1986 Silverstone BSCC 
1985 Donington BSCC  Go 1987 Donington BTCC 
1986 Brands Hatch GP 
Back to index page


Donington Park GP Circuit, Derby, Great-Britain

Date: 15/6/1986
Track length: 4.020 m
Entries accepted: 13?
Starters: 11
Finishers: 7

Pole position: Rouse in 1.49,53
Fastest lap: Rouse in 1.51,12 = 130,34 kmh

Distance: 20 laps
Average speed: 128,06 kmh
Weather: Fine
Ruleset: Group A
Car info: 1986 Cars


There has been a select core of competitors that has kept the British Group A series going. Willing to participate when everybody else had decided the series was dead, the cars always well presented - have so far put on a brave show over the last three rounds. Around the sweeps of Donington, they deserved much more than was dished up at the close of 15 laps.
In the end, victory went to the usual triumvirate: Andy Rouse (class A and overall): Richard Longman: B; Chris Hodgetts: C. But it wasn't quite that easy.
Throughout the weekend, the sun shone gloriously. And throughout the weekend, the track remained quite slippery - even breaking up in places - legacy of the Truck GP. Making it a touch more slippery was Newman, the Burlington BMW 635 CSi understeering over a kerb on Mike's first lap, splitting the oil sump and depositing the contents at McLeans. A small fire ensued at the rear end, too. So it was a quick trip to Sytner's to find a replacement, Mike qualifying in the second session.
Despite this, Rouse set his pole time with the ICS Sierra in the morning, bedding in tyres and trying a new axle ratio in the second. Team mate Peter Hall had suffered transmission problems on Friday - the new loop very hard on Vitesse gearboxes - and had also changed the engine, setting his time in the afternoon.
Mike O'Brien was Rouse's nearest Class A challenger on the second row, back once more at the helm of the Connells/Castrol Vitesse, the car running sweetly throughout. And, surprisingly, there was that familiar black and orange Vitesse out again. With help from TWR's Alan Scott, Dennis Leech had managed to build up another engine on Friday. Leech's persistence was ill-repaid, though, the V8 ingesting a lump of metal in the first session. Unbelievably, Dennis would be sidelined yet again. Sharing the front row with Rouse was the Datapost/Esso car of Richard Longman, the red car riding high on the kerbs with black turbo smoke issuing from its exhaust. Team mate Alan Curnow hauled himself up the grid in the afternoon, despite an electrical fire which blistered the bonnet's paintwork.
The Terry Drury RST seems to get better each time out, Mark Hales placing the Duckhams/ Motor car on the second row with a splendid second session effort. And then came the underpowered Alfas - complete with John West roadshow - Rob Kirby's clutch jamming in the first session, while Jon Dooley's example (with high lift cams) suffered high engine temperatures and required two oil coolers. Chris Hodgetts was sixth on the grid, the Team Toyota/Duckhams/Hodgetts Motorsport Corolla well clear of the opposition. The 'father' of the C class also had a new radio to play with, too. Crudgington followed in his Clausthaler example, despite clutch bothers, and then came Paul Taft in the Brooklyn Escort, Paul nursing a badly burned hand. For the race, Taft decided to preserve his new 16 inch rims, using instead the usual 15 inch versions.
To the race, then. And out went O'Brien on the green flag lap, half-shaft bust. At the green proper, Newman made another of his spectacular starts, but behind mayhem ensued as Crudgington and Dooley made contact at Redgate, Taft forced onto the dust. All three continued, but had lost the main bunch, Dooley soon to retire. At the Old Hairpin, meanwhile, Curnow's clutch disintegrated. At the front, Newman chased Rouse (suffering with a sticky clutch) followed by Longman, Hall and Hales, the RST moving ahead of the Rover second time round. And then Hall dropped out on lap 3.
Interest centred on the fabulous dice at the front, the BMW wailing its way up to McLeans in pursuit of the turbo car, the pair gliding gracefully over the undulations towards the Esses. And on lap 5 Newman went briefly ahead, a missed gear change by Rouse out of Melbourne allowing the 635 through for three-quarters of a lap. But on lap 10 it was all over, Newman spinning at the Old Hairpin. He recovered to finish second. Behind these two a superb B battle saw Hales in front of Longman, the car belching great sheets of flame. Cruelly, Mark was robbed four laps from the end, the car stopping dead - and then starting up perfectly in the paddock later. Compensation was fastest lap.
So it was that the last laps were reeled off, Hodgetts three-wheeling around to another 10 points in Class C to maintain his championship lead, followed home a few lengths back by the oversteering Alfa of Kirby.
After such promising beginnings, the race just petered out. Sometimes, there ain't no justice.

Touring Cars class A-C
Pos Pos in class # Team / Entrant
Car- Engine
Drivers, Nationality Engine
vol. (cc)
Group Distance,
Qualifying position Qualifying time Fastest lap Reason out,
1 1 1 Industrial Control Services Ltd.
Ford Sierra XR4 TI
Andy Rouse, GB
2320 tc L4 A 15 laps, 28.16,59 1 1.49,53 1.51,12  
2 2 5 Burlington Wallcoverings Ltd.
BMW 635 CSi
Mike Newman, GB
3475 L6 A 15 laps, 28.41,89 6 1.53,01 1.52,10  
3 1 44 Royal Mail Datapost
Ford Escort RS Turbo
Richard Longman, GB
1598 tc L4 B 15 laps, 28.53,87 2 1.51,83 1.53,10  
4 1 66 Team Toyota GB / Duckhams
Toyota Corolla GT AE86
Chris Hodgetts, GB
1587 L4 C 15 laps, 29.20,47 8 1.55,40 1.55,77  
5 2 30 John West Foods - Alfa Romeo Dealer Team
Alfa Romeo 75 V6
Rob Kirby, GB
2491 V6 B 15 laps, 29.21,61 11 1.57,16 1.56,35  
6 2 69 Brooklyn Motorsport / ECS
Ford Escort RS 1600i
Paul Taft, GB
1598 L4 C 15 laps, 29.46,37 12 1.57,26 1.57,07  
7 3 62  
Toyota Corolla GT AE86
Tony Crudgington, GB
1587 L4 C 14 laps, 28.33,37 10 1.57,06 1.57,57  
DNF   38 Terry Drury Racing
Ford Escort RS Turbo
Mark Hales, GB
1598 tc L4 B 11 4 1.52,09 1.52,86 Electrics
DNF   2 Industrial Control Services Ltd.
Rover Vitesse
Pete Hall, GB
3532 V8 A 3 7 1.53,16 1.57,77 Head gasket
DNF   31 John West Foods - Alfa Romeo Dealer Team
Alfa Romeo 75 V6
Jon Dooley, GB
2491 V6 B 2 9 1.56,48 1.56,76 Distributor
DNF   33 Royal Mail Datapost
Ford Escort RS Turbo
Alan Curnow, GB
1598 tc L4 B   5 1.52,19   Clutch
DNS   7 Linden Racing/Connels Estate Agents
Rover Vitesse
Mike O'Brien, GB
3532 V8 A 3 3 1.52,04   Driveshaft on warm-up lap
DNS   4  
Rover Vitesse
Dennis Leech, GB
3532 V8 A 3 13 no time   Engine in practice