With just over six weeks to go until the 2016 Mayo Stages Rally on Sunday March 6, preparations are in full swing. Mayo and District Motorsport Club are delighted to welcome on board again. Hotel Ballina and Kennedy Motors as joint main sponsors of the popular west of Ireland event and thank them for their support in this, the 40th year since the establishment of the club.
2016 sees Mayo host the opening round of the National Rally Championship and for the first time welcomes Triton Showers, which commenced as title championship sponsor in 2015. In addition, Mayo and District Motorsport Club also welcome back to Mayo, Triton Showers' MD Kevin Barrett, who is a former winner of the Mayo Stages Rally. The rally will also be round one of the very popular Border Rally Championship, which in 2016 celebrates its 25th year. Sligo Pallets has played a massive role as title sponsor in this championship and 2016 will be its sixth year in the role. The stage is firmly set for many top rally drivers and co-drivers to battle it out for honours in north Mayo.
Hotel Ballina is once again rally headquarters for the weekend. Just off the N26, but close to the town centre and with scrutiny, trailer park, and Parc-ferme adjacent to the hotel, this modern four star facility is ideally situated for easy access from all locations, and has proved to be a popular location with competitors and visitors to the rally over the past three years .Exceptional accommodation deals are available at Rally HQ, Hotel Ballina, for crews and followers. Bookings and information at (096 ) 23600, www.hotelballina.ie
After a rally show in Ballina town centre on Saturday March 5, the event proper begins on Sunday morning when the cars leave Parc-ferme. The competitors will face three testing stages, each to run three times. Offering a total distance of approximately 115 stage kilometres and 165 road kilometres, they look set to provide a challenging test for competitors.
A new clerk of the course comes on board for 2016. Kilalla native, David Breen is an experienced rally official, having undertaken a number of roles in recent years, he is ably supported by an experienced team of officials who are currently busy putting the finishing touches to months of preparations for this ever popular event.
Regulations for the 2016 Mayo Stages Rally will be available online shortly on Mayo and District Motorsport Club's website www.mayomotorsportclub.com with entries for the event already open.
On the lead up to the rally, Mayo and District Motorsport club will continue to highlight to local school children in the vicinity the importance of safety both at rallies and on our roads, with a road safety day in co-operation with the RSA, Mayo County Council, Bus Eireann, and An Garda Siochana. This has proven over the last number of years to be an excellent opportunity to teach the younger generation the essentials of being safe on the roads in a fun and memorable way.
The official launch of the 2016 Hotel Ballina – Kennedy Motors Mayo Stages Rally will take place on Thursday February 18 in Hotel Ballina, further details will be available on www.mayomotorsportclub.com