Pacenotes Stages Rally 11-2-17
Image copyright Tom Maxwell, Raceline Photography
Dessie McCartney had a great run on the Pacenotes Stages Rally, run at the Kirkistown race circuit, last weekend. For this rally Dessie had Geraldine McBride sitting next to him calling out the corners. They had a bit of a shaky start over the first two stages and lost time with a spin which dropped them down as far as 30th place. After that they really got going and posted some very quick times to finish the day in 10th place overall and second two wheel drive. If it hadn't been for the time lost early on then the result would have been a lot more impressive. The picture above show just how hard Dessie was pushing.
The Darrian is a different animal than the Porsche 911 that Dessie is famous for rallying with great success but we think he's got the hang on the GTR. Below is a picture Dessie sent us of him competing on the Cork 20 Rally 'many years ago'. Perhaps we can re-create this fantastic photo with the Darrian!
Tour of Epynt 2017 13-3-17
Photo captured by JMS Photographic www.jmsphotographic.co.uk
Well done to Huw Reed and Anthony Hackett who had a great run on this years Melvyn Evans Tour Of Epynt rally.
They started off the day being a little cautious over the first two of the morning stages but once they had got these out of the way it was a full on charge all day and they ended the day in an excellent third overall. Huw and Anthony were in fact fastest of all on stage five in the afternoon. Despite taking huge chunks of time out of the second place crew their pace wasn't quite enough to grab second with the gap being just six seconds at the end.
Richard Merriman was also back on the ranges with Kath Curzon in the co Drivers seat. They came home with third, in a very competitive class, and ninth overall. Chris Simmons and Andy Moss finished 17th overall.
Well done to all three crews, a great day rallying in Wales!
West Cork Rally 2017 13-3-17
Kevin Gallagher travelled down from Donegal to compete in this years Quality Hotels Clonakilty West Cork Rally in his new T90 GTR+. Kevin, along with co driver Brendan McElhinney, had a great run over both days of the rally which saw varying stage conditions from dry to very slippery. By the end of the event on Sunday afternoon they had climbed their way up to finishing second overall in the National rally, in a very competitive field, with a time that would have seen them finish 11th in the international rally. The car and crew show some great promise and speed and we look forward to seeing more top results from Kevin in the future.
Image Copyright John Crone
B&G MOT Centre SMC Stages 2017 Darrian 1 2 3
Darrians Win in the North, South and West 13-4-17
With three wins on three different rallies it was an incredibly successful weekend for Darrian Cars.
It was a close fought battle for the win at this years SMC stages held at the Anglesey Circuit in North Wales. This time, however, a Darrian was going to win the event but which one?
It would be Brandon Smith and Dylan Thomas who claimed the top spot ahead of fellow Darrian competitors Chris Simmons and Andy Moss. Simmons and Moss were charging in the later stages, closing in on the top spot but they couldn't quite overhaul the leaders and the eventual gap was just one second! Just to make it all the more impressive the top three was rounded out by Gareth Richards and Ian Jones in yet another Darrian.
What a great result, well done to all three crews and congratulations to Brandon and Dylan for a great win.
Bob Shaw Memorial Stages
Well done to Nigel Gibbard and David Jones for winning the Bob Shaw Memorial Stages at Talbenny in South Wales. After a slow first stage they went on to post fastest times on all but one of the rest of the days stages eventually finishing the day with over a minutes gap to the second place crew.
Northern Ireland Sprint Championship - Nutts Corner Sprint
It was another top three lockout for Darrians in the rally car class at the Nutts Corner Sprint in Northern Ireland. It was seasoned hillclimber and sprinter Seamus Morris who came out on top in his new rally spec T90 GTR+.
Second and third place went to the McCartneys, both in the same car. It was Richard McCartney who came out on top of that particular father son battle and Dessie had to settle for third. How often has a car achieved two podium places on the same event?
Well done to all three drivers, it's quite something to lock out the top three in such a competitive sprint.
