Antigua and Barbuda – Trackchasing Country #85

Antigua and Barbuda



Trackchasing Country #85




Greetings from places on the way to and from Crabbs, Antigua and Barbuda.   Click on the links below to read about the “story” and see the photos and videos from this trip to a small Caribbean country  where few Americans have ever been…Antigua and Barbuda, home to my trackchasing country #85.



HighlightsThe StoryVideosPhotos




The introduction 


I began the 2019 trackchasing season having seen racing in 82 countries. As you probably know there are 193 countries in the world. Only about 95 of those host racing that is acceptable by trackchasing rules.



That being the case I established a goal for the year of adding just one foreign country to my lifetime totals. Seeing racing in countries for the first time, for me, is getting just a bit more challenging.



Nevertheless, during the last half of April I went to Tunisia on the continent of Africa for some international race viewing. Then somewhat unbelievably, the very next week, I added Montenegro as trackchasing country #84.



By the way the next leading trackchaser has seen racing in 52 countries. Carol is not far behind with 47 countries listed in her record book. That makes her the World’s #3 Trackchaser!



With all of the above as a preamble I never would have given much thought to seeing a third new country this year. However, I have come to learn that predicting the future in trackchasing is a very difficult thing to do.



I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised. I have the Randy Lewis Racing Research Department on my side. This group consists of several people in house but literally hundreds if not thousands of people strategically spaced across the world giving me information on new tracks from their specific locales.



You’ve probably been on my website at If you have then you know that I go into some detail in both the written word, photo albums and videos to share my experiences. Some people think I’m giving too much information to my fellow competitors. However, I want to make it easy for them to enjoy the hobby. All they have to do is look at one of my trips and try to emulate as much of it as they can and they will have a great time.



Trackchasing in country # 85 was going to be in Antigua and Barbuda. I’ve got to be honest with you. I’m not sure I knew that Antigua and Barbuda was even a country! That lack of geographical knowhow would soon change.



So does the Randy Lewis Racing Research Department and its worldwide satellite affiliates get credit for this discovery of “A&M”? No! They do not.



I learned there was racing in Antigua and Barbuda from the Guy Smith dominated and Pennsylvania-based regional trackchasing group. I know. Hard to believe, huh? Nevertheless, when I get new track information from somewhere other than my own research group I am more than willing to give full credit to those who share the information.



Once I knew there was racing in Antigua and Barbuda I had to get the details. It’s one thing to spend all of your time trying to find where different racetracks are located. It’s a totally separate kettle of fish to GO to those racetracks! It didn’t take me very long to discover a fellow by the name of McGyver. He and I would become fast friends as time went along.



McGyver is one of the two co-founders of the Crabbs Raceway in Crabbs, Antigua and Barbuda. They only begin racing a couple of years ago on a full-time basis at their current track location.



Crabbs offers two kinds of racing at their facility. One form is called “rallysprint”. With this type of racing two competitors race at a time and ultimately knock each other out until there is a final champion. Unfortunately, when a race is limited to two cars the race does not count within the trackchasing rules.



Fortunately, they also have a second form of racing called “rallycross”. With rallycross racing at the Crabbs Raceway 4-6 cars compete at one time. I’ll be telling you more about that later in the story.



Our adventure, yes Carol would be joining me on this epic Caribbean travel log, will focus generally on three main categories. Of course, the people are almost always the most important, the most entertaining and the most culturally involved portion of the trip.



It is true that no trip would even start without a race. We would spend several days in Antigua and Barbuda. That gave us a chance to see both their rallysprint and their rallycross racing on two different days.



We have done a good deal of cruising vacations during our time. I estimate that we have cruised well over 25 times, some of it in the Caribbean. We couldn’t exactly remember if we had ever been to Antigua and Barbuda on one of those cruises. After visiting the island we didn’t think so but we were not 100% sure.



Now you know how I found out about the racing in Antigua and Barbuda. You know just a little bit about the main individual who helped make this trip a rousing success. In the ensuing paragraphs and photographs I’m going to tell and show you how this trip came down. You’ll meet the people we met, the challenges we encountered and the solutions that we found to make those challenges actually opportunities. I hope you enjoy the beautiful Caribbean scenery and lifestyle and someday get to visit the Crabbs Raceway as well as Antigua and Barbuda just as we did.





