Irish Festival Of Speed Blog- with Tonya Fortune
August 9, 2013 by Tonya Fortune
On Saturday evening I made the long trip to Limerick to take part in the second day of the Irish Festival of Speed Sprint, on Sunday 4th August. It’s most unusual to find yourself with a smile on your face on the Tuesday following a bank holiday weekend, but that’s the way I have found myself today, as I would easily say it was one of the most enjoyable events I’ve done to date.
I arrived to Limerick Racecourse with very much a lack of driving under my belt for the year, and hoping to have a good run in the car in preparation for my next stage rally event. The conditions were very slippery following heavy overnight rain, which I soon found out with one or two slides on the practice run.
Being at the slight disadvantage of not having been out for the first day of the competition on Saturday, my first run saw me clock up a time of 74.99 seconds, and left me lying 7th in class one. This was soon to be improved upon however, and run two saw me cut almost 2.5 seconds off my time to 72.51, and run three to 72.13, and moved me up to 5th in class.
With my confidence growing on every run, I went out on run four feeling determined, and ready to make a big push to improve my time. Unfortunately I missed a gear coming out of a tight left handed corner on the back section of the course, costing me dearly, but somehow I still managed to knock my time by a further 1.5 seconds, taking me down to a 70.63 for the run. I’d still love to know what it might have been if I hadn’t made the mistake on the gear!
Try as I might on the final run five, I just couldn’t get the same pace as run four, and also couldn’t break the magic 70 second barrier, but finished my day by cutting a final 0.3 seconds off, on a time of 70.30. This left me with a respectable 5th in class, and 64th overall.
So all in all it was a fantastic days fun, well worth the long spin, and with my little Corsa running like clockwork to really top off the weekend! Also I can safely say it will be one of the only events I’ll be doing where an aerial acrobatics display was taking place overhead while I was out on the course!
Thanks must go to the organisers of both the Irish Festival of Speed, and to the members of Limerick Motor Club who organised the sprint. It was an extremely well run event, with a great course, and I can say for certain that my name will be first on the entry list for two days driving next year!! I would recommend the Irish Festival of Speed to spectators and competitors alike, and with so much else to see and do, it was a shame not to have been able to have a better look around at the various displays on show!
Finally to round up, I also must say thanks to Dan, who swapped the navigators seat to do camera and servicing duties for the weekend, it was much appreciated!
So for now it’s back to work on getting ready for the next event in September, the Wexford Dick Bailey Stages Rally, with hopefully another good report to follow!
Until next time,