Jim Walsh Cork Forestry Rally - 18 Aug 13

Posted: February 7, 2014 2:12 PM - 13471 Hits

Round 5 - 2013 Irish Forest Rally Championship

O'Brien/Shinnors claim victory in Cork and extend Valvoline Championship lead

Posted: February 7, 2014 2:12 PM

Mick O' Brien (Focus WRC) dominated last Sunday's Cork Forest Rally to win by 55 seconds ahead of Owen Murphy (Evo9) who in turn had a margin of 6.8 seconds over third placed Josh Moffet (Evo9). Fourth overall was claimed by John Reid (Corolla WRC)and the Dubliner was followed home by a trio of warring 2WDs lead by Frank Kelly (Escort) Martin Mc Cormack (Escort) and Shane Mc Girr(Starlet RWD. Peter Mc Cullagh (Evo9) and Sam Moffet (Evo9) were next up ahead of James Coleman giving the Fiesta WRC its debut in the Irish forests. Another newcomer to impress was Bob Duggan (Civic) who won the Junior category in his first rally in the woods.

The DJD Jim Walsh Cork Forest rally was counting round five of the Valvoline Motorsport Ireland Forest Rally Championship. It was based in Ballyhea and its four fast and smooth stages (repeated) were run in the nearby Ballyhoura mountains.

On the first stage O' Brien was fastest out of the blocks and he stamped his authority on the event to win the test by a whopping twenty seconds. After stage two the gap was 27 and with half the rally completed O' Brien had a 47 second advantage. In the afternoon stages, The London based Corkman took a cautious approach as he extended his lead to 55seconds. On previous rounds O' Brien had issues with the launch control of his Focus but in Cork the car ran faultlessly allowing the driver full confidence in the handling.

Owen Murphy's second place was a testament to patience and resilience as his car suffered a myriad of maladies in the brakes, shocks and turbo boost. Nevertheless, the pre-event favourite and last year's rally winner stuck to his task despite ferocious pressure from Josh Moffet and John Reid. As the Corkman had the nominated this event for bonus points, his day in the Ballyhouras netted him a valuable 38 points and keeps in the hunt for landing his second forest title.

Once again Josh Moffet drove brilliantly, the Monaghan driver secured his second podium position of the year. He was fastest on two stages which lifted him to second place for a while. John Reid was also in second place for a time and then third as Murphy passed but a cautious time on the penultimate test put paid to a podium position as Moffet turned the screw late on. Niall Henry was having his best ever race in the south until he crashed out on stage 4.

For many spectators and there were many, the dogfight for 2WD honours was the highlight of this marvellous rally. Despite a power deficit, Martin Mc Cormack led Frank Kelly for most of the event. But there was precious little in it, always less than five seconds. After six stages Mc Cormack was leading by one tenth of a second. On stage seven Kelly dug deeper to record fastest time (of the rally) and lead the 2WD race by a second, extending it to three at the finish. Shane McGirr was third thirty five seconds in arrears, the FIvemiletown man keeping one eye on the championship leaderboard.

The junior category (class9) was dominated by Bob Duggan. The Kerryman was partaking in his first loose rally to check out suspension components for his tarmac exploits. In the event he led from start to finish with a winning margin almost three minutes. Conor Mc Carthy (Civic) was runner up about a minute ahead of John O' Flaherty (Escort) with Jonathan Orr (Civic) fourth. Daniel Cronin retired from second place on the second stage with half shaft failure. Dean Raftery non started, the Galway man has already lifted the junior title.

The Valvoline now heads to the sixth and final round on the Omagh Club's Bushwhacker Rally on Saturday Sept 28th.This mail biting series is still an exciting three horse race with O 'Brien leading on 115 points. Owen Murphy second with 97 and Philip Morrow is on 80. Morrow non-started in Cork but he has nominated the Bushwhacker for bonus points. Should he win in Omagh a maximum a 42 points awaits the Lisburn driver. And the Valvoline championship title.

Video Clips

Posted: February 6, 2014 4:15 PM



In Car

Posted: February 6, 2014 3:54 PM

Rob Duggan & Diarmuid Keane (Honda Civic) SS1


Marty Mc Cormack & David Moynihan (Ford Escort BDA) SS7


Shane McGirr & Jackie Elliot (Toyota Starlet RWD) SS3


Frank Kelly & Stephen Quinn (Ford Escort MkII)

Cork Forest Rally 2013 Final Report

Posted: February 6, 2014 3:47 PM

As day dawned over the Ballyhoura Mountains a vale of mist shrouded the sleepy nearby town of Buttevant. The sun was breaking through as the 54 starting crews began to assemble at Greenhall Motors and already the atmosphere was electric. An outside observer would have been forgiven for thinking that this was not a competition with the laughter and banter that could be heard over the burble of the idling engines in Parc Ferme, but with the metallic thump of 1st gears being selected, the war faces finally went on. The wait was over, this was it, The DJD Transport, Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally had begun.

Special stage 1, Ballinaboula and already the drama was beginning to unfold. 2009 winner Mick O’Brien signals his intent from the go, storming into the lead, 19.4 seconds quicker than his nearest rivals John Reid/Enda Shiels in the Corolla WRC. John a previous winner of the event back in 2010, held a 5.9 second cushion over 2012 winnesr Owen Murphy/James O’Brien who were complaining of severe brake problems which were causing some heart stopping moments in the EVO 9. Behind Murphy a further trio of EVO 9’s being driven Niall Henry, Josh Moffett and Pat O’Connell were all with a second of each other at the end of the 12.5km test. The long awaited 2wd battle was proving to be everything it was anticipated as being. Martin McCormack/David Moynihan made an almost perfect debut in Cork by setting the fastest 2wd time in the historic specification Escort but could be further ahead due to having to stop to fasten the bonnet pins mid stage. But the chasing pack was not far behind. Shane McGirr/Jackie Elliot and Adrian Hetherington/Garry Nolan tied for 2nd just 0.9 seconds back on Marty with Frank Kelly/Stephen Quin a further 0.9 seconds back in 4th. In the Junior category, Killarney’s Rob Duggan/Diarmuid Keane storm into a sensational lead on what is Rob’s first ever stage of his first ever forest rally to lead his nearest rivals of Conor McCarthy/Jonathan O’Mahony and Daniel Cronin/Coleman Hurley by over 20 seconds!

