NEWS FROM THE BARBADOS MOTORING FEDERATION - ISLAND MOTOR SPORT CELEBRATES RECORD SEASON

Wednesday, 4th January 2012

Motor sport in Barbados is in good health, and making a growing contribution to the island¹s sports-tourism product. For the first time since the Barbados Motoring Federation (BMF) was established in 2000, more than 400 local competitors took part in BMF-sanctioned events during the recently-concluded season . . . and that total is boosted to nearly 500 by a record number of overseas competitors, bringing worldwide publicity and valuable foreign exchange to the island.

Affiliated to the FIA, which rules the sport worldwide, the BMF is the island¹s governing body for motor sport; it also represents the interests of its member clubs in discussions with Government departments which facilitate the sport in the island, in particular the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, which permits road closures for an agreed number of events each year ­ for 2012, these number only 10 of the total 47 events.

Announcing the provisional calendar for 2012, BMF President Andrew Mallalieu noted: ³Despite the prevailing financial climate, interest in motor sport from participants and spectators alike continues to rise. As a responsible governing body, however, it is important for us to view the needs of the sport within the context of island life and not allow the calendar to run out of control with additional events.

³The BMF works very closely with the Ministry to minimise the inconvenience to residents and other road users and we have once again met the requested maximum number of road closures. In addition, more events in 2012 will be shared between member clubs for championship points, so as to reduce the overall number of events.²

In 2011, rallies and speed events organised by the Barbados Rally Club (BRC) attracted more than 150 competitors, of whom nearly half also contested the same disciplines with the Motoring Club of Barbados Inc (MCBI) or the Vaucluse Raceway Motorsport Club (VRMSC). The BRC MudDogs off-road navigational rallies and grass-roots autocross events added another 90 to its total, while the circuit racing activities of the Barbados Auto Racing League (BARL) and the Barbados Karting Association (BKA) at Bushy Park added a further 110 to the overall figure.

In its first full season, the BMF¹s newest member club, the Barbados Association of Dragsters & Drifters (BADD), was supported by more than 80 drivers; while some were established names from either circuit racing or rallying, more than 50 were newcomers to sanctioned BMF competition.

The total of 85 overseas competitors (25 from the wider Caribbean and 60 from 12 more countries as far afield as Australia and South Africa) was also a record ­ the previous highest was 81 in 2007 ­ and demonstrates the sustainability of motor sport¹s contribution to the island¹s sports-tourism portfolio, even in harsh economic times.

Mallalieu added: ³For the last two years, Barbados has hosted three International motor sport events: while the focus of the Digicel Williams International Race Meet at Bushy Park is largely regional, both Sol Rally Barbados and the Barbados Historic Rally Carnival attract competitors from Europe and further afield. These not only help motor sport make an important contribution to the island¹s economy, much of it in valuable foreign exchange, but are also the key to massively-increased worldwide television coverage.²

Highlights from the BMF¹s 2011 statistics on local competitors include:

+ 415 competition licences were issued ­ this is nearly three times the total issued this season by Jamaica¹s governing body, the Jamaica Millennium Motoring Club (JMMC), and more than twice the number issued by the BMF in 2006

+ 101 competitors participated in events organised by more than one member club

+ 45 competitors contested every qualifying round of their chosen championship, with BARL (15 drivers) and the BRC MudDogs (17 drivers or navigators) top of the consistency table

+ a further 48 competitors missed only one championship round, with BARL (24) and the BRC MudDogs (18) again scoring well for loyalty

+ 19 female licence-holders include five drivers, spread across circuit racing (cars and karting), navigational events and rallying

The Barbados Motoring Federation¹s Approved 2012 Calendar runs from the last weekend of January until the first weekend of December, with a total of 47 events listed.

For further information, please contact BMF President, Andrew Mallalieu:

e-mail: Andrew.Mallalieu@terracaribbean.com

BMF12-001a: January 2, 2012

BMF 2012 Approved Calendar at December 22, 2011

Jan 28/29 - Drag Racing (BADD)

Feb 4/5 - Kart Race Meet (BKA)

Feb 18/19 - Race Meeting (BARL)

Mar 3/4 - Kart Race Meet (BKA)

Mar 10 - Autocross & Dexterity Driving Challenge (*BRC/MCBI)

Mar 11 - Speed Event (MCBI/BRC)

Mar 17 - Navigational Rally (BRC MudDogs)

Mar 24 - Drag Racing (BADD)

Mar 31/Apr 1 - Kart Race Meet (BKA)

Apr 7 & 9 - Race Meeting (BARL)

Apr 14 - Navigational Rally (BRC MudDogs)

Apr 15 - Speed Event (MCBI)

May 1 - MudFest (BRC MudDogs)

May 6 - Special Stage Rally (BRC)

May 12/13 - Kart Race Meet (BKA)

May 20 - Autocross (BRC)

May 27/28 - Drag Racing (BADD)

Jun 3 - Speed Event (BRC)

Jun 9/10 - Special Stage Rally (BRC)

Jun 16 - Dexterity Driving Challenge (MCBI)

Jun 16/17 - Kart Race Meet (BKA)

Jun 23/24 - Navigational Rally (BRC MudDogs)

Jun 30/Jul 1 - Race Meeting (BARL)

Jul 7 - RallySprint (VRMSC)

Jul 7/8 - Kart Race Meet (BKA)

Jul 15 - Speed Event (MCBI)

Aug 11 - Special Stage Rally (BRC)

Aug 12 - Drag Racing (BADD)

Aug 19 - Autocross (BRC)

Sep 1/2 - Race Meeting (BARL)

Sep 8/9 - Special Stage Rally (MCBI)

Sep 8/9 - Kart Race Meet (BKA)

Sep 16 - Navigational Rally (BRC MudDogs)

Sep 22 - Drag Racing (BADD)

Sep 23 - Speed Event (BRC)

Sep 29/30 - Kart Race Meet (BKA)

Oct 7 - RallySprint (VRMSC)

Oct 13 - Autocross (BRC)

Oct 14 - Speed Event (MCBI)

Oct 20 - MudFest (BRC MudDogs)

Oct 20/21 - Kart Race Meet (BKA)

Oct 28 - Special Stage Rally (BRC)

Nov 4 - Dexterity Driving Challenge (MCBI)

Nov 11 - Navigational Rally (BRC MudDogs)

Nov 17/18 - Kart Race Meet (BKA)

Nov 24 - Drag Racing (BADD)

Dec 1/2 - Rallycross (VRMSC)

* where events are shared, the principal organising club is shown first Key to organisers (e-mail or web site)

BADD - Barbados Association of Dragster & Drifters (www.baddmotorsports.com)
BARL - Barbados Auto Racing League (www.barl.com.bb)
BKA - Barbados Karting Association (www.barbadoskarting.net)
BRC - Barbados Rally Club (www.barbadosrallyclub.com; www.rallybarbados.bb);
BRC MudDogs (www.muddogsbarbados.com)
MCBI - Motoring Club of Barbados Inc (David Williams, e-mail: draw362@yahoo.com)
VRMSC - Vaucluse Raceway Motor Sport Club (www.vaucluseraceway.com; www.barbadosrallycarnival.com)

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