Motor racers pay glowing tributes to Narine
By Steve Ninvalle
September 29, 2002
The Guyana Motor Racing and Sports Club has planned a massive funeral procession in the form of a motorcade for murdered speed ace Gavin Naraine who was gunned down along with three others Wednesday evening at Nathoo's Bar in Kitty.
The motorcade will depart outside the Cultural Centre on Homestretch Avenue at 8:00am Wednesday for the South Dakota Circuit where one minute's silence will be observed and a Lap of Honour taken.
In addition, drivers will rev. engines for one minute. Vice president of the Guyana Motor Racing and Sports Club (GMR&SC) Jad Rahaman said all motor racers and supporters of the sport are asked to join the motorcade which will also serve to denounce the heightened crime wave in Guyana.
Rahaman explained that motor racers are being asked to turn up with racing vehicles on trailers.
"Motor racing in Guyana will never be the same without Gavin Naraine. We have planned this motorcade in respect of all that he has done, we miss him a lot," Rahaman said.
According to Rahaman, the 37-year-old Naraine was going all out to retain his champion driver title. "He was making a very special effort. I think that he really wanted to do good at the November international meeting."
In recent years Naraine ruled the Group Two 'A' category with a stern hand and even moved up to the prestigious Group Three category and ruffled quite a bit of feathers.
"His death will have a tremendous impact on motor racing. He was more than a competitor. He was a stalwart when it came to organising meetings. As a competitor he was just dynamic," Rahaman declared.
Rupie Shewjattan who had several ding-dong tussles with Naraine in Group Two A was still at a loss for words when contacted by Stabroek Sport.
"Motor racing in the Caribbean has suffered with his death. I'm still very shocked. We celebrated our birthdays together. He was born on December 10th and I on the 9th. He was like a brother," Shewjattan, who was runner up champion driver, said.
Shewjattan disclosed that he will be donating a trophy in the name of the slain driver. "It would be called the Gavin Naraine Memorial Trophy and will be for local drivers."
Shewjattan's sentiments were echoed by former South Dakota lap record holder Andrew King. "Gavin was a true club man being an active member of the not only the GMR&SC but also the Georgetown Club, Everest Cricket Club and the Georgetown Cricket Club," Kind said and added that Naraine was so committed to the racing club that many declared that the `G' in the acronym GMR&SC stood for Gavin.
Remembering the late speedster Ray Rahaman, one of Guyana's most experienced drivers, said that Naraine entered motor racing in the mid 80s as the leader of a youth invasion.
"He was always enthusiastic about motor racing. He wanted to try everything. He bridged the gap between the younger and older generation of racers and was always the hardest worker on the committee," Ray said.
Naraine also dabbled in grasstrack racing said Ray but opted out after multiple injuries. "Time and time again his injuries on grasstrack prevented him from competing at South Dakota. So he had to give up that sport."
"He tried a bit of everything. He was obsessed with racing and determined to win. He even tried go kart racing and rallying," Ray said.
Ray reasoned that Naraine's departure will take the "snap" out of sport locally.
"This particular incident will take the drive out of drivers. Group Two `A' is now left with a void. There will be no yardstick for persons to measure their victories by."
Naraine's body would be flown to Canada on Wednesday for cremation Rahaman said.