Some of us had predictions, premonitions or event gut feelings on what the final result was going to be after looking at the standings going into the final event, BUT none expected the result that was delivered on the final day of RCMOTT’s Off Road nationals 2016. The predictions, premonitions or event gut feelings were eventually classified as fallacies when the leaderboard was thrown into turmoil, triple points bonuses does that.
The day started with the Met office issuing a warning of intense heat, clearly the MET office was duly informed that RCMOTT was having an event and it was going to be heat in the place. With the warning of heat the day begun with heat of many kinds. Steve St Louis was the first victim of the anticipated heat as his electric powered buggy spontaneously combusted after two laps in the Electric Buggy race. Immediately the race was stopped and all efforts was taken to extinguish the smouldering buggy. This ended Steve’s campaign in the class. In nitro buggy Colin Coldero made a very early break ahead of the pack and secured TQ in round one, he was relentlessly hunted by Steve Hosein, who was a member of Team TnT for the 2016 IFMAR Worlds. By accident, Steven’s transponder ID was logged under Steve St Louis’s name, who was still dealing with a different kind of heat. Round 2 of qualifying would see championship leader Akeel Ali making a hard charge for TQ, but with varying problems he did not capture it. Akeel was constantly hunted by 9 year old Zameer Ramoutar and Morgan Lloyd during his run. The final round of qualifying would see Jerome Gafoor making a committed run, a miscalculation on fuel ended his run securing Colin’s TQ.
Neil mohammed would take the TQ in the electric class which also saw the debut of 10 year of Nafees Mohammed. Neil Mohammed would go on the win the double mains making him the Electric Buggy Champion of 2016. With the main grid set for Nitro Buggy, all racers were trying to gather their composure for the 45 minute main that would be heated even more than the day’s ambient temperature. Race director for the day, Kester Johnson made the call for down and quiet. At the sound of the tone the 10 finalists mercilessly launched their buggies into the first bend, flat over jump, full power down the short straight, right over jump, pitcher mound, heavy braking into the hairpin right……. nobody was giving a hair’s space to the other, the pace was already on. It was to the surprise of many that 9year old 1 Zameer Ramoutar was across the line first.
While everyone was battling and looking for a fast line around the track, the youngster masterfully weaved his way through the competitive mayhem and took the holeshot. Zameer, along with his mechanic/ pitman/mentor/father had made the trip to the IFMAR World championship in Las Vegas USA where he learnt many things pertaining to the sport of Off Road Model car racing, now, back at home, he was showing the locals how attentive he was while in Las Vegas. Steve Hosein, Jerome Gafoor, both were also in Las Vegas were holding the 2nd & 3rd spots respectively. Championship hopeful Colin Coldero had a mechanical failure and was out of contention early. The hard charging Akeel Ali was in hot pursuit of the Las vegas trio, but their pace was world class. For 30 minutes there was no change in the top 3, then a malfunctioning fuel gun left Jerome Gafoor with a half empty tank of fuel, he eventually stalled out for fuel giving the 3rd spot to Akeel Ali who was living in Jerome’s shadow. While the top 3 battled, Morgan Lloyd who had a bit of a fickle early on was now a man on a mission as he put every ounce of his skill & determination to reel in 5th place Dimitri Baboolal, who was also on a mission to keep his spot. This battle would continue to the end of the race without change. In the end, 9 year old Zameer Ramoutar took the most important win of his 3 year Off Road racing career with 56 laps in 45:05 minutes. The youngster compounded his win as he also set the fastest lap time of the main with a 39.174s lap. The youngster was lifted to victory by his jubilant team mates and fellow racers as they know this 9 year old is the man to beat in 2017.
With the series completed & the dust settled, the top 10 drivers eligible to represent Trinidad & Tobago in all IFMAR & FAMAR events for 2017 are:
- 1st Akeel Ali- 701 pts
- 2nd Zameer Ramoutar- 682 pts
- 3rd Colin Coldero- 573 pts
- 4th Yusuf Baboolal- 552 pts
- 5th Dimitri Baboolal- 476 pts
- 6th Morgan Lloyd- 474 its
- 7th Steve St Louis- 459 pts
- 8th Jerome Gafoor- 400 pts
- 9th Yuri baboolal- 321 pts
- 10th Steve Hosein- 285 pts
RCMOTT congratulates these 10 drivers as well as all the other competitors who took the challenge for 2016. Don’t get comfortable, the 2017 off road season begins on Sunday 8th January 2017. See you there !!