Kumho Features Strongly in Irish Rally’s Winners Circle
The Kumho-shod Skoda Fabia WRC driven by Eugene Donnelly/Paddy Toner secured victory the 14-stage Larsen Circuit of Ireland Rally by over three-quarters of a minute. Donnelly, who also took top honours at the Galway International Rally in January, Donnelly, is already being tipped to win his fifth Irish Tarmac Rally Championship. Kumho notes that other drivers using its tyres during the April 11-12 event ended high up the ladder, including the fifth-placed Subaru Impreza WRC of Darren Gass/Diarmuid Falvey and the eighth-placed (second in Group N) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 of Rory Byrne/Jeremy Patterson. These last two drivers bear an additional connection to the Korean manufacturer – Byrne is a director of Kumho’s Northern Ireland distributor, Modern Tyre Service, and Patterson is an account manager there.
The weekend’s event also marked the second round of the Richard Egger Insurance MSA Asphalt Rally Championship, in which Kumho-shod cars filled no less than the first three places of Category A. First home was the Subaru Impreza WRC of Melvyn Evans/Sean Mullally. Less than three minutes behind was the similar car of David Mann/Alun Cook, despite a few minutes of excitement on the last Saturday stage when an unexpected downpour caught the pair on slick tyres. Completing the trio was the Audi A3 Quattro of Kynaston/Russell, the team having fought-back valiantly after losing some four minutes to throttle cable problems early in the event.
“This was clearly a memorable weekend for us,” commented the manager of Kumho’s European Motorsport Division, Steve Thompson. “We are used to seeing Donnelly flying on our tyres but were delighted to have so many other top drivers using Kumho rubber to such good effect.”