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Mitchell makes impressive European debut

SOMETIMES it’s hard to believe that Jason Mitchell only started rallying less than a year ago. 
 
The Victoria Bridge man has taken to the sport like the proverbial duck to water, which is incredibly apt given the conditions he had to deal with on his European debut in Belgium. 
 
After making a positive debut during last December’s Turkey Run Rally, Mitchell has been rarely out of the top 10 in any event he has competed in and in August of this year he won Omagh Motor Club’s Cam Trophy Rally Time Trial. 
 
But recently he took a massive step up and a huge leap into the unknown by travelling to Belgium to compete in the demanding Aarova Rally Oudenaarde during which he and co-driver Kenny Bustard had to overcome mud-splattered roads, lying and flowing water and cobbles in the trusty Greg Mitchell Motors-liveried R5 Ford Fiesta. 
 
Up against the likes of World Rally Championship regular, reigning Irish Tarmac Rally champion Craig Breen and the best local talent, Mitchell surprised himself by finishing 11th overall. 
 
“When we went out there the boys said to me ‘just try to get a finish, if you can get into the top 25, you’ll have done well because the Belgians go fast’,” he explained.  
 
“I only started at the Turkey Run last December so we can’t complain. 
 
“That’s the first time I’ve done a tarmac rally – although it was ‘tarmac’ with a difference! You had cobbles and running water flowing down the road like a burn with you trying to go through it at 120 miles per hour!”
 
FULL STORY IN LAST THURSDAY’S STRABANE CHRONICLE

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The Strabane Chronicle is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
Registered in Northern Ireland, No. R0000576. 4 Castle Street, Strabane, Co. Tyrone, Northern Ireland, BT82 8AB