Former UK National Rally Champion Roger Duckworth will make his fourth trip to Sol Rally Barbados this year, joining a growing list of returnees spread right through the field in the Caribbean’s biggest annual motor sport international. While he will be fighting at the sharp end, another four regular visitors are confirmed today in the Clubman, Group B and Historic classes.
Since Duckworth won the first of two prize drives in 2011 for winning Rallye Sunseeker National in the UK, he has not missed a trip to the Barbados Rally Club’s (BRC) premier event . . . and his results in the Intrynsis Subaru Impreza WRC S6 are heading in the right direction: seventh, sixth and then fifth overall, also WRC-2 winner, last year.
He has realistic ambitions for Sol RB14: “I obviously have to set my sights on winning WRC-2 again, but any better overall result seems optimistic. But I really would like to try to have a clean start this year - I lost 20 to 30 seconds on the very first stage on the last two visits. In Barbados, that is an age, and it takes the whole rally to catch up.”
Since Sol RB13, Duckworth has seen little action, although he did win Rallye Sunseeker for a fifth time, becoming only the second driver to achieve a hat-trick of wins. His winning co-driver, for the fourth time, was Mark Broomfield, who makes his Barbados debut this year. Duckworth says: “It was Mark’s 50th birthday this year, so his wife helped me encourage him to make the trip. We know each other pretty well when it comes to the stages - my first rally with Mark was 1991 Sunseeker.”