IT was a performance of heroic proportions. Team Summerbell Racing's (TSR) Andre Anderson took the 2013 Jamaica Race Drivers Club (JRDC) championship title at Texaco Techron Heroes of Speed at Dover Raceway in St Ann, last Monday.
"This is my first time taking the title. It gives me a great feeling of accomplishment for myself, my team at Anderson Racing, and for sponsors Total, Sherwin-Williams, NG Racing and Lucozade," the 25-year-old told Auto.
Anderson's run to the overall driver's championship evolved after the second race meet when he collected several points at May's Carnival of Speed event. His run continued into the season's third event, Independence of Speed, where he consolidated his points lead. His hunger for his first ever overall title was satisified last weekend after he battled mechanical problems before the season's final meet on Heroes Day.
His closest rival in the points, TSR team-mate Kyle Gregg, also suffered mechanical failure.
Poised for overall victory, Anderson still took the track and put in several scintillating drives to seal the deal of his other two targets, Bracket 27, and Modified Production class 4 (MP4). At the end of the day, he had graced the podium in every race he competed in, including three outright race wins.
"Right now we're planning for 2014. We're looking at all options on the table -- from simply upgrading the current car to maybe even changing it," said Anderson.
Behind his performance, Heroes of Speed was a very contentious meet as many competitors were keen to consolidate their positions or end their season on a high note. MP2 was all Alan Chen and the first MP1 race went to Natasha Chang, but all hell broke loose behind him during race two as Chang's class lead disappeared after an incident with Tarik Minott and Ackeel Shorter. Robin Sutherland would take that win.
The Bracket classes now run the standard combined format and, like angry bees, there were incidents galore such as Kevin Chock's Nissan 240SX mid-race engine fire and Nigel Edwards' out-braking himself in front of Samantha Summerbell to run off into the tyre barriers at corner one.
Summerbell would spend more time on the podium in this event than her father David Summerbell Jr, with double B32 race wins. Lincoy Small would win the first Bracket 38 race, with the second going to Ricardo Clarke. Kirby Smallhorne continued to dominate B45T, with David Wallen and Maxroy Allen splitting B45N race wins.
The bikers saw some fresh faces, but the usual suspects stayed on the podium. Adrian Blake won one Motorcycle class A (MCA) race with the other two going to Robert McDonald. Jason Campbell stamped his name on all three (MCB) races.
Fans would have to wait until late in the afternoon for the big guns, Summerbell Jr and Doug Gore to face off. Gore took the first MP4 race as mechanical issues kept Summerbell Jr from being competitive all day until the last Thundersport race. He managed to pull off another of his epic drives to come from sixth on the grid to eventually take the race lead. The lead was short-lived as Gore spun out after colliding with the rock face across from the infamous Pinky's Bluff. He spun out due to a broken rim, causing a yellow flag that eventually became a red flag halting the race in the fading light.
As per the rules, the race was awarded to Gore, but Summerbell Jr returned to the pits to a re-energised fanbase, confident that their driver still had what it took to match the might of the Audi for next season.