[www.inewsguyana.com] – Guyana has retained the Motor Racing glory of top Caribbean country following the completion of the Caribbean Motor Racing Championships yesterday at the South Dakota Circuit.
The Guyanese amassed some 508 points following the two legs of action in the championships in the Groups 2a (1.6l), Group 2b (2.0l) and the CMRC 4 competition.
After qualification on Saturday, Doug Gore sat on the pole position ahead of the Guyanese duo of Mark Vieira and Kevin Jeffrey respectively in the CMRC Group 4 but the tables turned in the first race.
A guard of honor clearing for the Doug Hollywood Gore and his Audi TT Quatro and Kevin Jeffrey’s Bush Cow through the pit lane represented the commencement of the CMRC Group 4 Fixture, the biggest showdown of the day.
The atmosphere in the pit lane when the cars lined up for the race was intense, both teams’ bearing stony expressions and keen eyes as they renewed a rivalry that was cut short in Jamaica earlier this year.
When the formations were complete and the flags dropped, there was very little clutch time before the cars barreled down the front straight away, Gore leading the pack and Jeffrey in chase.
Jeffrey applied the pressure from the start of the much anticipated 10 lap race to pole sitter Gore as the two traded fast laps with the crowd, race marshals and officials holding their breath at every failed pass Jeffrey tried to execute.
However, Gore could not handle the pressure of the Guyanese bush cow and misjudged a corner by entering too fast and sliding the German built machine into the sand in the 4th Corner (goose neck entrance) allowing Jeffrey to blow by.
This was met by resounding cheers by the over 10,000 people witnessing the spectacle, and a sigh of relief around the corners by the all the marshals and track officials.
From there on it was smooth sailing for Jeffrey who took the top honors; but gore had done enough to make a mark, a new lap record of 33.401, erasing the time set earlier in the race by Jeffrey (33.439) and the original lap record of 33.498 which the bush cow held.
Gore in an interview said that Jeffrey’s pressure was not getting to him but it was a bit of driver error and that the second race was going to prove the Audi’s worth; something that did not happen.
The second CMRC Race saw the duo trading positions, Jeffrey on pole and gore down in third, Mark Vieira in the mix of things, with almost the same result Jeffrey Ruling the roost, gore second and mark Vieira a distant third.
The final CMRC Race was the one to watch as both drivers indicated that they were going to max their machines out to better the records, at least Jeffrey did.
He said he was unseated that the lap record at Guyana was held by a Jamaican driver and was looking to change that; and was looking on course to do so, leading gore for the first three laps.
However, to the horror of the spectators, fans and race officials, the echo of the turbo charger died and so did the speed of the car.
Fans watched in anguish as the bush cow slowed and fell prey to Gore, who swooped by, but not before the lead baton was passed to Vieira.
Vieira, driving like a man possessed pushed the Rx-8 combo to the limit to hold the challenge of gore off, something he needed not to do after gore fell victim to a puncture near the end of the race.
But by then, the races were over, Gore was champion and he was just going through the motions as he nursed the car over the line.
Other CMRC Champion drivers include Kurt Thompson in the group 2b (2.0l) class and his brother Mark in the 2a (1.6l) class.
Presentation took place as well last evening at the circuit in a day which featured racers from Suriname, Canada, The United States, Jamaica, Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago.