Sun 08 Dec 96: Final Killarney Historic Stages, County Kerry, Ireland

Based in the South West of the Republic of Ireland, and organised by Killarney and District Motor Club, the inaugural running of this event uses the December date which the Rally of the Lakes used throughout the eighties and early nineties until it moved to May to fit in to the European Rally Championship.

The winter date allows the use of classic stages such as the breathtaking Healy Pass and the twisty Kilmacillogue, which would cause too much disruption to tourist traffic should they be run in the summer. A foggy Borlin stage sorted the men from the boys, and of course no rally in Killarney would be complete without Molls Gap, though the final run down Molls had to be cancelled when a Mini Cooper S spun and blocked the stage.

Top Historic finishers: 1 John Keatley/Maurice Beckett Porsche 911 1:11:38 2 Dessie Nutt/Elkin Robinson Porsche 911 1:11:51 3 Drew Wylie/Graeme Jennings Lotus Elan 1:16:46 4 Frank Fennell/Frank Hussey Porsche 911 1:16:56 5 Mervyn Johnston/Nigel Frazer Mini Cooper S 1:18:31 6 Drexel Gillespie/Jane Allen Lotus Cortina 1:19:46 7 Alan Courtney/Peter Martin Lotus Cortina 1:19:48 8 Robert McGimpsey/Bryan Gray MGB 1:20:57 9 Mike Corns/David Ryan Volvo 1:22:22

A full entry of 120 cars included 60 historics and post-historics, and 60 newer 'classics'.

--Simon Wallis (