Jeffrey, King to compete at Barbados race meet
Multiple Guyana and Caribbean champions, Kristian Jeffrey and Andrew King, are the first overseas drivers confirmed for the Williams Industries International Race Meet at Bushy Park, Barbados, over the weekend of August 31 – September 1.
The two Guyanese drivers have been among the most regular regional visitors to Bushy Park, and among the most successful. Jeffrey enjoyed a sensational debut shortly after the St. Philip facility was redeveloped in 2014, with a winning hat-trick on the way to the first of his back-to-back Caribbean Motor Racing Championship (CMRC) titles.
Jeffrey, in a recent interview with News Room Sport, stated, “I am happy to be back on the race track. Barbados is always a lovely place to tour and the track is always a good test of skills. If all goes to plan, I will be racing both the Evo and the Radical.”
Meanwhile, King’s record dates back to a decade earlier, when he battled in Group 3C with fellow-countryman Mark Vieira against the ‘home team’ of Doug and Mark Maloney in the first regional race meet supported by Williams Industries in 2004.
Although the CMRC, which this annual Race Meet has hosted since 2008, no longer exists in its most recent format, a number of the Caribbean’s leading drivers are signed up to face off for the first time this year.
The Williams Industries International Race Meet will run on the 2.01-kilometre International Circuit, with practice and qualifying on Saturday and racing on Sunday; the schedule will also include the third round of the Radical Caribbean SR3 Cup, along with races for BPMSI’s own Championship classes.
During his two title-winning seasons, Jeffrey won 14 of the 21 Group 4 races in his Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX, five of them at Bushy Park, earning the Guyana Sportsman-of-the-Year Award in 2015.
He moved on to the Radical SR3 Cup, where his hit rate of seven wins in just 17 races – with another six in Barbados – contributed to him being crowned 2017 Winter Cup Champion, before contesting the UK Radical Challenge Championship, finishing fifth in 2017 and fourth last year.
One of the region’s most experienced racers – he started in 1975 – King was twice runner-up in the Caribbean Championship in the ‘90s to David Summerbell Jnr and is remembered for his giant-killing acts in Minis, before switching to Mazdas.
After his initial visit to Bushy Park, King was an almost annual visitor in subsequent years as he continued to feature in the top six in the year-end CMRC standings, with a race win in 2010 and three more podium finishes in his RX-7.
King returned to the redeveloped facility in 2017, the top points-scorer in Group 4 (4wd), then narrowly lost out to Mark Maloney on home ground last year, despite which the Guyanese ace still won consecutive CMRC Group 4 titles.
BPMSI Chairman Sean Maloney said: “We are really happy to be able to confirm the participation of Kristian and Andrew; they are class drivers, have won many championships between them and will bring some real excitement to the weekend. We will be confirming more drivers in the coming weeks, once our friends in Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago have completed their upcoming race meets, and the feedback has been very positive.
“The Club is hard at work with the promoters, BPCI, and our loyal sponsors at Williams Industries and Digicel, to create a race meet with a difference; the regional flavour will not just be evident on the track, but also in the Festival Village, with something for all the family. As the various components fall in to place, we will be announcing them in the media, so keep an eye out for more news very, very soon.”