Belfast Telegraph

Porsche power back at Circuit of Ireland

By Sammy Hamill

It was a car which dominated the Circuit of Ireland several decades ago and now the latest version of the Porsche 911 is set to return for the 2015 edition.

Built by English Porsche specialists Tuthill, and usually driven by French four-time WRC winner, François Delecour, the new 911 R-GT will be crewed by Robert Woodside and co-driver Allan Harryman, the sons of two famous Circuit-winning fathers.

"I grew up watching Porsche 911s winning Irish rallies and after testing the R-GT earlier this year, it was obvious why rally fans across mainland Europe have been excited by the car," said former sprint champion Woodside. "It looks terrific and goes like a rocket!"

Circuit director Bobby Willis hailed it as "fantastic news" for the rally.

"The sound of the car is unbelievable and is guaranteed to make the hairs stand on the back of the neck," he enthused.

"This Porsche 911 has already proven itself in some of the biggest rallies around Europe and I'm delighted Robert and Allan will have the opportunity to drive it on a rally where they have a long family association."

Woodside's father Ian won the Circuit back in 1963 driving an Austin Healey Sprite and Terry Harryman, Allan's dad, won the following year as co-driver to Ronnie McCartney before joining Paddy Hopkirk for victories in 1965 and '67.

Meanwhile, entries closed this week for the race and have exceeded the maximum 140 permitted starters.

They include drivers from Poland, Russia, France, Hungary, Belgium, Sweden, Germany, Latvia and the Czech Republic as well as the UK and Ireland.

The full entry list for the rally, which roars into action over the Easter weekend, will be announced next week.

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