On to Special Stage 2, the awesome, New Fields. Again O’Brien lays down the marker beating the bogie time over the 12km test taking a further 7.8 second out of John Reid who again was second fastest. Owen Murphy holds third but was praying for service as the already serious brake problem were deteriorating further with every km. Murphy’s hunters now consisted of Niall Henry, Josh Moffett and Martin Cairns who after a slow start, now had the bit between his teeth. 2011 winner Pat O’Connell had a disastrous second stage, breaking a throttle cable and dropping back from an early 6th to last position in the rally. The already hot topic of the 2wd category now had even further fuel added to it as Martin McCormack sets another fastest time and Frank Kelly overhauls the McGirr-Hetherington dog fight to move into second position. Frank reports a power steering issue at the end of the stage that had been hampering him all morning. Rob Duggan produces another sensational time to move a further 15 seconds ahead in the lead of the junior category. Conor McCarthy held station in second position but Daniel Cronin retired at the end of the stage with mechanical trouble which promoted John O’Flaherty/Brian Slattery to third in the category

Following a well-earned break in service and time to remedy any mechanical gremlins, the crews headed out for Special Stage 3, a repeat of Ballinaboula. Mick O’Brien continued on from his morning lecture to stretch his lead to 41.1 seconds with another fastest time. John Reid is demoted back to third by Owen Murphy who regained his confidence in the Mitsubishi EVO following repairs to the brakes at the first service. Josh Moffett overhauls Niall Henry to take fourth and had the top runners still firmly in his cross hairs at the end of SS3. Martin Carins drops down the order to 17th by the end of the stage as with brake problems. The 2wd battle intensified further on SS3. Frank Kelly sets his first fastest 2wd time and second fastest overall time as “baby blue” is now back on full song and they begin to hunt down McCormack who posts the 2nd fastest 2wd time. Shane McGirr was having the time of his life on SS3 posting third fastest 2wd time but his great battle with Adrian Hetherington comes to an early conclusion when Adrian has an issue on SS3 and loses over 35 seconds to McGirr. Rob Duggan continues to show Conor McCarthy a clean pair of heels with John O’Flaherty delighted to be holding third in the Junior category.

A deep breath, a short road section and they were back at it on SS4, New Fields. Again, Mick O’Brien has another blistering run and beats the bogie for a second time over this classic test. John Reid has another fabulous run and re-takes 2nd position. Owen Murphy suffers turbo trouble and drops back to fourth behind young Josh Moffett/Jason McKenna who are the real movers on this stage. Josh drops the hammer on New Fields and also beats the bogie time, moving into third position, only 0.5 seconds behind John Reid and signalling his intensions for the remainder of the event. The rally loses Niall Henry and Suzan Wright on this stage when they roll their EVO 9 out of the event. Thankfully both crew members are ok. The already unbelievable 2wd battle now goes ballistic on SS4. Marty McCormack decides he is having none of Kelly’s attempts and goes all out on the mountain assault, beating the bogie time in the process. Frank Kelly is on a mission and with CMC’s very own Stephen Quin pushing him to the limit, they also, unbelievably, beat the bogie time on this stage. Shane McGirr refuses to be left behind by McCormack and Kelly and posts a time only 3 seconds slower than the bogie time. The 2wd battle has now become so frantic that all three are beginning to carve their way up the overall rally leader board, leaving a lot of the more modern 4wd machinery eating their dust! Rob Duggan continues to make the event his own, with Conor McCarthy and John O’Flaherty unchanged in second and third junior positions.

Back to service in Ballyhea, the event had reached its midway point and the atmosphere was electric. The stunning pace of O’Brien, Reid’s resilience, Murphy’s fight back, Moffett’s afternoon assault, Kelly and McCormack’s double bogie, McGirr’s magic drive and the Duggan domination are the hot topics of conversation. The service crews set to work making sure the cars are all set for their after dinner activities and the drivers take time to assess the mornings events.

Special Stage 5, Steamhill. At just over 7km, it is the shortest version this now most famous gravel stage and is also the shortest in the event, but not short on drama. 2012 winner Owen Murphy is finally on the pace and posts a fastest time over Streamhill and regains 2nd place. Mick O’Brien is second quickest but still holds a very comfortable lead in the rally at almost 49 seconds. Reid and Moffett are locked in an absolute dogfight for third position over SS5 with Josh taking a further 0.2 seconds out of Reid to reduce the margin to just 0.3 seconds. Reid is still third overall at the end of the stage but Moffett is making him work hard for it. The thrilling 2wd encounter continues with Frank Kelly going fastest for a second time and now applying real pressure on 2wd leader Marty McCormack. Just 0.8 seconds separate the two Escort drivers. Shane McGirr was not far behind and holding station in third position, ready to pounce should either Kelly or McCormack slip up. The Duggan demolition continues in the Junior rally with no change at the front or for McCarthy and O’Flaherty in second and third.

The shortest stage of the rally led onto the shortest road section of the rally with crews having barely time to catch their breath before the action recommenced on Special Stage 6, the famous Coolfree Mountain. Mick O’Brien responds to Murphy’s challenge in style by beating the bogie on yet another stage. John Reid decides to shake off Moffett and bangs in a fabulous 2nd fastest time on Coolfree proving the aging Corolla WRC is still well up to the challenge and creating a 5.3 second gap back to the young Monaghan man. Owen Murphy is third fastest and holding on tight to his second place overall while Josh is fourth fastest and fourth in the overall standings. Big drama unfolds at the end of SS6 in the 2wd category. Frank Kelly is again fastest, reducing the gap to McCormack to just 0.2 seconds but Frank has been off the road at the very summit of the mighty mountain. Frank reports a massive 4th gear moment where the car left the road and went through not one but two hedges before eventually returning back onto the road. Thankfully luck was on Frank’s side and “Baby Blue” emerged unscathed from the 80mph off road excursion. Marty McCormack commented that he was “on the door handles” in the BDA Escort trying to hold off the Kelly challenge and having one of his best days rallying in years. Shane McGirr was still third, driving a super rally, keeping his eye firmly on the Championship points table yet still within a few seconds of the front battle and thrilling the crowds in the little starlet. The junior rally saw no changes over SS6 with Rob Duggan continuing his master plan.

Crowds gathered around the cars at the final service, everyone anxious for a glimpse under the bonnet of these fabulous machines that had entertained all day. On The Limits Sports scurried between service tents to catch up on the many frantic battles that were playing out and everyone was eager with anticipation of what would unfold on the final two tests. We were about to find out.

Enter Special Stage 7, a repeat of Streamhill. Frank Kelly throws the kitchen sink at Streamhill to set the overall fastest time on the stage but Marty McCormack’s kitchen sink is also thrown at the hill as Marty sets second fastest time on the stage, just 0.7 seconds slower than Kelly. The 4wd runners are stunned by what has unfolded. The two Escort drivers have blown the WRC and GPN front runners away with an astonishing display of speed and commitment. Owen Murphy is next fastest but makes little impression on O’Brien’s now very comfortable 53.4 second lead. Moffett plays a blinder on Streamhill and moves in front of John Reid into third position overall, but less than three seconds separate the pair heading into the final stage. Frank Kelly snatches the lead of the 2wd battle from Marty McCormack with his blistering drive but McCormack is just 0.6 seconds behind and the BDA is snarling at Frank’s bumper. McGirr is comfortable in third with another impressive display on the hill and Rob Duggan is in cruise control at the front of the Juniors.

