SS5: McGarrity on the Verge of Victory, Battle for 2WD is ON!

SS5: The gap between rally leader Derek McGarrity and second placed Derek McGeehan has narrowed to less than 10 seconds with one stage remaining.

A change of format for the final two stages sees crews tackle the stage in an anti-clockwise direction with virtually three laps of the venue. This caused a few problems for the leading crews with both McGarrity and McGeehan getting stuck behind other competitors.

“They let a two-wheel-drive car off the start line in front of me as I was coming around for my last lap,” a flabbergasted McGarrity said. “I must have lost about 10 seconds!”

Second placed McGeehan passed two other cars during the stage but still managed to take a little bit of time out of the leaders, leaving the gap at 9.9s with one stage to go. Barring any major dramas, it looks like McGarrity and navigator Damien Garvey are on course to secure the rally spoils.

Gareth Sayers and Gareth Gilchrist managed to create a bit of a cushion between themselves and fourth placed Kevin Kelleher after that fourth test but they’re slightly concerned about a high water temperature warning in their Fiesta.

Sayers was coming under a bit of pressure from the crew but with Kelleher learning the new layout, he dropped a bit of time to leave him 10 seconds adrift of his rival.

Kieron and Amy Graffin are happy in fifth after a clean run while Emma McKinstry and Kenny Hull are comfortable in sixth. PJ McDermott is seventh and eighth placed Jason Mitchell was lucky to escape a big slide and then a two-wheeled moment after clipping a trackside tyre.

Andy Bustard lost a lot of time with coilpack issues and there’s a big battle in the two-wheel-drive category with James and Heather Kennedy now back in front ahead of Drew Stewart, Alastair Cochrane and Jamie Grant.

Further down the order, Stephen Whitford has been forced to stop his smoking Micra at the side of the stage.

Crews are about to start the final stage. Latest results are available from


You must be logged in to post a comment Login