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Two from two for Devine and O’Sullivan on Killarney Rally of the Lakes

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Muckross co-driver Noel O’Sullivan and his Derry-based driver Callum Devine took their second Assess Ireland Rally of the Lakes victory in as many years after an epic two days of motorsport in the West Cork and Killarney areas.

CHAMPIONS: Noel O'Sullivan and Callum Devine won the Rally of the Lakes for the second time. Photo: Ger Leahy

The Volkswagen Polo GTi crew fought back from a puncture on Killarney’s Moll’s Gap opener to then grab the rally lead on stage four, the daunting Ardgroom stage.

Despite several challenges and dramas including a late steering rack issue they managed to hold off the advances of Robert Barrable and Gordon Noble in their Citroen C3 Rally 2 to take a 25.1-second victory

O’Sullivan becomes the first Kerry-based competitor to win the rally twice.
“I was lost for words the first time, and I really don’t know what to say this time either,” said O’Sullivan. “I grew up watching this rally, and my earlier memories are of Bertie Fisher and Rory Kennedy winning this rally. I never thought I could win, never mind twice, I am very lucky to be competing at the front of this sport and I am very grateful to all who gave me the opportunities.”

Fellow Killarney men and early rally leaders Rob Duggan and Ger Conway had a bitterly disappointing end to what was a brilliant debut performance in their first Killarney outing in a top-line rally car and Rob’s first time competing in a top car since 2018.

Starting off the event with fastest on the first stage, setting a blistering pace on Moll’s Gap to be fastest by 9.8 seconds. The defending modified champion drove a similar Polo to that of the event winners. Fastest again on the opening run over a very wet Moll’s Gap on Sunday morning, the local crew started Sunday morning in third place. Their brilliant run came to a dramatic end on the rally’s penultimate stage, Gortnagane, when they clipped a bank and broke a steering arm.

Local driver Alan Ring and his West Cork co-driver Adrian Deasy were another crew on a debut run in another Polo. They realised their pre-event plan of a top-ten finish by coming home in ninth place. It was their first outing in a frontline car in several years after concentrating on historic rallying in recent times. Ring rued the lack of seat time and full confidence in his hired machine but, nevertheless, was very happy with his run.

Local Crews:

Lawlor’s Cross crew John McCarthy and Kieran O'Donoghue put in one of the drives of the rally to bring their Ford Escort home in tenth place and third in the modified section of the rally.
“We are very happy with the result,” said O’Donoghue, “It was a very hard rally on cars and men.”
Conor Murphy and Sean Collins overcame a host of problems, including a misfiring engine and a puncture to bring their Ford Escort home in 12th place.
Dave Slattery and Denis Coffey were three places behind in another Escort. They endured a host of problems including a broken throttle and clutch cable over the two days.
Defending junior champions Jason Farrell and Donagh Crowley stepped up to the main rally for the first time and took their Honda Civic to a dominant class 11F win. Mark O'Leary and Andrew Cronin were second in the same class in their Toyota Starlet.
Robert Counihan Timmy Kelly reported a trouble-free run in their Toyota Corolla Twin Cam to finish 37t.
Shane Doyle and William Kelliher were second in their class in their BMW E30
Father and daughter John Hickey and Michelle Hickey had a very enjoyable weekend in their Fubaru.
“I could do nothing better in the world, all the holidays you can imagine, than a father a daughter competing together in the Rally of the Lakes.”
His brother Charlie and his daughter Charlene had to rely on Super Rally rules to get to the finish but also reported an enjoyable weekend.
Raymond O'Neill and Jason O'Connor finished second in class 12 in what was O’Connor’s first attempt at the rally.
Despite a few close calls on their home Gortnagane stage, husband and wife Brian Doherty and Tara Duggan had a good weekend in their Ford Fiesta.
Killarney co-driver Tommy Moynihan guided Patrick O'Connor to fourth in class 20 in their Mitsubishi Evo 10.
There was an interesting mix of local co-drivers on pacenote duty for the O’Callaghan family. Sean Nolan guided Chris to 59th overall while his mother Hazel, guided by Tony McCarthy was six places
Father and son Tom O'Sullivan and Mark O'Sullivan reported a trouble-free run, as did Maurice Kennelly and Eoin Mulvihill.
Thomas Randles and Mark Horgan had severe engine problems in their Ford Escort and had to use Super Rally rules.
Kieran Fitzgerald and Denis O'Leary survived an off-road excursion in Beallaghbeama in their Toyota Starlet to take seventh in Class 11F.
Ruby O'Riordan made her rally debut and guided her father John to fourth in class.
Steven O'Connor and Paul McGlinchy overcame fuel pipe issues to make it to the end.
For the third event in a row, Sean Hickey and Noel Fleming failed to complete the full rally because of alternator problems.
Bob Moran had alternator issues in his Escort but made it to the end.
Stephen O'Connor and Jonathan O'Shea were contesting their first Rally of the Lakes and suffered brake issues in their Toyota Starlet.
Local co-driver Ger Somers and Raymond Spence overcame a host of clutch issues to get their Ford Escort to the finish.
Billy McCarthy and John Falvey broke a steering arm in their Nissan Micra on the first run over Beallaghbeama and were another crew to use SuperRally to get to the end.
Three crews: Jack O'Shea/Darragh Lynch (Austin Mini Cooper) Gary Healy/Kevin Doherty (Honda Civic) and Amy Burke/Emel McNamara (Ford Fiesta Mark 1) all used Super Rally rules to get to the end.

