For the third year, and after a hard 8 special stages, the winners, Declan Boyle and Brian Boyle came first to the finisher’s ramp at the Bayview Hotel, Killybegs on Saturday.
This was the third year for the Lettermacaward, Co.Donegal crew, to win the event, in their Fiesta WRC with a winning margin of 1 minute and 39.4 seconds, over second placed driver Manus Kelly and his co-driver, Gareth Doherty, in his Subaru Impreza.
This event was the final round of the 2016 Sligo Pallets Border Championship with many valuable points to decide classes for the season.
Early in the day, Ex-Harvest winner Garry Jennings and Rory Kennedy also in a Subaru WRC pushed hard and were the Boyle’s closest rivals, but the car expired after stage 6.
The Boyles kept it steady, while other drivers, such as ex-Harvest winner Niall Maguire and co-driver Enda Sherry, started cautiously but kept a steady pace to finish third overall.
Top 2 wheel drive crew and 4th overall was Gary Kiernan and Ryan Moore in an Escort followed close behind by the Letterkenny’s Damien Gallagher and Mac Walsh in another Escort.
Muff driver, Joe McGonigle and Ciaran Geaney, in the new Skoda R5, from Muff were making a steady, but hard-charging 6th place.
The top 10 finishers in the National Rally were as follows:
|1||1||Declan Boyle/Brian Boyle||Ford Fiesta WRC||7||52:48.4|
|2||3||Manus Kelly/Gareth Doherty||Subaru Impreza||7||54:27.8|
|3||4||Niall Maguire/Enda Sherry||Subaru Impreza||7||56:05.7|
|4||8||Gary Kiernan/Ryan Moore||Ford Escort||14||1||56:15.2|
|5||14||Damien Gallagher/Mac Walsh||Ford Escort||14||2||56:33.9|
|6||5||Joseph McGonigle/Ciaran Geaney||Skoda R5||5||1||57:10.6|
|7||19||Ryan Loughran/Brendan McElhinney||Ford Escort||13||1||57:15.2|
|8||12||Damien Toner/Denver Rafferty||Ford Escort||14||3||57:16.1|
|9||24||Columba Heena/Michael McClafferty||Toyota Corolla||13||2||57:28.9|
|10||17||Aidan Wray/Kieran McGrath||Mitsubishi Evo||4||1||57:41.3|
Also competing on the event, were Historic and Junior classes.
The Historic Rally was won by Stephen McFerran and James McKeefry, in a MKII Escort, while the junior classes were hotly contended all day, with eventual winners Gary McNamee and Bernard Foley.
|Donegal Harvest Historic Rally, 2016|
|1||87||Stephen McFerran/James McKeefry||Ford Escort||18||1||42:49.8|
|2||81||Seamus Heron/Gerry McVeigh||Ford Escort||19||1||42:53.3|
|3||112||Iarla Carty/Joe White||Austin Mini||17||1||47:59.9|
|Donegal Harvest Junior Rally, 2016|
|1||J2||Gary McNamee/Bernard Foley||Honda Civic||16||1||39:28.3|
|2||J3||Mark Murphy/Michael Hamilton||Honda Civic||16||2||40:19.5|
|3||J5||Brendan Dunleavey/Shane Dunleavy||Honda Civic||16||3||41:30.1|
|4||J4||Neil Martin Brogan/Ryan Moore||Honda Civic||16||4||41:39.5|
|5||J6||Nicholas Alcorn/Christopher Moffitt||Honda Civic||16||5||41:50.3|
|6||J8||Aaron Hammelmann/Ian Gallagher||Honda Civic||16||6||42:00.3|