All systems go!
Some of the region’s best drivers will be virtually flying at high speed over the weekend as the Barbados Auto Racing League’s (BARL) Digicel Williams Seaboard Marine International Race Meet at the Bushy Park, St Philip Raceway goes ahead as previously planned.
There was some doubt about the event after it was thrown into controversy over the past twenty-four hours following the discovery of 38 pounds of marijuana in the trunks of two racing cars which came into the island from Jamaica in containers for this Saturday and Sunday’s action.
Both cars were seized by police and at least two individuals connected to the meet were questioned by officers of the Drug Squad.But today in a release, BARL chairman Adrian Mayers said the event would go ahead as planned and would not be affected by the police probe which was still on-going.
Drivers and officials were expected to gather tonight at the Bushy Park club house for a social occasion, while qualifying and a practice session are scheduled for tomorrow.
“I can confirm that this investigation will have no affect on our race meet, and that patrons will see the full complement of 12 CMRC cars entered in action this weekend,” Mayers said, confirming that police had released the vehicles.
In his release, Mayers added that those “members of the regional motor racing fraternity” who had been questioned by police yesterday had been released.
Qualifying tomorrow is slated for 1 p.m., when admission is free. There will be seven 20-minute sessions, the last of which caters for the Seaboard Marine CMRC cars, which are scheduled to be on track at around 3 p.m. Once qualifying is complete, a further period of free practice will be permitted until 6 p.m.
The gates open at 6 a.m. on Sunday and racing starts at 9 a.m. after the traditional herringbone formation. The 22-race programme will culminate in the popular Monster Energy Drink Handicap.
In addition to a strong Barbadian contingent, several of the top drivers from Jamaica, Guyana and the Cayman Islands will be at Bushy Park over the next two days.
David Summerbell Jr. leads a high class contingent from the land of wood and water, while Andrew King is sure to generate much excitement and support from his Guyanese compatriots in the island.
The Cayman Islands will be represented in Barbados for the first time this year through Andy Bodden and ‘Junior’ Hydes, who are currently fourth and fifth in the championship standings. They are the only drivers other than the Jamaicans to have finished all three races at the Dover Raceway in Jamaica. Both have been competing in Jamaica in recent years since their home race track closed down a decade ago. (WG)