Irish Motorsport Expo

The STIG Revealed...

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Former Kilkenny Inter County Hurler Andy Comerford swappedThe STIG at the Expo 2 his Kilkenny Jersey for a rally suit. The STIG at the Expo 1Andy is pictured here during the Expo as he mingled with the crowd.

The clues again were:

Clue No. 1: He is English and Drives a German Car

Clue No. 2: He won a Major Championship in 2002

Clue No. 3: This Marble City Man plays Soccer with the Freebooters

Clue No. 4: As a pastime, this man catches your fish for his chips

Clue No. 5: His Brother hit the headlines last week

Clue No: 6:  ANAGRAM : Day for cord men.

Kilkenny's Terence Cleere was the first name out of the hat and is the luck winner of a €400 Holiday Voucher courtesy of Manning Travel, High St, Kilkenny City.

Irish Motorsport Expo Raffle Winners Announced

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1st Prize: Ravens Rock Rally 00 Navigator Seat with James Coleman

Winner of the 00 Seat with James Coleman in his Mk11 Ford James Coleman in his Mk11 Ford EscortEscort on this years Ravens Rock Rally was Darren Stanley from Longford. Darren can now look forward to a weekend to remember at the end of June as he will first carry out his recce of the special stages with James on Saturday the 25th, then he will accompany James to the ceremonial start on Saturday evening, where he will be in the co drivers seat as James drives up High Street and on to the ceremonial ramp and the usual photo shoot.

Darren won't get much sleep I'm sure on Saturday night as he looks forward to the fastest spin of his life with James over the NINE SPECIAL STAGES that make up the 2011 Ravens Rock Rally. Darren's prize doesn't end there however as he will round off the day by accompanying James to the finish ramp again in High Street where we will get his reaction to his high speed day in the Yellow Mk11.

2nd Prize: Winner of the Gents Racing Bike was Tony Drohan from Rathgormack.

3rd Prize: Winner of the 19" Flat Screen TV was Neal McGroarty from Donegal.


Buckstown Brings Down the House at Motorsport Expo

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The Irish Motorsport Expo rolled into the "HUB" Cillin Hill Ramplast Sunday, featuring the cream of each Motorsport discipline in Ireland enthusiasts were treated to Tarmac Rally Cars, Autotest Mini's, Autocross Buggies, Vintage Cars and Single Seaters. There was also a host of Motorsport trade stands as the Hub Arena was transformed into a Motorsport spectacular, all organised by the Carrick on Suir Motor Club.

Breen Opens ExpoThe hectic day of Motorsport entertainment was kicked off at 11am as the Expo was officially opened by Kilkenny Rally Driver Craig Breen. The day long show had attractions for all ages of enthusiastsRSA Car and fans. Highlights including the Formula 1 Car simulator, Craig Breen Supporters Club, The Motorsport Ireland Stand and the Road Safety Truck but it was the Seamus Anderson and the Gang from Buckstown Motorsport that set the days action alive. Seamus and the lads from Mullinavat held a gearbox challenge. The Buckstown crew had the challenge down to a fine art after numerous practice sessions in the preceding days. With crowds cheering the Buckstown crew had their Gearbox Challengefirst attempt at 3.30 and stopped the clocks at 4 minutes 11 seconds, exiting the blue Mk11 after the finish Seamus Anderson shouted we must go again. "We got off to the perfect start and everything was going great until we dropped the car off the stands and tried to restart the engine. I couldn't get theBuckstown MS car into the reverse gear. We lost some time here and I know we can set a better time. We'll try again." An hour later with the tension mounting and the crowds shouting encouragement the boys were back to have another go. This time the gang clicked and the crew beat their first attempt by 7 seconds, setting 4 minutes 4 seconds.

Young Drivers Forum: At 5.30 the Young Drivers Forum got underway Forumas Irish Rallying's budding talent were on display. Hosted by renowned Motorsport Journalist Martin Walsh the forum gave fans the chance to here the views and insights of the how these blossoming stars.

