The Guyana Motor Racing and Sports Club Monday evening honoured a long list of competitors who performed well at the final leg of the 2008 Caribbean Championships and also the local championships.
Barbadian Stuart Maloney in his Mitsubishi Evolution was crowned 2008 Caribbean Championship driver.
The soft-spoken Maloney, who scored the maximum 30 points in Barbados after competing in three races, came to Guyana second behind his father, the patriarch of the Barbados team, Douglas Maloney who had problems with his car.
Stuart Maloney, though, took advantage of a lapse by Jamaican David Summerbell Junior and registered wins in the first two races on Sunday to seal the championship with 50 points.
According to Stuart Maloney, “perseverance gave me the championship here (Guyana),” and added… “come 2009 I will be looking to defend my new title and will have Summerbell’s new lap record (34:98seconds) on my mind.”
The other racing ace to put his mark on this year’s championships was Group 2B and 3 champion Ryan Rahaman who was crowned Guyana’s overall champion for 2008.
Rahaman walked away with six wins from six starts on Sunday in his Ford Sierra and made up for the July 27 meet when his then newly acquired car saw him fighting for survival with two seconds and a third.
He would have none of that at this meet though, and put an indelible mark on the local scene.
Rahaman, apart from the being crowned overall champion, was also the race meet champion in group 2B and 3.
He also walked away with the Gavin Narine Memorial Trophy.
Barbadian Freddy Mac, Rahaman’s mechanic deservedly won the “Best Mechanic” trophy.
In the Unlimited motor cycle category, Canadian Kevin Graham was crowned `King’.
He also walked away with the meet championship.
In the 125cc/250cc motorcycle category, Charles Henry, who is being trained by Victor Pires, won the double and was adjudged race meet champion.
In the go-kart category, Stanley Ming made a triumphant return to the South Dakota circuit winning the meet championship while Christian Jeffrey was crowned overall champion.
Jeffrey was unable to give Ming a fight for the title of meet champion because he is currently pursuing studies overseas.
In the rookies’ category, Shane Sewjattan in his Toyota Corolla 4AGE drove his way to the meet champion position but lost out to Romeo Singh in his Turbo 4E Toyota Starlet for the overall title.
The Group 2A was one of the more competitive groups but Chet Singh, in his Honda Civic proved that he was one level above the rest winning both the meet and overall group championship.
In the final race presentation Canadian Paul Vieira, brother of local ace Mark Vieira drove his way to the race meet title in Group 4 with three wins out of three in his Mazda RX7 2nd Edition.
During the more than two hours long presentation and speeches, the visiting teams of Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, USA, Canada, Suriname, St. Vincent and Grenadines and St. Marten were presented with plaques by the president of the GMR&SC Vishook Persaud for their participation in the final race meet of the 2008 season.
Meanwhile, representatives from all the countries present praised Guyana for their preparation and hospitality and gave the commitment that come 2009 they will be here looking to be more successful.
And the grand old man of motor racing in the Caribbean Hilary Jardine O.D., J.P. called on more sponsors to come on board noting the mammoth crowd Sunday which he estimated to be in the vicinity of 15,000.
leased about the mileage and next year they should not hold back where sponsorship was concerned.
The GMR&SC also hounoured a few stalwarts of racing both locally and regionally.
Errol Ten Pow, who has been driving and riding for over 53 years, was given a plaque of appreciation for his more than 50 years in the motor racing business which he said he was proud of.
Ray ‘Raza’ Rahaman was honoured for his 40 years on the circuit.
“I am not any old barnyard animal to be put out to pasture but a stud who continues to produce during my retirement,” Rahaman said to loud roars and applause from the crowd.
Rahaman pleaded for someone like Sir Allen Stanford to inject the much needed finance into motor racing in the Caribbean.
“I have dedicated my life to motor racing and for the sum of US$1 per year for the rest of my life I am ready to train people to race.”
Topping off the awards was Barbados’ Douglas Maloney, who has been in the sport for over 40 years.
Douglas Maloney recalled the days when the Guyana Defence Force airplane transported his vehicle from Barbados to Guyana.
Jamaica by virtue of having the most competitors in the Championship races drove away with the Team Championship after it was found that they had amassed 107 point a mere two over their Barbados rivals.