Tuesday 16 January 2018

Rallycross: Graham in need of fast fix

Declan Quigley MOTORSPORT

Reigning Irish Rallycross champion and event favourite Tommy Graham is in a race against time to get his Ford Fiesta 4WD repaired ahead of this weekend's eagerly awaited Top Gear Festival Sprint at Citywest.

Graham damaged the centre differential on his Fiesta on his way to last Sunday's third round of the Irish Rallycross series and is struggling to get the necessary parts in time to take his place on the start line for the inaugural event, which begins today.

Mondello Park organisers have created the track and are running the event in conjunction with the Trials Drivers Club. The team format has helped attract an entry list that reads like a who's who of Irish motorsport.

In the absence of a road racing festival in the city centre this year, the expanded Top Gear Festival brings the cream of competitors from racing, rallying, rallycross and hill climbing together to be split into nine different classes. Each four car/driver team will complete in a relay to establish the fastest squad at the festival.

Fastest individual time of each run will also be logged and the power and traction of Graham's Fiesta had made him favourite for that honour.

In the possible absence of Graham, European Rallycross Division 2 champion Derek Tohill will showcase his talents in his nimble Ford Fiesta 2WD, while Lloyd Spendlove will be to the fore in his impressive Lotus Exige.

New tarmac rally champion Gareth McHale (Ford Focus WRC) and Eugene Donnelly (Toyota Corolla WRC) head the two rally teams. Each team will get seven runs from this evening through to Sunday, with a squad's best six times to count.

Irish Independent

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