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Gill taking racing timeout

Gill taking racing timeout SEAN GILL: taking a break from motor racing to focus on family. (FP)

By Trevor Thorpe | Mon, February 18, 2013 - 12:03 AM

Sean Gill is stepping down.

Gill, a former champion driver and at one time the fastest two-wheel drive exponent in the Caribbean, said a full-time commitment to the SX4 circuit had taken its toll, and he needed to concentrate on his family at this time.

As a result, he is taking a break from the sport.

“I will be back, though, and I am looking forward to competing again in the future,” he added.

During a motorsport career which started in the mid-1980s, Gill is the only driver to have grabbed the so-called “grand slam” of the Barbados Rally Club’s main titles – the June Rally, International All-Stage (now Sol Rally Barbados) and the BRC’s Driver’s Championship.

His record of four overall and 14 class titles in the championship is a tribute to his precise car control and professional approach to competition.

His record of over two decades in rallying and circuit racing in Britain, Jamaica, Guyana, and Trinidad and Tobago and Barbados makes him one of the most successful Barbadian drivers of the last 15 years.

He drove a highly modified Opel Corsa, before moving to a Suzuki Ignis JWRC and subsequently a Suzuki Swift, which firmly established him as the two-wheel-drive “top dog” in the region.

In 2010, Gill moved up the ladder of rallying taking on the immense challenge of helping to develop and drive the Simpson Motors Suzuki SX4 WRC. After the vehicle’s debut in Jamaica, he undertook two full years of competition in the Caribbean in the company of longstanding co-driver Michael “Zippy” Cummins.

For Gill, it has been a truly chequered career, one characterised by a unique ability to extract winning performances from all kinds of machinery – normally aspirated, turbocharged, two-wheel drive, rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive.

He has been a champion in the driver’s and co-driver’s seat and his incredible combination of results will be hard to match.

Gill’s seat in the SX4 will be taken by another highly rated driver, Neil Armstrong, who is at present testing the Suzuki in Britain under the watchful eye of three-time British rally champion Mark Higgins.

The first event for the Suzuki SX4 WRC will be Rally Trinidad, scheduled for March 23 and 24.

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