James Stafford and Jeff Case cruised to a clear victory in the Wexford M C Volkswagen Stages Rally at the weekend, bringing their Darrian home almost two minutes ahead of the Fiesta R5 of Stephen McCann and Damien Fleming after 15 stages spread over the two days.
The Wexford-Laois combination held runner up position for most of Saturday’s nine stage run, before taking the overnight lead on the day’s final test, four seconds ahead of early leaders Andrew Purcell and Liam Brennan.
Purcell’s Fiesta briefly went ahead again on Sunday’s opener, but was forced to retire immediately afterwards, leaving Stafford and Case in command as they pulled away from the opposition. Third place went to the Escort of Wesley Patterson and Johnny Baird, with local pairing Thomas O’Rourke/Tomas Scallan fourth in a Hyundai i20.
Desi Henry and Damien Connolly took a 13 seconds win in the final round of the Valvoline National Forestry Championship, the Enniskillen Lakeland Stages event. Former champion Sam Moffett, co-driven by James Fulton, finished in runner up position, with recently crowned Forestry title holders Cathan McCourt and Barry McNulty close behind in third spot.
WEXFORD M C VOLKSWAGEN STAGES RALLY AT WEXFORD (ROUND OF SUIRWAY GROUP SOUTH EAST STAGES CHAMPIONSHIP):
1 James Stafford/Jeff Case (Darrian T90 GTR) 97m 40s,
2 Stephen McCann/Damien Fleming (Fiesta R5) 99m 36s,
3 Wesley Patterson/Johnny Baird (Escort) 100m 13s,
4 Thomas O’Rourke/Tomas Scallan (Hyundai i20 R5) 101m 18s,
5 Leon Galvin/Ger Foley (Escort) 101m 26s,
6 John Reddington/Kenny Bustard (Fiesta) 102m 20s,
7 Paul Rowley/Darragh Mullen (Fiesta R5) 102m 44s,
8 Justin Smyth/James McEneaney (Escort) 103m 46s,
9 James Bradley/David Byrne (Escort) 103m 53s,
10 Adrian Evans/Martin Henry (Escort) 104m 50s.
Group N Production class: Richie Dalton/Ger Brett (Impreza).
Historics: 1 Neil Williams/Anthony O’Sullivan (Escort) 104m 05s,
2 Ian Davies/Wyn Thomas (BMW M3) 118m 37s.
Juniors Class 16: 1 Brian Rowan/Darragh Walsh (Civic) 55m 26s,
2 Michael O’Mara/Denise Rowan (Civic) 68m 09s,
3 Sean Dunphy/Mickey Brennan (Civic) 70m 39s.
Juniors Class 16A: 1 Mick Lonergan/Shane Corcoran (Civic) 50m 08s.
ENNISKILLEN M C LAKELAND STAGES FOREST RALLY AT ENNISKILLEN, CO FERMANAGH (FINAL ROUND OF VALVOLINE NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP):
1 Desi Henry/Damien Connolly (Fiesta WRC) 34m 17s,
2 Sam Moffett/James Fulton (Fiesta WRC) 34m 39s,
3 Cathan McCourt/Barry McNulty (Fiesta R5) 34m 50s,
4 Vivian Hamill/Andrew Grennan (Fiesta R5) 35m 11s,
5 Donagh Kelly/Conor Foley (Fabia R5) 35m 16s,
6 Patrick O’Brien/Thomas Nugent (Lancer Evo) 35m 20s,
7 Niall McCullagh/Ryan McCloskey (Fiesta R5) 35m 41s,
8 Stephen Wright/Arthur Kierans (Fiesta R5) 35m 44s,
9 Conor McCourt/Brian Hoy (Fiesta) 35m 48s,
10 Mickey Carbin/Conor Mohan (Lancer Evo 8) 36m 00s.