CHAMPION WATSON LEADS RALLY CLUB TITLE CHASE: Sol RB15 winner Panton ahead in WRC-1 & 4wd

Reigning Barbados Rally Club (BRC) Champion Driver Rhett Watson maintained his point-perfect score over the two weekends of LIME King of the Hill and Sol Rally Barbados 2015 last month, to maintain his lead in this year’s title chase. Jamaican Jeff Panton‘s victory on Sol RB15, his second in the island’s premier event, has moved him into the lead of both WRC-1 and the 4wd Championship.

SuperModified 12 class-leader Watson (BMW M3) has a perfect record, with five class wins and the maximum possible 90 points, his total aided by competing in one of the more popular classes. The points scale is reduced if there are fewer than three starters, which has affected second-placed Wayne Archer (Historic BMW 325), who also has a perfect score of class wins, but against reduced competition in the opening round, which cost him the two points by which he trails Watson.

SuperModified 12 class-leader Watson (BMW M3) has a perfect record, with five class wins and the maximum possible 90 points, his total aided by competing in one of the more popular classes. The points scale is reduced if there are fewer than three starters, which has affected second-placed Wayne Archer (Historic BMW 325), who also has a perfect score of class wins, but against reduced competition in the opening round, which cost him the two points by which he trails Watson.

Third is Jeremy Croney (Clubman Peugeot 206XS) on 85 points, with Group N leader Andrew Mallalieu (Subaru Impreza N10) fourth on 80, these two also affected by reduced competition earlier in the year. Fifth is Justin Campbell (BMW M3), who lies second to Watson in SM12, with Modified 7 leader Daryl Clarke (Honda Civic), rounding out the top six on 72 points.

All is not lost for those affected by under-subscribed classes, however. The dropped score rule requires competitors to discard their lowest points tally for the year: applying the rule now would place Archer alongside Watson as joint leader, with Clark promoted to third place – he has no score to drop, having missed the opening round in March – and reduce the 18-point gap between first and sixth to just 11 points. With three of the eight rounds yet to run, starting with the BRC Summer Nights Tarmac Stages on August 29, it remains a long way to the finishing post.

Nearly 50 drivers have scored points in the BRC Championships this year, five of them regular visitors from around the region, the most successful of whom, so far, is Panton. As the overall leader of Sol RB15 at the end of both days in his Ford Focus WRC06, he has assumed the lead of the 4wd Championship and WRC-1 from early leader, Trinidad's John Powell (Focus WRC08), who has slipped to fifth - not only did Powell miss LIME KotH owing to business commitments, but he drove his Group N Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX in Sol RB15, which also affected his points total. WRC-2 leader Roger Hill (Toyota Corolla WRC) is second in 4wd, Roger Skeete (Impreza WRC S12) third and Mallalieu fourth.

Nearly 50 drivers have scored points in the BRC Championships this year, five of them regular visitors from around the region, the most successful of whom, so far, is Panton. As the overall leader of Sol RB15 at the end of both days in his Ford Focus WRC06, he has assumed the lead of the 4wd Championship and WRC-1 from early leader, Trinidad’s John Powell (Focus WRC08), who has slipped to fifth – not only did Powell miss LIME KotH owing to business commitments, but he drove his Group N Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX in Sol RB15, which also affected his points total. WRC-2 leader Roger Hill (Toyota Corolla WRC) is second in 4wd, Roger Skeete (Impreza WRC S12) third and Mallalieu fourth.

In the 2wd Championship, Watson has a 19-point advantage over Campbell, with SM11 points-leader Andrew Jones (Escort MkII), who had previously been tied with Campbell, now third, seven points adrift, following his retirement with a blown engine from day two of Sol RB15. Solid performances over LIME KotH and Sol RB15 have catapulted Modified 6 leader Neil Corbin (Toyota Starlet) to fourth, ahead of SM10 leader Josh Read (Starlet) and Archer.

BRC Class Championship, Provisional positions after round 5:

WRC-1: 1st Jeffrey Panton - JAM (Rubis/Total/Sandals Barbados Ford Focus WRC06), 65pts; 2nd Roger Skeete (Sol/LIME/Simpson Motors/Automotive Art Subaru Impreza WRC S12), 58pts; 3rd John Powell - TRI (Intercontinental Shipping/Trinidad Mooring & Launch Services Ford Focus WRC08), 28pts

WRC-1: 1st Jeffrey Panton – JAM (Rubis/Total/Sandals Barbados Ford Focus WRC06), 65pts; 2nd Roger Skeete (Sol/LIME/Simpson Motors/Automotive Art Subaru Impreza WRC S12), 58pts; 3rd John Powell – TRI (Intercontinental Shipping/Trinidad Mooring & Launch Services Ford Focus WRC08), 28pts

