The Radio Operated Auto Racers hosted their long 2012 1:8 off- road national championships last Sunday at the Sir Garfield Sobers Sports Complex, St Michael raceway and as promised, the event was an exciting spectacle.
Starting with 1/8th qualifying heats, which allowed the two fastest drivers to advance immediately to the semi-final round, Chris Wadman and Matthew Whitney, both of Team Wadman Brothers, were the chosen ones to do so. They set the tone for the day and sent an early signal to the other competitors that they were the ones to beat.
As the 20 minute quarter-finals progressed, it meant that one of the nine remaining drivers in the competition would have to be eliminated before advancing to the semi-finals. Unfortunately, that person was none other than Andrew “Scooby” Smith in his Mustor’s Wholesale Liquors Team Xray XB 808, who was plagued with mechanical difficulties from the start of the day.
With Wadman and Whitney now joining the eight remaining drivers, the stage was set for the semi-final round, knowing that one competitor would not once again make it to the finals. When race director Robert Armstrong signalled the end of the 30 minute semis, it was none other than Robin “The Undertaker” Mustor who was declared the winner and likewise given the privilege of starting on pole position for the finals.
Scott Foster in his Hot Bodies D8 placed second and Barry Mustor, who competed in off-road racing for the first time, captured third position. This time around, it was the well known Brian “Neckey” Bayne in his Mustor’s Wholesale Liquors Team Xray XB 9 who did not advance to the final round of competition.
The stage was then set for a nail-biting 45 minute showdown, and from the time the starter’s orders were issued, it was Mustor and Foster who put immediate distance between themselves and the rest of the field, constantly exchanging the race lead up until the 40th minute of the race, when Mustor managed to finally put a comfortable gap between himself and Foster, maintaining it until the checkered flag was dropped.
This brilliant drive afforded Mustor the privilege of being the holder of the prestigious title of national champion for the third time, having won it at its inception in 2009 and then again in 2011. Mustor recorded 54 laps for the duration of the race, while his main rival Foster placed a well deserving second on 53 laps and Gerry Haynes in his Wadman Brothers Team Associated RC 8 captured the final podium spot.The regular racing season continues on November 18 at 2 p.m. (PR)