Mon | Jul 16, 2018

Motoring Club head takes unified approach

Published:Sunday | April 10, 2016 | 12:00 AMGlenroy Sinclair
John Ralston, head of the Jamaica Millennium Motoring Club (JMMC).
Go-karters in action at the Palisadoes Raceway, Kingston.

American poet Mattie Stepanek once said that unity is strength and when there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved. This is the approach that newly-elected president of the Jamaica Millennium Motoring Club (JMMC). John Ralston, is taking for motorsport in Jamaica and the wider Caribbean.

Since taking over the top motorsport position in Jamaica, the Campion College past student has wasted no time in engaging persons from all aspects, from circuit to drag racing, dexterity, rallying and sprints.

The JMMC is the regulatory body governing motorsport in Jamaica as appointed by the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA). The club is also responsible for issuing competition licenses and adjudicates all issues, disciplinary or otherwise, related to motorsport locally.

"What we have done is to invite representatives from all the motorsport groups islandwide to be a part of a committee which will make all the decisions. As a team we will be working closely together, offering support to the various clubs," said Ralston, who has been involved in motorsport as an organiser and competitor for more than 25 years.

Dubbed a man with a passion for motorsport, Ralston has been described by his peers as somebody who is approachable and will offer his support at any level to enhance the sport.

Among his priorities is for the clubs to improve their record keeping. "The focus is for them (clubs) to get the records of their financial accounts to the level where it should be," said Ralston, who has given an impression that he intends to wage war on any form indiscipline and violation of rules and regulations.

Apart from enhancing unity, Ralston also plans to assist with the development of young talents. Karting is the world's most affordable form of motorsport and where some of the country's current top drivers, such as David Summerbell, Kyle Gregg and Peter Rae, all started.

"We will be helping the Jamaica Karting Association (JKA) with their young talents," Ralston told Automotive.

The JKA has welcomed the help, but is specifically requesting that the JMMC assist with the technical training of their members, to check engines and be able to identify when their is a breach.

A JKA official said one way of developing young talents is to provide a level platform in order to enhance competitive races, in which only the driver's skill will make the difference.

"There are so many little things to do, but among our priorities is to keep the cost of racing down so more people can participate and also sustain what we already have in place," the JKA official said.

The next go-kart meet is set for Sunday, April 24, at the Palisadoes International Raceway, Kingston.