Frank Kelly is an Irish rally driver who we have just become huge fans of due to this video. Kelly races a pretty awesome little Ford Escort Mk2 that is powered by a 300hp Millington Diamond four banger. This little mill is naturally aspirated 2.5L four cylinder that is an updated version of the Cosworth headed engine that would have powered these cars back in the day. Using an aluminum block that provides more room for a long throw crank, the engine is lighter and it produces more torque than the original as well. When hooked to a sequential six speed manual transmission, this thing is a short wheelbase, screaming rocket that Kelly drives on the very ragged edge of control. This video is literally three minutes of non-stop sideways, flying, and sliding action from some of the most challenging rally courses that Ireland has to offer.
There are no wrecks but there are some close calls where the car is completely crossed up and Kelly goes into bee-swatting mode to get it back on line. Co-driver Liam Brennan is one of the most gusty guys we know because he’s not screaming and freaking out when the car decides it is going to fly or when Kelly decides to enter corners at speed that seem physically impossible to survive. With his heavy Irish brogue it can be tough to understand the instructions Brennan is yelling out but frankly as long as Kelly understands them, that’s all that matters.
This is an old school little car with some interesting technology packed into it. The sequential trans, the EFI engine, and undoubtedly some nice modern suspension components keep the thing tied to the ground (mostly) until Kelly wants to air it out some over hills and whatever else gets into the way. We have no idea what the car’s top end speed is in 6th gear but some of the flyby shots that are included in this video have to be showing this car going at least 120mph if not a bunch more.
The combo of the old RWD car and all the good tech is what really makes it for us, along with Kelly’s wide open driving style. This dude has never met a power slide that he doesn’t like! With the in-car and out of car footage, the gear banging action, and the straight up wail of this 2.5L 300hp mill, we hereby declare this video 100% BangShift approved!
Thanks to Brenhan Chapman for the tip on this video!