The Barbados Rally Club (BRC) has embarked on its 50th Anniversary year on a positive note, members learned from Chairman Mark Hamilton at the Club’s Annual General Meeting at the BCTSA Clubhouse at Searles, Christchurch, last Tuesday evening (February 27).
In his Chairman’s address, Hamilton said: “I am pleased to report that 2006 has proven to be a positive year for the Club from a motor sport, financial and growth perspective. From a financial viewpoint, and without going into detail, given that the Treasurer's report is forthcoming, I am pleased to say that the Club continues to perform positively and has now recovered fully from the negative impact of 2003. I anticipate that the trend will continue, with further control of expenditure and several creative revenue-generating projects on the drawing board for 2007.”
Founded in 1957, following the successful running of the first June Rally, the Club has organised a programme of events to mark its Golden Jubilee, which will run for four weeks from the middle of May. Key to those celebrations will be the 50th Anniversary Gala Dinner at the Sherbourne Conference Centre on Saturday, May 12, Rally Barbados 2007 on May 26-27, and the 50th Anniversary June Rally, which will run over the weekend of June 9-10.
On the topic of the celebrations, Hamilton noted: “Several committees have been working for the past five months on plans which will not only recognise this achievement in the appropriate manner, but ensure that the Club extracts maximum political and financial benefit, in addition to having a permanent record of motor sport, and the Club's involvement during its 50 years of existence.”
The Chairman also remarked on the continued success of the BRC Safari Championship of navigational events for four-wheel-drive vehicles, which helps grow the Club’s membership base, and thanked the Committee of Management for its commitment during 2006.
There was special praise for Tommy Bentley, who stood down from his position as Trustee after many years service to the Club; he was Treasurer for more than 20 years from the early 1970s, in addition to holding the positions of Secretary, Vice-President and acting President for shorter periods, after which he served as a Trustee. A former competitor, he was also route-setter for the June Rally for some years, and Clerk of the Course for countless events. He has been replaced as Vice-President by Harry Watkins.
Hamilton also lauded the work of the Barbados Motoring Federation: “I would also like to take this opportunity to highlight the continued efforts of the BMF which, although sometimes criticised, has been working along with its members to further the goals and aspirations of motor sport in general, which will no doubt benefit this Club. To this end, I am pleased to report positive feedback from Government coming out of recent meetings relative to the Task Force report, and it is my hope that they will soon make a definitive and positive statement of recognition of a sport that without a doubt has become the largest spectator sport in Barbados deserving of their support.”

There was only one change in the Committee of Management, with Jonathan Still not standing for re-election as Competition Secretary; his place has been taken by Paul Bourne. The CoM for 2007 is: Chairman, Mark Hamilton; Vice-Chairman, Barry Gale; Treasurer, Garry Clarke; Secretary, Geoffrey Noel; Competition Secretary, Paul Bourne; Assistant Competition Secretary, Lindsay Farmer; Marshal Liaison Officer, Roger Sargeant; Vehicle Classification Officer, Adrian Linton; Equipment Officer, Paul Allen; Public Relations Officer, Neil Barnard; Entertainment Officer, Josh Delmas.

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