By Neto Baptiste
Veteran drag-racer and a current member of the Antigua and Barbuda Drag Racing Association (ABDRA), Paul Ryan, is lobbying for the sport’s return, stating that its normal mode of operandi is conducive to the required social distancing protocols.
Speaking on the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show, Ryan said the body is currently looking at ways to further improve the operations at the track in hopes of lobbying the powers that be to allow its return amidst the global coronavirus pandemic.
“The most social distancing you could have is at North Sound because everybody sits in their cars, watch the races because it’s a half mile or a mile of track and persons are spread way out and it is social distancing at its best. We will be looking to improve our security and our checking and going forward, we hope to have guys back on the track, hopefully, during the month [June],” he said.
Ryan, who is also owner of Antigua Motors, said car race enthusiasts are eager to get back to the track and racing at the North Sound Race Way.
“As you know, we have been closed for some time and drivers are anxious to get back out on the track, to get off the road and start to get their cars ready again. It is a sport that there is probably about 300-plus racers in Antigua who enjoys the facilities at North Sound, and we just want to appeal to the powers that be,” he said.
Last week, the drag racing association and country’s sports minister, Daryll Matthew, held talks over the safety of the track which is located just east of the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground.
Reports are that a number of individuals, both verbally and in writing, expressed concerns over safety protocols or lack thereof that were employed by the association. Both entities are set for another meeting sometime in June. Races have not been held at the facility since May this year following the death of Marcus Williams. The driver’s death is not linked to any lapse in security measures or protocols in place at the track.