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Swiss duo set to give race fans a blast from past at Kirkistown

 

By Sammy Hamill ·

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In front: Matt Round-Garrido

The Kirkistown race circuit will resound to the roar of mighty V8 engines as a pair of Seventies-style Formula 5000 cars join the starting list for Saturday's 500 Club meeting at the Co Down track.

Swiss drivers Gislain Genecand and Alain Girardet will be lining up in the BOSS (Big Open Single Seaters) Ireland championship round which is part of a 17-race programme.

Powered by five-litre Chevy engines, F5000 cars were as quick as most Formula One cars back in the day, and Genecand is bringing his Surtees TS5A to Kirkistown, while Girardet will be driving a McLaren M10B.

The BOSS Ireland series is currently being led by Paul O'Connell in his F3 Dallara from the Mygale of John Stewart and the Dallara of Sylvie Mullan, who won back-to-back rounds at Mondello earlier in the summer.

The Dawson-WAM Northern Ireland FF1600 championship features strongly in the programme with two of the final four rounds scheduled for this weekend. English teenager Matt Round-Garrido has led the series all season in his Medina and sits on 180 points.

But he has been pegged back in recent races by Alan Davison who is in second place on 135 and David McCullough (105). Former champion Noel Robinson sat out the early part of the season but returned in June and has won twice in his Van Diemen.

Dromara's Mike Johnston will be renewing his season long battle with Newtownabbey's Jim Larkham in the Roadsports, and it is tight at the top in the Ford Fiesta championship, where Mark Stewart leads from Eórann O'Neill and Paul Stewart.

The popular Legends, replica 1950s American stock cars with 1000cc motorbike engines, are back too. Practice starts at 9.30am and the first race is scheduled for 11.30am.

Meanwhile, Andrew Watson is included in the Garage 59 team for the 10-hour International GT Challenge race at Suzuka in Japan where he will share a GT3 McLaren 650S with Ben Barnicoat and Côme Ledogar.

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In front: Matt Round-Garrido