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David Appleby Motorsport (DAM) started in 1987, David had been working for Austin Rover as Tony Ponds’s technician on the World Rally Championship with the Metro 6R4 and when the cars were banned, David decided to use his knowledge of the car and set up his own company as a specialist. He based himself in premises alongside his house which was near Malmesbury, Wiltshire.
He built many cars in his workshop and even redesigned the 6R4 with a longer wheelbase version called the DAM 4100. A lightweight race 6R4 was built with which he had many wins at Castle Combe in the Special GT Class including lap records and he also campaigned an Ex Le Mans Jaguar XJR11 which proved a real handful! The company had customers all around the world and David and his family travelled far and wide looking after their cars.
In the early 90’s David was one of the key figures to develop the Rover Sport Metro and the 216 Challenge Cars. He also built the Rover 827 Vittesse which set the record on the Isle of Man TT with over 100 mile per hour average speed with Tony Pond driving.
After 15 years of being a 6R4 specialist the 6R4 business was sold and the Appleby family moved to Devon. After taking some time out, and enjoying the slower pace of life, David still tinkered in his workshop at home. He took on a small project with the Renault Clio V6 and built one for tarmac rallying. With his son James growing up and taking a keen interest in motorsport it was inevitable that he would eventually want to join the family business so the business started growing again and this time they made the move into the more modern rally car the WRC Subuaru.
David's contacts within the motorsport industry led him to Prodrive and the Subuaru S8, 9 & 10 which he rallied lightly himself with success, before being sold. Looking for another niche market the Aston Martin (although not normally associated with rallying) was David's next project. Working alongside Prodrive to develop the Aston Martin Rally GT, David has used this car on tarmac events, rally and track days. It is an amazing car to drive and watch, with masses of power from the V8 engine its a real crowd pleaser and is certainly a marketing man's dream. He continues to develop this car although he has sold it to a long term customer.
The Prodrive and Aston Martin connection continued when David decided to take the company along the Racing route. With the knowledge of the Rally Aston it was a natural progression to the GT4 Race Aston and David & James raced together in the GT4 Challenge which led to the company running Race GT4 cars for customers.
As a lot of circuits are based are the centre of the country the travelling from Devon took its toll and in 2011 the decision was made to move to Greatworth Park, Banbury which is in the heart of the Motorsport Valley. James had graduated from university with a degree in Motorsport Engineering and was keen to be more centrally located.
David Appleby Engineering runs both Race & Rally customers in their respective championships and we still offer a complete motorsport engineering service but with the addition of lovely modern premises. We have expanded with a showroom selling the full range of Sparco racewear, designated build rooms, full set up floors, ramps and Engine Dyno. Even after 25 years we are still selling Brian James Trailers and Bott workshop equipment.