Bushy Park, Barbados – Last weekend, December 13 and 14, 2014, an eclectic mix of Legends of Motorsports
with Champions in their respective divisions faced off at the newly renovated world class facility at Bushy Park, Barbados.
On Saturday, December 13, 2014, the Nations Cup, which is the team competition, featured many champions from many different genres of motorsports. The Nations Cup was eventually won by Team Nordic (Tom KRISTENSEN & Petter SOLBERG) after narrowly beating out Team Scotland (Susie WOLFF & David COULTHARD). The final came down to the final turn when David Coulthard had an unexpected off road excursion thus, giving away the team competition title. Tom Kristensen was ultra dominant winning the best of three races in the finals which sealed the victory.
Driver’s had to drive many different cars set out by ROC with very little seat time to get used to the respective cars. The competition cars were evenly matched whereby any of the entered teams could win. However, the disadvantages were experienced by drivers. Some had never driven a left-hand drive car before and some had little or no experience with a sequential (automatic) transmission.
In the separate ROC Caribbean, Guyana can be very proud of both Kristian Jeffrey and Mark Vieira as they both did very well by winning one out of 3 races each but, failed to move on to the finals. Kristian Jeffrey narrowly lost one of the races to Doug Gore by a slim margin which ultimately ended his day. Team Barbados fielded two quality drivers’ with Dane SKEETE & Rhett WATSON both winning 2 out of 3 races each as well as Team Jamaica with Doug GORE (3 wins in 3 starts) & Jeffrey PANTON (2 wins out of the 3 races). These results moved them onto the next knockout rounds. But, Barbados was victorious by winning the ROC Caribbean Championship by winning the first two consecutive races in the finals.
Being the host country, Barbados automatically had their fastest driver, Dane Skeete from the ROC Caribbean group stage in the same car who qualified for The Race of Champions on Sunday. This allowed the fastest driver from either
Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago or Guyana to move onto the Race of Champions to take on the legends of world motor sport. At the end of the fierce and grueling competition, Doug Gore was the lone representative because he had set the fastest time. The ROC competition cars mostly favoured drivers’ that are more familiar with automatic (sequential) instead of the purest H pattern (manual transmission). The Guyanese drivers’ are not offering any excuses because they enjoyed the competition because it was something that they had not been part of in their racing careers and they will surely use this experience to enhance their respective careers. Job well done! The nation is proud!
The two day competition, Race of Champions ended with the Champion of Champions with a retired driver, David Coulthard beating Pascal Wehrlein, whom is the youngest driver to ever win a German DTM race in ‘2014. The best of three showdown saw David Coulthard, former Formula 1 driver winning the first two races from the young phenom thus, ending the competition and sealing the victory.
The best comment to summarize the Champion of Champions came from the 20 year old; he said “I couldn’t beat him – maybe because for me it’s a bit tough to drive a manual shift car with a clutch and everything. I’m used to driving with shift pedals and braking with my left foot so I was struggling a bit with that”. Both the (Ariel Atom, KTM X-Bow) are manual transmission cars. If the competition had gone onto a third and final deciding race then, it would’ve been a race car with a sequential transmission.
Racing fans need to take a step back and congratulate each competitor because the format(s) of Race of Champions are very different than each racing series that these drivers’ compete in, even though, it’s a gathering of worldwide champions against each other and one is victorious. The overall champion does not necessarily mean it’s the best driver in the world. Some drivers’ such as Jamie Whincup, Australia is unfamiliar with a left-hand drive car whereas, Guyana’s Kristian Jeffrey has had little or no experience with sequential (automatic) transmissions as he is the only top Caribbean driver that uses a manual transmission car and we are certain that other drivers’ can attest to something that caused them to open their eyes throughout the competition. Nonetheless, the annual ROC competition was once again an awesome experience!
(Win) D Gore 00:01:40.9459000 Vs D Skeete 00:01:40.6695000
R Watson 00:01:57.2212000 Vs (Win) J Panton 0:01:50.1338000
F Boodram 00:01:57.0625000 Vs (Win) K Jeffrey 00:01:57.7000000
(Win) M Vieira 00:01:53.3253000 Vs D Coelho 00:01:56.3514000
K Jeffrey 00:01:52.8760000 Vs (Win) D Gore 00:01:51.3122000
(Win) J Panton 00:01:43.7659000 Vs M Vieira 00:01:44.1797000
(Win) D Skeete 00:01:51.8177000 Vs F Boodram 00:02:14.4591000
D Coelho 00:01:51.3354000 Vs (Win) R Watson 00:01:46.9968000
(Win) D Skeete 00:01:35.7346000 Vs K Jeffrey 00:02:07.4006000
M Vieira 00:01:52.2390000 Vs (Win) R Watson 00:01:51.1085000
(Win) D Gore 00:01:39.9727000 Vs F Boodram 00:01:59.2867000
(Win) D Coelho 00:01:52.7631000 Vs J Panton 00:01:57.9579000
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