24 Hours of Ypres: Greer and Barrable take step up in class
Six Irish drivers have made the trip to Flanders to tackle this weekend’s 24 Hours of Ypres — on of Europe’s classic rallies.
Headed by the S2000 Skoda Fabias of British championship contenders Jonny Greer and Robert Barrable, the Irish contingent also includes the R3 Renault Clios of Tommy Doyle and Omagh teenager Mark Donnelly as well as former Mitsubishi Evo champion Neil McCance from Comber.
Another youngster, Jonny Leonard from Ballinamallard, starts his first European event in his R2 Ford Fiesta courtesy of winning the Hankook junior driver award in last season’s Northern Ireland championship.
The rally, round five of the Intercontinental Challenge series, was won in 2009 by Kris Meeke and it represents a huge step up for Greer and Barrable.
“It is all about gaining experience and trying something new,” said Greer, who will be back in British championship action on his home round of the series, the Todds Leap Ulster Rally in August.
“There are something like 30 S2000 cars starting the rally so it will be a good opportunity for Robert and myself to measure the progress we have made since switching to the Skodas.”
The Ypres start list includes six-time winner Freddy Loix and fellow Skoda drivers Jan Kopecky and Andreas Mikkelsen. The Peugeots of Meeke’s former Kronos Racing team in the hands of England’s Guy Wilks and Tour de Corse winner Thierry Neuville.