Two fined €3,500 each for dangerous driving at Killarney rally

Gardaí tracked men down after video of them doing ‘doughnuts’ emerged online

The accused completed 11 doughnuts each at an area along the Looscaunagh lake, a Garda told Killarney District Court. Photograph: Tom Fahy

The accused completed 11 doughnuts each at an area along the Looscaunagh lake, a Garda told Killarney District Court. Photograph: Tom Fahy

 

Two men from Tipperary have been ordered to pay €3,500 each after they were convicted of dangerous driving during the annual Rally of the Lakes in Killarney last April.

The men each performed several doughnuts in under a minute on a section of the N71 near Ladies’ View in Killarney through which the rally had passed earlier, Killarney District Court was told on Tuesday.

Martin Hayden (25) of Longfordpass, Urlingford, Thurles, and Iarfhlaith O’Brien (21) , of Ravendale, Rathmana, Thurles, a farrier who works with the Coolmore Stud, were both charged with dangerous driving on April 29th last at Looscaunagh, Killarney.

They entered guilty pleas in court on Tuesday.

Each was told he could pay €3,500 to the court poor box by November 21st to have the charge reduced to one of careless driving, but each will still get penalty points and have a conviction. They will also have to have devices fitted to any cars they may drive for a period of three years limiting their speed to 100km/h.

Doughnuts

Garda Patrick Sullivan of Killarney Garda station said the accused completed 11 doughnuts each at a gathering of car enthusiasts in the scenic area along the Looscaunagh lake between Ladies’ View and Moll’s Gap.

The court heard the men were identified from footage taken by an overhead drone which had been uploaded on to the internet and viewed more than 220,000 times on Facebook.

Solicitor for the men, Patrick Sheehan, said his clients were driving towards the Black Valley to follow the car rally when they came across a crowd and were told they had to do doughnuts to get past.

“Because they like rallies and because they like cars, they were carried away by adrenaline. They accept they did it. They were willing participants, but they were not the organisers, and had only a small role in the matter,” he said.

Mr Hayden and Mr O’Brien were driving 1,600cc Toyota Corollas which had now been sold, the court heard.