver while Niall (Maguire) can never be discounted.  I can?t wait to get stuck in, I?m really chomping at the bit for this season.?
Former double National champion Declan Boyle (Ford Fiesta WRC) has set his sights on a third title, despite winning five of last year?s events, the Lettermacaward native missed out on the title and had to be content with runner-up spot.   He will be hoping that the early season glitches in his Ford Fiesta WRC have all been sorted as he ventures into another Triton season.
With three titles already under his belt, the last in 2004, Monaghan?s Niall Maguire (Subaru WRC) has been seeking that elusive fourth crown but with such a strong level of competition this time around, his task will be even more difficult.
An entry from fellow Monaghan man Sam Moffett has spiced up proceedings, he will drive a Ford Fiesta WRC as opposed to his usual Ford Fiesta R5 and outright victory is well within his compass.  The top six is completed by Omagh?s Mark Donnelly in his Ford Fiesta WRC, who has stated his intention to contest the Triton Showers series.
West Cork driver Daniel Cronin competes in a Mitsubishi EvoIX, on his last outing on tarmac surface he won the Kerry Winter Rally in Banna where he beat Cavan?s Stephen McCann, who debuted a Ford Fiesta S2000 on the same event, the latter is seeded behind Cronin as they renew rivalry in County Tipperary.
Meanwhile, another Cavan driver Gary McPhillips (Ford Escort) is also amongst the top ten, he heads the two-wheel drive entry and will be the barometer for Kildare?s Ian Barrett in his Darrian T90, the low projectile will certainly be exciting to watch around the Nenagh roads.
 
Meath?s Trevor Mulligan, the defending rally.ie champion (top two-wheel drive in overall standings) and the Triton Showers Mk. 2 Ford Escort Challenge champion will start from the number eleven berth.  Others in the two-wheel drive category are Tyrone pair Adrian Hetherington and Viv Hamill, Killarney?s Ed Murphy and Donegal?s Mark Alcorn (Toyota Corolla).
 
In Group N, reigning Motorsport Safety Triton Showers champion Tyrone?s Aidan Wray (Mitsubishi EvoX) heads a strong contingent in the showroom category as he seeks a hat-trick of titles.  Dunmanway?s David Guest (Mitsubishi EvoIX) will certainly pose a threat while Monaghan?s Shane Maguire in a similar car and Maynooth?s Paul Barrett (Subaru) will also be aiming to put the pressure on Wray.  Barrett?s car will again carry the Vado (a sister company of Triton Showers) livery, Vado are underpinning the television coverage of the Triton series that will be captured by On the Limit Sports and beamed to over 50 countries around the world.
 
Elsewhere, the entry also features Cahir?s Andrew Fanning (Ford Fiesta), overseas driver Washington James in the ex-Roy White MG ZR, Limerick?s Eamonn Daly (Mitsubishi), New York based Martin Donnelly (Toyota Corolla WRC), Galwegian Richard Whelan (BMW 1M), Wexford?s Richard Moore (Ford Escort), Limerick?s Sean Moran (Ford Escort), Kerry?s Tim Enright (Ford Escort), Clare?s Alan O'Callaghan (Subaru) and another New York based driver, Paul Rowley (Citroen DS3R5).
 
In the Junior category, Donegal?s Michael Boyle (Honda Civic) is the leading entry with opposition emanating from Cavan?s Darren O?Brien, Meath duo Brian Brady and Tom Holton and Kerry?s Kieran Reen, all in Honda Civics.
 
From a local (north Tipperary) perspective the entry features Nenagh?s Andrew Slattery (Peugeot 208 R2), Templemore?s Paul O?Brien (Honda Civic) and brothers David and Shaun Forde from Nenagh.  David competes in a Subaru and while Shaun (Vauxhall Nova) will be making his first competitive outing on a tarmac surface rally.
Slattery?s Garage, Puckane with support from Peugeot Ireland are co-sponsors of the rally.
 
