Porsche 997 R-GT prep for the 2017 Ulster Rally

There’s one week to go to the 2017 Ulster Rally, where John Coyne and Stephen Joyce return to action in the Tuthill Porsche 997 R-GT rally car. Our latest R-GT 911 made its debut on the Donegal International Rally in June, only to retire on safety grounds during the final day, with a freak wiper motor failure in torrential rain on the north west coast of Ireland.

The car has since been re-prepared for this year’s Ulster Rally, which takes place on August 18th and 19th, in and around the walled city of Derry~Londonderry. It’s the second year that the Ulster Rally has been run in and around Derry~Londonderry and Strabane, so returning competitors from last year will get a slight advantage, having previously run the stages through counties Derry and Tyrone.

The rally has a very strong entry list, with crews from the FIA European Rally Trophy (Celtic Cup), the MSA Prestone British Rally Championship and the Clonakilty Black Pudding Irish Tarmac Rally Championship all taking part. There are two regroups over the two-day event: one on Friday in Derry’s Guild Hall Square and on Saturday in Strabane town centre.

Porsche 997 R-GT spec tweaks for the 2017 Ulster Rally

We’ve made a number of minor changes to the Porsche 997 R-GT for the 2017 Ulster Rally. The event includes a series of night stages on Friday, so we’ve increased the light output up front, with some corner lights and a bonnet light bar. A new cool suit has been added for the co-driver to match John’s suit, making Stephen even more chilled than previously!

The complete wiper motor and linkage assembly has been replaced, and anti-mist film has been applied by our friends at Mercedes F1 to a new heated windscreen fitted by Russell at Ultimate Windscreens (above). The engine has been serviced and gearbox removed for a clutch check. We’ve also made some modifications to the sump guards, to help with ride heights on the very bumpy Irish roads.

Everything is looking good for Ulster, so John and Stephen should hopefully enjoy a reliable rally this time around and chalk up their first finish in front of the great Northern Irish fans. We wish them luck and look forward to sharing exciting times with the enthusiastic and knowledgeable spectators in and around the event.

Click here to read a Q&A with Porsche rally driver, John Coyne, ahead of the 2017 Ulster Rally