Bajans battling in Rally Trinidad
THE FITTING of a new gearbox should keep the Barbadian pair of Neil Armstrong and Barry Ward in the Sol Simpson Motors Suzuki SX4 in contention as Rally Trinidad enters its final day Sunday.
Armstrong and Ward lost the fourth gear on stage No. 8 Saturday and slipped to 53 minutes 51.15 seconds as the 22-stage rally went to the overnight halt with 13 cars remaining in the quest for the title.
However, Suzuki engineers Simon Wallis and Simon Robinson were fitting a new ‘box’ and said that the car would be ready for the final day’s action.
“We will examine the ‘box’ after the rally to determine what caused the problem, but that apart, we are satisfied with the performance of the car with the new driver, so far,” Wallis said.
Armstrong said he was comfortable with how the car was performing and he was looking forward to resuming the action and the completing the remaining ten stages today.
The Jamaican pair of Jeff Panton and Mike Fennell Jr, in a Ford Focus WRC leads the rally with a total elapsed time of 51 minutes 43.76 seconds, while last year’s winners John “Penti” Powell and Nick Telfer in a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo.1X were lying in third spot with a time of 54 minutes 26.12 seconds after getting ahead of another Barbadian driver James Betts and co-driver Jason Costelloe in a Lancer Evo 1V.
The Bajans experienced tyre problems during the stage at Bronte.
Earlier, Barbados lost the pair of Dean Serrao and Jeremy Croney after their Ford Escort Cosworth developed engine problems, while the pair of Harold Morley and Kreigg `Yearwood, in a Subaru N14 were lying in seventh spot.