Local Crews Dominate Snowdrop Rally
Friday the 4th March saw the first round of the 1983 Dungannon Motor Club Rally Championship when forty-four crews turned up to tackle the Snowdrop Rally.
Ken Colbert and Alistair Donaldson, the reigning club champions, led the field away from the start area at Magowan’s Service Station on the Dungannon by-pass. 84 miles awaited the competitors, designed to test navigators and machinery.
The cars did take heavy punishment with local crew Trevor Haydock and Brian Quinn forced to retire at the petrol halt, and the 1982 road rally champions, Kevin O’Kane and Godfrey Crawford, retiring when their clutch gave up. Eric McIvor and Colm Quinn were left to take on Kenny’s immaculate Talbot Lotus Sunbeam in a two-way battle. Kenny and Alistair had to settle for second place behind Eric’s Avenger when Kenny’s car was dogged by rear braking problems.
Class 2 also had it’s share of retirements with some crews retiring when their exhausts became damaged to avoid confrontation with Club officials. It was David Aiken and Trevor Agnew in an Escort who came home 3.5 minutes ahead of Malcolm McLean and David Smyth, to take the Class honours, as well as third overall. Alwyn Spiers and Keith Cunningham in a Mazda 323 finished 3rd in Class 2.
As always, the largest class was Class 3. Local crews again dominated with Alan Jardine and Alan Lamont in a Ken Colbert prepared 1600cc Sunbeam storming the class to win by more than 5 minutes. It was a pleasing result for them in only their second event. Raymond Hughes and Adrian Haydock in a 1600 Escort came home second, ahead of Tom Boden and Raymond Donaldson, also in an Escort.
Sam Bell and David Black, running in their first event, won the 1300cc award in their standard 1256cc Vauxhall Chevette Hatchback.
Overall Winner: Eric McIvor / Colm Quinn (Avenger) 22.42
Class One: 1) Ken Colbert / Alistair Donaldson (Lotus Sunbeam) 23.42 2) James Erwin / Sam Campbell (Escort) 43.50
Class Two: 1) David Aiken / Trevor Agnew (Escort) 30.14 2) Malcolm McLean / David Smyth (Escort) 33.34 3) Alwyn Spiers / Keith Cunningham (Mazda) 35.54
Class Three: 1) Alan Jardine / Alan Lamont (Sunbeam) 37.01 2) Raymond Hughes / Adrian Haydock (Escort) 42.45 3) Tom Boden / Raymond Donaldson (Escort) 46.22
1300 Class: Sam Bell / David Black (Vauxhall) 129.14