Declan Boyle has to get points on the board at Smartpart ALMC Rally

Decland Boyle
Decland Boyle

The Triton Showers National Rally Championship takes flight for the second half of the season on Sunday with the Trim based Smartpart ALMC Rally, marking the return of the Dublin based club to the national series for the first time since 1999.

It is a crucial event for former double champion and top seed Declan Boyle (Ford Fiesta WRC), he has three non-finishes to his credit and with the series based on the best six from eight events, in reality he has no room for any further error.

His only point’s haul so far was on the Circuit of Kerry where he took 20 points for victory and two from the Power Stage.  While there is no doubting his pace, a lack of reliability has put a third title in jeopardy.  

On the last round in Cavan he led entering the final loop but retired with an alternator problem. It is a huge task for Boyle, who also needs the extra three points for winning the Power Stage so he can begin to close the deficit to series leader Roy White.

In stark contrast White has scored in all four rounds to date and while overall victory has eluded him thus far he has taken the maximum 23 points in Carlow and Cavan where the respective winners (Manus Kelly and Sam Moffett) were not registered for the Triton Showers series.

Although he has a 15 point lead it is far too early to speak of a first title given the very fickle nature of the sport while the likes of former champions Niall Maguire and Warrenpoint’s Peadar Hurson are still very much in the title hunt.

The event is a counting round of the MSA Asphalt Championship, the only Irish round of the series and it accounts for a strong overseas contingent with Hugh Hunter heading the contingent.

In Group N reigning champion Tyrone’s Aidan Wray (Mitsubishi) is the top seed and will be followed by Paul Barrett (Subaru), Shane Maguire (Mitsubishi), Trevor Bustard (Mitsubishi) and Neil Tohill (Mitsubishi)

Rally HQ is the Castle Arch Hotel, Trim.