First on stage were Donegal's Toni Kelly and from County Monaghan's Stephen Wright and Vincent McAree. Martin questioned the trio about how they got into the sport from an early age and their current respective rallying programmes. Next up to the limelight were current Billy Coleman award winner Robert Barrable from Dublin and his was joined by WRC Academy participants Co. Fermanagh's Alastair Fisher and Kilkenny's Craig Breen. Host Martin Walsh spoke to Robert about his resent move to four wheel drive and the Skoda S2000 and his madden win at the West Cork Rally. He then moved the Alastair and Craig to speak about their exploits in the world stage and the WRC Academy.

SUIRWAY FARM MACHINERY 3The evening was rounded off with the launch of the 2011 Ravens Rock Rally. Clerk of the Course John Rafter took centre stage for the official Launch, during his speech John spoke about the 2010 event being the fulfillment of an ambition by taking on the organisation of the event “One of the most rewarding parts for me came at the ceremonial start in High St, all our hard work over the previous ten months came to the fore. The rally was a major success and the reaction from people who came up to me in the weeks that followed was vindication that Motorsport is alive and well in the Marble City."

After showing his delight about the 2010 event John went onLaunch to unveil the main sponsors for this years event and outlined the rally schedule over the weekend of June 25th and 26th.

"2010 was the start of a three plan; firstly we wanted to showcase the Ravens Rock Rally as a sporting event to Kilkenny City. With that achieved our next step was to build on that achievement and raise awareness of all the Motorsport disciplines here in Kilkenny and I think with the crowds that we've seen here today Motorsport has a strong foothold in the South East of the Country. Now to the part I've been waiting to get to, the 2011 event. After taking a few weeks off to recharge the batteries my team and I were back to work on the 2011 Rock and from the beginning the work has be hard but dedicated and I would like to thank all the members of the Rock committee and I know this years rally will be bigger and better than 2010. We again welcome back our main Sponsor Suirway (James Coleman) but this year its Suirway Farm Machinery as James has launched his new business and the Carrick on Suir Motor Club are delighted to be associated with James' new brand. I also welcome back Pius Phlean and Kilford Arms Hotel as our second joint sponsor. We had the honor last year of basing the club’s premier event in the Kilford and Pius with his team couldn't have been more helpful pre, during and post the event. I'm delighted to announce that the 2011 Ravens Rock Rally will again be based in the Kilford Arms Hotel. On the day of the rally the attention moves from the event HQ to the stages firstly but also to the service area, which becomes the central core when the rally is running. Last year we were luck enough to acquire the use of the Chancellors Mill premises and again this year John Dalton has come onboard to give the use of his facility. The Chancellors Mill’s site will again act as the centralised scrutiny, parc ferme and service and I thank John very much. Moving to the Rally itself, we last year the rally form a counting round in three major championships. Neil McCance was a worthy winner and was competing in the Mitsubishi Challenge, sadly this championship is not running in 2011 but we were grateful for its support last season, 2010 also saw the rock form part of the Southern Four Championship and we welcome back the crew taking part again this year in this prestigious regional championship. Another regional championship that comes back again this year is the South East Stages Rally Championship. The South East Stage holds a special place in the Carrick Club as the championship is organised and promoted by the five Motor Clubs in the South East. The championship is also ran by our own club secretary Ann Fitzgerald, with the championships PRO Joe O'Brien. If I may say I'm keeping a close eye on the South East Stages this year because as of the last round my great friend Shay Power is in top spot in the leader board, he must have a good co driver. In 2010 the Rock had its turn out of the Dunlop Series but we are delighted this year to welcome back the National Championship to Kilkenny. There has been some spectacular rallying over the opening four rounds to date this season and I'm sure round five in the Black and Amber County will be no different.”  

