IIt seems a long time ago since we were all together enjoying the 2019 Shamrock Vintage Challenge. Nobody then could have forseen the havoc that Covid-19 would inflict on all of our lives including playing about with our old cars. Hopefully the worst is now behind us and we look forward to returning to a more “normal” life. There may be still some Covid conditions to be followed, but we at Irish Racing Green are confident that we can put on an event that will contain all of the critical elements that have made the previous Challenges so enjoyable. Therefore, following on from the great success of the 2019 Shamrock Vintage Challenge, for which we were delighted to be awarded the “spirit of FIVA” award, we are delighted to offer you the opportunity to come and join us for the 2022 event, in the south-west of Ireland. Come and 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 2022 we will start in Co Kilkenny at the Newpark Hotel where we will spend our first night before heading on to Killarney, Co Kerry where we will be based at the wonderful five-star Dunloe Hotel, just outside Killarney for the next three nights. The Dunloe is literally within sight of the famous Gap of Dunloe and will be the perfect venue as, apart from being one of the best hotels in Ireland, it is also small enough for us to 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.
As on the 2019 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 socialising and chat at the various coffee and lunch halts.
The event is being organised by a team of seasoned competitors with long experience in both national and international rallying.
- Mickey Gabbett – 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 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. A Past-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 2022 event.
Overall, the team shares a passion for these historic machines and, in particular, driving them competitively. Ireland is an ideal location to realize 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 forty five 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 socialising at the bar.
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.
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 prizegiving gala evening at The Dunloe will also be included and there will be a courtesy luggage van to bring all competitors’ baggage from the Newpark Hotel to the Dunloe Hotel on the Monday morning thus avoiding crews having to carry their own. (Power to weight ratio will also be boosted.) 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 Killarney which has an abundance of good restaurants. On this evening there will be a courtesy bus to bring competitors from the The Dunloe into Killarney and back again later in the evening.
You can view and download the regulations for the Shamrock Challenge 2022 here.
You can download the Shamrock Challenge 2022 entry form here.