By Visakha Tillekeratne –
While at least 500 railway crossings remain unprotected, countless villages in Sri Lanka remain without access roads and another large number of the citizenry have very meagre means of transport, the glamorous second edition of the Colombo Night Races will be held here in Colombo on the 14th and 15th December 2012 – Today and tomorrow.
The event will be conducted collaboratively by Carlton Motor Sports Club (CMSC), the Asian Motor Racing Club (AMRC) and the Sri Lanka Motor Cycle Club (SLMCC). Qualification round of the event will be held on 14th Friday at the Colombo Fort CNR race track and races will be held on the 15th December at 7.00 PM onward at same track. The Track Layout is published below.
The event has been described in all its glory.
A tourist website describes it thus.
“It was revealed that the Race track will be similar to last year’s track with an extension up to Galle face. The GT-3 and the GT-4 category will be an international event which hopes to attracted drivers from Malaysia, Indonesia and Japan and Hong Kong. This year’s McLarens 1300 event is an addition to the Colombo Night Races with ten cars arriving on to the track, which will be driven by local experts as well as up and coming young drivers. VW Polo Cup Race is planned with seven Indian drivers in action along with three local drivers. It was also noted that the SL-GT Super Cars up to 3500cc race attracted the 24 drivers which is the highest recorded for a race of this nature. The organizers expect few riders from Maldives to arrive in the island to compete along with our local riders which to is expected to add glamour to Motor Cycle events.Four Motor Car races will be happening on race night with experienced International racers. Super Car GT3 / GT4, VW Polo cup and Toyota Etios races will race twice during the day since the given categories were identified as super experience for spectators.
VW Polo and Toyota Etios events are newly added categories for the CNR 2nd edition and expects many more foreign races for both events.
However, AMRC official acclaimed that number of racing categories which were on 1st edition taken down from 2nd edition this year to minimize difficulties fro organizers.
MOTOR CARS EVENTS
GT3 AND GT4 CARS
VW POLO CUP CARS
SL-GT UP TO 3500CC
SL-H UP TO 1600CC
FORMULA McARENS 1300
TOYOTA – ETIOS
MOTOR CYCLES EVENTS
Racing and modified Open Event [ above 250cc]
Racing and modified bikes up to 125cc 2 stroke / up to 250cc 4 stroke [single cylinder]
Super Motor Open [Racing and Modified above 125cc]
Standard 250cc 4 Stroke
Concerns of Citizens
Usually citizens of a country should be extremely proud and happy, when events are conducted and showcased in their own country. Especially when that event is to do with endurance of individual athletes or teams, when the city is organized especially for the event, when the selection of the country is made based on best bids for competition, when the event is a classified regional or international competition and when the event is conducted transparently and with the proceeds going for the betterment of the country’s sports infrastructure or development of the sport through a national body or for charitable causes citizens should not only be proud, but support this actively.
However in the case of the Colombo Night Races, conducted on the roads used by the citizenry for their day to day affairs and the resultant inconvenience for weeks now and when there seems to be no transparency in its conduct, this situation is worrying and aggravating at the same time.
So being a Citizen of the City of Colombo an attempt was made to pose the following questions to the Colombo Municipal Council. But this attempt did not prove fruitful. It is only professional and ethical to write something based on feedback, fact and evidence. As no answers were received from the Mayor’s Office, the writer decided to put before the reading public, the questions that were asked. The reader therefore can decide if the questions are reasonable and warrant answers in the interest of good governance, central to which is transparency.
These are the 10 questions:
1. Is the CMC part of the Colombo Night Race 2012 organizing committee as public amenities are used?
2. Are the roads on which the race is worked out under the purview of the CMC or RDA?
3. As last time, is it happening this time as well – that contours and pavements are changed or flattened?
4. Who paid to get them back to original condition? Is the same happening this time as well?
5. From where are the sand bags and from which river/location was this sand mined? Who paid for the sand bags?
6. What about the nuisance factor? These are within areas of hotels, apartments and offices.
7. What about the hazards and laws re hazards – normally races are on special tracks? (In the USA and Canada such races on ordinary roads are deemed illegal)
8. Is any revenue coming back to the city of Colombo?
9. What is the total expense and income of this event?
10. As the roads are very narrow for racing, if something happens to a bystander/spectator does insurance cover this person?
Are these valid questions? Should the city’s tax payers know the answers or not?
YOU be the judge!