Rally Weekend: The one day rally will take place on Sunday the 26th of June with the ceremonial start taking place in High Street on Saturday evening the 25th with a parade of the competing cars, making the Motorsport Spectacle a weekend event. The rally welcomes back the Dunlop National Championship for this year and will also be counting rounds in the Triton Showers South East Stages Rally Championship and The Southern 4 Championship. The Headquarters will again be based in the Kilford Arms Hotel, with Scrutiny, Parc Ferme and centralised service in Chancellors Mills premises. The rally will keep the same format from a year ago with a three stage layout each being repeat three times. 
DunlopSES LOGOWindscreen-S4


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Over the next two weeks in the build up to the Expo the Carrick Motor Club are running a NAME THE STIG COMPETITION with a prize of a €400 Holiday Voucher for the WINNER.

CLUES will be uploaded HERE ON THE CLUB SITE, the club’s facebook page and to Rally.IE and you  can enter the competition by taking note of the clues and emailing your answers to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

SO if you think you know who the STIG get your answer in NOW!

Clue No. 1: He is English and Drives a German Car

Clue No. 2: He won a Major Championship in 2002

Clue No. 3: This Marble City Man plays Soccer with the Freebooters

Clue No. 4: As a pastime, this man catches your fish for his chips

Clue No. 5: His Brother hit the headlines last week

Clue No: 6:  ANAGRAM : Day for cord men.


Motorsport Extravaganza set for the HUB

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Now only two weeks before the doors open on Ireland’s biggest Motorsport irish motorsport  expo - logo largeshow as the Irish Motorsport Expo comes to Kilkenny. The Expo has been organised to showcase all the disciplines of Irish Motorsport in Ireland and will cover:

  • Stage Rallying
  • Karting
  • Circuit Racing
  • Autocross
  • Hillclimb/Sprint
  • Trial
  • Autotest

The Expo will also serve as an introduction for people who would like to get involved. Highlights of the day include the Young Drivers Forum and the official Launch of Carrick on Suir Motor Club’s premier event, the Ravens Rock Rally, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary and set to be staged for the second year in succession in Kilkenny on June 26th.

Doors will open at 11 am on Sunday morning and the entertainment beet_fleet_photowill get underway outside the HUB complex with the BeatFM Beat fleet with a host of giveaways. A great family day is to be enjoyed in the Cillin Hill as the Carrick on Suir Motor Club have lined-up some of the most influential exhibitors in Irish Motorsport.

At the show you’ll see:

  • Killian Duffy On the PaceNOTE
  • Chequered Flag
  • Autofashion
  • CSE Motorsport
  • Kiltorcan RaceWay
  • Halfords
  • Ed Sport
  • Wishart Motorsport
  • Orchard Motorsport
  • Craig Breen Rallying
  • Joe McConnell Oils

Further exciting events at the show include:

  • Raffle of James Coleman’s co-drivers seat for 00 course car for this year’s Ravens Rock Rally
  • Timed gearbox change challenge, featuring Buckstown Motorsport
  • Unveiling of the STIG. Which has a 1st PRIZE of a €400 holiday voucher
  • Kick Start Trials

Building on the success of the Motorsport Forum held at the club's Halloween Historic Stages Rally the club has decided to hold their second such event a the Expo, keeping the same format but this time concentrating on the blossoming Irish talent that we have coming through the ranks.

The panel includes:

  • Current Billy Coleman Award Winner Robert Barrable
  • FIA WRC Academy participants Alastair Fisher and Craig Breen
  • Motorsport Ireland and RSA Young Driver Ambassador Toni Kelly
  • Young chargers in the Valvoline National Forestry Championship Vincent McAree and Stephen Wright

Host for the forum will be renowned Irish Motorsport Journalist Martin Walsh

The forum format includes a one on one interview with each of the panel with Martin Walsh, following this Martin will begin a discussion with the panel on the subject of rallying for young drivers in Ireland. The forum will end with a question and answers session from the floor. The forum kicks off on the main stage in the HUB arena at 5pm SHARP!