Historic rally:

Co-driver Brian Duggan was the best-placed Kerry man in the historic rally. He guided Luke McCarthy to fourth place.
Brendan O'Mahoney and Darren O'Mahoney were eighth in their unusual Lada Samara.

Junior category
Brothers Damien Nagle and Shane Nagle were the top Kerry crew on the junior rally, taking fifth place at the end.
The unrelated Keith O'Connor and Aaron O'Connor were three places behind and happy to put their heavy Midlands Moto Rally crash behind them.
Brother and sister Mossie Costello and Megan Costello were ninth in their Civic.

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Credit Union launch a new collaboration with Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd.

Building on recent success the Credit Unions of Kerry and West Limerick have launched a new collaboration with Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd. Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd specialise in Photovoltaic (PV) […]

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Building on recent success the Credit Unions of Kerry and West Limerick have launched a new collaboration with Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd.

Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd specialise in Photovoltaic (PV) Solar systems that generate electricity, battery storage, air to water heat-pumps and much more.
Gilroy’s work with customers to receive the SEAI once-off grant towards the purchase and installation of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems and heat pumps for your home.
Collaborating with Kerry and West Limerick Credit Union expands the finance options available to Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd customers to help finance new PV Solar Panel installations. Loan rates will be directly linked to the property BER starting from 4.7%(4.89APR) for an “A” rated BER.
Martin Gilroy; CEO with Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd said: “We are delighted to officially launch this collaboration with the Credit Unions of Kerry and West Limerick. Customers have already reaped the benefits on recent installation projects after contacting their local Credit Union. Having a direct link to local Credit Unions allows us to guide customers to affordable financing options based on the specific installation quotation we provide at very competitive rates.“
Speaking on behalf of the Kerry and West Limerick Credit Unions, Ashley Fitzgerald added: “We are delighted to have Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd come on board as part of our Greener Homes Loan offering. Home Energy Upgrade have become a prominent concern and talking point among members in recent months, by Credit Unions having a direct link with Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd allows both sides to make referrals and seek the best finance option for members. We are working hard building relationships with Green Energy Ltd providers as we want to ensure our members can avail of the best loan rates for all upgrade works.”
Credit Unions across Kerry and West Limerick. Abbeyfeale Credit Union, Cara Credit Union, Killarney Credit Union, Listowel Credit Union and Rathmore and District Credit Union can be reached via: www.creditunion.ie
Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd can be contacted on 066-7115920, email info@gilroys.ie or for more information visit www.gilroys.ie.

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Racegoers Club to host Cheltenham Preview Night

Killarney Racegoers Club will host its annual Cheltenham Preview Night in Corkery’s Bar on March 7. Admission is free and this year’s chosen beneficiary is the Killarney Branch of St […]

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Killarney Racegoers Club will host its annual Cheltenham Preview Night in Corkery’s Bar on March 7.

Admission is free and this year’s chosen beneficiary is the Killarney Branch of St Vincent De Paul Society.
The expert panel includes professional punter Paddy Wilmott, leading jockey Conor McNamara, up-and-coming Kerry-based trainer Eoin McCarthy and local bookmaker Brendan Tyther with Vince Casey acting as the event’s compere.

“There is no admission fee but a raffle on the night for dual membership of Killarney Racegoers Club for the year, which includes 13 days racing and many reciprocal days to other race meetings,” said Mr Casey.

The Cheltenham Festival begins on March 12.

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