Belfast Telegraph

300 on starting line for a rally special occasion

By Sammy Hamill

They will turn out in their droves on Tuesday morning, putting the over-indulgencies of Christmas behind them to take part in the annual It's Not The Boxing Day Rally - so named because it no longer takes place on Boxing Day as it did in the past.

Close to 300 hardy enthusiasts from all aspects of motorsport and more will assemble in Moira for an old-fashioned-style Targa rally which will test their driving and navigational skills. They will include experts and novices, even a family more associated with sailing and boosting a former Miss Northern Ireland, Tiffany Brien.

The starting list is headed by multi autotest champion Eamonn Byrne in his Toyota Starlet but including everything from rally to racing drivers.

Steven Ferguson, another multi British and Irish autotest champion, will be there along with the likes of Christopher Evans, Eric Patterson and Allan Harryman who are front runners in the increasing popular lanes rally events in their Mazda and Toyota sports cars.

Former NI junior rally champion Stevie Whitford, who plays a key role in Kris Meeke's support team in the World championship, will be joining in as will UK Ginetta Junior champion Daniel Harper, navigating for his dad Stan. He's too young to hold a driving licence!

Now in its 70th year the Ulster Automobile Club event is always a family day out and the Woodsides will be well represented with dad Robert competing against sons Simon and Mark. But it is the estate agency-owning Briens who are out in full strength with Simon, Juanita, Mark, Julie, Jack and, of course, Tiffany all taking part.

The Tannery, on the airport road, outside Moira, is the start venue at 9.30am.

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