Donegal’s Declan Boyle completed a great sporting weekend for the county with a dramatic late win in the Mór Oil Galway Summer Rally in Loughrea on Sunday.
Boyle, who was driving his Subaru WRC for the first time in competition, had trailed Donegal compatriot Donagh Kenny by 20 seconds going into the day’s final stage. However, Kenny slid off on stage nine, allowing Boyle to claim first place, finishing in 1:06:23.
Galway’s JJ Fleming and Robbie Ward produced a great drive after early handling problems to finish in second place in their Ford Focus WRC in 1:08:30. The duo also won the Conroy Cup as Best Galway Motor Club Crew, a cup they last won ten years ago.
Yet another Donegal driver, Declan Gallagher, took third place in his Toyota Starlet.
Boyle, along with brother Brian, had previously stated that their “only intention” was to get used to their new car in advance of next year’s National Rally Championship, and that they had never dreamed that they would emerge victorious.
Robert Duggan and Noel O’Sullivan won the junior rally. The pair’s Honda Civic finished on 48:56, just 13 seconds ahead of local Galway crew Damien and Joseph Boyle in another Honda Civic.
Galway Motor Club PRO Ultan Burke thanked the Gardaí, Galway County Council and all residents along the route for their assistance in the smooth running of the event.
TG4 will screen highlights of the Mór Oil Galway Summer Rally 2012 at 5.10pm next Sunday 2 September.