Neil Armstrong Competing On The 2011 Rallye Sunseeker In His Sol Barbados-Liveried Mitsubishi Lancer - Photo Credit: Stuart Paice


Sol Rally Barbados 2012 and its island home are set to have an increased presence at next month's Rallye Sunseeker, with the organisers and tourism backers of the Caribbean event using the event as a key part of its overseas promotion.

The Barbados event has promoted itself at Sunseeker for two years already, but this year is stepping up its involvement. Supported by the island's private sector Tourism Development Corporation (TDC), the Barbados Rally Club (BRC) will rewards the winners of the Rallye Sunseeker National with free entry and shipping to Sol Rally Barbados 2012, including flights, accommodation and a rental car, a prize valued at around £5,500.

In addition, the Barbados Tourism Authority's (BTA) London office has signed an agreement to become a direct Marketing Partner of the Bournemouth-based event, which will see it sponsor an exciting new component of the event, a travel exhibition that will run alongside scrutineering.

The innovative 'Rallye Sunseeker featuring the Barbados Holiday Show', a first for UK rallying, will be staged at the Bournemouth International Centre (BIC) on Friday 24th February. The Barbados marketing team will then also be present at the Ceremonial Start on Poole Quay later that day, before being at Somerley Park the next day for the popular Motorfair.

BTA vice-president, marketing & sales UK, Petra Roach said: “Sol Rally Barbados is a key element of our sports-tourism product; there is great synergy between it and Rallye Sunseeker – both earn vital tourist income in 'slower' months, winter in the UK and summer in Barbados, both are organised by really professional teams, and both attract huge crowds, so I am delighted to take our relationship to the next stage.”

Sunseeker Event Director Rick Smith added: “Rallye Sunseeker has always been about innovation, so our plan to use the BIC as the venue for Scrutineering and Documentation was always on the wish list. Now that the Barbados Tourism Authority has continued – and increased – its support for 2012, we are pleased that the novel plan to link the two activities has culminated in a motor sport event allied to a holiday show.”