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The top three contenders for the 2021 McGrady Insurance Motorsport UK Northern Ireland Rally Championship crown are back in action this Saturday for round two of the hotly contested series.

Based within the confines of the expansive Shackleton Complex in Ballykelly, near Limavady, the Eakin Bros Brian James Trailers Dogleap Rally will see Championship leader Jonny Greer (Citroen C3) continue battle with Derek McGarrity (Fiesta WRC) and reigning champion Stephen Wright (Fiesta R5) at the Maiden City Motor Club organised event.

Greer and navigator Kirsty Riddick claimed victory at the opening round of the series in June where they finished comfortably ahead of McGarrity and Paddy Robinson, with Wright and Liam Moynihan third. However, McGarrity was piloting an ageing Ford Focus WRC on that occasion and he plans to up the ante with a newer Fiesta WRC at Shackleton.

The top three Championship contenders will face stiff opposition from a strong field of four-wheel-drive crews including Aaron McLaughlin and Darren Curran (Fiesta R5). They finished fifth at round one and having sealed victory at the previous running of the Dogleap event in 2019 – which was then a non-championship event – Shackleton is one of their favourite hunting grounds.

Also in the mix will be former Irish Tarmac Champions, Josh Moffett and Andy Hayes (Fiesta), as well as Desi and Mark Henry (Hyundai R5). Peadar Hurson and Damien Connolly (Fiesta WRC) are also in the mix, while Derek and Mark McGeehan make a return to the series with their Mini WRC.

Two-wheel-drive

The two-wheel-drive battle will be just as enthralling and crews will have their work cut out to beat the Darrian T90 belonging to Barry Morris and Dylan Doonan. They secured the category spoils at the opening round of the McGrady Insurance series and will again face stiff opposition from a host of potent 2WD crews.

They include Escort pilots Damian Toner, John Bradley and James Kennedy, while Seamus Morris (Darrian T90 GTR), Marty Toner (BMW 1M), John Devlin (Escort) and Alastair Cochrane (Escort) are all expected to be in the mix.

Schedule

The event will include six stages all based within the confines of the Shackleton Complex. Due to Covid-19 restrictions, spectators will not be permitted into the venue. The first car is due to start around 9.15am and live results will be available from rallyscore.net. Event updates will be posted throughout the day at nirallychampionship.com and facebook.com/nirallying.

Entry list (Top 20)

1 Aaron McLaughlin/Darren Curran (Ford Fiesta R5)
2 Jonathan Greer/Kirsty Riddick (Citroen C3)
3 Derek McGarrity/Paddy Robinson (Ford Fiesta WRC)
4 Stephen Wright/Liam Moynihan (Ford Fiesta R5)
5 Josh Moffett/Andy Hayes (Ford Fiesta)
6 Desi Henry/Mark Henry (Hyundai i20 R5)
7 Peadar Hurson/Damien Connolly (Ford Fiesta WRC)
8 Barry Morris/Dylan Doonan (Darrian T90)
9 Derek McGeehan/Mark McGeehan (Mini WRC)
10 Niall Henry/Damien Duffin (Ford Fiesta)
11 Kieron Graffin/Amy Graffin (Ford Fiesta R5)
12 Martin Cairns/Claire Cairns (Ford Fiesta WRC)
14 Ian Millar/Ronan O’Neill (Ford Fiesta R5)
15 Damian Toner/Denver Rafferty (Ford Escort)
16 Sean Devine/Niall Devine (Ford Fiesta)
18 John Bradley/Crawford Henderson (Ford Escort)
19 James Kennedy/Heather Kennedy (Ford Escort)
20 Jason Mitchell/Peter Ward (Ford Fiesta)

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