Across the road for the final test, SS8, a repeat of Coolfree Mountain. A nervous anticipation descends on the start line as light rain begins to fall as the front runners assemble. Josh Moffett lays down the bench mark taking fastest time on the final test and sealing third overall after a very impressive drive all day. Next fastest is Mick O’Brien and with it taking outright victory on The 2013 Denis J Downey, Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally. John Reid is third fastest but must settle for fourth overall after being embroiled in one of the battles of the rally all day. Owen Murphy consolidates his second overall position by setting fourth fastest time on Coolfree to bring the curtain down on a very difficult day for the Murphy team. And what of the 2wd war??? Frank Kelly emerges from “the jungle” to take victory in the 2wd category, lift the MK2 Master trophy for the very first time, taking fifth overall and the class 5 victory in the process. What a day for the Kelly Motorsport team. Marty McCormack arrives at the finish of Coolfree knowing he has conceded to Kelly but smiling from ear to ear after his day in Cork. Shane McGirr slides the Starlet through the flying finish of Coolfree, taking third 2wd and sealing a class 5 victory in the Valvoline Forest Rally Championship for 2013. Both Shane and navigator, Jackie Elliot are thrilled with their result and their day out in North Cork. A very happy Rob Duggan lifted the Junior crown with a start to finish victory, fastest time on every stage and 1st FWD car home. We met up with Rob at the finish ramp and asked him his thoughts his first ever Forest Rally, “Some craic” he commented “I’ll be back”. Conor McCarthy finished off a fine drive to take 2nd in the juniors while a delighted John O’ Flaherty took third in the category.

The class battles had their own stories to tell also throughout the day.

Class1: Early class leader Colm O’Mahony suffered gearbox failure on stage 3 to hand the class lead to Padraig Deasy/ Edel McCarthy who held onto the finish to take a class win from Pierce Doheny Snr/Tommy Hayes in their Peugeot 106. Third in class 1 was taken by a delighted Stewart Dowser/John Rafter.

Class 2: Mike Garahy/Sean Henehan took the lead from Mick Nevin/David Forde on stage 2 and never let it go from there on. Mick and David finished a fine 2nd in class with CMC crew Tim and DJ Howard thrilled to take third.

Class 3: One of the biggest battles of the event took place in the rapid class 3. Ian Millar/Ronan O’Neill took the early lead from local ace Paul Fitzgerald with Pierce Doheny Jnr on the notes. The two crews went head to head for the day setting a blistering pace which saw Millar and Fitzgerald separated by just 0.8 of a second heading into the last stage. Millar had thrilled the crowds all day and was thoroughly enjoying his first visit to Cork in his glorious BDA powered Escort. Fitzgerald drove the wheels off his screaming 1600 Vauxhall powered MK2 on the final test to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat on by just 2.8 seconds and uphold local honour. James O’Rourke from Limerick took a comfortable third after Jimmy Deane retired with gearbox failure and Alan Tracey slid wide into a drain, losing a lot of time and the third place spot in the process.

Class4: Again a thrilling battle in this highly competitive class. Local crew Mick “The Warrior” Sullivan/ Carol O’Keeffe took a start to finish victory in the class but first looks can be very deceiving as a major battle took place all day between “The Warrior” and class 4 specialist Ray Benskin Jnr with Nicky Hegarty on the notes. The two pinto powered Escorts were locked in combat all day over the Ballyhoura Mountains. Sullivan did not bow to the Benskin pressure and kept his cool to take victory in the class. Ray Benskin with Kerry man Keith McCarthy on the notes finished a fine 3rd in class and both were delighted with their days rallying, rounding out two great results for the Benskins.

Class 5: The now well documented battle of the day saw Frank Kelly/Stephen Quin sealing first place with Martin McCormack/David Moynihan taking second after what is widely considered to be the drive of the event in the beautiful John Moynihan prepared, BDA powered historic MK2 Escort. Shane McGirr/Jackie Elliot had a very impressive day out in Cork, taking third in class 5 and were never too far from the leading pair all day.

Class 6: Saw just two finishers, Stephen McCann/Breen McNamee took a comfortable victory in their Mitsubishi Evo 7 over the second placed local crew of Danny Creedon/Tom Foley in their Subaru.

Class 7: John Reid/Enda Shiel takes class 7 and fourth overall. John had been embroiled in a tremendous battle all afternoon with Josh Moffett for the final place on the podium. A down-pour as John left the start line of SS7 scuppered any chances of holding the third overall position. James Coleman takes 2nd in class and 10th overall after his exciting drive in the Fiesta WRC. James was blown away by the performance of the little car and would have finished as high as 6th overall only for a puncture which dropped him back the order.

Class 8: Another titanic battle unfolded in the highly competitive class 8. The lead at the front changed throughout the day as Josh Moffett dipped in and out of the overall honours but further down a real street fight was developing between the other top crews. Pat O’Connell /Mark Wiley set a great early pace on stage 1 but it was all to come undone on SS2 when the crew lost a massive amount of time and dropped to last on the road wth broken throttle cable. Welch visitors Sara Williams/Dai Roberts were off to a flying start on her first trip to Cork, right behind O’Connell on SS1 and then slotting in behind Josh Moffett on SS2 following O’Connell’s retirement. Just 7 seconds covered the following three drivers of Sam Moffett, Gerard Lucey and Peter McCullagh as the crews entered the first service. The drivers traded times all afternoon in a thrilling battle with Peter McCullagh making the best ground, overhauling both Gerard Lucey and Sara Williams in the process and was now lying in third position behind Sam Moffett who had also leap-frogged Sara Williams. McCullagh continued his great run to overhaul Sam and win the class. Sara Williams retired on SS7 after her great drive which promoted Gerard Lucey who was navigated by his brother James to 3rd in class. Sam Moffett finished 2nd in the highly competitive class after a great battle with McCullagh.

Class9: In the Junior category, Killarney man Rob Duggan with Diarmuid Keane on the notes gave everyone a lesson on how it’s done. With a start to finish victory on only his first ever gravel rally, Rob’s pace can only be described as remarkable. Conor McCarthy/Jonathan O’Mahony took a very comfortable second place which they held all day. Early third placed runners Daniel Cronin/Coleman Hurley retied with mechanical difficulties on SS2 but got going in the afternoon for a 00 run. John O’Flaherty/Brian Slattery inherited 3rd place following Cronin’s retirement and were delighted with their run.

Class 20: Enda McNulty/Paul Sheridan in a Subaru Impreza took a comfortable victory from 2nd placed Mark Murphy/Alistair Wiley in the Mitsubishi Evo 8 with Monaghan’s Michael Carbin/Stephen Thornton rounding out third in the older Evo 6.

Comments on the event:

Greg Shinnors: “The event ticked all the boxes. Superb stages, excellent organisation, brilliant service and scrutiny areas, short road sections and live results. It had everything....”

Owen Murphy: “The ultimate rally....”

John Reid: “Such an enjoyable event, well done everyone involved”

Frank Kelly: “What a battle and what a rally...such good stages, it was impossible not to enjoy yourself out there today”

Martin McCormack: “What a day that was....rallying at it’s best”

Shane McGirr: “Without a doubt, the best forest rally in Ireland”

Rob Duggan: “Some craic....I’ll be back”

The Cork motor club would like to thank everyone who made this event possible. We would like to thank our main Sponsor, Denis j Downey Transport Ltd and all our stage sponsors for the support. We would like to thank Greenhall Motors, The Charleville Agricultural Show Committee, The Corbett Court, Motorsport Ireland, Coillte, all members of the press who covered the event and An Garda Siochana.

