Chefette Restaurants has been confirmed as title sponsor of the Barbados Rally Club’s (BRC) MudDogs Safari & Safari Novice Championships for the fifth year, continuing its enthusiastic backing for the series, which began with the awarding of novice trophies in 2010. Competitors are now making preparations for the new season, which kicks off with this Sunday’s March Safari.
Four months since the Nassco November Safari sealed the champion navigator and driver titles for Chris O’Neal and Leslie Alleyne respectively for a record fourth consecutive season, the MudDogs – the BRC’s off-road division – are preparing to do battle once again for the prized Sextant Challenge Trophy and the Peter Farmer Memorial Trophy.
Alleyne and O’Neal begin their title defence on Sunday in the Isuzu D-Max, one of 13 crews confirmed at last night’s briefing meeting at the Barbados Clay Target Shooting Association’s club house at Searles, Christ Church.
And there is a new trophy on offer this year, as BRC MudDogs Sub-committee chairman Ricky
Holder explained: “We will now also be having driver challenge winners, with a new overall trophy. Thanks are due to Chris Armstrong of Shelbury Construction, a long-standing supporter of MudDogs events, for donating this new trophy, which will be presented alongside the traditional trophies at the annual prize-giving. The driver challenges are popular with our crews and also provide a spectacle for the fans, and we’re looking forward to the first two in Sunday’s opening event.
“I must also thank Chefette Restaurants for their continued support of the championship and the enthusiasm with which they cater for our competitors and marshals. It really does make such a big difference to what we do.”
Route-setters for the season-opener are Johnny Pinto and Mark Western. The first crew will leave the start at Colleton Plantation, St John, at 8 a.m. on Sunday, to tackle two routes in the east and north of the island. The lunch halt will be at around 11.30a.m. at the Sand Dunes Restaurant on Ermy Bourne Highway in St Andrew, with the finish at approximately 5.30p.m. at Hannays Swamp, St Lucy.
There are two driver challenges, one in each route, to kick off competition for the new trophy – the first will be on the field just south of Barclays Park, St Andrew, at around 11 a.m., the second at around 4 p.m. at Hannays Swamp.
Sunday’s event is the first of five between now and November, which qualify for the 2017 championship. As before, crews are required to compete in four out of the five safaris to be eligible for year-end championship points. If they compete in all five safaris, then their best four scores will count. (RB)
Chefette MudDogs Safari Championship & Chefette MudDogs Safari Novice Championship
Round 1 – March 12 – March Safari Pro Class
1 Robert Warren/Ian Warren (Land Rover Defender)
2 Richard Hinkson/Kevin-Jon Manning (Suzuki Samurai)
3 Leslie Alleyne/Chris O’Neal (Isuzu D-Max)
4 Ben Norris/Kirk Watkins (Ford Ranger)
5 Michael Ward/Warrick Eastmond (Suzuki Jimny)
6 Wayne Manning/Willie Hinds (Suzuki Samurai)
7 Nicholas Lorde/Brett Barber (Land Rover Discovery)
8 Jean-Marc Cozier/Andrew Croney (Honda Pioneer)
9 Damien Johnson/Justin Lynch (Suzuki Samurai)
10 Chris Armstrong/Wayne Clarke (Toyota Hilux)
11 Kerry Renee/Adrian Sinkler (Suzuki Samurai)
12 George Mendes/Garry Mendes (Mitsubishi Sportero)
13 Ryan Corbin/Dustin Edwards (Toyota Hilux)
Chefette MudDogs Safari Championship& Chefette MudDogs Safari Novice Championship
Round 1 – March 6; Round 2 – April 8; * MudFest – May 1; Round 3 – June 24/25; Round 4 – September 17; Round 5 – November 12. * non-championship event (to be confirmed)