Due to business commitments former National champion Peadar Hurson (Ford Fiesta WRC) is not competing in Nenagh but will be amongst the entry for the second round, the Midland Rally in Longford at the end of March where Donegal?s Manus Kelly (Subaru WRC) will also begin his tilt for the Triton title.
 
 
EVENT DETAILS:
 
Organising Club: Birr and District Motor Club
Clerk of the Course: Bill Ryan.
Rally Headquarters: Abbey Court Hotel, Nenagh. Tel: 067 41111.
 
First Car Away: 08. 40
 
S.S. 1 & 3:       Forty Acres (14.7km) 9.32 & 11.42.
S.S. 2 & 4:       Cloughprior (14.7km) 10.01 & 12.13.
S.S. 5 & 7:       Patrick?s Well (11.5km) 13.30 & 15.34. 
S.S. 6 & 8:       Kilmore (15.30km) 13.57 & 16.01.
 
Service: Streame, Nenagh: 10.40, 12.52 & 14.32.
Finish Ramp: Hotel, Nenagh. 16.41.
 
Top 10 Starters:
 
1. Donagh Kelly/Conor Foley (Ford Focus WRC)
2. Roy White/James O'Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC)
3. Declan Boyle/Brian Boyle (Ford Fiesta WRC)
4. Niall Maguire/Enda Sherry (Subaru WRC)
5. Sam Moffett/James Fulton (Ford Fiesta WRC)
6. Mark Donnelly/Barry McNulty (Ford Fiesta WRC)
7. Daniel Cronin/Shane Buckley (Mitsubishi Evo IX)
8. Stephen McCann/Damien Fleming (Ford Fiesta S2000) 
9. Gary McPhillips/James McNulty (Ford Escort)
10. Ian Barrett/Owen O'Flaherty (Darrian T90)
 
2017 Triton Showers National Rally Championship Diary Dates:
 
1.         Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh Rally                  February 26
2.         Midland Rally (Longford)                              March 26
3.         Monaghan Rally                                            April 23
4.         Circuit of Munster  (Rathkeale)                     June 4
5.         Raven?s Rock Rally (Waterford)                    June 25
6.         Sligo Rally                                                       July 9
7.         Galway Summer Rally (Gort)                          August 27
8.         Fastnet Rally (Bantry)                                     October 29
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Report Round 1

MOFFETT WINS ABBEY COURT HOTEL NENAGH RALLY
 
Report courtesy of Triton Showers
 Proud sponsors of the Irish National Rally Championship.
 
Leading from the start Monaghan?s Sam Moffett in a Ford Fiesta WRC and co-driven by Cavan?s James Fulton won the Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh Rally, the opening round of the Triton Showers National Rally Championship.  They finished 59.1 seconds ahead of the similar car of Donegal cousins, Declan and Brian Boyle.
Another Donegal driver, Donagh Kelly and his Monaghan co-driver Conor Foley in a Ford Focus WRC were 36.1 seconds further behind in third, they claimed an extra championship point for setting the fastest time on the Power Stage.
Cork?s David Guest and his Monaghan co-driver Emmet Sherry (Mitsubishi) won the Group N category and Cavan?s Gary McPhillips/James McNulty (Escort) took the laurels in the two-wheel drive section.  Victory in the Junior category went to Donegal?s Michael Boyle and his co-driver Dermot McCafferty (Honda Civic).
 