We would also like to thank our neighbouring clubs for all the help before and during the event. To the dozens of marshals who lined out in force once more in Cork Forestry we say a sincere thank you and to the competitors we would like to say thank you and look forward to seeing you all back in North Cork in 2014.

Results

Posted: February 6, 2014 3:12 PM

1 Michael O’Brien/Greg Shinnors (Ford Focus WRC) 43m 45s,
2 Owen Murphy/James O’Brien (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9) 44m 40s,
3 Josh Moffett/Jason McKenna (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 Gp N) 44m 47s,
4 John Reid/Enda Shiels (Toyota Corolla WRC) 44m 51s,
5 Frank Kelly/Stephen Quin (Ford Escort MkII) 44m 58s,
6 Marty McCormack/David Moynihan (Ford Escort MkII) 45m 01s,
7 Shane McGirr/Jackie Elliott (Toyota Starlet Starlet) 45m 35s,
8 Peter McCullagh/Tommy Cuddihy (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 Gp N) 45m 35s,
9 Sam Moffett/James O’Reilly (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 Gp N) 45m 40s,
10 James Coleman/Liam Brennan (Ford Fiesta WRC) 45m 42s. 

Leaders After:
SS1-8 Michael O’Brien/Greg Shinnors (Ford Focus WRC)

Stage Winners
SS1 Michael O’Brien/Greg Shinnors (Ford Focus WRC)
SS2 Michael O’Brien/Greg Shinnors (Ford Focus WRC)
SS3 Michael O’Brien/Greg Shinnors (Ford Focus WRC)
SS4 Bogey Beaten
SS5 Owen Murphy/James O’Brien (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9) 
SS6 Michael O’Brien/Greg Shinnors (Ford Focus WRC)
SS7 Frank Kelly/Stephen Quin (Ford Escort MkII)
SS8 Josh Moffett/Jason McKenna (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 Gp N)

Ford Fiesta WRC on Irish Gravel

Posted: August 16, 2013 8:48 AM

The Cork Motor Club is thrilled to announce another first for Irish Forest Rallying and possibly one of the biggest announcements of the event, the debut of the Ford Fiesta WRC on Irish Gravel. Carrick on Suir Motor Club’s very own James Coleman has confirmed that he is to enter the event in a Ford Fiesta WRC and was just as excited as we are with the prospect of unleashing the World Rally Car Machine on the mighty Ballyhoura Mountains when we spoke to him earlier today.

James, a forest regular in his more usual but very potent MK2 Escort contacted the Jim Walsh Cork forest Rally team in the last few days to inform of the good news. When we spoke to James he commented
“ We’ve been working on a deal for getting the Fiesta out for Cork for a while now but we needed to make sure all the logistics were in place before making it public. It’s an awesome machine and it will be a steep learning curve but I can’t wait to get going in it on Sunday”.

Coleman has plenty of experience of the Cork Forest stages having been a front runner in the 2wd category for the last number of years and with CMC’s very own Liam Brennan guiding him from the navigator seat, James and Liam will certainly be ones to watch out for next Sunday.

The Ford Fiesta WRC made its Tarmac debut in Ireland on the Cork Motor Clubs very own West Cork Rally back in March of this year with Darragh O’Riordan at the wheel and now makes it’s gravel debut on another Cork Motor Club event, The Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally. Another first for Cork….the temperature is really starting to rise now….roll on Sunday the 18th. Watch this space….

Time and Distance/Final Instructions 1/Service Park Layout

Posted: August 15, 2013 12:06 PM

Available at:

Seeded Entry List

Posted: August 14, 2013 9:19 AM

236 STEWART DOWSER/JOHN RAFTER (FORD KA) [1]
235 Padraig DEASY/EDEL MCCARTHY (NISSAN SUNNY) [1]
234 NIAMH DRIVER/BARRY DRIVER (SUZUKI SWIFT) [1]
233 COLM O'MAHONY/KEN CARMODY (FORD KA) [1]
232 FRANCIS KELLY/CHARLOTTE EGAN (VAUXHAUL NOVA) [1]
231 TIM HOWARD/DJ HOWARD (OPEL CORSA) [1]
230 TONY O'DRISCOLL/ANTHONY O'DRISCOLL (PEUGEOT 106) [1]
229 PIERCE DOHENY SNR/TOMMY HAYES (PEUGEOT 106) [1]
228 JOHN O'CONNOR/JOHN CURRAN (HONDA CIVIC) [3]
227 ADRIAN BEATTIE/JONATHAN CARROLL (HONDA CIVIC) [3]
226 JONATHAN ORR/MARTIN MCBREARTY (PEUGEOT 106) [3]
225 JAMES O'ROURKE/DAVID O'ROURKE (FIAT PUNTO) [3]
224 CONOR MCCARTHY/DYLAN COFFEY (HONDA CIVIC) [9]
223 mIKE SHEEDY/SEAN SHEEDY (TALBOT SUNBEAM) [2]
222 MICK NEVIN/DAVID FORDE (FORD ESCORT MK2) [2]
221 MIKE GARAHY/SEAN HENEHAN (FORD ESCORT MK2) [2]
220 ALAN TRACEY/BRIAN O'KEEFE (TOYOTA COROLLA) [3]
219 DAMIEN MCGAURAN/THOMAS MCGAURAN (TOYOTA COROLLA) [5]
218 RAY BENSKIN/KEITH MCCARTHY (FORD ESCORT MK2) [4]
217 MICK SULLIVAN/CAROL O'KEEFFE (FORD ESCORT MK2) [5]
216 SEAN W BENSKIN/JOE FITZGIBBON (FORD ESCORT MK2) [4]
215 RAY BENSKIN TNR/NICKY HEGARTY (FORD ESCORT MK2) [4]
214 DAVE DUNNE/SARAH WHELAN (FORD ESCORT MK2) [5]
212 OLLIE WILLIAMS/BRIAN QUINLAN (FORD ESCORT MK2) [5]
211 DANIEL CRONIN/COLEMAN HURLEY (HONDA CIVIC) [9]
210 IAN MILLAR/RONAN 0'NEILL (FORD ESCORTMK2) [3]
209 HUGH MCQUAID/ENDA GERETY (FORD ESCORT MK2) [4]
208 JIMMY DEANE/PETER MURPHY (FORD ESCORT MK2) [3]
207 PAUL FITZGERALD/PIERCE DOHENY JNR (FORD ESCORT MK2) [3]
206 PAUL BARRETT/DERMOT COLGAN (FORD ESCORT MK2) [5]
205 ADRIAN HETHERINGTON/GARY NOLAN (FORD ESCORT MK2) [5]
204 MARTIN MCCORMACK/DAVID MOYNIHAN (FORD ESCORT MK2) [5]
203 MICHAEL CONLON/CIARN MCPHILLIPS (FORD ESCORT MK2) [5]
202 FRANK KELLY/STEPHEN QUINN (FORD ESCORT MK2) [5]
201 SHANE MCGIRR/JACKIE ELLIOTT (TOYOTA STARLET) [5]

