ITRC: Donegal: Event preview

The stage is set. The set may be the same as last year. A lot of the main characters are too, and a lot of the extras but the plot is still a mystery as the cast for this years Donegal epic assembles in Letterkenny and we won't know how it all...

The stage is set.

The set may be the same as last year. A lot of the main characters are too, and a lot of the extras but the plot is still a mystery as the cast for this years Donegal epic assembles in Letterkenny and we won't know how it all pans out until the end of the final reel on Sunday. Heading the cast, his name in the biggest lights around, is the man with the fastest draw in the west, Andrew 'the Ace' Nesbitt, hero of a hundred shootouts the length and breadth of the country and a legend with his trusty Subaru Impreza WRC. Past form suggests that few can match the man from Armagh when it comes to sheer speed in Donegal, and speed is what counts over the rugged terrain of Ireland's northernmost county. But many will try over the next few days, and if one of them succeeds, he could become a legend himself. Could it be 'Desperate' Derek McGarrity, no mean gunslinger himself, who has shown already this year that he can mix it with Nesbitt when things go according to plan? Or maybe 'Easy' Eamonn Boland whose consistent pressure has kept the leaders on their mettle at every outing this year. Right now he is Nesbitt's closest challenger on points, and he ain't so slow. Both he and McGarrity will ride into town on Subarus too.

And what about 'Maverick' Austin McHale, who has come out on top on many occasions during a long and successful career. Toyota-mounted, with a Corolla WRC the Dubliner has set himself the very difficult task of contesting both British and Toshiba Tarmac Championships this year. So far he has not scored a victory this year, but it would be a foolish man who bet against him. And then there's Mark Higgins, the out-of-towner. Young, fast and having his second run in a Toyota, the man from Man is an unknown quantity in Donegal, but unknown quantities have won here before--But you can't discount Daniel 'The Kid' Doherty. His home is in nearby Carndonagh, his mission is to uphold local honour, his commitment is awesome -- and he has the right equipment in the shape of another Subaru WRC. If things go his way, he, too, could be topping the bill when the final credits roll. And the supporting players are legion. More than 150 of them with 'drive on' parts and enough extras lining the stages to make Cecil B de Mille go as green as the Donegal hills with envy.

This is the ultimate western epic. So--will the hero ride off into sunset with the spoils as he has before, or will his plans for domination of the event -- and this years Toshiba Tarmac Championship be thwarted by one or more of the 'Fabulous Five' at the eleventh hour? We will just have to wait and see.

Lights--Camera--Action--

-www.toshibarally.com

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About this article
Series Other rally
Drivers Mark Higgins , Austin McHale