2009 Lafarge Stages Report

5 September 2009

Leading from the off Camillus Bradley won the Cookstown Motor Club's Lafarge Cement Ireland Stages with first time navigator Ryan Crozier. Many crews claimed that Camillus was in a league of his own, and the times proved it despite a scare over the first stage jump. Camillus reported "We had a good race with the boys behind" the Draperstown man continued, "The main thing is Ryan enjoyed the day!"


The Cookstown Motor Club event also hosted round five of the Pacenotes ANICC 2wd Rally Challenge. After the first loop of stages, overall Challenge leaders Drew Stewart and David White were fourth overall, ten seconds ahead of rival Michael Conlon and Hugh McKenna.


After three more tests taking in Davagh Forest and Loughry College, Michael Conlon was surprised to move into the lead by one second. Drew Stewart was now second but enjoyed a better run on the second loop, despite the time loss. However Conlon was unaware that his campaign was to take a hit on stage six, retiring from the event with a collapsed wheel bearing.


Another expected front runner in the Pacenotes series, Gary Price also had trouble at the beginning of the day, a mysterious electrical fault on stage one making it a non-finish for him. This left Drew Stewart with the task of completing the last loop and take the maximum points to increase his lead on the Challenge standings.


Mark and Sinead McGrath finished second in the Challenge with 12th overall their best performance this season and a great boost to the points tally. Patrick Shields was one of the entertainers of the day sliding the Starlet into third and 15th overall. Local men Raymond Doyle and Marc Nugent took fourth in the Challenge with Alan Acheson fifth ahead of Brian Quigley and Paul Deery.



In the 1400cc class, Eamon McLaughlin's twenty-fifth overall performance was also enough to claim the class ahead of Corey McKay and Conal McNally. Third went to Portadown's Arnie Lutton and Tom Young's nimble Micra.


In the 1600cc 8 valve category Simon Gordon and Billy Regan set the early pace in Davagh, but they retired after stage four. That left Brian Quigley and Paul Deery to claim the class win by almost forty seconds ahead of Paddy Quinn and Raymond Loughran.





In the class for cars up to 1650cc thirteen seconds separated the four class finishers, JP Quigley would have had a clear win though if it wasn't for a road penalty, the Honda Civic pilot settling for third in class. JP's bad fortune left Patrick Shields and John McColl's with the class win. Second went to Raymond Doyle with navigator Marc Nugent in the hot seat.



The up to 2100cc category ended in a tie between Mark and Sinead McGrath and Darrell Quinn and Stephen O'Hanlon. Both Mk2 Escort crews finished the event on 33min 15 seconds; however Quinn was declared the victor of the class as he had a greater number of fastest stage times during the day.


Round six will move to Enniskillen on the 3rd October and the first Pacenotes ANICC 2WD Rally Champion will be decided on the 28th November at the Gullion Stages.


William Neill

Posted by PMcCollum on 7/9/2009; Last updated by PMcCollum on 7/9/2009