After nine hotly-contested rounds of the 2012 Barbados Rally Club’s Virgin Atlantic Driver’s and Class Championships, fought out since the curtain-raiser in March, the chase for the prestigious Champion Driver title will go down to the wire at the club’s final event of the season – the BRC Winter Gravel Rally at Black Bess, St Peter on October 28.
With a perfect score in earlier events, modified 7 leader Daryl Clarke (Honda Civic) was hot favourite to win the title, which is based on each driver’s class total, minus the season’s lowest score. He faltered for the first time at the BRC Autumn Gravel Sprint last month, where he shared class wins in the double-header with Edward Corbin (Toyota Corolla RunX), the first man to beat him all season.
Second-placed Neil Corbin (Toyota Starlet) also shared class wins, in M6 with Jamal Brathwaite (Mitsubishi Mirage RS), leaving the gap between the two at three, while Logan Watson (BMW M3) won SuperModified 11 twice to draw to within three points of Corbin and six of Clarke.
Before dropped scores are taken into account, Clarke has 156 points, Corbin 153, and Watson 150. All have scored in every round so far, but each has a different lowest score to drop – once these are subtracted, the order remains the same, but the gaps are cut: Clarke has 143, Corbin 142 and Watson 140. The year’s final event promises to be one to remember, as the island’s most prestigious title is contested. As the season draws to a close, two variables remain important: the overall title is based on class results, with each driver dropping the season’s worst score, while this is also the time of year when some
classes are not fully-subscribed – that means fewer than three starters – resulting in a lower points haul for those competitors who do turn out. Tighten your seat belts! (RB)