The Barbados Rally Club (BRC) is at an advanced stage of planning for the 33rd running of its blue riband event. Four months out from Rally Barbados 2023, which is scheduled for the weekend of June 10/11, the venues for the event’s special stages have been decided, the route outline is close to completion and partnership negotiations are well under way.
 In an upbeat interview, Rally Director Neil Barnard explained: “Towards the end of last year, the Club started a dialogue with the membership to encourage wider participation in the organisation of events to supplement the efforts of our frequently over-worked Committee of Management. The outcome was very positive and a number of people came forward wanting to do more.

 “As a result, we have a new rally sub-committee, expanding on the role of the Competition Secretary and sharing the workload. This committee is responsible for planning, setting and creating our rallies and speed events and we have been hard at work putting the structure of our events in place.

 “As well as deciding on the stages themselves, there are many other considerations, such as residents, travelling public, transit routes, service parks and safe locations for our volunteer marshals, along with decisions on spectator areas. We are preparing a number of announcements to confirm those plans during the coming weeks.”
 In addition to Barnard, the new sub-committee members are Johnathan Alleyne, Jason Tull, Barry Ward, Rhett Watson and Kreigg and Kristian Yearwood. All have competition experience, Tull as both co-driver and more recently driver, while Watson is a two-time Rally Club Champion Driver; Alleyne, Ward and the Yearwood brothers have logged many years in the co-driver’s seat, all of them with considerable success, Alleyne sitting for the past few seasons with 2019 and 2022 Champion Driver Edward Corbin.

 Rally Club officials have also been working closely with their counterparts at the Motoring Club Barbados Inc (MCBI) over recent weeks to plan the locations for the rally and sprint events for the 2023 season that will require Road Closure Orders from the Ministry of Transport, Works & Water Resources.
 Barnard again: “One of the most important considerations when planning the events that will run on public roads is ensuring that no one area of the island is over-utilised during a single calendar year. By working closely with the Motoring Club Barbados Inc and its President David Williams, we have planned the stage locations for almost the whole year, with the Motoring Club starting its season in the middle of March.

 “The next steps for our team will be to brief our other essential volunteers – stage commanders, marshals, timing and results personnel, so everyone has a clear understanding of what is planned for the year. We have been making good progress.”

Rally Barbados (June 10/11) is a tarmac rally, with around 20 special stages run on the island’s intricate network of public roads, under road closure orders granted by the Ministry of Transport, Works & Water Resources; the King of the Hill ‘shakedown’ (June 4), runs under a similar arrangement and features four timed runs on a roughly four-kilometre stage, the results of which are used to seed the running order for RB23.