GMR&SC VP highlights immediate plans of new ExCo
By Avenash Ramzan
The new Executive Committee of the Guyana Motor Racing and Sports Club (GMR&SC) will convene shortly to chart the way forward for the sport, after businessman Rameez Mohamed was elected as the new president on Thursday night.
Vice-president Hansraj Singh, in an exclusive interview with News Room Sport on Friday, pointed out that while the impending meeting will give a clear view of the path of the new executive, there is a critical area that will engage their attention during the next 12 months.
“In the immediate future I think the number one priority is for us to have this FIA track- the extension- to come in the future so that we can move what we’re currently doing to a different level, which is international standard. So to put it in a nutshell, that would basically be our number one priority in terms of moving the sport forward. There so many other things we can sit down and talk about that are affecting drivers and spectators and so on, and for sure we will have a look at that, but in terms of making this thing what we want it to be or moving the sport to international standard that would be our number one priority,” Singh explained.
Adopting a more united approach is what the new executive will be basing it work on, Singh responded, when quizzed on what assurance the new group can give members that the administration of motor racing would change for the better.
“It is a new committee with new faces, new energy, new thinking, new strategy and so on, and as you rightly said, we have a new president. His way of doing things will be different from the previous president’s way of doing things, but for sure I think we have a more united approach in terms of how we would want to see things done, and in terms of making drivers more comfortable with the sport and the organisation as a whole,” Singh posited.
He continued, “There is so much that you could do as an organisation, but we would try as much as possible to maintain that harmony in motor racing.”
Establishing a working relationship with the government is also an area of focus for the new body. Singh pointed out that both parties stand to benefit from such a partnership, as a motor-racing has always been a consistent contributor to the country’s economy.
“There is a new government in place, just like a new committee in place and we would like to establish a relationship with the government like any other sport entity to access as much subsidy or funding or whatever it is would be available to any sporting organisation in the country,” Singh remarked.
He added, “Hopefully we would be able to get such support from government, and they see the potential of what we do as a sport and nationally in terms of bringing tourists to this country. Because, as you would know, like many other sports, cricket and football and so, which are basically the major sports in Guyana, motor racing is one of the sports that brings the most tourists to this country at any given time whenever we have our international race meets and then throughout the year for the various race meets. So we do make a contribution nationally in terms of income and tourism and so on, so we would expect that the government, in some way or the other, help us, support us to develop this package or product that we’re also helping them with. It’s basically a partnership; hopefully we can establish that.”
Meanwhile, commenting on the current structure where elections are held every 12 months, Singh said it is not the ideal time-frame for an ExCo to properly function, especially given what obtains in Guyana.
“It’s too short of a time for any committee to go in, have a plan and then implement that plan. That might be applicable if you have numerous amounts of resources available where you could pull and put it where it is necessary in terms of the functioning. But when you have to garner resources and put together a whole host of logistics that are not readily available, then you need time to execute that plan,” Singh stressed.
Mohamed, who has been on the Executive Racing Committee for the past two years and served as Vice-president for the past year, will have Singh as his Vice-president, while Azim Jaffar is the new Secretary. Noel Shewjattan is the new Treasurer; John Bennett is the Assistant Secretary/Treasurer; and Sunil Persaud is Club Captain.
The Committee Members are Kamal Seebarran, Wayne Vieira, Paul Jewanram, Azaad Hassan and Diana Dornellas, while the Technical Advisor is Brian Tenpow.
Mohamed came up against the incumbent Mahendra Boodhoo and former Vice-president Mohamed Roshandin, and secured a narrow win, just three votes ahead of Boodhoo. A total of 75 votes were cast, with Mohamed receiving 30, while Boodhoo got 27. Roshandin managed 18.
In the lead-up to the election, Mohamed had revealed a 10-point plan for the growth and development of the sport.
They include the development of infrastructure for a drag racing strip; membership benefits for drag racers; the expansion of participation both nationally and internationally; the upgrade of existing facilities; a functioning website for the club; formation of a marketing team to promote the sport; and the promotion of fairness in the application of racing rules.