Leinster Trophy Preview
September 13, 2013 by Leo Nulty
Well, it’s Leinster Trophy time folks, so time for a look at the runners and riders who will compete for one of the most famous trophies in Irish Motorsport.
The Formula Sheane class will race for the trophy for the second year in a row. This has caused plenty of chat and Facebook posting over the last few weeks but to clarify, it is more about how it was awarded than the fact that it was awarded to the Sheanes. Nobody has a problem with the class getting the trophy- as said before, they will provide a packed grid and superb racing. (In an unusual move, the LMC have reacted by already announcing that FF1600 will race for the trophy in 2014!)
Kevin Sheane is the man of the moment in the class, leading the championship coming into the decider this weekend in his Eolas recruitment backed car. He dominated the last round at Kirkistown two weeks ago, breaking the lap record in the process. The evergreen Brian Hearty is one of the few who can challenge and beat Sheane and is keen to win the big one, having retired from last years event with mechanical problems. His Vodaphone car is never far from the sharp end of the
grid and he is one of the hardest in wheel to wheel battle, so don’t discount him. Barry Rabbitt is probably the dark horse here- he has shown flashes of pace to beat anyone in his Goldenpages.ie backed car but has been beset by niggly mechanical issues which damaged his title campaign. The above three are probably the favourites but there are a number of others capable of upsetting the applecart too. Dave Parks is devastatingly quick on occasion and is surely one to watch. Tim Swail, a former winner of Mondello Park’s Become A Race Driver award, has returned to the series with the ex Antoin Cahill car and has been going very well in testing at Mondello recently- he should not be too far away. Robbie Allen, running in the colours of series sponsor Micksgarage.com, is also worthy of consideration- he is quick and tough and can’t be discounted. Dan Mulligan, Enda O’Connor and Anton Savage are proven winners in the class and they have dusted off the overalls too for a shot at the biggest race of the year- I suspect all three will go well. Savage in particular, is always great to watch- a real charger. Keith Hogg has had a tough season but again, if his car goes well, he is a consideration for the rest. Tristan Quinn was a frontrunner in 2012 in the class but has not ventured out thus far this season. He is another to be tempted back out by the chance of getting his name on the same trophy as Senna, Hakkinnen et al.
Should there be trouble at the front, there are a host of less experienced racers well capable of grabbing their chance. John Linnane, Gary Corcoran and Jennifer Mullan have all shown huge improvement this year and should show well. All in all, it has potential to be a cracking race and it is extremely hard to pick a winner from the entry list! May the best man, or woman, win!
Remember, if you can’t get down to Mondello park this weekend, you can watch all the action live & free on www.mondello.tv in HD for the first time!