Motorsport Ireland Young Rally Driver of the Year and newly crowned DMACK MSA British Junior Rally champion, Rob Duggan, will head to the Isle of Man this weekend for the final round in what has been an almost perfect season for the 23 year old Vauxhall driver from Killarney, Co. Kerry.
Duggan and co-driver Ger Conway wrapped up the British junior title on the penultimate round of the series on the Ulster Rally a few weeks ago and the pair head to the famous island full of confidence for the season finale. Confidence will definitely be needed as Rally Isle of Man (Sept 15th-17th ) has a fearsome reputation thanks to a gruelling 3 day route which includes street stages, night stages and unique weather conditions that can make tyre choice extremely difficult. More often than not, the Isle of Man is a place where experience counts, but it is also a place where experience can be gained and that is Rob’s main aim ahead of the event.
Speaking ahead of the weekend Rob said; “Rally Isle of Man offers a really unique challenge. Having never competed on the island before I’ve no doubt I’ll be at a slight disadvantage as it’s such a specialised event but it will be the first time I’ll have been able to drive the Vauxhall Adam without having to think about the championship so I’m looking forward to that. We have proved our pace on every event this year and would like to continue our form on the Manx if possible. Recce will be extremely important on the island but Ger and myself have worked hard on improving our pacenotes all year and an all new event to us is always a good place to test them. I intend to treat the event with the respect it deserves but I also want to enjoy myself. To round out the season with another strong performance would be the icing on the cake for myself and all the team around me who have worked so hard this season.”
Following a shakedown stage on Thursday afternoon, the 2016 Rally Isle of Man will start on Thursday night with a spectacular head to head super special stage which will take place along the Douglas Promenade. A brace of tests in the darkness will complete Thursday’s action. Friday will offer a stern challenge with crews facing a 13 hour, 11 stage day including a leg of 5 consecutive stages without service. Saturday will see just 3 stages but none are less than 13 miles in length with the final stage crossing the island, starting on the infamous Druidale, taking in the familiar landmarks of Brandywell Cottage, Injebreck and Abbeylands jump before joining the world renowned TT course for the final dash back to Douglas and the TT start/finish line. More information on the event can be found by visiting www.rallyisleofman.co.im
To keep up to date with Rob’s exploits, make sure and visit www.robduggan.com and www.vauxhallmotorsport.co.uk or follow Rob on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Rob is supported by Rentokil Initial, Motorsport Ireland, Sport Ireland and the Team Ireland Foundation