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irish tarmac rally championship

Stellantis Motorsport Rally Cup ready for Donegal duel

The Stellantis Motorsport Rally Cup IRE & UK resumes its battle for a €75,000 prize fund next weekend, as the Wilton Recycling Donegal International Rally plays host to the fourth round of the epic new series [21-23 June].

Promoted by Race & Rally, the new-for-2024 championship for both Peugeot 208 and Opel Corsa Rally4 machinery allows drivers to compete across eight, top-class events in Ireland and the UK.

An on-event cash pot of €6,000 is available to the first five crews’ home at each event, with the winner collecting €3,000, sliding down to €500 for fourth place. The fifth-placed driver receives one Michelin Motorsport tyre from distributors Protyre Motorsport Ireland. Plus, the Junior champion at the end of the season will receive registration to the 2025 FIA Junior European Rally Championship, entry fees to six rounds of the Junior ERC and twelve tyres per round contested in the series, worth almost €40,000.

With three rounds complete, it’s Welshman Ioan Lloyd who sits at the top of the standings and heads to Donegal in the pound seat. He and co-driver Sion Williams are the only pairing to have taken two maximum scores this season thanks to wins at West Cork and Rally of the Lakes, but the Peugeot 208 crew ended their Severn Valley Stages off the road, meaning the battle for the top spot is still wide open.

Eleven other contenders are bidding to hunt them down, and it's Keelan Grogan who sits just nine points shy in second. Co-driven by Ayrton Sherlock, Grogan has improved his score on every round contested with runner-up spot in the Lakes a highlight; a win surely is just around the corner for the Irishman.

Recovering from a shaky start to the season, Kyle McBride is on fine form of late, taking the non-championship Jim Clark Rally Junior BRC win in emphatic style last month. His asphalt pace is proven and with Darragh Mullen alongside and will be a strong bet to be in the race for a win this time out.

But everywhere you look in the Stellantis Cup, there are rapid young chargers who are more than capable of being in the mix. Casey Jay Coleman/Lorcan Moore have found themselves fighting for podium positions on many occasions, and consistency pays in championship fights, and those contenders who can regularly rack up points could well be in line for the top prize at the end of the season.

The Scottish crew of Robert Proudlock and Steven Brown scooped an impressive Severn Valley win as they revelled on the gravel, but two other non-finishes put them down the leaderboard. Joseph Kelly and Killan McArdle are on an upward trajectory with their points accumulation, so will be hoping for more in Donegal, whilst Matthew Boyle and Gary Byrne enjoyed a strong if not late start to their campaign in the Lakes.

Youngster Kalum Graffin and co-driver Richard Crozier continue to learn their Peugeot and as the season progresses, could well start troubling those higher up the order. John O’Rourke and William Nolan uphold Opel Motorsport honours in their Corsa Rally4 and will be eager to banish their Rally of the Lakes impact from their minds.

Three days of classic Donegal lanes await with a gruelling schedule which begins with six stages on Friday. Super Saturday sees over 106 kilometres on offer although Sunday’s final leg is no walk in the park, with six tests and ninety-one kilometres in store, bringing the total to over 275 competitive kilometres and twenty stages during the weekend. A true test of the Stellantis Motorsport Rally Cup IRE & UK contender's resilience and skill.

External Credits:
Stellantis Motorsport Rally Cup IRE & UK


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