THE third edition of the highly anticipated Georgetown Grand Prix will take place at the GT Motorsports track on Thomas Lands this evening.Several of Guyana’s top junior and senior drivers have been dusting the cobwebs off over the last week to get themselves ready for the event.The X30 juniors are expected to be the pinnacle of the event with a two-point difference between leader Zachary Persaud and Nathan Rahaman.With Zack at 111 and Nathan at 109, the battle could go either side with both youngsters understanding that the winner of the overall championship at the end of the year gets a MOTUL-sponsored seat at a U.S. event.They can also not underestimate the rest of the pack, as one good day for Rayden Persaud (82) or Paige Mendonca could jeopardise their championship hopes.With every point being important, the two points awarded for fastest lap in qualifying will be where the fun starts for these young daredevils.The X30 Senior class has its own fireworks with former junior champion Mikhail Persaud returning to action after missing the first two rounds because of academics.At the moment, it is Matthew Phang who leads with 103 points over Steven Nobrega (98) and John Phang (91) but things could go topsy-turvy with the right kind of action from any of those guys today.Elan Rahaman is in the mix as well, with 73 points and can cause some serious upsets.In the X30 Masters class, Shan Seejattan leads with 77 points ahead of Mahendra Boodhoo (51) and Vishal Sawh (48) but the addition of Raymond Seebarran, a former four-stroke champion could make things difficult for the trio.In the Easy Cup division, Naresh Alves leads after two rounds with 111 points ahead of Ackeem Thomas (99) and Rylie Ramroop (84).In the 60CC Kids Cup, Justin Ten-Pow holds a commanding 154-point lead over Nicholas Sawh and Ben Phang who are tied for second place on 90 points.Today’s event begins at 18:00hrs
Sheriff Street expansion…to consider sanctions for contractorWith 11 months already passed since a contract was signed with Sinohydro Corporation Ltd for the construction of the Mandela Avenue/Sheriff Street expansion project, no significant progress has been made, which adds to years of being delayed by various technicalities.Public Infrastructure Minister David Patterson said he is disappointed at the pace at which the project is moving, and the Ministry had made this opinion known to the contractor. The Minister reminded that the contract was signed since 2017 and there is little work to show for it.“The contractor I know is trying and he started at the top end, but I am not satisfied and would have written the contractor and those involved,” Patterson said on Wednesday at the sidelines of an event, where he also explained that if nothing is done soon, the Ministry may resort to applying penalties.“We hope in the short while they will increase the pace of work. After 10 months they have done as much as they should have done,” he said. When asked if there will be financial implications instituted against the contractor, he said, “There is aOngoing drainage works on Sheriff Street, Georgetownprocess and we are on top of it,” Patterson said.The Minister further explained that there is nothing preventing the contractor from pushing in extra hours to ensure the project meets the deadline. According to him, there is no restriction on work time, especially since the company would have submitted a traffic management plan, which was reviewed and approved, allowing it the time to work on that major road.The US$31.03 million contract was awarded to the company last year. The two-year project is aimed at covering approximately seven kilometres of road. The project which is being funded by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), involves the following works: relocation of utilities, lane and shoulder improvements, placement of sidewalks and paved shoulders, traffic signals, traffic signs, streetlights, drainage, a pedestrian overhead walkway, bridges, among others.The IDB had, earlier last year, revised the scope of works on this road project, putting it on hold and delaying the opening of tenders for the project. This was done following discussions entered into with the Finance Ministry aimed at achieving completion of the project before the loan deadline set by the IDB had expired.Initially, Loan-2741 was signed in 2012 to the tune of US$66 million, with a completion deadline of March 2018. The revised scope, which was anticipated to cost US$35 million, would include the relocation of utilities, for which GTT and the Guyana Water Incorporated have been contracted.The initial project was tendered twice: first in 2014, and then again in 2015, both times under the previous Administration. On the second occasion, tenders were returned in May 2015, as none of the contractors was deemed responsive.The Public Infrastructure Ministry said last year that several of the internationally funded projects were unable to get a start in 2016, and the Sheriff Street to Mandela Avenue project was one of those that did not get off the ground as anticipated.It was explained that Government had decided to have a review of this project with it being nullified twice, once in 2015 and then in 2016. The review was conducted by the WSG Design Unit along with the consultant firm Egis, in association with SRK Engineering.