Jennings defies modern technology to take third
Garry Jennings and Kerry McCarter on the podium after finishing third.
Garry Jennings defied modern technology to bring his dated Subaru Impreza home third overall on last Saturday's Lurgan Park Rally.
On an event dominated by World Rally Championship driver Kris Meeke in his Mini WRC Garry spent most of the day locked in a tense battle with Derek McGarrity, and despite the Glengormely driver being behind the wheel of a new Mini Garry was able to finish 2 seconds clear of his rival and snatch the final podium position.
After the event's opening stage in slippery conditions McGarrity led the event outright with Garry almost five seconds adrift in fourth, and that gap had grown to eight seconds after stage three.
Garry reeled the Mini in one the next test however, reducing the gap to one second after an overshoot at a junction by McGarrity.
In treacherous conditions another small mistake by McGarrity let Garry ahead, and it was a lead he was not going to relinquish. Holding a 2.5 second lead going into the final test, Garry, co-driven by partner Kerry McCarter, did enough to secure third.
Further down the field there were several local drivers battling for class awards. In the historic section of the event Raymond Johnston was up against the legendary Jimmy McRae, who was being co-driven by local man Eamon McGarrity.
In one of the most hotly contested classes of the event the pair, along with Drew Wylie, swapped seconds all day.
Raymond led the class at the half way stage, but with all three only separated by three seconds the outcome was far from clear cut.
On the penultimate stage McRae showed all his experience to leapfrog from third to first, a position he held until the end, ahead of Wylie with Raymond and Marc Johnston finishing third,
Jonny Leonard put in a dominant performance in class one to cruise to class success in his fiesta, and Shane McGirr, partnered by Jackie Elliott, finished second in their class after another spectator friendly performance in his Starlet. Brian Durnien brought his Escort home sixth in class.
This article appeared in Impartial Reporter 02 Aug 12