Duggan gains Young Rally Driver of the Year nomination
Rob Duggan has been nominated for this year’s Motorsport Ireland Billy Coleman Young Rally Driver Award for his performances in May and June.
The 22 year-old from Killarney won the Junior Rally in both the Rally of the Lakes and Donegal Internationals, which, combined with his earlier Junior victory in West Cork, leave him in a strong second position in the Clonakilty Blackpudding Irish Tarmac Junior Championship, just four points behind the class leader.
Driving his Ford Fiesta R2, Rob also scored a class win in the Circuit of Ireland National Rally at Easter, and just last weekend, he made the changeover to a Peugeot 208 R2 and had a winning debut in the Tyrone Stages Rally. He hopes that this will give him an even better opportunity of clinching both the Tarmac Junior title and the Road to Wales series in Northern Ireland, with its free entry and funded drive in this year’s Wales Rally GB, the final round of the World Rally Championship.
Whether or not he maintains his lead in the Road to Wales, the young Kerryman plans to contest Rally GB in November and would like to tackle either the revived British Rally Championship or several Junior World Rally Championship rounds next year.
He has been rallying since 2012, and the highlight of his career to date was his fourth place in the National section of the 2014 Rally of the Lakes in his Honda Civic.
Rob is in the third year of a four year apprenticeship as an electrician in Liebherr in Killarney, and his principal sponsors are Rentokil Initial, Eager’s Newsagents (Killarney), O’Sullivan Cycles (Killarney), Mike Moriarty Centra (Farranfore), CB Tool Hire and Donal O’Brien Car Sales.
The winner of the Motorsport Ireland Billy Coleman Young Rally Driver of the Year Award receives €50,000 worth of support to contest stage rallies nationally & internationally in 2016 along with the support of Billy Coleman co-ordinator, Tom Walsh, while the two runners-up will receive free entries into a number of MI permitted events in 2016, along with co-ordinator support.
Five bi-monthly winners are selected from January-February, through to September-October, joined by the winner of the Junior Championship in theTriton Showers National series, the winner of the Junior category in the Valvoline National Forestry Championship, and a wildcard selection, as the award finalists.
(photo – William Neill)