On the opening stage Moffett, despite stalling his Ford Fiesta WRC on the start line, was quickest and led Kelly by 10.1 seconds.  Roy White (Ford Fiesta WRC) was a second further behind followed by Niall Maguire (Subaru WRC), who was 10.5 seconds further adrift and had to contend with a misted windscreen.  Declan Boyle was next in a top six that was completed by the Escort of Adrian Hetherington.
On the second stage Moffett pushed on and arrived at the Nenagh service park with a 19.3 second lead over Boyle, who was slightly dubious about his time - he was shown as having posted the fastest stage time.  The Donegal driver reckoned there was an error as Moffett arrived at the stage finish hot on his heels.  ? (Boyle?s time was subsequently amended after the finish).  White admitted he took a cautious approach and wasn?t taking any chances, he occupied third ? 12. 3 seconds further adrift and 3.2 seconds ahead of Kelly, who spun his Focus WRC half way through the stage. 
Maguire struggled through the stage due to a heavily misted over windscreen.  Mark Donnelly (Fiesta WRC) rounded off the top six as he took a steady approach on what was his debut outing in the car and his first tarmac rally in four years. Adrian Hetherington, who was next in classification continued to lead the two-wheel drive category and was trouble free.  The top ten was completed by Stephen McCann, who reckoned his Fiesta S2000 lacked top speed on the opening stage.  Gary McPhillips (Escort) was ninth with Daniel Cronin in tenth losing time with transmission woes as his Mitsubishi stuck in third gear, he withdrew at the service halt.
Meanwhile, in the Motorsport Safety Group N category David Guest (Mitsubishi) led the similar car of Neil Tohill by 14.3 seconds with Paul Barrett (Subaru) a fraction of a second further behind.
 
On the repeat of both stages Moffett was in control and duly extended his lead to 30.4 seconds, the rally leader was happy with his pace and remarked that he just needed to stay out of trouble.  Second placed Boyle had a few moments when his car aquaplaned in the wet conditions.  Meanwhile, White retained third as he admitted his tyre choice ? ?a cut slick? - was a little too brave.  Kelly closed to within 1.9 seconds but he reckoned that his lack of seat time and the conditions were costing him time.  An untroubled Mark Donnelly (Fiesta WRC) and Niall Maguire (Subaru WRC) rounded out the top six, the latter having sorted the issue with the windscreen.
Top two wheel drive exponents Adrian Hetherington and Gary McPhillips, both in Escorts, were next on the leaderboard, the margin between them stood at 7.2 seconds.  Stephen McCann (Fiesta S2000) and Ed Murphy (Escort) completed the top ten.
In Group N, David Guest continued to control proceedings, he was 29.3 seconds ahead of the Mitsubishi of Shane Maguire with Neil Tohill (Mitsubishi) seven seconds further adrift in third followed by an untroubled Paul Barrett (Subaru).
 
Switching to a pair of stages closer to Nenagh for the afternoon, Moffett continued to blaze the trial and consolidated his lead to 58.8 seconds by the completion of S.S. 6. At the Nenagh service the Monaghan man recalled a major moment on the sixth stage when his Fiesta almost got away from him.  Boyle was second and Kelly moved into third at the expense of White.  Donnelly and Maguire both got through the pair of stages safely to hold fifth and sixth respectively.
McCann in seventh thought he had punctured when he clipped a bridge and he backed off for a few kilometres.
Gary McPhillips (Escort) took over the lead of the two-wheel drive category but Adrian Hetherington was only three tenths of a second behind in a top ten that was completed by the Mitsubishi of Group N leader David Guest, who took a steady pace as Shane Maguire cut the deficit to 17.2 seconds, Paul Barrett (Subaru) was third.
Moffett backed off on the final pair of stages to claim the spoils with Boyle second. Kelly punched in the best time on the Power Stage to claim the additional bonus point.
In the two-wheel drive category, McPhillips held off the challenge of Hetherington. Ian Barrett (Darian T90) was third in the category.  Guest, Shane Maguire and Paul Barrett were the top three in Group N.
In the Junior category, winner Michael Boyle (Honda Civic) had to secure his side window that popped out on the way to the opening stage.  The young Donegal driver found the final pair of stages very slippery, indeed, he endured a moment on the final stage when his Honda Civic slid in the conditions.
The Triton Showers ?Drive of the Day? was won by Mark Donnelly/Barry McNulty (Ford Fiesta WRC).
 
