William Creighton is making a one-off appearance in the Irish Tarmac Championship at West Cork

Moira driver William Creighton has ruled out a surprise result on the West Cork Rally, insisting he is solely focused on better understanding what makes his Ford Fiesta Rally2 tick on closed-road events.

Based out of Clonakilty and expanded from a two-day affair to a three-day competition, West Cork is the only round of the Irish Tarmac Championship Creighton plans to contest this year with Liam Regan.

It comes at an opportune time as the talented 26-year-old has the chance to fine tune its set-up for asphalt – a surface he has yet to experience at competitive speeds in the M-Sport-developed machine.

To date, seat time has been limited to a brace of winter fixtures, including last month’s Rally Sweden – the first of seven World Rally Championship WRC2 starts Creighton is going to make during 2024.

Next up in WRC2 is April’s Croatia Rally, but before that and in the days immediately after this Saint Patrick’s weekend meeting, Creighton is heading to England for the start of the British Rally Championship.

“I will focus on my own event and work on getting comfortable in the car,” said Creighton. “The Rally2 cars are so impressive in Tarmac set-up and for sure it is a step up from what we have been used to over the past few years, so we need to take it stage-by-stage to get to grips with it on this type of event.”

“The aim for West Cork is to get familiar with the Rally2 Fiesta on Tarmac as we build our experience ahead of round one of the British Rally Championship and then our next WRC2 event at Rally Croatia.”

Creighton features in a top ten that is arguably one of the strongest seen on a round of the Irish Tarmac Championship for some time as it comprises no fewer than four champions of the cross-border series.

Number one seed in his newly acquired Citroen C3 Rally2 is Josh Moffett who is aiming to make it a third straight West Cork win; on Friday he runs in front of the Volkswagen Polo GTI R5 of Irish Tarmac title holder Callum Devine and the Ford Fiesta Rally2 of four-time British Rally champion Keith Cronin who strolled to a comprehensive triumph at February’s first round in Galway alongside Mikie Galvin. At number four is Matt Edwards in a Ford Fiesta Rally2, with Creighton one place behind the Welshman.

“The pace amongst the Irish Tarmac Rally Championship regulars will be very competitive – there is a huge entry with a lot of strong drivers – so this will provide a good benchmark that we can use to gauge our improvement over the course of the three days,” added Creighton.

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