ITRC: Rally of the Lakes preview

Supercar Show and Drivers' Forum to kick start rally weekend. This weekend sees the Ordnance Survey Ireland Rally of the Lakes 2003 take centre stage in Killarney and its surrounding region, with the cream of tarmac rally competitors poised to...

Supercar Show and Drivers' Forum to kick start rally weekend.

This weekend sees the Ordnance Survey Ireland Rally of the Lakes 2003 take centre stage in Killarney and its surrounding region, with the cream of tarmac rally competitors poised to fight it out for one of the most prestigious prizes in Irish motorsport on Saturday and Sunday. Activities for rally fans will commence with the Supercar Show and Drivers Forum, which will take place at Ireland's National Events Centre, adjacent to the Gleneagle Hotel, tomorrow (Friday) evening. Up to fifteen rally cars from the Group B era of the 1980s and earlier Group 4 machines will be displayed, and the history of each car will be detailed in a presentation commencing at 8.30pm.

The presentation will be followed at 10pm by a Drivers Forum, where some of the top seeds for the Ordnance Survey Ireland Rally of the Lakes 2003 will be interviewed by Martin Walsh of the Irish Examiner. The audience will then get an opportunity to put their own questions to the competitors, allowing fans to interact directly with their rallying heroes.

There will also be a Rally Exhibition in the INEC on Friday night, with a number of companies displaying rally-related merchandise of interest to competitors and followers. Some exhibition space remains available, and interested parties should contact Derek Lee at the Gleneagle Hotel, Tel. 064 -71500, for further information.

All the latest news regarding the event can also be accessed on the internet at www.rallyofthelakes.com.

McHALE TO SET THE MARK

Austin McHale's Subaru Impreza WRC S7 will be the first car off the Ordnance Survey Ireland Rally of the Lakes 2003 Start Ramp, as the No.1 seed, Andrew Nesbitt, has withdrawn his entry, having been unable to secure a car for the event. The McKinstry Impreza used by Nesbitt on the Circuit of Ireland is unavailable, and no alternative machine could be sourced in the limited time available.

McHale's car has had a new engine fitted during the week, the previous motor having caused difficulties during the Pirelli Rally in Northumbria last weekend. A titanic Rally of the Lakes battle is predicted between McHale and Circuit of Ireland winner, Derek McGarrity, who will also drive one of the latest Subarus. McGarrity will be navigated on the Rally of the Lakes by Dermot O'Gorman, while McHale will be partnered as usual by Brian Murphy.

Other late withdrawals from the Rally of the Lakes 2003 include JJ Fleming, originally seeded at No.9, and Patrick Elliott, who is recovering from injuries sustained in an accident on the Monaghan Rally last Sunday.

Meanwhile, the contest for Group N honours has taken on an added dimension with the news that Trevor Cathers is to drive an official Prodrive-prepared Subaru Impreza in the 'showroom' class.

The Ordnance Survey Ireland Rally of the Lakes 2003 Start Ramp ceremony will take place at 0747hrs on Saturday morning at the Gleneagle Hotel, with Stage 1, Molls Gap, getting underway at 0800hrs.

-www.rallyofthelakes.com

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Other rally
Drivers Austin McHale , Brian Murphy