1. S. Moffett/J. Fulton (Ford Fiesta WRC) 1h. 00m. 26.9s.
2. D. Boyle/B. Boyle (Ford Fiesta WRC) 1h. 01m. 26.0s.
3. D. Kelly/C. Foley (Ford Focus WRC) 1h. 02m. 02.1s.
4. R. White/J. O'Brien (Ford Fiesta WRC) 1h. 02m. 05.9s.
5. M. Donnelly/B. McNulty (Ford Fiesta WRC) 1h. 02m. 57.3s.
6. N. Maguire/E. Sherry (Subaru WRC) 1h. 03m. 37.3s.
7. S. McCann/D. Fleming (Ford Fiesta S2000) 1h. 04m. 54.2s.
8. G. McPhilips/J. McNulty (Ford Escort) 1h. 05m. 12.9s.
9. A. Hetherington/R. O'Neill (Ford Escort) 1h. 05m. 15.3s.
10. D. Guest/E. Sherry (Mitsubishi Evo IX) 1h. 07m. 52.7s.
 
Provisional Championship Positions after Round 1:  S. Moffett 20pts; 2. D. Boyle 18 pts; 3. D. Kelly 17pts; 4. R. White 14pts; 5. M. Donnelly 13pts & 6. N. Maguire 12pts.
 
2017 Triton Showers National Rally Championship Diary Dates:
 
1.         Abbey Court Hotel Nenagh Rally      S. Moffett/J. Fulton (Ford Fiesta WRC)
2.         Midland Rally (Longford)                              March 26
3.         Monaghan Rally                                            April 23
4.         Circuit of Munster  (Rathkeale)                     June 4
5.         Raven?s Rock Rally (Waterford)                    June 25
6.         Sligo Rally                                                      July 9
7.         Galway Summer Rally (Gort)                         August 27
8.         Fastnet Rally (Bantry)                                     October 29
 
 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
JENNINGS WINS POWER STAGE AND LEADS SERIES


Donegal?s Donagh Kelly (Ford Focus WRC) and his Derry co-driver Kevin Flanagan won an exciting Abbeyleix Manor Hotel Rally, the opening round of the new Triton Showers National Rally Championship.
In wet and very difficult conditions they finished 38.7 seconds ahead of the Subaru WRC of Garry Jennings/Rory Kennedy with Niall Maguire/Enda Sherry (Subaru WRC) a further 25.4 seconds behind in third.  
Aidan Wray/Kieran McGrath (Mitsubishi) won Group N and the Triton Showers ?Drive of the Day? was won by Cavan?s Chris Armstrong/James Fulton (Ford Escort), they also won Class 13.


On the opening stage, Tullacommon near Borris in Ossory, Kelly set the best time and led Boyle by 13.9 seconds with Darren Gass (Subaru WRC) 1.4 seconds further behind in third and 0.5 of a second ahead of the Subaru of Niall Maguire.  Kevin Kelleher and Steve Wood completed the top six.  Frank Kelly/Liam Brennan (Escort) and Mark Kane/Eugene Donnelly (Escort) both crashed out on the opening stage.
Boyle topped the time sheets through the second stage but Kelly arrived at the service park with a lead of 5.9 seconds and remarked on the copious amounts of standing water on the second stage.  Boyle was content enough in second and wasn?t prepared to take any undue risks.  A delighted Niall Maguire (Subaru WRC) occupied third ? 4.8 seconds further behind.  
Alan Ring, who had a moment on the opening stage when his Subaru snapped, moved up to fourth place with Kevin Kelleher (Subaru WRC) untroubled and 1.4 seconds behind.
Sixth placed Steve Wood (Subaru WRC) lost time when the windscreen misted over.  Elsewhere, Darren Gass (Subaru WRC) spun on the opening stage and had no wipers for the third stage, he was seventh with Garry Jennings one of many to suffer with a misted windscreen, down in eighth spot.  The top ten was completed by the Mk. 2 Escorts of Chris Armstrong and Craig Breen.


