Off-roading excitement

Observer writer

Friday, November 01, 2019

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Last Sunday's Off Roading on the Farm: Stage IV may have been short on competitors, but not on excitement. The event was held at Brighton River in St Elizabeth.

“It went well. It could have been better, as the lack of competitors held us back all day. But with the few that came out, everyone enjoyed themselves. The new challenges went great, so it was all fine,” event organiser Troy Bernard told the Jamaica Observer's weekly Auto magazine.

Bernard delivered on several of his promises for this staging: expanding the obstacle course; and presenting a more organised experience, while under the guidance of the Marshalling Club of Jamaica. Their expertise in motorsports kept things fair for competitors, and safe for those watching.

Nigel Wilmot, who won the most challenge sections for the day, lifted his hat to the event.

“There's been improvements. There were more obstacles. It's more controlled, more organised. We had the Marshalling Club of Jamaica doing an excellent job in containing the crowd, controlling the timing, and stuff like that. It had a flow to it this time. So there's been much improvement and the course was a little bit more challenging with more obstacles added. It was good,” he said.

The new format kept things interesting. Rather than tackling one obstacle at a time, they were grouped to create an exciting race against the clock. The Hell Hole was combined with the Mud Bog, the See Saw, and the Hill & Gully. The Elephant Feet and Balance Tyre were also one, as were the climbing challenges, log, steps and hill. Drivers had the option to compete in all three sections or just the ones they felt suited their skills.

Unfortunately, due to the lack of competitors no overall winner was chosen, but Nigel Wilmot took two challenge section wins. He won the Elephant Feet and Balance Tyre obstacle and his second attempt in the Swamp Crossing.

“It was fun. I really came out to have fun and entertain the crowd,” Wilmot said.

Wilmot brought three of his off-road vehicles to the event, his 2012 Jeep Wrangler, Suzuki Jimny, and Samurai. He switched back and forth between them for certain challenges. He even loaned them to his fellow Wilmotorsports teammates, including the lone female competitor, Karrell Bennett.

Wilmot was kept honest by Corneger Sterling, driving a stock VW Amarok pickup and Steven Hibbert in his modified Toyota Land Cruiser. Hibbert won the first round of the Swamp Crossing, while not incurring the one-minute penalty for avoiding the water-filled Hell Hole obstacle.

Off Roading on the Farm: Stage III winner Cheval Darby only returned for one segment, the Hill Climb, which he won.

Bernard said the next Off Roading on the Farm is scheduled for April 2020.

“We'll never stop because we love this. For Stage V, just look out for bigger and better things from Off Roading on the Farm,” he said.

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