WRC-2: 1st Roger Hill (Nassco/Esso/Pennzoil/MotorMac Toyota Corolla WRC), 67pts
Group A: 1st Avinash Chatrani (iShop Barbados/Electric Avenue/PowerBass/Lenovo/1 of K/Copocabana/Sign Station Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VI), 56pts
GpN: 1st Andrew Mallalieu (Terra Caribbean/Blue Sky Luxury Subaru Impreza N10), 80pts; 2nd David Coelho – TRI (Total/Lubetech/Zanzibar/Kaizan Sushi/www.machinerysalestrinidad.com/Quipsol Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX), 56pts; equal 3rd Harold Morley – ENG (www.bajanloveshop.com/10 Saints/Red Square/Costco Subaru Impreza WRX STi R4) & John Powell – TRI (Intercontinental Shipping Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX), 37pts; etc
SuperModified 12: 1st Rhett Watson (Chefette/Power King/Gliptone/Stihl in support of Little Pink Gift BMW M3), 90pts; 2nd Justin Campbell (Dream Solutions/Itstaboo.com/Hunikom/Campbell Racing Team/Castrol/Hilton Barbados/One Media/Biz Needz BMW M3), 77pts; 3rd Stan Hartling – CDN (Bambarra Rum BMW M3), 51pts; etc
SM11: 1st Andrew Jones (AP Jones Pharmacy/Southern Surf Beach Apartments/Lucozade Ford Escort MkII), 61pts; 2nd Dane Skeete (Sol/LIME/Automotive Art Peugeot 306 Maxi), 47pts; 3rd Stuart McChlery (Lubriguard/Gunk Ford Escort MkI), 31pts
SM10: 1st Josh Read (Stihl/Gliptone/Sprite/Hankook/Weetabix/Chutney’s/Royal Purple/EZone Toyota Starlet), 55pts; 2nd Neil Armstrong (Rubis/Chefette/Hankook/Nassco/GUNK Toyota Starlet), 30pts; equal 3rd Roger Mayers (Chefette/Sol/Digicel/DHL/Hankook/Illusion Graphics WR Starlet) & Cliff Roett (Nassco/Paulo’s Churrasco do Brazil/Roett’s Garage Toyota Starlet), 28pts; etc
SM9: 1st Mark Kinch (Black Pearl Party Cruises/Jolly Roger 1/Rubis Kirtons/Ultraviolet Entertainment/Appleton Estate Jamaica Rum Toyota Starlet), 45pts; 2nd Clifford Cox (Snorkel Toyota Starlet), 43pts
M7: 1st Daryl Clarke (MQI Collision Repair/Mom’s Pasta Products/Roberts Manufacturing/Valvoline Honda Civic), 72pts; 2nd Jamal Brathwaite (Platinum Motors/Valvoline/Automotive Art/R S Electrical/Ellesmere Quarries/JSB Motorsport/Chicken Pen Racing/Codgies Customs Brokers Honda Civic Type-R), 64pts; 3rd Paul Horton – TCI (Sky Motorsports/Java Island/Real Ford Escort MkI), 58pts; etc
M6: 1st Neil Corbin (Nassco/Jason Jones/BG Products & Services/Auto Solutions/Valvoline/Max Meyer Paints/Emtage Electric Toyota Starlet), 68pts; 2nd Chris Williams (Cutters Barbados/Sun Flower Events/Solo/Royal Chinese Restaurant Ford Fiesta), 65pts; 3rd Paul Inniss (Durex/Sun General Insurance/Caribbean Villa Chefs/Chicken Stop Inc/Illusion Graphics/Hugh Auto Body/HIV Aids Commission/Erie Tyre Service/JJ Racing Team Honda Civic), 61pts; etc
Clubman: 1st Jeremy Croney (Warrens Lubricants/Sign Station/SRG Engineering/Sweet Temptations Peugeot 206XS), 85pts; 2nd Pierre Clarke (SDRR Hydraulics & Industrial Spares Honda Civic), 47pts; 3rd Rommell Martin (Winston Enterprise/Fusion Boutique/VV&K Rentals/B3 Imaging/Candy Lane/Rallymaxx Toyota Starlet), 41pts; etc
Historic: 1st Wayne Archer (Archer’s Hall Design Centre/Diamonds International/CACS BMW 325), 88pts; 2nd John Corbin (Valvoline/Corbins Garage/Pro Sales Toyota Corolla), 69pts; 3rd Jonathan Ince (Ocean Fisheries/Hankook Daihatsu Charmant), 62pts

BRC 4wd Championship: 1st Panton, 73pts; 2nd Hill, 70pts; 3rd R Skeete, 64pts; 4th Mallalieu, 61pts; 5th Powell, 57pts; 6th Coelho, 43pts; etc
BRC 2wd Championship: 1st Watson, 78pts; 2nd Campbell, 59pts; 3rd Jones 52pts; 4th N Corbin, 37pts; 5th Read, 35pts; 6th Archer, 32pts; etc

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