Good news for Circuit of Ireland and Ulster Rally

Winners of the 2015 Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally Craig Breen and Scott Martin
Winners of the 2015 Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally Craig Breen and Scott Martin

Good news for junior drivers in the 2016 British Rally Championship, which will feature two rounds in Northern Ireland, the Circuit of Ireland and Ulster rallies.

The 2016 Junior BRC Champion will win a subsidised drive in the 2017 Drive DMACK Fiesta Trophy worth £60,000.

Thanks to the support of Carlisle-based tyre manufacturer, DMACK, the winner will begin their international rallying career on five FIA World Rally Championship events in 2017.

Open to any driver under the age of 26, the DMACK Junior BRC will be a competitive proving ground for crews as they have the chance to tackle some of the best forest stages and tarmac tests in the British Isles in FIA-homologated R2 cars.

DMACK will supply control tyres for the DMACK Junior BRC series, and the number of tyres used per round will be restricted to keep costs to a minimum and to create a level playing field for all competitors in the class.

The series will take in all seven BRC events, however, drivers will only carry their best six scores towards the championship. Every crew will have to play a Joker to play on one of the rounds for which they will score double the points and the final round on the Isle of Man will also count for double points.

The company has already made big commitments to the 2016 BRC, having announced that it will run promising young talent Max Vatanen, son of 1980 BRC Champion and 1981 World Champion Ari Vatanen in a Ford Fiesta R5 adorned in the DMACK colours.

McLaren GT has confirmed the full line-up of factory drivers, alongside Dungannon’s Andrew Watson from the Young Driver Programme, that will contest the 2016 Liqui Moly Bathurst 12 Hrs race in February with Australian-based Tekno Autosport, running as a GT entry for the first time.

After the most successful season for McLaren GT, Tekno Autosport and Objective Racing will run three examples of the 650S GT3 at the Mount Panorama circuit.

Rob Bell, Alvaro Parente and Young Driver Andrew Watson are set to tackle the 6.2 km track for the first time, joined by Shane Van Gisbergen who has previously contested the race with McLaren in one of the most memorable finishes in the history of the famous Australian race.