1982 Omagh Pre-Circuit

Photo: David Smyth
Kevin O'Kane and Godfrey Crawford took the win at Omagh in Kevin's 1760cc Avenger.

O’Kane and Crawford take series lead at Omagh.

This article is courtesy of Eric Hamilton’s scrapbook. Original source report is unknown.

Omagh Motor Club’s Pre-Circuit Rally was won last night by local crew Kevin O’Kane and Godfrey Crawford driving an Avenger.  O’Kane finished with a comfortable lead over John Jones and Drew Todd (Escort) with Trevor Haydock and Brian Rowan in a Sunbeam third.

Kenny McKinstry and John McGaffin (Escort), who had been leading the Championship, headed the entry list out of the Omagh Showgrounds on a small loop to the South West of the town, near Dromore, to the first petrol halt.  Here Tommy Speers and Joe Law (Escort) had set the pace, leading the event even though it had virtually gone past Kevin O’Kane’s house.  Jones was in third place, behind O’Kane, and McKinstry had been slowed by alternator trouble and was shortly to retire.

Dungannon’s Trevor Haydock and Brian Rowan had a steady run to take third place overall.

The second section was approximately 50 miles through Seskinore and round by Sixmilecross.  The small lane at Mullaghslin Quarry was to prove the downfall of many of the less experienced crews, several collecting a wrong approach into the passage control.  A good run by Hegarty and Foster in Class 2 was ruined by such a mistake.

Eric Hamilton, navigated by Derek Ervine, lost a certain third place when Ervine, having got the quarry passage control correct, mis-plotted the next control and therefore received a fail, to upset a very good run by this young Richhill driver.

Eric Hamilton and Derek Ervine were set for a good result when a minor plotting error dropped them to eighth place.

Positions at the second petrol halt showed that O’Kane had edged ahead of Speers and Jones was holding off Haydock for third position.

The final section of the rally took in the Gortin forest area to the North of Omagh.  The only major retirement was that of Tommy Speers, who  dropped out of second place when a number of wheel studs sheared on the Ashmenagh mountain section.  Speers and several other leading crews had experienced persistent baulking by non-competing cars, and when it kept happening, it began to take on a very deliberate look.

Kenny Thompson and Eric Patterson were top of the Semi-Experts Class and took a brilliant fourth place overall.

The final results showed that Kevin O’Kane had collected his second championship win of the series and now had a one point lead in the Championship from Kenny McKinstry.


  1. Kevin O’Kane / Godfrey Crawford (Avenger)
  2. John Jones / Drew Todd (Escort)
  3. Trevor Haydock / Brian Rowan (Sunbeam)
  4. Kenny Thompson / Eric Patterson (Toyota)
  5. Raymond McQuaid / David Johnston (Escort)
  6. Kenneth Rea / Raymond Rea (Chevette)
  7. Andy Wilson / Brian Dorman (Fiesta)
  8. Eric Hamilton / Derek Ervine (Escort)
  9. Terry Hegarty / Bob Foster (Escort)
  10. John McCracken / Mark Crowe (Escort)


  1. Andy Wilson / Brian Dorman (Fiesta)
  2. Derek Ewing / Philip Irwin (Escort)
The winners of the 1300cc Class were Andy Wilson and Brian Dorman in their little Fiesta, and seventh place overall.