There was heartbreak for Ireland’s Callum Devine shortly before the finish of Vodafone Rally Portugal yesterday just as the Derry driver looked all set to take runner up position in the Junior section of this World Rally Championship round.
The 23 year old current holder of the Young Rally Driver of the Year title, and the Billy Coleman Award, held fourth place following Friday’s stages and climbed to second on Saturday, behind Swede Dennis Radstrom.
He held this place for most of yesterday’s final section, a clear nine minutes ahead of Italy’s Enrico Oldrati, but on the eighteenth of the twenty stages, a wheel came off his Ford Fiesta R2T and that was the end of his weekend.
Waterford’s Craig Breen finished seventh in the main rally, after being as high as second during Friday’s stages in his Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT car. His Northern Ireland teammate Kris Meeke led the rally at one point, but crashed out and was unable to continue.
At home, Cork’s Barry Meade and Colin Fitzgerald took victory in the Carlow Sheehy Motors Mini Staaaages Rally in their Escort, eleven seconds ahead of Frank and Lorna Kelly from Tyrone.