Finn Lappi takes Circuit of Ireland honours

Circuit of Irleand winner Lappi
Circuit of Irleand winner Lappi

Finland’s Esapekka Lappi and co-driver Janne Ferm raced to victory in the Circuit of Ireland Rally which finished last night.

Sepp Wiegand came in one minute 50 seconds behind the winner to claim second place to make it a Skoda Fabia one-two.

Lappi had led from the start and eased home to his triumph in the final Gregorlough stage between Dromore and Lurgan.

Dubliner Robert Barrable took third place.

In the Irish National Championship Declan Boyle snatched victory after Gary Jennings crashed out.

Jennings looked poised for victory but his crash on the final stage handed the win to Boyle in a Subaru.

Boyle’s fellow Donegal man Donagh Kelly was second in the national rally with Glengormley’s Derek McGarrity in third.

That third place for five-time Circuit winner McGarrity saw his lead in the Northern Ireland standings increased.

The Circuit of Ireland was back on the calendar after a one-year absence and is round four of the European Rally championship.

Thirty-seven crews entered for the International section, with 84 crews forming the National entry list. A total of 14 nations were represented.