JENNINGS AIMS FOR THIRD TIME LUCKY
Subaru Impreza ace Garry Jennings is sure that he can put two years of mistakes behind him to triumph in Galway this week on the Irish Tarmac Championship curtain raiser.
Jennings came closest to finishing on the top step of the podium in 2014 when he moved to within two hundredths of a second of eventual winner Declan Boyle, but an incident on the Brady’s Yard stage, when he aquaplaned into a field before returning to the stage, meant he had to settle for second.
More disappointment followed 12 months later when Jennings when he clipped a rock on the opening day and damaged the steering. With no way of fixing it he surrendered the runner-up spot.
“We have been extremely unlucky in Galway these past two seasons,” explained the Kesh businessman.
“Hopefully it will be a case of third time lucky for me because it would mean so much to win in Galway. It would be great if I could add it to my list of rally victories – I’ll certainly be trying hard to do it.
“People say that I tend to go better in the wet than I do in the dry, and yes the roads were damp when I was challenging for the win in Galway before, but it didn’t pan out the way I had hoped.”
The process of rebuilding Jennings’ Subaru after it went up in flames on August’s Ulster Rally is nearing completion, meanwhile, with the engine arriving back from Belgium over the weekend.
Despite not featuring competitively for the best part of six months, the 2013 Tarmac champion insists he has the speed and the car he needs to fight at the business end of the field in Galway.
“I feel more comfortable driving the car now than I have at any other time,” explained Jennings. “I won in Donegal and then at Lurgan Park last year and came close to achieving three straight wins on the Ulster Rally before the fire started in the engine bay.
“I wouldn’t say that I have one of the fastest cars this season but I certainly believe I have one of the most reliable cars in this year’s championship.
“I know that in order to win I have to beat some very quick World Rally Car drivers as well as people like Keith Cronin and Alastair Fisher in the R5 cars.”
A total of 14 R5 and S2000 cars have been entered.