Introduction to Connacht Motorclub
Connacht Motor Club has since its reformation in 1981 dedicated itself to the promotion of Motorsport in the North West region attracting membership from Sligo, North Leitrim and North Roscommon. Though its membership of well in excess of 100, both male and female, the club organises and promotes motorsport events, nurtures new competitors and supports neighbouring fellow Motorsport Ireland affiliated clubs in the running of their events.
Records do show that Sligo and District Motor Club did exist back as far as 1947, running Treasure Hunts and Autotests, continuing throughout the fifties and sixties. It was in the start of the eighties that the emphasis on stage rallying gave a small number of members the vision to grow the club again and this dedication is still evident today.
The highlight of the clubs calendar has continually been the Sligo Stages Rally held in annually in July. Since the first multi- Stages Rally the headquarters have been accommodated at the Sligo Park Hotel with stages alternating between the areas of Coolaney , Tubbercurry , Ballymote , Riverstown ,Gevagh , Dromahair , Manorhamilton ,Ballintrilick Grange ,,and Maugherow. Many of the renowned classic stages in the region have been part of the ever changing loop. Ladies Brae , Lough Easkey ,Lough Bo , Arigna , and the Horse Shoe , many of which also were often used as Circuit of Ireland stages in the past and more recently some as Rally Ireland stages.
The club also has been fortunate over many years to have been accommodated with venues to run up to four loose surface autocross events in the calendar year. This , being a cheaper entry level of the sport is an ideal opportunity for the young budding competitor to get valuable experience in car control while measuring up to the more experienced competitor. Many familiar names like, Eugene Donnelly, Glen Allen, Niall Mc Shea, Gary Jennings, Alastair Fisher among others competed on Sligo’s loose surface events in the past.
The Hewison Autotest Championship has close affiliation with Connacht Motor Club as two members of the Murray family, K .P. senior and his son Alan both held the title in different decades. Sadly neither champion is with us but in their memory, the club proudly host a round of the current championship each year.
Over the past thirty years the club has been continaly been bringing improvements to the organisation of events , which much was adopted when Rally Ireland was run in the North West .