Roy White was down in 25th position after he too struggled with a lack of vision through the misted screen of his MG ZR that completed the third stage with gearbox woes, unfortunately, he retired at the service park when it was discovered that a tooth in the crown wheel was broken.
Donegal?s Declan Gallagher (Toyota GT86) had a brief tenure ? the car ground to a halt on the second stage.  


Out on the repeat loop Boyle held the edge over Kelly.  Closing to within a fraction of a second of his rival after the fourth stage Boyle then moved into the lead on Stage 5 and by S.S. 6, he was the 12.3 seconds in front.  Boyle reckoned that the final stage of the loop was quite tricky as Kelly remarked that he was taking no chances.
Gass showed a fine turn of speed to move into third ? his McKinstry prepared S14 Subaru WRC had more grip than the S11 Subaru of Niall Maguire, who was 32 seconds further behind after a fine drive through the opening loop.


Having raised the suspension of his S12B Subaru WRC Garry Jennings improved his performance and slotted into fifth some ten seconds behind Maguire.  Alan Ring completed the second loop in sixth position but retired with transmission woes.  On S.S. 5 he had a major moment when his Subaru WRC got out of line.


Kevin Kelleher was next on the leaderboard, the windscreen visor of his Subaru WRC came adrift and was entangled in the wiper mechanism, luckily, it blew away in the wind a few seconds later.  Steve Wood (Subaru WRC) held eighth from the Mk. 2 Escorts of Craig Breen and Chris Armstrong, who completed the top ten.


A dramatic final loop brought many changes to the top ten.  On S.S. 7, Boyle punctured and dropped to 25th. overall before eventually finishing 14th.  Darren Gass retired his Subaru with a broken half shaft and Craig Breen?s fine drive ended on the same stage - also with a broken half shaft.
Meanwhile, Kelly went on to claim victory and Jennings, who won the first ever Power Stage in Irish rallying took second ? the three points gained for the Power Stage (where Boyle and Maguire were second and third respectively) - was enough to put him into the lead of the Triton Showers series ? a point ahead of Kelly.  
Kelleher was fourth and Kevin Barrett Subaru WRC) made up ground to secure sixth overall.
The top ten was completed by Chris Armstrong (Escort), Aidan Wray (Mitsubishi), Brendan Cumiskey (Subaru) and Brian Brogan (Escort).  Wray?s victory in Group N was only confirmed late in the evening.  


Elsewhere, John Stone (Skoda Fabia), who stopped to change a punctured wheel on the first stage clawed his way back from 131st to 18th.  Peadar Hurson (Subaru WRC) was the only non-starter amongst the top twenty.


The Cork crew of Vincent McSweney/Michael Kearney (Honda Civic) won the Junior category and Niall Keane/Conor Keane (Talbot Sunbeam ) took the laurels in the Historic section.




1. D Kelly/K Flanagan (Ford Focus WRC) 1h 00m 12.7s
2. G Jennings/R Kennedy (Subaru WRC) 1h 00m 51.4s
3. N Maguire/E Sherry (Subaru WRC) 1h 01m 16.8s
4. K Kelleher/R Fitzpatrick (Subaru WRC) 1h 01m 41.7s
5. S Wood/K Moriarty (Subaru WRC) 1h 03m 08.7s
6. K Barrett/S Mullally (Subaru WRC) 1h 03m 57.7s
7. C Armstrong/J Fulton (Ford Escort) 1h 04m. 01.7s
8. A. Wray/K. McGrath (Mitsubishi EvoIX) 1h. 05m. 00.6s.
9. B. Cumiskey/R. O'Kane (Subaru) 1h. 05m. 11.9s.
10. B. Brogan/D. McGettigan (Ford Escort) 1h. 05m. 15.3s.


National Rally Championship - Positions after Round 1: 1. G Jennings (Subaru) 21 points; 2. D Kelly (Ford Focus) 20 points; 3. N Maguire (Subaru) 17 points; 4. K Kelleher (Subaru) 14 points.


Martin Walsh,
Media Co-Ordinator,
Triton Showers National Rally Championship.


Telephone: 086  8212023 - Not for publication).