Red hot rally action returns to the forests around Mansfield this weekend when the Rainworth Skoda Dukeries Rally returns.
Rainworth Skoda of Mansfield are the main sponsor of the rally for the 10th year running and the event is based, starts and finishes from Southwell Racecourse with 44 stages miles in and around Sherwood Forest on Saturday with Scrutineering at the racecourse on Friday.
The popular event is a qualifying round of the REIS - Get Connected BTRDA Rally Series and the MSA English Rally Championship. It also qualifies for the four Regional Association Championships - the Dansport EMAMC Stage Rally Championship, the Roadrunner / Phoenix Awards ANEMMC Rally Championship, the Threshfield Garage Ravenol Oil ANCC Stage Rally Championship and the AEMC Ward Trophy.
No recent winners to the event will be present this year, in its 54th year, so there will be a new name on the trophy.
During recent years some very well known names have won the rally, including last year’s winner, Hugh Hunter in his Ford Focus WRC. Oother winners have included Chesterfield’s VK drinks entrepener Steve Perez, winner in 2006,2009 and 2010.
The first Dukeries Rally to run was in 1960 with a restricted RAC permit and in the 1970s a typical route would include Donington Park before the race circuit was rebuilt.
The 1970s was the era dominated by the late Roger Clark/Jim Porter in the Esso Uniflow Escorts, winning the Dukeries Rally three times; in 1962, 1972 and 1973.
The Clark family have scored five victories in total with Roger’s sons Matthew in 1993 and Oliver in 1997 following in the family tradition.
Then 2002 saw long-time Dukeries club member Brian Bell equalling the Roger Clark’s record of three wins (1992, 1999 and 2002)
More recently Andy Burton became the first person to win the rally four times 1995, 1996 and 2003 and 2011 in his famous Peugeot Cosworth .
Local crews and Dukeries Motor Club Members taking part include Gary Wayne and Andy Smith in a Subaru Impreza, Tony Bird and Dave Walters in a Escort Cosworth WRC Chris and Steve Grundy Vauxhall Corsa and Jason Lepley and Howard Pridmore in a Escort Mk2 RS1800.
Spectators are welcome at the start and finish at Southwell Racecourse, the main service area at the Thoresby Market Site and to several forest stage venues.
Please only visit these venues and park in the official car parks. There is no public access to the other stage venues rallying in this area.
The cars are grouped into three sections. The first group numbered 201 onwards are cars up to 1400cc and BTRDA Rally First cars. The first car will leave the start at 8.30am.
The second group numbered 101 onwards are the two wheel drive cars, including many pre 1981 Historic Rally cars. Finally there will be the four wheel drive cars including the World Rally Cars (numbered 1+).
Cars start at one minute intervals so the whole field will take at least two hours to pass through a stage.
Friday, 7th June Scrutineering/Documentation – Southwell Racecourse
The rally cars will undergo safety and technical inspection and competitors will complete documentation procedures between 4pm and 8.15pm. (Bar, fast food, toilets, programmes, rally videos etc).
Saturday, 8th June Start – Southwell Racecourse
The first car will leave the start at 8.30am with the others following at one minute intervals.
Stage 1 – Watchwood, Map Ref: 120/585.505 First car due at 9am
Approach from the B6386 (Calverton) down the ‘no through road’ which is blocked off from the A614. Pass the stage entrance and park at the end of road. (See location plan). Use the footpaths on the north side through Foxcovert Plantation which give direct access to fast S bends about 0.3 miles into the stage.
Please do NOT enter or exit the stage through the stage entrance. No parking on the A614 – clearway.
Stage 3 - Rainworth Skoda Sherwood Pines I, Map Ref: 120/ 611.637 First car due at 10.10am
Follow signs to the Sherwood Pines Visitor Centre off the B6030 into the forest (See location plan). The visitor car park at Sherwood Pines has been enlarged and there are huge additional parking areas on the right hand side of the car park. Pay & Display £4 per day.
To avoid queues park up and then get a ticket from the machines. From the car park it is a 300m walk west and south to the viewing areas. (Toilets, programmes and refreshments will be available).
Main Service Area – Thoresby Market Site, Map Ref: 120/628.709 From 11.30am to 2.30pm
Free spectator parking is adjacent to the Service Area. Do not use the Competitor entrance - follow the green spectator arrows.
Please be aware of vehicles moving around the Service Area. Each rally car will be in the service area for approx. 60 minutes. (Interim results, toilets and fast food available).
Stage 7 – Blidwort,h Map Ref: 120/592.524 First car due at 1.35pm
Spectator parking and access to the stage is available via the Forestry Commission car park off Longdale Lane (See location plan). Map Ref: 120/ 591 524. Please do not use Blidworth Bottoms car park.
Stage 8 - Rainworth Skoda Sherwood Pines II, Map Ref: 120/ 611.637 First car due at 2.10pm
Same access and parking arrangements as Stage 3 The Pay & Display ticket is valid all day.
NB: There are some stage route changes for the afternoon.
Finish and Awards Presentation – Southwell Racecourse - from 3.50pm onwards where the results will be displayed. The prize presentation for the 1400cc classes will take place at around 5.30pm with the overall awards for the event being presented at around 7.15pm. (Full bar, fast food, fish & chip shop and toilets available).
See next week’s Chad newspaper for full report and photographs.