Mon | Aug 21, 2017

Familiar races return to Palisadoes today

Published:Sunday | April 24, 2016 | 4:00 AMGlenroy Sinclair
Contributed Mike Simmons, driving go-kart number 87, navigates a corner on two wheels.
File David Summerbell (left) and Peter Rae (right) take on Doug Gore (centre) in a friendly tussle during the opening meet of the 2016 go-kart season at the Palisadoes International Raceway in March.
File :Brandon Finzi-Smith
Contributed Ryan Lue
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He flew into the island yesterday morning, quietly full of confidence and ready to renew rivalry at the Palisadoes International Raceway, Kingston, today.

It has been seven years since Andrew Simmons raced at the go-kart track and he is not in Jamaica on vacation but to wage 'war' in a friendly way taking the fight to the Super Rotax Class' top brass, which includes standout drivers at Dover Raceway.

Doug Gore and David Summerbell, Peter Rae, Garth Genus, Mike Simmons, Senna Summerbell, and Timothy Stewart are among those who will be in action.

The clash is part of what should turn out to be an intriguing day of racing. "Today's meet promises to be filled with non-stop action. We have more competitors this time around. There will be at least 30 karts in action, and we are looking forward to some really good stuff, " Neil Williams, one of the Jamaica Karting Association (JKA) directors, told Automotives on Friday.

A point of interest in the Super Rotax event is the father and son combination of the Simmons, who will be up against some seasoned and tough campaigners. "I am in it for the fun, but I am hoping to win," said Mike Simmons.

"From the look of things, Peter Rae seems to be the man to beat. He seems to have the knack for the Super Rotax Class, but this time, I hope I can turn the tables," said Summerbell.

"These guys are super fast. The last race meet, they kept pulling away from me each time we came on to the straight, but as long I can get a podium finish, then I will be satisfied," commented Gore.

Inactive for a while, the outsider of the pack is shot Timothy Stewart, who has completed school in the United States and is now back home. According to the records, the last time he competed at the track was in 2010. In 2006, he sent a message to the world that Jamaica was alive and well in go-karting, winning the Junior Class pre-final at the Rotax Finals in Portugal.

JUST FOR FUN

"I have not a driven a kart in close to six years. For now, it is just for fun, but I am grateful for the experience," said Stewart, who is also preparing to rally this year.

Another returnee to the sport is the talented Tara Fong Yee, one of the no-nonsense females the sport has seen. Though she has been away for some time, as is customary, Fong Yee is expected to make her presence felt.

The battle in the Comer 80cc class is expected to be among Paul Moodie, Zachary Sirgany, Brandon Finzi-Smith, and Daniel Lawrence. The showdown in the Rotax Mini-Max Class will involve Duncan Stanley Jnr, Tommi Gore, Ryan Chisholm, Ryan Lue, and Zander and Zachary Williams.

The son of David Summerbell, Senna, is poised to dominate the Rotax Junior Class, which also features Justin Sirgany, Marc Anthony Eaton, Zachary Lee, Jordon Wallace, and Joseph Lodenquai.

Jonathan Law, Dominic Gordon, and Matthew Williams will battle for supremacy in the Rotax Senior Class.