Ashley Field dominated the 2016 Dukeries Rally, held at Donington Park, repeating his victory of 2015. The Dukeries MC driver, with Steve McNulty alongside for the first time, was quickest through every stage in his Darrien T90 to win by 2 minutes and 5 seconds from the Class 5 winning Proton Millington of Graeme Bell and Russ Radford after 7 stages.
Field’s advantage over Bell was 12 seconds after the slippery first stage on the Donington tarmac with the Escort of Roger and Sam Cox in third place. Each stage was laid out around the Donington circuit, service roads and car park with straw bale chicanes as added obstacles. As the track dried Field’s lead increased with each stage, but the Cox’s slipped back to sixth after four stages before hitting a straw bale on stage 5, forcing their retirement.
Sheffield and Hallamshire MC’s Martin Hodgson and Tony Jones (Ford Escort Mk II) took over third place and reduced the gap to Bell and Radford by 27 seconds, to just 4 seconds with two stages remaining. Both recorded the same time on stage 6 before Bell and Radford sealed second place on the final stage, their advantage just 6 seconds at the end.
Dukeries pairing Dave Welch and Stuart Proctor recovered, from an off-stage excursion on the opening stage, to seventh after five stages before their Subaru Impezza succumbed to gearbox problems.
Lee Edwards and Mike Roberts (Welsh Borders) took fourth overall in their BMW M3 while Craig and Alex Fleming took the Class 3 victory, and fifth overall, despite their Mk II Escort coming into contact with a straw bale chicane. Class 2 victory went to the Honda Civic of Richard Bliss and Jamie Vaughan while Mid Derbyshire MC crew John and Ryan Godbehere took Class 1 in their Ford Puma. One place ahead was the first Mid Derbys car home, the Class 3 Renault Clio of Rob Fisher and Adam Lawrence.