Caribbean Spec Miata Racing Series to start in T&T

Caribbean Spec Miata Racing Series to start in T&T

At a TTASA Circuit Sub Committee Meeting held in June 2019 an idea was put forward by circuit and karting racing champions Ronald Wortman and Ravi Singh that Trinidad and Tobago was ready for a new Spec Series in Circuit Racing.  Also called “one-make” series, a spec series is basically a race series where all the drivers race the same model of car, all spec’d out to be identical. All the cars have the same build, power, weight, tyres and suspension. This puts a larger emphasis on driver skill, and more often provides some really exciting action.

The idea was born from the need to find a cheap entry level spec car that would encourage new drivers and race teams to make the bold leap to Circuit Racing in Trinidad & Tobago. The Mazda Miata Second Generation Chassis was chosen as the weapon of choice for this new series. For those who do not know, when the first  Miatas arrived on the automotive scene in the nineties, these little 1.6L / 1.8L  cars were (and still are) considered to be the poor man’s racing car of choice. Light, agile, great power to weight ratio, rear wheel drive, cheap to maintain and “Lightning McQueen” good looks. Mazda Miata Spec Series were popping up all over the world. These cars remain so popular that they have only now reached the fourth generation Miata from 2015. With this excellent choice, twelve (12) interested local teams in T&T,  down-payments in hand, they moved on to the next stage, Miata used-car hunting had begun.

But why were Teams so attracted to this particular spec of car? Simple answer, overall cost was relatively low in comparison to other circuit classes currently being raced in the TTASA championship. The initial cost for these Miatas ranged from  £1000.00 to £2000.00 at British winter prices.  A race prepped Miata’s total cost, which includes a full Caribbean Spec Upgrade Package from Advance Autosports in the USA,  an OMP roll cage, racing tyres, safety gear etc. would be just shy of TT$65,000.00 as compared to TT$150,000.00 for the leading Group 1 (entry-level) race car in TTASA’s annual Circuit Championships.

Despite delays in England, by March 2020 twelve Miatas had been purchased and were being disassembled for shipment to Trinidad. At this point it should be mentioned that despite all efforts made by TTASA and the Caribbean Spec Miata Cup planning team, no reduction in taxes were procured to ship these vehicles to Trinidad. With the Covid Pandemic resulting in a lockdown by April 2020, there were now massive delays to get cars shipped to Trinidad. All cars arrived in Trinidad by late June and local teams began building their Caribbean Spec Miata Racing Cars. 

The Miata Spec Series has not only attracted seasoned Drivers like Ravi Singh, Ronald Wortman, Christian Bourne, Ajmal Mustapha, Ryan Peyrau and Nizam Mohammed. New drivers to Circuit Racing have also jumped on the bandwagon:  Trinidad & Tobago Rally Club Champion young driver Craig Sumair will be diversifying his portfolio with some door-to-door racing. TTASA’s Time Attack Champions Chris Kahadar and Shiva Maharaj will also be getting into the wheel-to wheel action. From the Trinidad & Tobago Karting Association we have young, new talent, some still in their teens:  Justin Wortman, Scott Wortman, Matthew Singh, Rossi Lochan, Shane Sheppard and Brent Russell. You can read more about them here.

 

 

 

If you were around Circuit Racing in Trinidad & Tobago in the late 90’s and early 2000’s,  you must surely have heard of the Carib Stock Car Series. This Nissan B13 stock car series, the brain child of our very own Frankie Boodram, was immensely popular drawing huge crowds to Wallerfield where there were lots of close side by side racing action. 

 

 

As we continue in the midst of the Covid Pandemic, racing is presently not allowed in Trinidad & Tobago. At least seven Miata Spec Series Teams have completed building their cars and have moved on to track testing while adhering to current Covid protocols. 

 

 

The hope is that the Miata Spec series with its expected close racing will once again draw large numbers of spectators to Wallerfield.  Let’s hope that we will soon see the resumption of Circuit Racing and all other forms of Motorsport at the Frankie Boodram Wallerfield International Raceway. Zoom Zoom!



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