Shamrock Vintage Challenge 2019



Shamrock Vintage Challenge we are delighted to offer you the opportunity to come and join us for the 2019 event, in the south-west of Ireland. Enjoy the superb driving roads of West Cork and Kerry, taking in the dramatic scenery of the wild Atlantic Way, and the wonderful landscapes that make up the beauty and drama of this part of Ireland. For 2019 we will start in east Cork at the 5-star Castlemartyr Resort where we will spend our first night before heading on to West Cork and Kerry where we will be based at the wonderful 5-star Sheen Falls Hotel outside the very pretty town of Kenmare for the next three nights. Sheen Falls is the perfect venue as apart from being one of the best hotels in Ireland, it is also small enough that we can take over the entire hotel and have it all to ourselves.

Your team has been ferreting away in search of suitable terrain. We have enjoyed rediscovering roads that seem like old friends and discovering new roads that most competitors will never have driven on before . The area is littered with names that evoke motorsport of a bygone era. The Healy Pass, Moll’s Gap, Roughty River and Ballaghbeama Gap are just a few to whet your appetite. As on the 2018 Shamrock, the entire route has been laid out with older vehicles in mind. Smooth roads, little or no reversing on tests, simple tulip instructions for the road sections and a variety of straightforward directions for the regularity sections. Again, there will be plenty of time allowed for socializing and chat at the various coffee and lunch halts.

The Team

The team shares a passion for these historic machines and, in particular, driving them competitively.

Mickey Gabbett has been competing in historic motorsport both at home and abroad for more than 20 years, Mickey has been involved in running events for many years. He has unique access to many of Ireland’s stately homes and we will be visiting some of these, and other notable venues, for tests and refreshment interludes.

Michael Jackson has been competing since the early 70s and organising events for the last 20 years. He has served as Clerk of the Course for the TDC Retro Rally and is currently Clerk of the Course for the Gordon Bennett International Rally.

Shane Houlihan is a highly experienced competitor in vintage events worldwide. He is an enthusiastic advocate for the old car movement in Ireland, and further afield. Currently President of the Irish Vintage and Veteran Car Club, Shane has been organising and running events for early cars for a number of years.

Ian McCulloch is also a seasoned competitor and has been organising and helping competitors learn the basics and get up to speed on many events over the past number of years. Again, he will be our competitor liaison officer for this 2019 event.

The event is being organised by a team of seasoned competitors with long experience in both national and international rallying. The team shares a passion for these historic machines and, in particular, driving them competitively. Ireland is an ideal location to realise this enthusiasm, with its uncluttered roads, unique scenery and relaxed atmosphere.


It is intended that the event be suitable for crews of all abilities, though some previous experience might be a help. Each crew will be equipped with a road book with route instructions given by way of tulip diagrams. This is the simplest form of navigation and should not cause any problems. The instructions for the regularity sections will be given in various ways including maps and tulips. Again, these will be straightforward with no tricks. The day book will be handed out thirty minutes before leaving the hotel each morning. This is to avoid over-enthusiastic crews from poring over maps and details in their rooms when they ought to be socializing at the bar.

Eligible cars

All pre-war cars (pre-1940) are eligible with separate classes for various engine sizes. A working odometer will be required and, to this end, a modern odometer such as a Halda, Brantz, Monet, etc may be fitted, as long as it simply records distance. Details for cars classes and equipment will be given in the regulations.

What’s included

The entry fee is an all inclusive cost. It covers all hotels for each crew in either twin or double rooms and all meals including lunches and coffee halts etc. The prize giving gala evening at Sheen Falls will also be included and there will be a courtesy luggage van to bring all competitors’ baggage from the Castlemartyr Resort to the Sheen Falls Hotel on the Monday morning thus avoiding crews having to carry their own luggage. There should be no further costs for competitors other than fuel for their cars plus fuel at the bar. There will be one evening where competitors will be free to dine and entertain themselves in the picturesque town of Kenmare which has an abundance of good restaurants. On this evening there will be a courtesy bus to bring competitors from the Sheen Falls Hotel into Kenmare and back again later in the evening.


You can view and download the regulations for the Shamrock Challenge 2019 here

Entry Form

You can download the Shamrock Challenge 2019 entry form here.