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Irish tarmac rally championship

A-List Driver Line-Up Expected for Revamped Ulster Rally

Organisers of next month’s Modern Tyres Ulster Rally are anticipating an A-list driver line-up, for what will be the penultimate points scoring round of the Irish Tarmac Rally Championship.

After five rounds of the cross-border series, 2016 Tarmac champion Keith Cronin is currently leading the way on 73 points courtesy of victories in Galway and West Cork with Mikie Galvin in the co-driver’s seat.

However, success for Welshman Matt Edwards on Easter’s Circuit of Ireland, and consecutive wins for County Londonderry’s Callum Devine, have propelled them into the title mix as well.

Their attendance ensures Skoda and Ford will be represented on Saturday, 17th August, with those manufacturers trading times with Citroen, Volkswagen, and Hyundai-badged machines.

Entries for the event, which is promoted and organised by Northern Ireland Motor Club Ltd, are open and already over forty crews – from different classes – have registered their interest.

Returning Clerk of the Course Wayne Turkington said: “I am pleased to see entries are coming in thick and fast for the Modern Tyres Ulster Rally. Already, there are some big names and I expect them to be joined by many, many more as the closing deadline for entries approaches.

“Many of the leading Rally2 drivers in the Irish Tarmac Rally Championship will cross the start ramp in Newry next month where they will be joined by top modified and Rally4 competitors.”

Wayne Turkington has confirmed the Ulster Rally is being run over a single day in 2024 and not two in an effort to cap costs for organisers and teams. However, with eight closed-road stages totalling eighty-three competitive miles lying in store, he insists the challenge remains.

The action begins with a loop of two stages – ‘Shinn Bridge’ and ‘Banbridge North’ before cars return to Newry for service at Modern Tyres’ Carnbane Industrial Estate headquarters.

‘Tyrone Ditches’ and ‘Babylon Hill’ make up the second loop followed by service and then a second pass over ‘Shinn Bridge’ before crews regroup at 2pm at Banbridge Civic Building on the Downshire Road in advance of ‘Banbridge North’. Service is then followed by the last two speed tests of the rally – the repeat of ‘Tyrone Ditches’ and ‘Babylon Hill’ respectively.

“Although these are all familiar stage names, we have significantly changed two of the stages and reversed and changed the other two making them all a new challenge,” says Wayne. “As always, the stages are what make a rally. and any changes must be made in order to enhance the experience for the competitors and also the spectators. With that in mind, I believe that next month’s event will offer the best stages to be run locally this year.”

Supplementary regulations, along with a rally guide for fans planning on making the trip to Newry, are now available to view on the official Ulster Rally website (

External Credits:

Ulster Rally


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