1 OWEN MURPHY/JAMES O BRIEN (MITSUBISHI LANCER EVO 9) [20]
2 MICHAEL O'BRIEN/GREG SHINNORS (FORD FOCUS WRC) [7]
3 MARTIN CAIRNS/TBA TBA (SUBARU IMPREZA WRC) [7]
4 JOSH MOFFETT/JASON MCKENNA (MITSUBISHI LANCER EVO 9) [8]
5 PAT O'CONNELL/MARK WILEY (MITSUBISHI LANCER EVO 9) [8]
6 DAN O'BRIEN/MARTIN BRADY (FORD FOCUS WRC) [7]
7 SAM MOFFETT/JAMES O REILLY (MITSUBISHI LANCER EVO 9) [8]
8 JOHN REID/ENDA SHIELS (TOYOTA COROLLA WRC) [7]
9 ENDA MCNULTY/PAUL SHERIDAN (SUBARU IMPREZA WRX) [20]
10 JAMES COLEMAN/LIAM BRENNAN (FORD FIESTA WRC) [7]
11 LIAM REGAN/JASON MCKENNA (PEUGEOT 206 EVO) [20]
12 PETER MCCULLAGH/TOMMY CUDDIHY (MITSUBISHI LANCER EVO 9) [8]
14 GERARD LUCEY/JAMES LUCEY (MITSUBISHI LANCER EVO 8) [8]
15 NIALL HENRY/BARRY MCNULTY (MITSUBISHI LANCER EVO 9) [20]
16 SARA WILLIAMS/DAI ROBERTS (SUBARU IMPREZA N12) [6]
17 MARK MURPHY/ALISTAIR WYLLIE (MITSUBISHI LANCER EVO 8) [20]
18 IAN CHADWICK/GAVIN SHEEHAN (SUBARU IMPREZA WRX ) [20]
19 MICHAEL CARBIN/STEPHEN THORNTON (MITSUBISHI LACNER EVO 6) [20]
20 STEPHEN MCANN/BREEN MCNAMEE (MITSUBISHI LANCER EVO 7) [6]
21 HANS MATTIA/SHANE BUCKLEY (MITSUBISHI LACNER EVO 8) [8]
22 DANNY CREEDON/TOM FOLEY (SUBARU IMPREZA WRX) [6]
23 ALAN O'RIORDAN/JIMMY JORDAN (SUBARU IMPREZA WRX) [20]

Marshal Meeting Points

Posted: August 13, 2013 12:56 PM

    SS1&3: Cost Cutter/Great Gas Ballyhea @ 07:30. Stage Commander Kiera Daly.
    SS2&4: Roche’s Londis Doneraile @ 08:00. Stage Commander Johnny Casey.
    SS5&7: Roche’s Londis Donerail @11:45. Stage Commander Jon Waterman.
    SS6&8: O’Sullivan’s Kildorrery @ 12:15. Stage Commander Joseph Shinnors Jnr.

Program Outlets

Posted: August 13, 2013 12:55 PM

    Costcutter Ballyhea
    The Corbett Court Ballyhea
    Roche’s Londis Doneraile
    O’Sullivan’s Kildorrery
    Amber Service Station Charleville
    Doherty’s Centra Buttevant
    Keary’s Filling Station Mallow
    The Roundabout Inn Mallow

Press Release 5

Posted: August 13, 2013 12:54 PM

The Stages are set, the plans are finalised and the countdown is on to the best Forest Rally of 2013, The Denis J Downey Transport Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally. Round 5 of the Motorsport Ireland Valvoline Forest Rally Championship sees the country’s top gravel crews descend upon the North Cork Towns of Buttevant and Ballyhea for what has long been regarded as Ireland’s premier Forest Rally event.

Clerk of the Course, Sean Daly has organised a superb event which kicks off on Saturday August 17th in Buttevant where the crews and cars will be put through mechanical and documentation scrutiny at Greenhall Motors. Once all the checks and balances are complete, the cars will be stored in overnight Parc Ferme wich is also located at Grennhall Motors, Buttevant. On Sunday August 18th the crews will leave Parc Ferme to take on 8 magnificent gravel stages totalling 85km, all located within the famous Ballyhoura Forest complex. Service for the event will be completed after every two stages with the service area located at The Charleville Showgrounds Ballyhea, giving the spectators a chance to get up close with the cars and drivers.

The Cork Motor Club are delighted to announce that a fabulous entry has already been received for the event with more coming every day. The line up across the classes features the cream of gravel specialists.

At the front it really is anyone’s call. Previous winners of the event include Owen Murphy, Pat O’Connell, John Reid and Mick O’Brien all of whom are entered in the event. They are joined by Phillip Morrow who’s form to date in this year’s Valvoline Championship has been sensational. Marin Cairns enters in his stunning Subaru WRC S12 as does recent Donegal International winner Sam Moffett in his Mitsubishi. Sam’s brother Josh is never one to be left behind and lines out in Cork, again in a Mitsubishi along with BTRDA regular Dan O Brien in the rapid Ford Focus WRC. The pace at the front is set to be astonishing as all drivers bid to gain maximum points in the championship and lift the coveted Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally title. Overseas crews include 2013 Swansea Bay Rally winner Sara Williams from Wales. Sara brings her Subaru Impreza to Cork and will certainly be one to watch out for as she aims to make her mark on Irish gravel. Patsy Keenan makes the long trip all the way from the USA to take on the mighty Ballyhouras in his Mitsubishi Evo. In the 2wd category, excitement is really building. All the “Top Guns” of gravel are coming to Cork. Last year’s 2wd winner Shane McGirr returns to defend his title in the powerful Toyota Starlet but the competition is set to be fierce from the chasing pack. Frank Kelly and Adrian Hetherington line out in their awesome 2.5 Escorts along with the hard charging Mickey Conlon in his stunning example. Ian Millar, Martin McCormack and Seamus O’Connell line out in a trio of BDG powered Escorts, all set to scream their way through the Ballyhouras. Tyrone’s Paul Barrett makes a welcome return to the Cork Forests in his ultra-competitive Escort G3 and should prove to be a real contender for the 2wd honours. Local aces include Ballyhea’s very own Paul Fitzgerald and Mallow man Jimmy Dean who are set to restore the old rivalry and go head to head in their respective class 3 Escorts.

The new “Mark 2 Master” awards have generated huge interest among the MK2 fraternity. The rivalry is building every day. Expect to see further top additions to the already impressive line up over the coming days along with the inevitable predictions and odds on the title.

Big Valvoline battle beckons in the Ballyhouras

Posted: August 13, 2013 12:36 PM

The tension is mounting ahead of next Sunday's Jim Walsh Cork Forest rally, round five of the 2013 Valvoline Motorsport Ireland Forest Rally Championship. This series has been exciting and extremely competitive all year, with three different winners in four events and each rally claimed by less than ten seconds.

The Cork forest rally is the penultimate round of the 2013 Valvoline series with the final event hosted by the Omagh club on the Bushwhacker rally on September 28th. The Valvoline has now reached "squeaky-bum" time and there are at least three strong candidates for the title still standing. Bonus points and dropped scores will be crucial in deciding the final outcome of the series.

