Barry pulls Rabbitt from the hat to claim Leinster Trophy

Meath man Barry Rabbitt yesterday won Ireland’s biggest motor race, the historic Leinster Trophy at Mondello Park, for the second time, after an exciting duel for much of the ten laps with Stephen Daly from Dunshaughlin, who was hoping to become the first driver ever to score a fourth victory.

Daly started as the firm favourite, having won Saturday’s Boss Formula Libre event which had much the same entry list, and also started from pole position after setting the best qualifying time. However, disaster struck once the starting lights turned green, with his Dallara’s engine stalling, leaving him to start last of the large entry before he could persuade his engine back to life.

Heavy rain made the conditions treacherous, but although Rabbitt was only fifth on the grid, he made a perfect start to snatch the lead, while Daly jumped from last position to sixth place on the opening lap, claiming third spot two laps later and runner up place when Paul Dagg spun shortly after half distance.

Daly was determined to get that fourth win, closing to within two seconds of the leader by lap eight, when fate intervened. Another car spun off, causing a safety car to come into play, which froze the placings as they were. With just over one lap remaining, that was how positions stayed until the chequered flag, giving the delighted Rabbitt a repeat of his Trophy win of six years ago.

Images: Carl Cleary
Text: Motorsport Ireland