Dixies Rally Challenge 2-5-17
Photo captured by JMS Photographic www.jmsphotographic.co.uk
Richard Merriman and Kath Curzon made a return to good form with a podium finish of this weekends BG LandRovers Dixies Challenge rally. Richard and Kath put in some very quick times all day over the epynt ranges and they eventually finished the day in third overall, first two wheel drive, against some very competitive crews. Well done to both and we want to see some more great performances like this for the rest of the year now.
Toyota Harlech Rally 2-5-17
Brandon Smith and Dylan Thomas continue their good form with a third place overall on the Toyota Harlech stages this weekend. Well done to both for another great result. Gareth Richards and Ian Jones finished in seventh overall.
EMC Sprint 1-7-17
Image Copyright Rosemary Mccartney
Three drivers showed exactly how comptitive the Darrian is at the Eniskillen Motor Club Sprint in Northern Ireland.
Barry Morris had an excellent drive and came out on top in the rally car class, not only beating his father Seamus in the same car but beating Dessie Mccartney too. Barry ended the day in fifth overall, 1st in class and was the quickest non race car and he also broke the class record which was previously held by Dessie.
Dessie did not have an answer to Barrys pace but he still came home with 2nd in class.
Seamus Morris came in 4th in class with a little bit of work to do to catch up with Barry.
Thanks to Rosemary Mccartney for the great picture!
Enville Stages 2-7-17
Geoff Roberts and Terry Martin had a good run on this years Enville stages held at the Anglesey Race Circuit. They finished fourth overall and second in class in amongst tough competition.
Brandon Smith and Dylan Thomas had a few problems on the day but still managed to finish the event in 7th overall and third in class.
Brawdy Stages 9-7-17
Dai 'Dot' Davies and Gerwyn James had a great run yesterday on this years Brawdy Stages. In his first event in the new car Dai took very little time getting to grips with the car and was soon posting very competitive times and one overall fastest time as well. They finished the day in 3rd overall and second in class. Not bad for the first go in a new car.
John Lewis and Dilwyn John had another fantastic result finishing 4th overall and first in their class by a forty second margin to their nearest class competitors. Two great drives, well done.
There were some great results at this years Midsummer Caerwent Rally with Chris Simmons and Andy Moss finishing the day in 5th overall and second in their class.
Jonathan Davies and Tom Wood also had a good day finishing in 20th overall and second in their class.
Richard Merriman and Kath Curzon unfortunately missed out on any class results in a very strong field, they finished 4th in class and 8th overall. Ian Sutton and Karen Phelps finished 10th overall.
Mini Epynt Stages 04-06-17
Image Copyright Joáo Moura
The Epynt weather was up to it's usual tricks this year for the Mini Epynt Stages. After being dry through the early hours the heavens opened just after the cars had left to start the first loop of stages. This meant a lot of people were caught out on slick tires in very wet conditions.
Despite the early tricky conditions there were some great drives. Huw Reed and Anthony Hackett came home with first in class after finishing 7th overall.
Nigel Gibbard and David Jones would take third in class and tenth overal.
Well done to all the crews who made it round in some tricky conditions!
Brief reports of Race and Rally results for Darrian and Davrian. For older results go to the Results Archive page
Harry Flatters Rally 30-7-17
Image Copyright RallySport Media
Well done to Huw Reed and Anthony Hackett for an excellent performance on this years Harry Flatters Rally. Reed and Hackett posted consistently quick times all day in the showery conditions and came home at the end of the day with fourth place overall and first in their class.
Rhichard Merriman and Kath Curzon also had a great run over the ranges finishing 10th overall and third in what turned out to be a very competitive two litre class.
Hopefully we will see equal or even better performances on the Mewla rally at the end of the month.
Mewla Rally 27-8-17
Richard Merriman and Kath Curzon had a good result on this years Mewla rally. The event took on a new form this year with some stages at the Royal Welsh Showground in Builth Wells but with the majority taking place up on the Epynt Ranges as usual.
Merriman and Curzon got off to a great start at the showground but really came into their own up on the ranges and were soon in third place overall. Unfortunately they were not able to keep this place and by the end of the day they had slipped back to sixth overall and came away with second in class.
