Tourish is tops in Galway as new rallying season gets underway in style

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Donegal crew Damien Tourish and Domhnall McAlaney won the National event at yesterday’s Galway International Rally.

Tourish and McAleney led the way in their Escort, with one minute and 5.8 seconds to spare on Armagh duo Damian Toner and Mick Coady, in a MK2.

Picture: Damien Tourish and Domhnall McAlaney in action in Galway. Picture by Kevin Glendenning.

It’s a fine start to the campaign for Cloghan’s Tourish, who has always been one of the leading national competitors.

In the main field, the honours went to Craig Breen, who led the way in an R5 Fiesta.

Breen competed in the 2018 World Rally Championship for Citroën, but lost out after they reduced their numbers from three to two for 2019.

Breen won from Alastair Fisher, with 14.4 seconds between them.

Garry Jennings and Rory Kennedy were neck-and-neck with Breen, but their Impreza slipped off on the sixth stage. Thereafter, it was a case of just getting across the line for Breen – and he did just that.

Josh Moffett – the current Tarmac Champion – was third.

The leading Donegal crew were Declan and Brian Boyle in the R5 Fiesta, who finished seventh.

Three-in-a-row Donegal International winners Manus Kelly and Donall Barrett were in an R5 Hyundai i20 for the first time and came in 12th. Kelly and Barrett are doing the Championship this year, having secured deals with Philip Case Motorsport and a sponsors Applegreen.

Columba Heena and Stephen Joyce came eighth in the national rally in their Corolla, winning class 13 in the process, while Brian Brogan and Damien McGettigan were ninth in a MK2.

Click here for all results from the Galway International Rally

Sports writer from St Johnston, now based in Letterkenny, with ten years' experience covering sport in Donegal. Was a nominee for NUJ Sports Journalist of the Year in 2010. Honoured by the Donegal Boxing Board in 2016 for his coverage on the sport.

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