With just a week and a half to go to Heartlands Rally 2012 Laois Rallysport Club are delighted with entries to date.
Clerk of the Course Sean McEvoy says they have been flooding in thick and fast and if they continue at that rate, he hopes to have a full entry and possibly a reserve list! After the smooth running of last years rally which was only hampered by atrocious weather on the day, the Heartlands Rally has established itself as a well organised, value for money, driver focused rally.
There has been great talk about it all around the country at other rallies with drivers looking forward to Sunday June 10. The rally will kick off on the Friday night, June 8 when some of the drivers travelling from the further corners of the country will arrive into town to get set up for the weekend.
The rest will follow on the Saturday morning which will see a flurry of activity around the town. After checking in at Rally Headquarters in O’Loughlin’s Hotel, Main Street, Portlaoise they will head out to recce the stages to see what is in store for them.
Then it’s over to County Hall where scrutiny of the cars will take place Saturday evening. Following that the main street is the place to be as a ceremonial start will take place at 7:30pm, with rally cars coming down the main street of the town and stopping outside O’Loughlin’s Hotel for a brief interview with the famous-in-rally-circles Dougie Hughes, before going back to County Hall for the night.
Sunday morning County Hall will be all action with cars taking off from there and coming back in for service throughout the day. This is an ideal opportunity for anyone curious about rallying who doesn’t want to follow the stages to come in and stroll around and look at the expensive cars on display.
Details will follow in next week’s issue for those who want to go out onto the stages. The victors will be on display outside O’Loughlin’s Sunday evening for a while, with a finishing ceremony and then inside to the hotel itself for prize giving.
Local drivers to watch include last year’s Fastest Laois Person, Larry Brady, who will have to defend his title from club members Paul Lacey, Pat Delaney, Dan Gorman, Seamus Heaney, Aaron Martley, Christy Kelly, Ned Kelly and Declan Cuddy to name a few.
The boys have been working hard on their cars for the last few months and Larry may well be feeling the pressure. But all is fair in love and rallying!
Laois Rallysport Club would like to thank their sponsors Laois County Council and O’Loughlin’s Hotel. Also Laois Hire who continue to be loyal supporters of the Rally Club, and all who contribute in one way or another. The rally could not run without their support.