Promenade Stages Rally 2-9-17
Image Copyright Graham Roberts
Well done to Nigel Gibbard and Simon Rogers for their fantastic win on this years Promenade Stages Rally.
The Friday night stages began with Geoff Roberts and Terry Martin, in another Darrian, topping the time sheets and it looked as if they would be the Darrian to beat. Saturday was a different story and it was Gibbard and Rogers who moved up to the lead in and managed to stay there in an incredibly tight battle between the top three or four cars. There was no chance to ease off towards the end of the rally and they eventually took the win by just one second.
Geoff Roberts and Terry Martin had a few problems later on Saturday and slipped down the order to eventually finish in 5th place overall.
Neil Howard Stages Rally 4-11-17
Joshua and Tamsyn Davey had an excellent result in the first round of the MSN Circuit Rally Championship at Oulton Park. With this being only their second event in the Darrian T90 they were seeded a long way down the field but with a lot of very quick people up ahead. This certainly didn't worry them as they soon had the car up into the top ten and three fastest stage times through the day saw them finish the day in sixth overall and first in class. It would have been fourth overall but they recieved a ten second penalty on the last stage. Still a fantastic drive though and we hope to see more performances like this from Joshua and Tamsyn.
Image copyright John Gorton
Challenger Stages Rally 20-11-17
Dan Gibson and Alf Chanter, 2017 ASWMC Tarmac Rally Champions
Well done to Dan Gibson and Alf Chanter for clinching the 2017 ASWMC tarmac rally championship. They had a steady run on the Challenger stages at Bovington Camp to make sure they did all they needed to win the championship. By the end of the day they were seventh overall and second in class.
Tony Rees and Lloyd Morgan also had a good run in Tonys new T90 GTR+. After a very cautious start they soon found that they had the pace to compete at the top of the results and set fastest stage times. The early caution and a spin on the last stage meant they finished in fourth overall and first in class.
NHMC Cadwell Stages Rally 20-11-17
Image Copyright Steve McKenna SMJ.Photography
Joshua and Tamsyn Davey continued their good form in the second round of the Motorsport News Circuit Rally Championship at Cadwell. The times were incredibly close at the top and at one point Joshua and Tamsyn were up to second overall. A few problems to overcome later in the day saw them drop down the order a little bit but they managed to fight back to finish fourth overall and took another class win. They certainly showed that they have the pace to run at the front of a very competitive national rally!
Northern Ireland Championship Success For Dessie and Seamus 22-11-17
Image Copyright Neil Coulter Photography
Image Copyright Gary Craig
It has been an incredibly successful year in Northern Ireland for Darrian. Dessie McCartney and Seamus Morris have been nearly unbeatable in every event they have entered this year and between them they have secured four class championship wins and two second places.
Dessie McCartney - Darrian T90 GTR
1st in Class 2017
Northern Ireland, McGrady Insurance Special Stage Rally Championship
1st in Class 2017
Northern Ireland ANICC S.W. Adair Sprint Championship.
2nd in Class 2017
Northern Ireland Millars Oils Hill Climb Championship
Seamus Morris - Darrian T90 GTR+
1st in class 2017
Naylor Engineering Southern Hill Climb
1st in Class 2017
Northern Ireland, Millars Oils Hill Climb Championship.
2nd in Class 2017
Northern Ireland ANICC SW Adair Sprint Championship
Well done to both Dessie and Seamus for all your championship wins this year an we hope 2018 will prove just as successful, if not more!
Glyn Memorial Rally 27-11-17
Chris Simmons and Andy Moss had a great run on the Glyn Memorial Stages at the Anglesey circuit to finish fourth overall and second in class. They had a very close battle over the two day event with the eventual class winner with Simmons and Moss having the upper hand on the first day but they dropped a little bit of time and ended up a close second. A great result on what looked to be a very competitive event.
Hall Trophy Rally 27-11-17
Paul Culverwell and Terry Martin had a great run on this years Hall Trophy Rally taking a class win and finishing tenth overall. Paul admitted to being a little nervous after his last outing in the T9 didn't go to plan but it would seem that it all came back to him pretty soon. A great result.
