Editor: I begin by making a general statement. Anytime you have a Government who wants to get rid of a governing body of an organization you can ONE HUNDRED PERCENT GUARANTEE that their true intentions are not to help those people whom the governing body protects.
That being said, for those of you who don’t know; there is no longer a Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Automobile Association (SVGAA).
The reasons why it is gone, makes an interesting study. The point is that it is gone and we Motor Enthusiasts now have no unified body and are left holding on to broken promises by this administration who has no incentive to give us what we want.
We have lost the only track we ever had at Diamond to build another sporting complex that once again only caters for physical body sports and leaves us motor sport loving enthusiasts stranded!
For those of you on the spectators’ side of the events, that means no more hearing the sounds of roaring engines and back firing, no more debating with your friends and sometimes strangers whose car is going to win; no more seeing cars running head to head, side by side, competing against each other for the glory of first place. No more cheering when a vehicle makes an aggressive slide leaving a large cloud of smoke or dirt and worst of all, no more dreaming of one day “that’s gonna be me out there!”
Some of you may say well, we still have the former E.T. Joshua airport tarmac to host events. But, do we really?
They just built wooden schools on the side at the bottom half of the stretch where we host drag events. They turned the entire road into the entrance and exit 0of a secondary learning institution.
Do you think the Ministry of Education or the Sports Council, whoever is in charge is going to allow people who they see as a bunch of people that just want to “speed up and down in their cars?” to use that venue our home?
They have no idea the sacrifices many of us make especially in St. Vincent just to be able to afford the parts needed to finance our sport. Many of us eat only ramen noodles just to be able to afford the extremely high customs tax because we get no concessions.
Many have taken out loans paying high interest rates just to build their cars. Some force themselves to learn mechanics just to cut the financial cost of it all, while others spend six figure sums, to own these cars!
We spend thousands of dollars of our own hard earned money to pull off an event knowing a profit is not coming back just for the love of this sport.
The sacrifices do not stop there. The pain of spending hours figuring out a problem that should have only taken a few minutes, or the heart break of saving up all the money necessary to order a part, waiting for it come only to find out it’s a wrong part or it does not solve the issue.
In many of those instances the parts can’t be returned because they were imported, often times wrong parts many times just end up being stuck here as expensive space holders!
Optimists might argue “well the school won’t be there forever, they said its temporary.” My question is how do you know? Tax payers’ money was spent to build it.
Are they just going to let that money go to waste when the original schools are reopened? Are they going to just tear it down? Even if they decide to really make those schools temporary, who is to say we will get the space when they do not need the buildings since we have no governing body to say HEY YOU PROMISED!!
I am not writing this article to cast blame on any one person or club, I BLAME ALL OF US. Those of us who are involved and those of us not involved. If you are not a part of the solution you are a part of the problem.
I am begging all clubs and interested enthusiasts to please STOP the bickering and the petty fights, even the serious ones, let us all come together and be heard! We may not have a governing body anymore but we still have a voice. If we do not do this now there will be no motorsports for our kids and grandchildren to participate in or to spectate in. This appeal does not just apply to the vehicular community but also the motorcycle community. No track for us means no track for you too. We will be left with only the options we currently have and one of them isn’t exactly safe. The other permission must be asked before using, some of you may know where am talking about…. Therefore we must come together we must be heard.
A group of heads tackling a problem is better than none. The choice is up to you. Put aside your differences get everyone you can to let us be heard or let it die!
Kamal Bacchus – Browne