David has been involved in off-road motorsports for more than 40 years. He has successfully raced motorcycles, buggies, off-road trucks, and stadium vehicles.
Early in his motorcycle career, David won a gold medal for the United States and Team Yamaha at the Six Day Trials in Austria.
At age 18, David was involved in a tragic head-on collision that ended in a fatality. The accident led him to vow to make off-road racing a safer sport. In his pursuit of safety, he chaired the drivers’ safety meetings for many of his races, as well as worked with race promoters to avoid hidden hazards. He also worked with many less experienced drivers, sharing techniques to avoid problems.
A successful racer, David was chosen by Ford as one of the original drivers for the legendary Rough Riders program.
David took his passion for vehicle safety to the manufacturers, working for more than two decades with the transmission, safety, engine, chassis development, motorsports, and Special Vehicle Teams (SVT) of Ford Motor Company as a consultant in their testing, research, and development efforts. David was a test driver for the Safety Rollover Airbag Sensor team, helped build the Raptor Race Vehicle for international competition, and worked for Roush as the manager for Ford Off-Road Track Safety.
David Ashley passed away on September 14, 2021.
Class of 2014: David Ashley, left, receives his award for being inducted into the Off-Road Motorsports Hall of Fame by emcee Larry Huffman.
David Ashley's Off-Road Motorsports Hall of Fame Induction Video
Editor: Tyler John Bianco Voice Over: Dave Spiker
1991 Ford Rough Riders Off Road Season in Review
Credit: Jay Daniel