Frank Byrnes' two year sabbatical from the single seater scene came to an abrupt end on hearing that Padraig Forde Junior's class winning Hillclimb F2000 Reyard was up for sale. The former Formula Vee race winner just could not resist the...
Frank Byrnes' two year sabbatical from the single seater scene came to an abrupt end on hearing that Padraig Forde Junior's class winning Hillclimb F2000 Reyard was up for sale. The former Formula Vee race winner just could not resist the temptation and without hesitation made the purchase. Within weeks, Frank was back in the driving seat. With little time to prepare or practise the Oranmore, County Galway native made a long trip but successful to Dungarvan, County Waterford for Rounds 1 and 2 of the Dunlop National Hillclimb/Sprint Challenge. The cross-country journey back home was made with considerable ease after recording not one but two podium finishes over the two-day event.
Byrnes took to the 240bhp 2.0 litre 16V Vauxhall engined race machine 'like duck to water' needing very little time to acclimatise to its 140 mph top speed. At the end of Day One, third place (out of 80 entrants) was secured after three timed runs over the 1.4 mile steep circuit. His only worry was finding the correct braking points especially upon entering the double hairpins. But his fears were to be short lived as Day Two delivered further success. In recording third fastest (again), Frank shaved off over 3 seconds on his previous best time of 64.41 from the day before and was just pipped for second position by a mere 0.13 of a second.
Feeling a little overjoyed after his efforts, Frank put his successful return down to the performance of the car. "The F2000 Reyard is just an awesome machine," said Frank. "All I had to do really was sit in and drive. The speed and traction is just unbelievable. I knew the capabilities of the car as it had won sprints like this in the past and when Padraig put it up for sale, well, I just had to have it. At present, I am looking for some sponsors to help fund my campaign in the National Series and to finish 3rd Overall and 2nd in Class after the two days puts me on the right track as it were to generate the exposure required," he added. "My next outing is the Phoenix Park Festival for Rounds 3 and 4 on July 21st/22nd. Here's to more podium finishes."
-Irish Motorsport News