Motorsport Ireland academy driver Aoife Raftery, has been blazing a trail in Europe over the past few weeks, culminating in taking part in two rounds of the Italian Rally Championship.
This is her first full year competing and along with co-driver Geraldine McBride, the 21-year-old Galway driver took on the Rally delle Marche and the Rally dell’ Osolla over two weekends.
After setting exceptional stage time in the first event, which was a loose surface rally, she would retire the car with just one stage remaining, with drive shaft problems. On the second event on asphalt, Aoife completed all tests and took the honours in the female class.
She has competed on almost 20 events throughout the year, in Ireland and also competing in San Marino Rally, in July, as well as an ‘Ice Driving Academy’ in Norway in February. Earlier this month, she spent a week in the Tarragona region of Spain, training at the World Rally Championship – Rally Catalonia.
The rally car, a high specification Peugeot 208 Rally4, was run by European Rally Championship Ladies Champion – Tamara Molinaro, an Italian professional Rally Driver.