Rali Cwm Gwendraeth 4-2-18
2018 is off to a good start for Richard Merriman and Kath Curzon after they got their first class win of the year on Rali Cwm Gwendraeth in Pembrey. After spending the morning trying a few different setups with the car they were down in third place in class but Richard and Kath put in two very quick times later in the afternoon which saw them jump up to take the class win and finish seventh overall. Hopefully this will be the first of many class wins this year for them!
Tour of Epynt 11-3-18
This years Tour of Epynt rally had a very strong entry with it being the first round of the MSA Protyre Asphalt Rally Championship. As is often the case on Epynt the first stages were damp and very slippery and as the day went on the roads did dry out a little bit. But the rain came eventually for the last stage with competitiors just having time to change to wet tyres!
Huw Reed and Anthony Hackett were the highest placed Darrian at the end of the day. They led their class all day but it looked as if they might lose the win on the last stage after suffering a puncture but they had done enough to secure the class win and 9th overall. A good start to the year and some good championship points.
Not far behind were Richard Merriman and Kath Curzon in the T90. They finished 10th overall and first in their class by a very small margin!
Tony Rees and Geraint Thomas had a good run, not pushing as much as they could have done because they will be off to compete on the West Cork Rally next weekend. They finished the day with 3rd in class and 15th overall in the GTR+.
Well done to all the Darrian Crews, not a bad start to this years Epynt rallies.
Mayo Stages Rally 11-3-18
Image Copyright Alan Noonan Rally Through a Lens
Stuart Darcy and Keith McCarthy had a great result on this weekend Mayo Stages. They brought their GTR+ home with seventh overall, first in class and first two wheel drive.
After a very close battle for the class lead in the morning Darcy and McCarthy put in some very fast times in the afternoon to clinch the win. This was a very competitve performace from them this weekend and it bodes well for the West Cork Rally next weekend where they join three other Darrian teams, all new GTR+ models. It should be exciting!
West Cork Rally 18-3-18
Images Copyright Alan Noonan Rally Through a Lens
This years West Cork rally saw the long awaited return of John Dalton and Gwynfor Jones in the latest 'Works' Darrian T90 GTR+. This was the first event for the new car with it only having done a small ammount of testing since it's unveiling at last years Castle Combe rally day. Johns last rally was five years ago but he quickly remembered which pedal did what. The car, and driver, certainly lived up to expectations and was very fast straight away on the saturday morning stages. The ring was the first stage and John and Gwynfor set the fastest time in the national category and 6th fastest in the overall field including the internationals. As the day went on John and Gwynfor set many more fastest stage times and got in to a great battle with Gary Kiernan and Ryan Moore. Kiernan had hired a Millington powered Proton for the event and was posting some very good times.
Both the Darrian and the Proton were a long way ahead of the rest of the national field but at the end of the first day Kiernan had edged ahead by just over five seconds.
On day two John and Gwynfor were again quick off the mark in the Darrian and set the fastest time on the first stage managing to equal Kiernan to a tenth of a second on total time!
Kiernan got the upper hand again on the next couple of stages and then, later in the day, John and Gwynfor had a disagreement with a sea wall causing damage to the Darrian but were able to carry on carefully and finish the last two stages. This meant they couldn't take the battle with Kiernan right up to the end of the rally but they still proved that the new car has pace. Before the incident with the wall there was a gap over almost three minutes to the third place crew behind them!
Second in the national category was a great result and John and Gwynfor were also fastest two wheel drive car and the highest place Welsh crew.
John Dalton was also the first driver to be awarded the Donal O'Brien trophy for the fastest class 14 driver. Donal was a much loved and talented rally driver who was tragically killed in a collision on the road last year where he was knocked off his bicycle. He had competed in all kinds of motorsport, go karts, single seater formula racing and grass track racing. Donal came back to stage rallying in recent years and was a regular front runner throughout Ireland in his pride and joy class 14 Mk2 Escort. Donals family were there at the prize giving evening to see John recieve the trophy.
Over the course of the saturday stages Stuart Darcy and Keith McCarty were also having a good run in their GTR+. Not quite able to keep with the pace of John and Gwynfor but still giving the rest of the field a good battle. After five stages they were third in the national category.