Top of the leaderboard on 94 points is Mick O' Brien. A resident of London but a native of North Cork, he claimed victory on Moonraker in addition to a second and two third place finishes. Unlike his pursuers O' Brien has already collected his bonus points but he has the powerful Focus WRC at his disposal for the fast Ballyhoura tests. A former winner of this event, he will be able to mount a strong challenge for the rally and the championship. Philip Morrow (EVo9) is second with 80 points. The Lisburn driver is the only driver to win twice this year and he also has two third places to his credit. Morrow is a former winner of the UK MItsubishi challenge and he has nominated the final round in Omagh for his bonus points. If Morrow wins in Cork, it will be his championship to lose.

However Owen Murphy (Evo9) will have his sleeves rolled particularly as it is his home rally. Murphy is a former Billy Coleman Award winner (2006),and was the Forest Rally champion two years ago. He won this rally last year and he has nominated his home event for bonus points this year. His results in the 2013 series include a win, a second and a third. He retired on round two with diff failure. While he may look a distant third on 59 points, when dropped scores are taken into account Murphy will be right at the cutting edge.

Fourth position is claimed by Shane Mc Girr at the wheel of the exciting Starlet RWD. The Tyrone driver has a total of 52 points and while he has an outside chance of championship victory, he is competing against the latest four wheel drive technology. Mc Girr could make the championship podium and he could be the winner of the 2WD segment and class five championship on Sunday night.

The Cork forest rally consists of 8 stages and will be run within the Ballyhoura Mountains on the Cork-Limerick border. Clerk of the Course Sean Daly has designed a compact route that includes a total competitive distance set at 85km.The format includes service after every two stages, rally h/q at the Corbert Court Hotel, Ballyhea (2km south of Charleville on the N20) and service at the nearby Charleville Show Grounds. First car is away at 0900, returning at 1730.

Press Release 4 - Rally Offically Launched.

Posted: August 5, 2013 2:35 PM


Photo: Ger Leahy


The 2013 Denis J Downey Transport, Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally was officially launched on Tuesday July 30th in front of a large gathering of members of the press and motorsport fans from across the country. The evening proved to be a wonderful social occasion with several of the top local forest competitors cars on display as well as the DJD Transport “Rig” dwarfing all and sundry. A great atmosphere greeted everyone present and Sean Daly handed down a very comprehensive preview to the long anticipated event. As indicated on the run up to the launch there were a few surprise announcements made on the night, much to the delight of the eager crowd gathered.

One of the biggest announcements Sean made on the night was the new feature to the event,” The MK2 Master”. This special prize is open to all drivers of the now legendary Ford Escort MK2 which for almost 4 decades has been the most popular competition car out there and still to this day occupies a large majority of the entry lists on events across Ireland, The UK and Europe. The Mk2 Escort has always been a firm favourite with Irish forest rally fans and this year CMC have laid down the challenge, who is the best out there on gravel, who will be crowned “The Master” on Sunday August 18.

Down through the years The Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally has attracted the cream of MK2 Escorts and drivers with some achieving memorable results against much more modern and technically advanced machinery. Speaking to Clerk of the Course, Sean Daly,
“The idea for The MK2 Master is one which I had been considering for some time. The concept is obviously not new given the popularity of the long established MK2 Challenge which is a coveted prize for the tarmac crews. We thought it was time that the gravel lads and ladies had something similar to battle for and given the number of MK2 Escorts already entered along with the quality of these cars, their drivers, navigators and service crews I decided the time was now right. It also adds a new dimension to the event which is sure to please all concerned”.
The MK2 Master awards will be presented to the three highest placed MK2 Ford Escort drivers. 1st prize will consist of a free entry to the 2014 event. 2nd prize will consist of a €300 voucher which may be redeemed against an entry to the 2014 event and 3rd prize will be a €200 voucher which may be redeemed against an entry to the 2014 event. A perpetual cup will also be awarded to the 1st placed MK2 Escort driver who will be crowned “The MK2 Master”.

The launch night also saw news of further entries to the event, all of whom are potential rally winners and make an already impressive line-up now the envy of many a larger event. Former Cork Forest winners Pat O’Connell and John Reid have confirmed entries. The addition of these two very quick drivers is of significant note as with their inclusion, all previous winners of the event since 2009 are now present in the starting line-up, testament to the high regard this event is held in . Entries have also been received from Dan O’Brien and Martin Cairns both of whom commented that August 18th can’t come fast enough when we spoke to them recently. Dan O’Brien showed some great pace at the Willie Loughman Carrick Forest Rally earlier this year and is sure to enjoy the Cork Forest stages in his Ford Focus WRC. Martin Cairns makes his now annual appearance in Cork in his beautiful Subaru Impreza WRC S12. Martin always puts a big push on for Cork and over the years has set some fantastic times on its famous gravel. Martin has accrued an impressive points haul in the championship to date this year with consistent results, Cork Forest Rally could be the one where Cairns makes his move on the front runners.

It would take a very brave and confident person to predict who will be on top at the finish ramp on Sunday August 18th in Ballyhea but one thing is for certain, a big welcome awaits all travelling to North Cork that weekend.

Clerk of the Course Sean Daly was delighted to announce that the 2013 Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally will once again use the state of the art and CMC developed live timing system. This system has proved to be very popular with competitors and spectators alike as times are uploaded onto the web almost instantaneously after a car crosses the flying finish of each stage. Sean also announced a first for a round of the Valvoline Forest Rally Championship as news of the event will now be covered by Sligo man Art McCarrick and his very popular Ditchslapped Twitter blog. Art will be keeping us all abreast of the happenings, interviewing the drivers and delivering the news live as it unfolds out on the stages. Follow the event with your smartphone, tablet or pc on Twitter @Ditchslapblog.

Sample Video of the Stages

Posted: August 4, 2013 8:11 PM

Promotional Video

Posted: August 4, 2013 8:04 PM

Overview Map

Posted: July 26, 2013 9:37 AM


View DJD Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally 2013 Event Map in a larger map

Press Release 3

Posted: July 26, 2013 9:34 AM

With near record breaking temperatures and drought officially declared, one would be forgiven for mistaking the Ballyhoura Mountains for those of the Acropolis in recent weeks. Thankfully, with temperatures returning to a much more pleasant level and with light rain forecast in the coming days, Clerk of the Course, Sean Daly’s plans are falling perfectly into place. With Sunday August 18th now looming large on the horizon Sean and the team are busy dotting the I’s, crossing the T’s and making sure everything is one hundred per cent for what is set to be one of the best forest rallies of 2013.

The Mediterranean style weather has yielded its benefits on the stages, with almost zero rainfall and all surface preparations having been made in exceptionally dry conditions, the route is in truly immaculate condition. “We couldn’t be happier with the last few weeks” commented Sean Daly. “The stages were in superb condition when selected back in February and with the recent dry spell and effort put in by all the CMC team our stages are now very special indeed.”

