Galway Motor Club has announced that the title sponsors for the 2016 Galway International Rally will be a Galway company, Corrib Oil. Preparations are well advanced for the event which will take place over the weekend of the 5th to 7th February 2016.
The Galway Motor Club Committee is delighted that the event, which has been running annually since 1971, has attracted such a prestigious brand name.
Eugene Dalton, Managing Director of Corrib Oil, stated “I am delighted that our company has been given the opportunity to sponsor the first major sporting event in Galway next February. The event is a long established one, now running for 45 years, and continues to attract significant media coverage, including extensive TV coverage of the city and county, and attracts top teams from Ireland, UK, Germany and USA each year.”
The 2016 event will again have International Status and will be the opening round of the Clonakilty Black Pudding Tarmac Rally Championship. The Clerk of the Course is Kieran Donoghue from Headford, an experienced organiser and rally competitor. The rally will have a three day format. There will be an opening Ceremonial Start in Galway city on Friday 7th February. Over the following two days there will be a total of 15 stages. The Saturday route will be extended considerably for 2016, and will cover 9 closed road stages in the south and east of the county. A further 6 stages will be covered on the Sunday closer to the city, with a centralised Service Area each day. The event Headquarters will be the Clayton Hotel in Ballybrit, Galway. The event will have categories for Historic Rally cars, which this year will cover the full route of the International Rally, and a Junior rally, which will cover the Sunday stages.
The 2015 Galway International Rally was won by Donagh Kelly from Donegal in his Ford Focus WRC. Donagh had a very successful year subsequently and was crowned Tarmac Rally Champion at the end of the season. For 2016 the championship will feature a new category of rally cars, named “R5”. These cars are rallied extensively in Europe in particular, and the Corrib Oil Galway International Rally will see a number of these exciting new cars making their International rally debut.
Further details about the event will be announced in the coming weeks and a comprehensive “Rally Guide” will be published on the rally website shortly.