The Hills Are Alive- Ballyvaughan Hillclimb Preview!
The Galway Motor Club is delighted to announce details of its annual Motorsport Hillclimb Weekend, which is based among the fabulous Burren Landscape in Ballyvaughan, North Clare. The event will take place on the 22nd & 23rd April and will form the opening two rounds of the Naylor Engineering National Hillclimb & Sprint Championship 2017.
This year’s Championship takes place over seven weekends, 14 rounds taking in some of the most scenic parts of Clare, Carlow, Wexford, Limerick, Waterford and Donegal. These events bring a much needed boost to the local economy with big demand for accommodation, food and entertainment.
The organisers are delighted to welcome back M Fitzgibbon Contractors Ltd as title sponsors of this year’s event. They are also thrilled to be back in Monks Pub, Ballyvaughan for the HQ this year. It is over 10 years since the Hillclimb HQ was held in Monks and it will be great to be back again. Each year Ballyvaughan puts on a great show for the Hillclimb fraternity and this year will be no different. Competitors will start arriving on Friday afternoon for an optional scrutiny which will take place in Mooney’s Emo service station between 6pm & 8pm where everybody is invited to get up close and personal with some of the fastest cars this country has to offer and also speak to their drivers.
On Saturday morning, the drivers will head to the world-famous Corkscrew Hill one of the most unique stretches of road in Ireland. The 1.5 km ribbon of tarmac winds its way up the famous hairpin section before opening out to a fast sweeping road. This provides an immense challenge for all the competitors!
Sunday heads out the coast road through Fanore and on to Ballinalacken Hill. The 1.7km test is technical but also extremely fast in places interspersed with tight bends which is sure to keep the driver’s adrenaline pumping from start to finish. The diversity in the two different sections of road will give the competitors a full weekend of challenges. It is sure to be one of the best events in this year’s Hillclimb Championship Series.
Reigning Hillclimb Champion Joe Courtney (above) will be hoping for a good event to get his championship defence off too its best start. He will have stiff competition from the likes of Sylvie Mullins & Rory Stephens. Frank Byrnes in his V8 Pilbeam & Peter Dwyer in his Lola single seater will be making a return to the Ballyvaughan Hills after a long absence along with Paul O Connell who will be debuting a Norma Sportscar.
Local Clare man Robert Dwane will also be debuting his new OMS single seater and he is sure to be quick off the mark and mix it at the top. Reigning Northern Irish Hillclimb Champion Christopher Houston in the rapid OMS Single Seater is sure to mix it with the Irish Regulars. In the saloon class Ben O’Brien is hoping to debut his new BMW Touring Car with Seamus Morris bringing his rapid new Darrian T90 GTR.
Local crews competing are Patrick Curley in his Honda Civic, Derek Daly & Brian McMahon in their Formula Renaults, Maurice & Cathal Gannon in a Ford Escort MK2 to name just a few.
If you would like to be part of the event, you can help out by marshalling either day. This is the best way to see these cars up close, at full tilt through the Burren landscape. There are also designated, safe spectator areas on both hills which will be marshalled. More information and maps regarding these areas will be posted online closer to the event.
Entries Secretary for the Ballyvaughan Hillclimb event is Aiden Connolly and he can be contacted on 086-3487757 between 6.00pm and 9.00pm.
Entry fee is €245 for both days or €140 for a single day with drivers getting a practice run followed by at least three timed runs each day.
Regs Entry forms are now available to download from both club websites www.galwaymotorclub.ie, & www.Irishhillclimb.com.
Image from caoradubha.com