Interest in the event is excellent and the entries have been steadily rolling in since publication of the event regulations. All the championship regulars are there along with a host of non-championship gravel experts who are making the trip to Cork in August. The line ups in both the 4wd and 2wd categories are a who’s who of top gravel crews. With names like Owen Murphy, Phillip Morrow, Michael O’Brien along with the Moffett brothers Sam and Josh to name just a few already entered, the battle up front is set to be fierce. The 2wd category is one of the strongest seen if the forests in recent years with all the top modified gravel men pitching to take the coveted 2wd Cork honours.

The Valvoline Forest Rally Championship has proven itself to be one of the most competitive series out there this year with three different winners over the four rounds to date. The Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally is now set to be a real game changer as it is now make or break at the front of the Valvoline Forest Championship. Current championship leader Michael O’Brien is no stranger to North Cork having family ties to the village of Churchtown and being a previous winner of the event in 2009, he is sure to be quick from the outset in the Ballyhoura Mountains. Last year’s winner Owen Murphy is still well in contention for this year’s championship title and knows that a maximum score in Cork will put him in a very strong position especially when double points are considered. Owen has vast experience of the Cork Forest stages having been a front runner here for the last 5 years, a former rally and championship winner, his speed is unquestionable. However there always is a dark horse and this year it would take a cool customer to bet against Phillip Morrow. Phillip’s entry into the championship in January has set the stages alight and his battles with O’Brien and Murphy to date this year are already the stuff of legend. Phillip comes to Cork having won the opening round in Limerick and round four in Tipperary just recently and is the only driver in the championship to have two wins to his name so far in 2013. Currently lying second in the points table, Phillip’s razor sharp lines and outright speed could prove to be a perfect combination for the smooth, fast and flowing Cork stages.

The 2wd section is proving to be a real mouth-watering affair with championship regulars Shane McGirr and Michael Conlon set to have some very serious competition in Cork. “The Two Reindeer” Frank Kelly and Adrian Hetherington make a welcome return to the Cork Forest stages in their 2.5 Escorts along with the ever spectacular Martin McCormack in his screaming historic MK2. Add Seamus O’Connell into the mix along with former Ulster National winner Ian Millar and the scene is set for some serious sideways action and titanic battles. Can Kelly and Hetherington get the 2.5’s to put the power down, will Conlon and McGirr’s current run of form shade the day or can McCormack take a historic 2wd victory in Cork, who knows but one thing is for sure, it will be fabulous to watch.

The Cork Motor Club is also delighted to announce that we have secured an entry from recent Swansea Bay Rally winner Sara Williams. Sara a native of Wales was introduced to the Cork Forest Rally team at the Willie Loughman Carrick Forest Rally back in March of this year. Since then Sara and the team have kept in constant contact and having heard nothing but top reports about the Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally, Sara confirmed an entry even before regulations were available. Sara will no doubt add her own style and proven ability to an already impressive line-up in her Subaru Impreza N12b.

The Rally launch takes place at Rally Head Quarters, The Corbett Court Ballyhea on Tuesday July 30th at 8pm and will feature a display of forest rally cars along with one of the DJD Transport fleet as the background. COC Sean Daly will give members of the press and public a sneak preview into the event along with a run down on the stages and entries received to date. The Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally launch night has proved over the years to be one of the best social nights of the CMC calendar with finger food, light refreshments and good old fashioned banter all in abundance. All members and non-club members are welcome to come along and sample the atmosphere which is sure to be electric given the entries already confirmed and a few names and announcements which the club hope to have more news on at the launch night…..watch this space.

Rally Launch - (Tue) 30 Jul 13

Posted: July 24, 2013 5:58 PM

The launch of the Denis J Downey Transport Ltd sponsored 2013 Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally will take place in the Corbett Court, Ballyhea on Tuesday, July 30th at 7.30pm. All Welcome.

Press Release 2

Posted: June 30, 2013 5:55 PM

As the evenings stretch out for summer time and with the weather looking somewhat more seasonable than we have grown accustomed to, The Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally organising team are at maximum attack. Preparations for the event have been ratcheted up a number of notches over the last weeks and this year’s event is shaping up to be a classic. First time COC Sean Daly has put a mammoth effort into the event to date, selecting one of the longest competitive routes of the 2013 Valvoline Forest Rally Championship over what can only be described as truly magnificent stages.

Sean, a North Cork native, has received huge support from the local community in the form of sponsorship from local businesses and the use of private premises, all of which form the backbone of any successful event and Sean is very grateful to everyone in the locality for this support. The North Cork business community is keenly aware of the level of business the rally has brought to the locality over the years and they are also aware of why the competitors return in such numbers to Cork Forest Rally year after year; a friendly welcome, a well-run event and above all, our famous North Cork stages. Maintaining the stages to this high level costs the Cork Motor Club a significant amount of money each year and the local business community has been extremely supportive and forthcoming with sponsorship to help support the effort.

The team are delighted to announce that a new title sponsor has been secured for the 2013 event, Denis J Downey Transport Ltd. Sean Daly, COC commented “ We are thrilled to have DJD Transport on-board with us for this year’s event. Securing sponsorship in the current climate is not an easy task but DJD Transport were very enthusiastic about the prospect when approached. We knew from the response that we could form a strong partnership from the outset.”

Denis J Downey Transport was founded in 1929 and has established itself as one of the leading transport companies in Ireland. With an extremely modern fleet and highly trained staff. The company offers a wide range of transport solutions including Domestic and International Transport, ADR HazChem Freight and Aviation Security Freight along with Warehousing, Storage and Complete Logistic Solutions. Their state of the art base is located on a secure 7 acre site near the village of Donoughmore, Co. Cork. DJD Transport are no strangers to supporting Cork Motor Club events or indeed to Rallying having supported The Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally as a stage sponsor for several years now and numerous CMC events in the past. The DJD Transport decals are instantly recognisable thanks to those famous yellow and white trucks that we have all become accustomed to seeing on our daily travels and rally fans will also equate the DJD brand with the beautifully prepared Ford Escort MK2 which company manager Leonard Downey campaigns to great effect on tarmac rallies. We are confident that the famous yellow and white will look just as impressive on the Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally door cars in August.

