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Local drivers chasing points in the Barbados Rally Club (BRC) 2018 Driver’s and Class Championships are preparing for the two most important weekends of the year, with Flow King of the Hill (May 27) and Sol Rally Barbados (June 1-3) just over the horizon. And they will need to be on top of their game if they want to keep the year-end trophies at home, with a record number of overseas drivers registered for points, following in the wheel-tracks of Jamaica’s Jeff Panton, who was last year crowned the BRC’s first non-national Champion Driver.

David Coelho of Trinidad & Tobago won the Group A title in 2016, while the Turks & Caicos Motoring Club’s Stan Hartling and Paul Horton are both regular competitors; the number has been boosted this year by the addition of Hartling’s son Ben, George Sherman of the United States and Britain’s Rob Swann, all of whom currently have cars based in the island . . . and all seven have already scored points.

At Flow KotH, the speed event points scale gives 15 for a class win, while Sol RB18 represents two Championship rounds – Friday and Saturday are round three, Sunday round four – with 20 points each for a class win; that gives a maximum possible score of 55 points over the two weekends, which is a little over 40 per cent of the year’s total. With only seven qualifying rounds and no dropped score, dealing with the pressure cooker atmosphere of these upcoming weekends is key to success.

Thanks to a very strong entry in last month’s opening round, the Carter’s Pit-Stop Stages (April 22), 30 drivers have already scored points, eight of whom jointly lead the Champion Driver title chase, with maximum scores from fully-subscribed classes: Panton (WRC), Avinash Chatrani (Group A), Rhett Watson (SuperModified 3), Barry Mayers (SM2), Jeremy Gonsalves (SM1), Edward Corbin (Modified 1), Greg Cozier (Historic 2) and Allan Kinch (Clubman 2). Panton and Watson also respectively lead the 4wd and 2wd Championships.

While overall and class awards for Sol RB18 will be presented only to those crews which complete all the scheduled 24 stages, the ‘two-thirds’ rule still applies for locals. Points can therefore be scored in the Championship on Friday/Saturday and again on Sunday, providing a crew has completed two-thirds of the stages each time, which has often led to all-nighters in island workshops to restore cars for the following day. Overseas competitors who are not registered for the BRC Championship are ignored as far as points are concerned, although local crews will still revel in the chance to gauge their competitiveness against the once-a-year visitors.

Sol Rally Barbados (June 1-3) and Flow King of the Hill (May 27) are organised and promoted by the Barbados Rally Club, which celebrated its 60th Anniversary in 2017. Title sponsors: The Sol Group and Flow. Major partners: Automotive Art, Banks, Chefette, Simpson Motors, Toyo Tires. Partners: Accra Beach Hotel & Spa, Barbados Hotel & Tourism Association, Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc, Geest Line, Tourism Development Corporation. Associate sponsor: Stoute’s Car Rental

BRC Class Championship
Positions after round 1:

