John Lyons pictured beside a Replica of his 1981 Donegal International Rally winning Mk2 Escort
The Donegal Motor Club have announced further details of the 2017 Shandon Spa & Hotel Donegal Harvest Stages rally, based in Marble Hill, Dunfanaghy.
Clerk of the Course for the event is Tony Boyle welcomed everyone to the Shandon Spa & Hotel. He said, “I welcome you all here to Marble Hill, Dunfanaghy on this our launch of The Shandon Spa & Hotel Harvest Stages Rally. We have a really top class event here in the Dunfanaghy area, on Saturday 7th October.”
Tony went on to outline the format of the event. “The event will use three local stages repeated three times, giving nine stages in total. There is a total of 226 Km road miles, of which 116 km are stage miles.
He continued, “Entries have poured in the past week, and we are now on the final preparations for this popular rally here in two weeks’ time. We are seeding the entries at present and from that list we are happy to announce our top 10 entries for this year’s rally.
Top 10 Entries
1 Declan Boyle, Brian Boyle
2 Joe McGonigle, Ciaran Geaney
3 David Bogie, John Rowan
4 Damien Gallagher, Mac Walsh
5 Kevin Eves, Chris Melly
6 Damien Toner, Denver Rafferty
7 Damien Tourish, Domhnall McAlaney
8 Ryan Loughran, Brendan McElhinney
9 Brian Brogan, Damien McGettigan
10 Ed O'Callaghan, Raymond Scott
Tony added: “The Shandon Spa & Hotel Harvest Stages Rally is part of two championships, firstly it is Round 6 of the 2017 Sligo Pallets Border Championship, and secondly, a counting round of the Donegal Motor Club’s own Donegal Commercials Club Championship.
"We have to thank The Shandon Spa & Hotel for its kind title sponsorship, and all the local sponsors who have generously assisted us with the backing that makes this event possible. For each of the nine Special Stages, we have individual sponsors. These are listed in the programme and I, along with my team of officials and the Donegal Motor Club thank those companies who did this.”
Tony continued: “This rally will benefit the local economy, and as a thank you to all our sponsors, I would ask everyone associated with the event, where possible, to support our sponsors. Without their input it would simply not be possible to run this major national sporting event.
"I must not forget others who assist us as well. IN particular, I wish to thank all the residents along the rally route for their co-operation. I hope that they all have a safe and enjoyable day and we will strive to keep the inconvenience to a minimum. I would insist that all competitors, when traversing the stage, respect the residents – particular during your reconnaissance as the roads are open to the public who are going about their daily business. Please drive with care with the speed limit specified. I would also ask you to collect all litter and dispose of it appropriately. It is also highly important that spectators respect the residents and their private property along the stages. Please respect the notices and co-operate with the volunteer marshals on this matter.
"I would also like to acknowledge the co-operation and assistance of both Donegal County Council and the local Garda Síochána in the planning and running of this event. Thank you!
"Donegal Motor Club Ltd could not run this event without the support of the many volunteers, some of whom will travel from neighbouring motor clubs to work on the event in various roles. I would like to extend a very warm ‘Thank You!’ to each and every one of you – the assistance is recognised.
"Safety is as always our key priority during this event, both on the stages and on the roads. In relation to this a comprehensive Safety Plan has been compiled and approved by our governing body, Motorsport Ireland. I would appeal to all spectators to co-operate fully with the officials who are there for everybody’s safety. Equally I would ask competitors to obey all of the safety measures which are their responsibility," said Tony Boyle.