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Jennings ready to spring a surprise in Sligo

WILL Gary Jennings upset the odds when the Dunlop championship resumes in Sligo on Sunday? The Fermanagh driver has sold his Group N Mitsubishi and rented a McKinstry-run Subaru WRC for a one-off run on this event. He could well put the cat among the pigeons with the regular national front runners, given his previous performance in a Subaru WRC.

Top seed Niall Maguire is the most consistent driver in the series, scoring in all six rounds to-date. However, he will have to have a couple of no-score finishes if he is get the unprecedented fourth title he seeks.

On paper, the Monaghan man leads the table with an eight-point advantage over Melvyn Evans with Derek McGarrity a further two points in arrears. But when dropped scores are taken into account Maguire lies third, four points behind Evans and McGarrity, who are tied on 76 points.

All will be in action on Sunday, as will Kevin Barrett, who has an outside chance of getting back into contention for the title should the top trio hit trouble over the demanding nine-stage route.

Mike Quinn will have his work cut out if he is to defend his rally.ie modified crown having accumulated only 14 points from his three outings to-date. The reigning champion has a chance of reducing the deficit as category leader Ed Synan is not competing in Sligo. However, Donegal ace Declan Boyle, who is just five points behind Synan, is very much in with a chance of taking the title. Also among the modified challengers are Victor Hunter, Samuel Kelso, John McQuaid, Eugene Ferry, Joe Connolly and Damien Toner -- all in Escorts -- and Raymond Conlon (Toyota Corolla) and Lloyd Hutchinson (Mini).

Group N leader Sean Flanagan will be eager to add to his 31 points garnered from three outings, but faces Omagh star John Cairns, a regular Sligo runner, Paul Kiely, the championship winning co-driver who has switched to the driving seat, and Eugene Meegan. Shane Maguire, who won the Driver of the Day award on the Circuit of Munster, will be out in his Subaru.

pStephen Wright and Paul McGee clinched the 2010 Fiesta Sport Trophy crown in Donegal with two rounds to spare. The Monaghan crew won the opening three rounds and finished second to Stephen Baxter (with co-driver Martin Brady), who claimed his maiden win in the series.


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