Kevin Gallagher and Gerard Callaghan were also showed promising speed on saturday morning but problems for them half way through the day saw them drop away.
Tony Rees and Geraint Thomas were another Welsh Darrian crew who went over for the weekend. Still gaining confidence in the car they drove a steady rally sith the aim of getting to the end. They gradually made their way up the the time sheets and eventually came home safely on sunday evening in 22nd place. having started with number 75 on the door this was great progress for Tony and Geraint.
Well done to John and Gwynfor for a fantastic result, hopefully there will be many more!
Thanks to the Cork Motor Club for another fantastic event. The 'works' Darrian team may have been away from the West Cork Rally for a few years but we were very pleased to be back again.
Images from the service area, click to view. Copyright Dafydd Robertson-Williams
Tour of Caerwent 25-3-18
Image Copyright Neil Jones Central
Richard Merriman and Kath Curzon had another great result on sundays Tour of Caerwent stages where they finished in fourth overall and first in class. It wasn't an easy class win for them though. They had a great day long battle with Lee Edwards and Mike Roberts but some fast stage times in the afternoon saw Merriman and Curzon claw their way up to win the class by just one second! A great result again.
Circuit of Kerry 8-4-18
Image Copyright Alan Noonan Rally Through a Lens
Stuart Darcy and Keith McCarty had another great result in the Darrian T90 GTR+ on sundays Circuit of Kerry Stages. Again they were the highest placed two wheel drive car finishing in seventh overall and first in class. This is the same result as the Mayo stages last month and it shows great consistency and a great start to the Triton Showers National championship with them taking two class wins from two rallies.
SMC Stages 15-4-18
Image Copyright Steve McKenna SMJ.Photography
Bruce Edwards and Jim Smith had a fantastic result when they made the trip down to Anglesey for this years SMC stages. They took the overall win after a day long battle, trading fastest times, with Chris West and Keith Hounslow. Coming in to the last stage, Edwards and smith were trailing by just one second. With a big push on the last stage they were quicker than West and Hounslow to win the event by just three seconds. A very close result but a win is a win by whatever margin and it certainly keeps it exciting!
Corbeau Seats Rally - Essex 22-4-18
Mark Straker, after spending the last two years rebuilding his Darrian, finally debuted his new look car at last weekends Corbeau Seats Rally in Essex. The new red paint was not the only thing different about the car though. Mark was using a new 1.6 litre turbocharged engine for the first time. After many months of development work the engine and the car ran very well for the first time out and Mark, joined by his regular Co Driver Michael Coady, finished the event in fourth place overall taking first in class and top two wheel drive honours. Not bad at all for the first event!
The Corbeau Seats rally was also a huge success. As the first closed road rally in England there was a lot of pressure on for the event to go according to plan and be popular with the locals and rally fans. Hopefully the success of this event will mean that many more motorclubs will work towards introducing more closed road events across the UK. Closed road rallies provide a different challenge for UK crews, something they could previously only get by going abroad, we need more events like this in the UK.
Well done to Mark and Michael on their result. With a bit more seat time they could be a team to watch out for on the closed roads in the UK as well as Ireland!
Photos by Carl Leavold
Horiba D'Isis Stages 22-4-18
Mark Straker had another outiing in his Eco Boost powered GTR on Saturday at the Mira proving ground which he used as a chance to do more running and testing in the car before taking it to bigger events in Ireland. Conditions could not have been more different than last week in Essex with the rain coming down hard. Straker, this time co driven by his brother Jeremy, struggled on the first two stages finding that old, hard tires in the wet do not give you much grip at all! After that they put fresh tires on and suddenly jumped up the leaderboard, setting two fastest stage times, eventually finishing in third place overall.
A great comeback, considering it was only supposed to be testing, and we look forward to seeing what Mark and this car can do over the next few months.
Image copyright RallyGallery.com
Dixies Challenge 23-4-18
Richard Merriman and Kath Curzon had a fantastic run on Epynt yesterday on the Dixies Challenge rally. After some more work developing the dampers Richard seems to have got back on it and now he and Kath are getting right up there to the top of the results table again. They finished in third place overall yesterday having lost out on second place on the last stage by just one second. Still, finishing third behind a WRC and a Group N evo is a good result.
