‘Sheriff’ to lead local posseRoger “The Sheriff” Skeete will lead the Barbados team to Sol Rally Barbados 2013. (Picture by Trevor Thorpe.)
By Trevor Thorpe | Sun, January 20, 2013 - 12:03 AM
Barbados’ top rally driver will lead the local team in the Barbados Rally Club’s Sol Rally Barbados 2013 on June 1-2.
Roger “The Sheriff” Skeete, the most successful driver in the 23-year history of the Caribbean’s premier event, will team up with co-driver Louis Venezia in the Sol/Michelin/Simpson Motors/Da Costa Mannings Auto Centre Subaru Impreza WRC S12 for the gruelling event which has so far attracted 70 starters.
Skeete said he was looking forward to the new season after what he described as some “character-building” moments in 2012 which he wants to put firmly behind him.
“The disappointment of failing to restart after the afternoon service in Sol RB12 while in the lead, and with a car that was slowly coming to me with setup changes we were making through the nine stages up to that point, was character-building,” he declared.
Skeete said that they had to be solving small problems coming off a major rebuild in 2011, but he and his co-driver were not going too badly in Sol RB12 until the unfortunate problems that had eluded everyone presented themselves.
He noted the trend continued until the end of the year, with small problems holding him back, except in the last event where the car worked very well, albeit with an engine overdue a rebuild.
Skeete added that despite having taken corrective measures, he would start 2013 with a rebuilt and tested car.
With a fresh engine, he is looking forward to competing alongside his son Dane and co-driver Tyler Mayhew, whose car is yet to arrive in Barbados.
The driver, whose entry was posted a few days ago on the official web site www.rallybarbados.net, has a record 12 wins in the BRC’s blue riband event dating back to 1990. He also won in 1991 and 1992, before winning again in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2010 and 2011.
Skeete will compete in the new WRC-1 class, created as part of the BRC’s review of its class structure, carried out in a three-year cycle.
The previous Modified 8-WRC has been split into two, with cars built up to the end of 2003 now separated from those built after. In addition, WRC-2 will cater to an increasing number of cars that no longer fit into the regulations for other four-wheel-drive classes.
They include the Subaru Impreza built to the British B13 regulations and driven by British driver Rob Swann, who is also entered in this year’s event.
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