Alastair Fisher followed up his third place on the Rally Isle Of Man, with a superb second place amongst the British Championship regulars on the Ulster International Rally last weekend.
For the 21-year-old, co-driver Rory Kennedy and the Pro-Tec/McGarrity Motorsport team it was a flawless weekend, with no dramas, and not a mark on their Group N Mitsubishi Evo 9, as they finished sixth overall in the rally, the third of the Group N runners, behind two former British Rally champions, namely Gwyndaf Evans and Mark Higgins. However, as Gwyndaf was not BRC registered it leaves Alastair taking second place BRC points.
The event went well right from stage one, Tardree on the outskirts of the rallies new base in Antrim: “The first stage was very slippery. Even though we were only the tenth car on the road, there was a lot of mud pulled out onto the road,” said Fisher. “We choose a cut slick which wasn't a bad choice for the loop of stages, and on stage one we had a good time, second fastest Group N, and I was happy.”
Onto the famous Glendun and Torr Head stages near Cushendun, and Fisher kept up his consistent, fast pace, a pace that had brought him consistently within a second a mile of the top Group N times set by Keith Cronin, Higgins and Evans.
“Up to Saturday lunch time really our pace was consistently just one second per mile down on the leaders, which was a lot closer than on the Manx,” he added, “By that stage we also had put a good gap between us and those behind us, so for the Saturday afternoon stages we backed off to ensure our finish.”
The change in pace in the PPG Lancer was reflected too on Friday evening, with an excellent time on the daunting cliff edge Torr Head stage in the dark, the test that unfortunately claimed Cronin.
“I enjoyed that stage, our notes worked well, and our tyre choice was correct. It's a daunting test for sure; you simply cannot afford to be off line, or its disaster!”
The overall result strengthens Fisher's lead in the Group N Irish Tarmac Championship, and his third place overall in the 2009 MSA British Rally Championship.
”We will have a look at the Cork 20 to aim for the Irish Championship, but also it's important to try to retain our position in the BRC on the Trackrod,” Fisher concluded. “Dave Weston Jnr is still a threat there and we need a good finish on that final round.
"We are aiming to contest our home rally, the Fisher Engineering Lakeland Stages as a bit of a gravel test too, and I'm really looking forward to the fast forests of the Trackrod Rally.”