It is not just the four-wheel-drive cars that can record top 10 stage times in Sol Rally Barbados 2010 (May 29/30), which marks the 20th Anniversary of the inaugural running of the Barbados Rally Club’s (BRC) International All-Stage Rally – there are some giant-killers, whose nimble cars are ideally-suited to the short, sharp stages.
In SuperModified 10, Ian and Robert Warren (Automotive Art/Shell V-Power/Simpson Motors Suzuki Swift) are the class act, although nothing is guaranteed, with opposition including Cliff Roett/Orry Hunte (Paulo’s Churasco Do Brasil/Carters & Co/Lucky Horseshoe/Nassco/Lubriguard/Roett’s Garage Toyota Starlet) and Daryl Clarke/Russell Brancker (Ellco Rentals/Mom’s Pasta Products/Area 5 Auto Works/Paintless Dent Removal Mitsubishi Mirage).
The unknown quantity is the yet-to-be-seen All Terrain Plus/Makita/Star Products/Quik Start Auto Renault Clio of James Betts and Josh Delmas, while the increasingly high-tech Unknown Entity/Corbz Workz Ford Escort MkI of brothers Logan and Rhett Watson is another to watch. From overseas come Richard Lewis/Marieanne Gray in the Welsh Tsalta Motorsport Ford Escort and British Columbia-based Bajan Dwane Jackman and Canadian co-driver Michaela Guscott in the Blitzkrieg Autowerks/Coache Collision and Repairs/Proper Design Volkswagen Golf.
All bets are off in SM9, where giant-killing acts are the order of the day: last year’s winners Josh Read/Mark Jordan (Automotive Art/Baram Services Toyota Starlet) and Jeremy Gonsalves/Natasha Farnum (All Terrain Plus/Makita/Star Products/Quik Start Auto Suzuki Swift GTi) were both well up the overall order in the Automotive Art Shakedown Stages, but the dark horse may well be ‘09 M8-A winners Neil Armstrong and Barry Ward (Pit Bull Energy Drink/Hankook/Gunk/Electric Avenue Starlet).
The overseas interest here focuses on the Highland Waste Services/Mad Fine Fashions/Graham Curry Photography Ford Anglia WRC of Scotland’s Allan Mackay and Ulster co-driver ‘Mad Mo’ Downey’ and the Track Batteries/Lucozade Energy/The Dispensary Starlet of Trinidad’s Vishal Dhanraj and Richard Ramsingh.
In Modified 7, brothers Adrian and Jonathan Linton will wish to address last year’s rare retirement in the Ravensden/Garbage Gobbler/Morris Straker Construction Vauxhall Astra GSi. Those out to stop them are led by Freddie Gale/Kyle Proverbs (Gale’s Hatcheries/redlinefuels.com/Nassco Toyota Corolla RunX) and the rising stars of the Ellesmere Quarries-backed Chicken Pen Racing outfit, Kyle Catwell/Justin Harrison (Star Fish Design/Cutters of Barbados/Freekz Customz/John Hardman Engineering Volkswagen Golf GTI) and Ron Greaves/Stuart Leach (McCarthy’s Garage/Williams Tool & Equipment Rentals Honda Civic Type-R).
While the experienced John Corbin and Owen Proverbs (Corbins Garage/Klark-Odio/Automotive Art Toyota Corolla) can always be relied on for a solid result, one unpredictable element of the class is the arrival of Chris Ullyett/Derek Ince (Ullyetts Machine Shop Service Ford Escort RS2000), which may shake things up.
M6 multiple champions Edward Corbin/Rodney Clarke currently lead the Virgin Atlantic BRC Overall Class Championship with a perfect record for the season so far in the Automotive Art/Klark-Odio/Corbins Garage/JVM Signage Daihatsu Charmant.
This class is more varied than before, however, with challengers including the consistent Jamal Brathwaite (AM Electrical/FG Wilson/Autoplus Motors/Meridian Windows/Chicken Pen Racing/Ellesmere Quarries/D2 Racing Suspension/Avon Products Mitsubishi Mirage RS), co-driven by sister Talia Mapp, and Dane – son of Roger - Skeete getting used to the ex-Ian Warren Williams Trading Inc Peugeot 206, along with co-driver Tyler Mayhew.
Three-time class-winner Scotland’s Kenny Hall moves up to M6, with Dutch co-driver Fenny Wesselink in his recently-acquired ex-works Super 1600 Ford Puma, while Ireland’s Peter Gallagher (Dublin Crystal/Peter Gallagher Design Peugeot 206) again has local co-driver Dario Hoyte. Turks & Caicos debutant Paul Horton (Sky Rally Sport/H Racing/Horizon Construction/HSE Investments Honda Civic) also has a local co-driver - Kristian Yearwood - while the ‘entertainment officer’ is Nigel Reece, with cousin Jonathan Reece in the Subzero Services/TGM Air Conditioners/Trident International Corporation/Ullyett’s Machine Shop Service/Williams Industries Datsun 120Y.
Bird’s Focus flies in for Scrutineering
The leading British contender in Sol Rally Barbados, former UK National Champion Paul Bird, has again flown his car to the island and, as last year, it becomes the most recent World Rally Car to reach the Caribbean; his supercasino.com/Vent-Axia-sponsored Ford Focus WRC 08 landed at Grantley Adams International Airport on Monday (May 17).
After his second consecutive victory on the Manx National Rally earlier this month, Bird said: “This is hopefully a good omen for Sol Rally Barbados, which I desperately want to win . . . so that's the next task later this month.”
Bird’s Focus will be among more than 90 cars that will assemble for Scrutineering at Simpsons Motors in Warrens on Saturday (May 22); while cars will be arriving from before 1.00pm, so the scrutineers can carry out their work in a secure area, it is mandatory for all cars to be present between 3.00pm and 6.00pm, during which time there will be driver interviews and a formal welcome offered to the overseas crews.
Sol Rally Barbados 2010 (May 29/30) and Shell V-Power King of the Hill (May 23) are organised by the Barbados Rally Club, which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2007; title sponsor is the Sol Group. Marketing partners are Simpson Motors, LIME, Automotive Art, Banks and Karcher; official partners are the Barbados Hotel & Tourism Association, Barbados Tourism Authority, Divi Southwinds Beach Resort, Geest Line and Virgin Atlantic Airways; associate sponsors are Stoute’s Car Rental, Glacial Pure and Chefette.
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