Today saw the Northern Ireland Rally Championship (NIRC) launch for the 2006 season which will cover 9 rounds all over NI on both loose and gravel surfaces and is one of the most hotly contested championships in Europe. PaceNotes have again continued its sponsorship and now into its 3rd year showing its dedication and success. It is Irelands best selling rally publication who’s editor Simon Mooney said "Everyone at PN is delighted to be associated with the NIRC. This is now our 3rd season sponsoring the series. We see it as an integral part of helping the growth of PN and it’s our way of putting something back into the sport."
The 2WD category of the series will be sponsored by SuperDrive Motorsports Centre who’s managing director Brendan Crealey said "At the end of each championship event, the leading 3 competitors in the 2WD category will each receive cash prizes which will go towards payment of the following rounds entry fee. As a competitor myself, I know how difficult it is to fund rallying. Everything helps and I think this is a great incentive for clubmen."
Local Journalist Jonathan Macdonald of MotorsportPR will be the media co-ordinator for the 06 championship in which he has set up a dedicated web site for the series with up to date results after each round and details for the competitors and spectators alike before and after each of the 9 rounds. Cool FM DJ Sonia Mac has expressed interest in driving selected rounds of the championship in a SuperDrive supplied car and could well be seen doing Bishopscourt Stages, Dogleap rally and Rally of the Glens.
R1 – Eurocables Rally (Kirkistown) – 18th Feb 06
R2 – Bishopscourt Stages (Bishopscourt) – 18th Mar 06
R3 – Tour of the Sperrins (Maghera) – 20th May 06
R4 – Mourne Stages (Newry) – 10th Jun 06
R5 – Dogleap Stages (Limavadey) – 5th Aug 06
R6 – Lakeland Stages (Enniskillen) – 9th Sep 06
R7 – Bushwhacker Rally (Omagh) – 30th Sep 06
R8 – Down Rally (Newcastle) – 21st Oct 06
R9 – Rally of the Glens (Ballymena) – 4th Nov 06
With the machinery on show today including a couple of class winning Mk2 escorts, class winning evo’s and an S9 impreza od Sean Devine it looks to be a great start to the series and we should be covering all 9 rounds of it so i’d like to take this oppertunity to wish all those competing the best of luck in the season and "keep ‘er lit"