Derek McGarrity added the McGrady Insurance Bishopscourt Stages, round two of the Carryduff Forklift MSA Northern Ireland Rally Championship to his championship tally.
The Glengormley driver steered his Subaru WRC to the top of the podium to secure another impressive rally victory, following on from Kirkistown last month.
He moved into the rally lead after stage four and stayed there until the finish of the rain-soaked event, his margin was 16.2 seconds over the Mitsubushi EVO 6 of Jonny Leonard while Derek McGeehan claimed third in a Toyota Corolla WRC.
Ballynahinch and District Motor Club pulled out all of the stops to lay on a challenging event for more than 70 crews with brand new stage layouts and a total of 14 stages were challenging enough, but the weather helped to add more drama to the mix as rain and wind pelted the County Down venue throughout the day.
After the opening stage, it was a surprised Kieron Graffin who found himself leading the rally from Trevor Ferguson, with Mark Massey completing a trio of Group N crews in third.
The short 1.6 mile test certainly sprung a few surprises but Graffin held on to the lead after stage two, albeit by just seven-tenths of a second from Massey.
Mark Massey emerged as the new rally leader in his Group N spec Mitsubishi EVO 9. Early leader Graffin had dropped out of the top 10 after an overshoot. His problems were then compounded when he was awarded a maximum stage time for allegedly cutting the stage, despite setting a slower time than my previous run.
Graffin’s troubles left Massey at the top of the leaderboard.
One stage later, when Massey lost half a minute with a problem, McGarrity moved into the number one slot and that was a position that he was never destined to relinquish.
In the two-wheel-drive category, Alan Smyth took a win in his Citroen C2.