WRC: 1st Jeffrey Panton – JAM (Rubis/Sandals Barbados/KIG Ford Focus WRC06), 20 points; 2nd Rob Swann – ENG (Elegant Hotels/Blue Sky Luxury/Cygnet Plant Subaru Impreza WRC S12B), 17pts; 3rd Roger Hill (Esso/Nassco/MaxMeyer/MotorMac/Pennzoil/Energizer/Refresh your Car/California Scents Toyota Corolla WRC), 15pts
Group A: 1st Avinash Chatrani (Lenovo/PowerBass/Genius Lynk/iShop/Copacabana/Gunk Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VI), 20pts; 2nd Andrew Mallalieu (Terra Caribbean Subaru Impreza), 17pts; 3rd David Coelho – TRI (Subway/Zanzibar/Kaizan Sushi Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX), 15pts
Group N: 1st George Sherman – USA (Subway/Zanzibar/Kaizan Sushi Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX), 15pts
SuperModified 3: 1st Rhett Watson (Chefette/Stihl/Gliptone/Leafy Organics/Gunk/Hankook/Bajan Pure Water/It’s Barbados/Power King Batteries, in support of Little Pink Gift BMW M3), 20pts; 2nd Logan Watson (Leafy Organics/Sign Depot/Subzero Services/Luxe Caribbean Properties/It’s Barbados/Hankook/Cargo BGI/Stihl/The Unknown Entity BMW M3), 17pts; 3rd Andrew Jones (Lucozade/Caribbean Powder Coating/Southern Surf Beach Apartments/AP Jones Pharmacy Ford Escort MkII), 15pts; etc
SM2: 1st Barry Mayers (Chefette/Rubis/Digicel/Hankook/DHL/Illusion Graphics Ford Fiesta), 20pts; Daryl Clarke (Automotive Art/Flow/Amir’s Chicken/MQI Collision Repair/eCarib Classifieds Honda Civic), 17pts; 3rd Dane Skeete (Sol/Automotive Art Peugeot 306 Maxi), 15pts
SM1: 1st Jeremy Gonsalves (Sign Depot/Valvoline/Star Products/John Hardman Engineering/Guava Tech/Roscoe’s Machine Shop Opel Corsa), 20pts; 2nd Winston Thompson (Ellesmere Quarries/BCR Car Rental/SDRR Hydraulics & Industrial Spares/Ullyetts Machine Shop Toyota Starlet), 17pts
Modified 2: 1st 1st Paul Horton – TCI (Arbikie Island Estate/Java Island/Sky Motorsports/H Racing Citroen DS 3 R3 MAX), 17pts; 2nd Jamal Brathwaite (Platinum Motors/Valvoline/Automotive Art/Consumers Guarantee Insurance Honda Civic Type-R), 15pts
M1: 1st Edward Corbin (Valvoline/Hilti/Express Imports/Cargo BGI Daihatsu Charmant), 20pts; 2nd Benjamin Hartling – CDN (The Hartling Group Citroen C2 R2 MAX), 17pts; 3rd Paul Inniss (Brydens Insurance/East Point Grill/Going Places Travel/Cockspur/Caribbean Villa Chefs/Chef Byer Catering/Castrol/JJ Racing Team/Hugh Autobody/Brunswick Barbados/Drive-a-Matic Car Rentals/Autoderm), 15pts
Historic 2: 1st Greg Cozier (Barbados Historic Rally Carnival/Geest Line Ford Escort RS), 20pts; 2nd John Corbin (Valvoline/Hilti Toyota Corolla), 17pts; 3rd Wayne Archer (RW Water/Arrow Construction/Arrow Woodworking/Archers Hall Design Centre/D & A Air Conditioning BMW 325), 15pts
Clubman 2: 1st Allan Kinch (Jolly Roger/Pirates Cove/Guava Tech/Printmax BMW 318ti Compact), 20pts; 2nd Ryan Wood (Carter’s Pit-Stop/Guava Tech/CA Autobody/Power King Batteries/Tropical Shipping/Maxxis Tyres BMW 318ti Compact), 17pts; 3rd Stuart Garcia (Four & Twenty Bakery/Intelligent Defence Systems/Smith’s Engineering Works/Zaccios/Kirba Inc BMW 318ti Compact), 15pts; etc
C1: 1st Trevor Mapp (Sign Station/JSB Motorsport/Chicken Pen Racing/Valvoline Mitsubishi Colt Mivec RS), 17pts
GpB: 1st Jonathan Still (Sharkey’s Bar/Castrol/Suga Apple Swimwear/Pelican Market Suppliers Inc BMW M3), 15pts
BRC 4wd Championship: 1st Panton, 20pts; 2nd Swann, 17pts; 3rd Hill, 15pts; 4th Chatrani, 14pts; 5th Mallalieu, 13pts; 6th Coelho, 12pts
BRC 2wd Championship: 1st R Watson, 20pts; 2nd B Mayers, 17pts; 3rd Clarke, 15pts; 4th L Watson, 14pts; 5th E Corbin, 13pts; 6th Jones, 12pts; 7th Gonsalves, 11pts; 8th Horton, 10pts; 9th Cozier, 9pts; 10th A Kinch, 8pts; etc

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