Motorsport Ireland Young Racing Driver of the Year

This weekend sees one of the most prestigious meetings in the Motorsport Ireland calendar, the Leinster Trophy. With 11 different classes racing over Saturday and Sunday, there will be plenty to keep the crowds entertained but the Leinster Trophy race itself promises to be the highlight of the weekend. Current Motorsport Ireland Young Racing Driver of the Year, Jonny McMullan, will be looking to impress having finished third in the race last year. The Newtownabbey driver, is fresh from a strong performance in Knockhill in Scotland last weekend which saw him extend his lead in the British Formula Ford Championship where a took a brace of podiums and he is eyeing up a maiden Leinster Trophy win in his Irish Sports Council and Dunlop Van Diemen. McMullan will face stiff competition from Co. Kildare youngster, Jake Byrne as both attempt to get their name on the trophy which bears the names of motorsport legends such as Mike Hawthorn, Ayrton Senna and Mika Hakkinen. Top rally driver Sam Moffett will make a surprise appearance at the race meeting and he plans to compete in the ASK Supercar class. Admission to Mondello Park this weekend is €12.50 for adults with under 16’s going free.

 Motorsport Ireland Young Racing Driver of the Year

Jonny McMullan to compete for the Leinster trophy this weekend. Photo by Brian Walsh

Clare Motor Club will run their annual stages rally on Sunday, based out of the Oakwood Arms Hotel in Shannon. Maynooth driver Kevin Barrett heads the entry list in his Subaru Impreza World Rally Car. Barrett will be followed by Daniel McKenna and the Monaghan Junior World Rally Championship competitor will be making his second appearance in the Ford Fiesta R5 which he used in Galway recently while the rapid Ed O’Callaghan will start at number 3 in his Mark 2 Ford Escort. Shane Maguire and Mac Kierans are the top Group N seeds at number 8 in their Mitsubishi while the Co. Cork pairing of Padraig Deasy and Edel McCarthy are the top junior seeds. A highlight in the entry is the ex Colin McRae, 1997 Subaru World Rally Car, which will be piloted by young UK driver Niall Moroney. Moroney will start at number 39 in the iconic blue car. The organising team have laid on a friendly, compact route featuring a pair of challenging stages west of Ennis on good quality tarmac which will be repeated 3 times, followed by service after stages 2 and 4. The overall length of the event is 231.70km of which 89.70km are stages. The first car will leave parc ferme at the overflow car park in Shannon Airport across from Westair Aviation on Sundaymorning at 9.40am returning to the final control at the Oakwood Arms Hotel at 4.40pm. The Clare Stages Rally will be round 5 of the Top Part West Coast Rally Championship.

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