There was also a return to the stages for David Morgan. David has had a lot of success in a 1600cc Darrian T9 but this rally saw his first outing in his new T90 GTR with a Millington 2.5 engine. Quite a different car compared with the T9 and a significant step up in performance. David and his co driver Richard Suter had a good first rally in the car, taking it steady, learning how the car performs. They finished in 11th overall, not too bad considering the car is new to them.
Image copyright RallySport Media
Harlech Stages 6-5-18
Fantastic, hot and dry weather greeted the six Darrian crews who traveled to Harlech on sunday for the Toyota Harlech Stages Rally. With a lot of quick Darrians there was always going to be a good battle and this time it ended in a complete lock-out of the podium positions at the end of the day.
In the morning it was Dave Morgan and Alan Thomas, in the T90 GTR, who took the lead of the event with Gareth Richards and Ian Jones in the T90 not far behind. Richard Merriman and kath Curzon were a little further back in fourth at this stage.
Dave Morgan and Alan Thomas stayed at the top of the results through the day which considering it is only the second event in the car for Dave this is very promising for future events, but some trouble on the final stages dropped them some time and they eventually finished in second overall.
Richard Merriman and kath Curzon put in some very quick times through the afternoon and got ahead of Gareth Richards and Ian Jones and by the end of the day they climbed up the leaderboard further to take the overall win.
Gareth Richards and Ian Jones had a couple of slower stages on old tires in the middle of the day which probably hurt their chances of a win somewhat but they still managed third place overall, not far behind Dave Morgan and Alan Thomas, to lock out the top three.
At one point during the day there were five Darrians in the top six but at the end of the day that had changed to 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 5th.
Finishing fifth overall was Alan Oldfield and Sion Cunniff in the new T90 GTR+, only four seconds from getting on to the podium themselves, showing just how close and competitive it was.
Ian Sutton and Karen Phelps finished in eighth place overall taking second in class 4
1st overall - Richard Merriman and kath Curzon - Darrian T90
2nd overall - Dave Morgan and Alan Thomas - Darrian T90 GTR 1st in class
3rd overall - Gareth Richard and Ian Jones - Darrian T90 2nd in Class
5th overall - Alan Oldfield and Sion Cunniff - Darrian T90 GTR+ 3rd in class
8th overall - Ian Sutton and Karen Phelps - Darrian T90 2nd in class
This was an amazing result for Darrian cars, a few more days like this would be great!
Carlow Mini Stages 20-5-18
Two rapid GTR+ models entered the 2018 Carlow Mini Stages and this year times were very close and competitive all day, a few seconds either way could change the order dramatically.
Ian Barrett was back in a Darrian again but this time with Millington power. He and his Co driver, Eoin O'Flaherty, had a great run and set very competitive times all day and one fastest stage time. They were up to second overall before problems on the last stage dropped them down the order where they eventually finished in sixth place overall and second in class.
Kevin Gallagher and Noel O'Sullivan with their Honda powered GTR+ were also running at the top end of the very competitive field. At the end of they day they found themselves in fifth overall, finishing just ahead of the other Darrian crew, and getting first in class.
Well done to both crews, a good result on a competitive event. Lets get some more Darrians out to Carlow next time!
TSH Stages 19/20-5-18
The TSH stages in Cornwall is a very popular single venue tarmac rally that runs over two days. Two Darrians competed this year with Tony Rees and Jamie Vaughan in the GTR+ and local crew Dan Gibson and Alf Chanter in the T90.
Rees and Vaughan were quick off the mark setting the fastest time of the first stage and they would go on to set a few more over the next two days. A couple of slower times on Saturday put them back a bit but they fought their way back up to finish in third overall. Thier pace was definitely promising for future events.
Dan Gibson and Alf Chanter also had a great run setting some fast times but not quite able to challenge the top three. They were able to overcome some final stage drama to finish in fourth overall and first in class. A great result.