Longford autotest revs up much excitement

The Midland Motor Club (MMC) held their first multi venue Autotest recently as part of the Hewison Trophy Autotest and the event proved to be a resounding success.

The Midland Motor Club (MMC) held their first multi venue Autotest recently as part of the Hewison Trophy Autotest and the event proved to be a resounding success.

It was a counting round of the National Championship and took place in Johnston Farm Equipment, Athlone Road, Longford by kind permission of Sam Johnston. It was staged under the International Sporting Code of the FIA, and the General Competition Rules of Motorsport Ireland, while Motorsport Ireland officials attended on the day.

The MMC Autotest brought top competitors to Longford from throughout the country and it was also the fourth round of the Clubs Championship.

The tests were set up by Micheal Reilly and his team on a 40km loop, and the 18 to 20 tests challenged even the top drivers.

At the halfway mark, three drivers were within a few seconds of one another. Eddie Petterson was 1st, Eamonn Byrne was 2nd and David Thompson was 3rd and the local lads at the half way mark were going well. Sam Johnston was 4th, Colin Duffy 5th, Enda McLoughlin 6th, Nigel McCloughry 7th, Alan Gibbons 13th, Michael Lenehan 14th, Seamus McTigue 20th, Joe Lenehan 23rd and Cillian Lenehan 26th.

Then it was off to the test in Ballinalee and Drumlish and at the end the results were added up and the winners were: 1st overall Eddie Peterson, 2nd Eamonn Byrne and 3rd David Thompson. In the classes, the result went well for the locals winners of Class 1 - 1st Sam Johnston, 2nd Jonathon Bradshaw and 3rd Sean O’Toole; Class 2 - 1st Eamonn Byrne, 2nd David Thompson and 3rd Colin Duffy; Beginners class - 1st Nigel McCoulghry, 2nd Paul Farran and 3rd Peter Geraghty; Midland Motor Club Members prizes-1st Enda McLoughlin, 2nd Alan Gibbons and 3rd Michael Lenehan.

There were some great results for the local lads so well done to them and all the winners. Michael Reilly thanked those who provided refreshments for the April 28 event, the marshals and those who provided their premises as well as co-stewards.

Congratulations to Michael Lenehan on his return to the motorsport environment after a long absence. All involved hope to see him out in more events in the near future. The next event for the Midland Motor Club is on June 30 which is also a new event for the club - a loose surface autocross.

Midland Motor Club covers counties Roscommon, Leitrim, Longford, Westmeath and Offaly. The Club run Navigation Trials, Autotest Trials, Multi Venue Autotest, Autocross and Stage Rally events throughout the year. Membership is €15 per person and €5 for each additional family member to join.

Club meetings are held on the second Monday of every month and new members are always welcome. Further details on www.midlandmotorclub.com

Final Autotest Results

1 Eddie Peterson 1211.6s, 2 Eamonn Byrne 1217.7s, 3 David Thompson 1255.4s, 4 Sam Johnston 1268.9s, 5 Colin Duffy 1275.2s.

Class winners: Eamonn Byrne 1217.7s, Sam Johnston 1268.9s.

Beginner awards: 1 Nigel McCoulghry 1320.9s, 2 Paul Farren 1361.9S, 3 Peter Geraghty 1371.7s.

Club members: 1 Enda McLoughlin 1305.8s, 2 Alan Gibbons 1399.3s, 3 Michael Lenehan 1401.3s.