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Top driver award was a shock, insists Jonny McMullan

By Sammy Hamill

Jonny McMullan has added one final accolade to his catalogue of 2015 achievements - Ireland's International Driver of the Year.

Winner of the British Formula Ford championship, McMullan was presented with the Manley Memorial Trophy at Motorsport Ireland's annual awards ceremony in Dublin, adding his name to a list which already includes fellow Ulster racing drivers Kenneth Acheson, Martin Donnelly, Eddie Irvine, Jonny Kane and Adam Carroll.

Former Northern Ireland FF1600 champion McMullan was voted MI's Young Driver of the Year for 2014 and used the Dunlop funding to launch a UK campaign which saw him win the British National title and the Triple Crown championship. His home appearances were limited but he also won the Vivion Daly Trophy competition at Mondello.

Overall, the Newtownabbey driver secured a record 17 pole positions, 10 race wins and a total of 21 podium finishes in 2015.

But the Manley Trophy award came as a complete surprise. "I thought I was asked to attend the awards lunch as just a guest and had no idea I was even in the running," said McMullan. "I was gobsmacked."

His successor as Young Racing Driver of the Year is Jake Byrne, a 21-year-old student from Naas who won the Northern Ireland FF1600 championship.

The Young Rally Driver of the Year is Rob Duggan, who is expected to use his bursary to fund a British championship campaign.

Belfast Telegraph

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