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Rally Mexico: Gareth MacHale preview

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Rally Mexico: Gareth MacHale preview
Mar 8, 2007, 8:29 AM

Old Dog, New Tricks for MacHale World Rally Team Ireland's leading World Rally Championship (WRC) contender, Gareth MacHale, will have a new team mate this weekend on Rally Mexico; his father, Austin. "I'm delighted to be back in Mexico. It ...

Old Dog, New Tricks for MacHale World Rally Team

Ireland's leading World Rally Championship (WRC) contender, Gareth MacHale, will have a new team mate this weekend on Rally Mexico; his father, Austin.

"I'm delighted to be back in Mexico. It obviously has a special place in my heart after last year" said Gareth.

It was at Rally Mexico in 2006 that Gareth and co-driver Paul Nagle scored Ireland's first World Championship points in over twenty years with a stunning sixth place finish, and they will be aiming to better that performance this year in his new 2006 Ford Focus WRC. Austin MacHale will be partnered by long-time co-driver Brian Murphy.

Austin MacHale commented that whilst it was more traditional for the son to inherit the father's car, he was looking forward to getting behind the wheel of the 2003 Ford Focus WRC that performed so well on the event last year. "As the saying goes," he joked, "It's the old dog for the hard road and the pup for the path."

Gareth's response to that was: "Austin might be the senior member of the team, but Paul and I will be aiming to show him nothing but the tail-lights this weekend."

The event covering a total distance of 850 km, is based in Leon, 400km north of Mexico City. It is the highest round in the WRC series, with the opening day's Ortega test climbing through cacti-filled mountains to a breathtaking 2737 metres. It begins on Thursday evening with a ceremonial start in Guanajuato, a UNESCO-designated World Heritage Site, which last year drew almost 60,000 fans. The town is famed for its beauty and underground network of roads.

It may have the shortest route of any World Rally Championship event, but there will be no shortage of action at Rally Mexico this weekend.

-credit: mr

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Series WRC
Drivers Paul Nagle , Austin MacHale , Brian Murphy