Following the forum the day will come to a close with the officially launch of this years Ravens Rock Rally, unveiling this years event sponsors and Clerk of the Course John Rafter will give details about the clubs 40th hosting of their premier rally. The launch will start again on the main stage in the Hub at 7pm


Inaugural Irish Motorsport Expo comes to the HUB!

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altSummer of Motorsport set for Marble City

Nine months ago Threecastles man John Rafter was the driving force that saw the hugely successful Ravens Rock Rally being hosted in Kilkenny City. Rafter and his organising team brought the Carrick on Suir Motor Club’s premier event back to the Marble City for the first time in three year’s. He and his team took the Rally to new heights as the Black and Amber County welcomed back rallying. Now nine months on and John is back for round two and he promises this year’s event will be bigger and better, “Last year I took on the job of Clerk of the Course for the first time. It turned out to be a huge success and very rewarding for both myself and my hard working team. One of the main reasons for taking on the organisation of the club’s most prestiges event was that the rally would be based in Kilkenny for three consecutive years. In 2010 my team and I set ourselves a goal of laying the foundation of a professionally run event that we could build upon over the following two years. I was delighted with the support from within Kilkenny City and the people of the County where the special stages were situated. Among the highlights over the event weekend last year was the help we received from Pius Phlean at the Kilford Arms Hotel, the Dalton family at chancellors Mills, the City Council, the Gardai but the part that still gives me the most pleasure was the ceremonial start that was staged the evening before. To see the culmination of all our hard work come together and for rallying to take over Main Street was something I will never forget.”

“After taking some time (Three days) to recharge the batteries my team were full of ideas to make the event bigger and better for this year. Our intention from the start of the project last year was to build a legacy that would continue after the three year period of hosting the event was up and I think we have now found away to do that. I am now proud to announce that on Sunday the 22nd of May “The HUB” in Cillin Hill will host a feast of Motorsport as the Carrick on Suir Motor Club will host the Inaugural Irish Motorsport Exposition.

The HUB, Located in a commanding roadside position on the outskirts of vibrant Kilkenny City, The Hub is fast becoming the premier multi-purpose venue in the south east. With a flexible indoor space: 1,585msq (17,060ft sq), a capacity of 2,000 and access to a local population of 434,205 within a 40-mile radius, this integrated exhibition and events centre is quickly developing as the venue of choice in the south east for event planners and consumers alike.

The Hub indoor arena:    * Floor area: 1,585msq (17,060ft sq)

    * Dimensions: 51m long x 31m wide x 9m height (floor to underside of grid)

    * Power: 3 phase power supply, distributed throughout The Hub

    * Access: Direct access to The Hub via two large loading doors (6m high x 5m wide) operated electronically

    * Capacity: 2,000

    * Organiser/Production Office: Equipped with telephone line, broadband internet access and linked to the in-house PA system.

The Irish Motorsport Expo will be divided into three core sections. Section one will be the exposition itself, based in “The Hub”. There will be twenty five main exhibitors showcasing the best of Irish Motorsport; all the various disciplines of Motorsport in the Country will represented. The show will focus on the sport at grassroots level and how a young person can join the club and get involved in Motorsport.

In Motorsport and on our Countries roads safety is of paramount importance. Within the last month Ireland’s motorsport governing body Motorsport Ireland joined forces with the Irish Roads Safety Authority to launch a new safety initiative concentrating on young drivers. Both organizations will be on hand at the expo to raise awareness for this new initiative and promote this new scheme.

Section two, on the evening of the Show the club will hold the Official Launch of this year’s Ravens Rock Rally. The launch will include various rally cars taking on a specially built course outside the HUB grounds, this will then be followed by the official announcement of the details of the 2011 Ravens Rock Rally and the unavailing of this years main Sponsors. Sponsors - Suirway Farm Machinery, the Kilford Arms Hotel and the Kilkenny People Newspaper.

Section three, directly after the official launch of the Ravens Rock the focus will return to the indoor arena of the HUB where a Motorsport Forum will be held. The Forum will be hosted by Irish Motorsport Journalist Martin Walsh and will focus on Irish rallyings youngest talent.