COC Sean Daly is also pleased to announce details of our stage sponsors. Without the support of these local businesses the event simply would not run and as always we are indebted to these people and organisations, many of whom have been backing the event for several years now. Our stage sponsors are as follows:

Exact Signs, Kildorrery
Computronics, Mallow
Mallow Motor Factors
Mallow Brakes
Darren O’Sullivan Tyres, Newtwopothouse
Eamonn Tarrant Skoda, Banteer
R&R Tyres, Ballincollig
The Roundabout Inn, Mallow

The Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally has built a reputation over the years for having some of the best gravel stages in the country. Our stages are noted for being fast and flowing but above all, super smooth. This reputation has not been achieved by accident as the Cork Motor Club team, along with help from Coillte, have been maintaining these stages over the years to the highest possible standard. The help and support from Coillte can never go unnoticed, down through the years Coillte and the Cork Motor Club have built up a strong partnership and the common goal is to keep the Cork Forest Stages in tip top condition time and again. This year will prove to be no different as preliminary work has already been completed on most of the route. Clerk of the Course, Sean Daly along with his trusty crew have been busy tending to the forest roads of the Ballyhoura Mountains, repairing areas that required attention following the long winter and wet spring we have recently experienced. Coillte input has also been tremendous, repairing localised sections where recent logging has been completed, reinstating the roads to an even higher level than before and allowing several months for the repairs to settle in advance of the event.
“ It’s this attention to detail that sees the competitors return year after year to our Cork Forest stages” commented event Clerk of the Course, Sean Daly, “ and this year we are using this reputation to attract a broader range of competitors to the event. This year’s Valvoline National Forest Rally Championship has seen a renewed interest in the sport with quiet a number of new crews having converted from tarmac to gravel for this year’s championship. The Valvoline Forest Championship is proving to be a very attractive option to competitors for a number of reasons. With recce not permitted on gravel events, the time required away from work is minimal and the fuel costs associated with the recce are eliminated. Tyre costs are also greatly reduced with less requirements for tyre types and compounds when compared to tarmac events. Our aim is to keep this renewed interest going and capitalise on the current momentum. This year’s event will have all the traditional appeal that draws the more seasoned gravel crews but it will also be an ideal opportunity for the competitor who is considering contending the 2014 Valvoline Forest Rally Championship to sample Forest Rallying at its finest with minimal set-up changes required due to the nature and condition of the stages selected. ”

Sean’s team have not only been busy out on the stages carrying out the preparations, but they have also been busy meeting and talking to competitors from far and wide in attempt to assemble a top array of crews to thrill the spectators on August 18th. This ‘personal touch’ approach is already yielding rewards. A number of overseas crews have already been confirmed along with several top national crews but the jewel in the crown might yet be to come. Interest has been expressed by a top Irish Tarmac Championship crew, who are very keen to come and sample the Ballyhoura stages if the logistics of competing on the event can be worked around their current Tarmac Championship schedule.

But it’s not just the overseas and top crews that Sean’s team have been in touch with. The team has attended all round of the Valvoline Forest Rally Championship to date and have met with the clubman/clubwomen competitors to gauge the requirements and take on board the suggestions offered. Align this with our organising team, who through their own years of competing at club level and organising successful events , know the elements required in order to make an event attractive to club competitors with cost, convenience and quality stages being very high on the list.

With this in mind the team have organised an extremely compact route and schedule while giving the competitors arguably the longest competitive route of the 2013 Valvoline Forest Rally Championship.
“ Our scrutiny and Parc Ferme location could not be more ideal” commented Clerk of the Course Sean Daly. “Mechanical scrutiny, documentation scrutiny and Parc Ferme are all located within the one complex, Greenhall Motors, Buttevant. We are indebted to the O’Shea Family for the use of their premises for this purpose. It should prove extremely convenient for competitors on the Saturday evening to have all pre-event checks under one roof with Parc Ferme less than 50m away. Sundays arrangements are equally as competitor and crew friendly. The service area for this year’s event is located at Charleville Show Grounds, Ballyhea which is located on the N20, approximately 1.0km from the Rally HQ, The Corbett Court Ballyhea and 2.0km from Charleville to the north. The Charleville Show committee have very graciously allowed us the use of their venue and we would like to thank them sincerely for this support. Due to the central location of the service park, teams will have easy access to facilities with filling stations to choose from in both Ballyhea village or Charleville and food being served all day at the Rally HQ, crews will be spoiled for choice”. Also of note is the proximity of the service area to Stages 1 & 3 with service crews having the option of doing a spot of spectating if they wish as the stage is approximately 4km away. With the service area located right on the doorstep of the Ballyhoura Mountains, road sections are quiet compact with approximately 150km of road section over the entire course of the event. The compact format has also allowed the organising team to build very reasonable service times into the schedule. Service will be conducted after every two stages with crews being allowed 40mins per service.

Regulations

Posted: June 30, 2013 5:55 PM

Available at:

Event Flyer

Posted: May 4, 2013 12:53 PM

Press Release 1 Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally

Posted: May 4, 2013 12:45 PM

Press Release 1 Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally
Round 5 of the Valvoline Forest Rally Championship.
Date: Sunday Aug 18th.
Rally HQ: The Corbett Court Ballyhea.
COC: Sean Daly.
Deputy COC; Darren McCarthy
Assistant COCs: Brendan Fahy & Paul Casey.
Total Stage km: 85km
Total Road Milage km; 150km

Plans are at an advanced stage for the Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally which this year is based at The Corbett Court in Ballyhea. Clerk of the course for this year’s event is Sean Daly.

The Jim Walsh Cork Forest Rally has always been known as THE COMPETITOR FRIENDLY RALLY and by getting a lot of feedback from competitors Sean and his team have organised an event that should prove very popular, all the elements are there for very exciting competitor friendly event.

All this year’s stages are in the famous Ballyhoura Forest Complex known for its super smooth, fast flowing stages. Having met competitors from far and wide during this year’s championship to gather feedback on what the competitors want, the team have assembled a fabulous selection of stages.

Initial plans saw the rally pivoting around six traditional Cork forest stages based in the Ballyhoura Mountains totalling 65km of competitive distance with service after 3 stages.

Details of this provisional route was previewed to the competitors at the recent Willie Loughman Carrick Forest Rally and received an extremely positive response from all competitors with some asking if the team could extract even more competitive KMs from the famous Ballyhoura mountains, such is the high regard that seasoned forest competitors hold these stages in.

Over the last week the team have been busy trying to achieve just that. Further territory was inspected during the week and found to be in exceptional condition. The team are delighted to announce that the rally will now total 8 stages with total competitive distance now set at 85km. Some of the territory now included in the rally has not been used in almost 10 years so there should be something new in there for even the most seasoned campaigners.

Due to the inclusion of two additional stages into the event the format has now been revised to include service after every two stages, making the event even more competitor friendly. Total road distance is now 150km due to the inclusion of the additional stages and revised service format.

Clerk of the Course for the event Sean Daly said my team have been busy putting a lot of work into the event. Our aim from the outset this year is to deliver an event based on what the competitors want. The team has attended all rounds of the championship this year and have met with competitors from far and wide to find out how best to tailor our event to the needs of the competitors. The feedback we have been continually hearing is give us more competitive kilometres and service time. This is exactly what we have done.

Strong interest has already been expressed in the event with 5 WRC cars already confirmed along with a host of top GpN and 2wd cars. Feedback from crews registered for the championship is this is the event most crews plan to nominate double points on, due to our reputation for super smooth stages .

Regs and entry forms will be available very shortly. They are currently with MI for approval.

Service: Charleville Showgrounds, Ballyhea.

Mechanical and Paper Scrutiny: Greenhall Motors, Buttevant, Sat Aug 17th

Note ;
Rally HQ: The Corbett Court Ballyhea. The Corbett Court does not provide accommodation but we have a deal struck with our previous HQ The Roundabout Inn, (022 21815) Mallow for competitor accommodation, Just mention the rally when booking to avail of the deal.

Club Website

Posted: May 4, 2013 12:45 PM

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