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News & Results from the Weekend

Rob Dwane in his 1.3 OMS Suzuki from Saturdays Kirkistown Sprint. Photo courtesy of Gary Craig Motorsport Photography.
Double National Hillclimb and Sprint champion Rob Dwane got his bid for three Pack and Pallet titles in a row off to the best possible start by scoring maximum points on both days of the 500 Motor Racing Club of Ireland’s double header weekend at Kirkistown, in Co Down.

The 22 year old from Tulla, Co Clare, was seven seconds clear of Chris Houston in another OMS in Saturday’s opening round, with Dubliner Rory Stephens taking his Dallara to runner up position yesterday, almost nine seconds down.

Paul Hamill was best of the saloon drivers in his Tiger Mini on the opening day, with Darragh McMullan’s Seat Leon just beating him by 0.29 seconds for class honours yesterday.

Veteran rally driver John Coyne was the only one of the Irish contingent to complete Rally Guanajuato, the Mexican round of the World Rally Championship. Dubliner Coyne and his Galway co-driver Stephen Joyce brought their Ford Fiesta R5 home in fifteenth place overall, one position ahead of the works Hyundai of Belgian WRC contender Thierry Neuville.

The Irish retirement list included the Skoda Fabia of Barry McKenna/James Fulton, and the VW Polo of Finnish rising star Oliver Solberg with his Tyrone co-driver Aaron Johnston, both with mechanical problems. The rally’s final day was cancelled due to travel restrictions, with six times World Champion Sebastien Ogier’s Toyota Yaris declared the winner ahead of current title holder Ott Tanak’s Hyundai. 

Below is the full list of results from the 500 MRCI Sprint at kirkistown 14/15 March. 


500 MRCI SPRINT AT KIRKISTOWN, CO DOWN (ROUND 1 OF PACK & PALLET NATIONAL HILLCLIMB/SPRINT CHAMPIONSHIP) (DAY 1):

1 Rob Dwane (OMS Suzuki) 86.65s,

2 Chris Houston (OMS Suzuki) 94.31s,

3 Rory Stephens (Dallara-VW 309) 97.33s,

4 Ben O’Brien (Reynard FVL) 105.24s,

5 Paul Hamill (Tiger Mini) 107.23s,

6 Tommy Gardiner (Civic) 110.20s,

7 Neil McMullan (Seat Leon) 111.29s,

8 (tie) Dara Fay (Suzuki Swift) and Neil Dugan (Peugeot 205-Ford) 111.74s,

10 Gary Cunningham (Mini Suzuki) 111.92s.

Class winners: Dara Fay, Philip Whitty (Cinquecento), Tommy Gardiner, Paul Hamill, Gary Cunningham, Mick O’Shea (MGB GT), Chris Houston, Rory Stephens, Chris Snow Jnr (Civic), Neil Dugan.

500 MRCI SPRINT AT KIRKISTOWN, CO DOWN (ROUND 2 OF PACK & PALLET NATIONAL HILLCLIMB/SPRINT CHAMPIONSHIP) (DAY 2):

1 Rob Dwane (OMS Suzuki) 88.46s,

2 Rory Stephens (Dallara-VW 309) 97.30s,

3 Darragh McMullan (Seat Leon) 107.25s,

4 Paul Hamill (Tiger Mini) 107.54s,

5 Ben O’Brien (Reynard FVL) 108.00s,

6 Gary Cunningham (Mini Suzuki) 108.36s,

7 Brian Kirwan (Peugeot 206-GM) 108.48s,

8 Tommy Gardiner (Civic) 109.23s,

9 Neil McMullan (Seat Leon) 110.47s,

10 Dara Fay (Suzuki Swift) 110.98s.

Class winners: Dara Fay, Philip Whitty (Cinquecento), Brian Kirwan, Darragh McMullan, Gary Cunningham, Mick O’Shea (MGB GT), Rory Stephens, Chris Snow Jnr (Civic), Neil Dugan (Peugeot 205-Ford).

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