BY MARTIN WALSH
DUNMANWAY’S David Guest will debut his new Ford Fiesta R5 on this week’s Corrib Oil Galway International Rally.
Recently, The Southern Star caught up with the former Irish Tarmac Group N champion, who showed us what it’s like inside the cockpit of the Fiesta that is somewhat different to the road-going version.
Sitting in the wrap around bucket seat, David explained the process.
‘The first thing is that you turn on the switch that gives you the dash display. Then you start the car by building up oil pressure first before the car will fire, it might take 15/20 seconds. Then when you are ready to fire up the car you start it and leave it run and warm up the different water and oil temperatures until such time as you move the car.’
David then explained what happens when he and co-driver Jonathan McGrath arrive at the start of the stage where they await the start countdown.
‘You put the car into stage mode (a button near the gear lever and handbrake) there are three different lag settings for how aggressive the lag is,’ he explained.
‘Normally we usually use lag number two. In the wet we might bring it back to lag number one but it’s not inclined to push the car as much. Lag 3 is a little bit more aggressive than Lag 2 but we normally wouldn’t use it at this time of the year. On a dry West Cork Rally, we will have lag number 3, it’s just more aggressive in corners.
‘We have a launch control button here so at the start of the stage you press the launch control button, keep it pressed, put the car into first gear and then you accelerate to the floor, up the clutch and as the car starts to move you leave go the launch control (the launch control limits the rev limiter to 6500 revs).
‘To go up the gears you pull the lever and push it back to go down. There is a button at the top of the lever, the car will only go to first gear until you press the button.
‘The wipers are on the steering column, indicators and lights are on a button on the steering and a menu button to go through the screen that you have your different fuel levels, temperatures and pressures including brake pressure, diff temperatures and pressures, everything that you will ever need is on the screen.’
The top speed of the Fiesta R5 is 118mph. David, whose last car was a Skoda Fabia S2000 concluded, ‘You’re extremely busy in an S2000 car, this seems a bit more relaxed.’