Wednesday, May 22, 2019



Carol and I were set to begin our adventure to Antiqua and Barbuda. We headed to the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).



Carol and I have a simple drill when we go to the airport. I drive her to the terminal and she checks our bags. While she’s doing that I drive Carol Lewis owned and MFunds sponsored Lexus RX350 back to our Los Angeles International Airport parking garage. The garage is about a 20-25 minute walk to the terminals at LAX. Normally by the time Carol has checked the bags I have finished parking the car and walking back to the airport. This works for us.



Today we would not be checking any bags. It was expected that Carol would be gone for six nights on this trip. I was planning to be away from home for nearly two weeks. I bought enough clothes in my one carry-on bag to last me for half the adventure. At the midway point of my journey I would find a place to wash my clothes. Then I would have enough clean clothes for the balance of the trip.



However, Carol still had “chore” to do at the airport. While I parked the car she needed to get the boarding passes for two other airlines in addition to the boarding passes we already had on our primary airline. Yes, we would have boarding passes for THREE flights! Why? We were flying “standby” to Florida. If we didn’t make one airplane we would have two other options on a standby basis. If we missed the first flight there wouldn’t be enough time to get boarding passes for the next standby flight in another terminal. That’s why we printed out the passes in advance. Yes, we are professionals.



I often tell you that I couldn’t do what I do without the help of my sponsors. That is so true. I could still do it on my own but it would be tremendously more expensive and not nearly as convenient.



If we didn’t make any of the three flights we were standing by for, and they were all virtually full, we would have to buy tickets to Florida at the very last minute. That would cost a lot of money. I was overjoyed when our first option came through for us and we boarded a plane bound for Fort Lauderdale, Florida.



At the parking garage I had taken pictures of where I parked the car. Sometimes, after being gone for two weeks, it’s easy to forget where the car was parked!



Carol and I both have a membership in the Priority Pass program. This is a special program that comes with our Chase Visa Sapphire Reserve credit card. Priority Pass allows us to eat in restaurants and stay in airport lounges at no additional charge when we travel. We would use Priority Pass this morning with a $56 food credit at Rock and Brews for breakfast. You can buy a lot of food and drink for $56 even in an airport.



Wouldn’t you know it? We feared we might not make any of the flights on a standby basis and we would have to buy tickets at the last minute. It turned out that we got a seat on our preferred airline and in first class as well. Yes, we were lucky ducks!



The two major airports in the greater Miami Beach area are the Miami International Airport (MIA) and the Fort Lauderdale–Hollywood International Airport (FLL). We landed in Fort Lauderdale but tomorrow’s flights to Antiqua and Barbuda would leave from Miami International.



That being the case we grabbed a ride from Uber for the 27-mile ride from FLL over toward MIA. Once at the Miami airport it was time for dinner. Priority Pass would help us out with that.



With a three-hour time zone change difference from California to Florida we had landed in Fort Lauderdale at dinner time. We immediately sought out the Viena restaurant at MIA. Once again we used Priority Pass to pay the first $56 of our bill. Of course being in Florida we ordered some key lime pie because one should never go to Florida without ordering key lime pie.



Our server at the Viena restaurant was both inexperienced and weird. In a nutshell he screwed up the bill, which would require us to come back to the restaurant tomorrow to straighten out. I won’t even go into the details!



I almost never make hotel reservations before the day we are going to need some place to stay. Why? We are usually flying on a standby basis. We never know if we’re going to make the plane or not. If we don’t get a seat while flying standby then we don’t need a hotel in whatever direction we are heading. Since most hotel reservations are nonrefundable we have to know for certain that we’re going to get to our final destination before making a hotel reservation.



That’s not a problem for me. is one of my sponsors. Tonight at the very last minute at dinner I made a reservation at the Sheraton Miami Airport Hotel and Executive Meeting Center. This hotel’s least expensive room was selling for $180 per night. With Priceline I ended up paying $113. That’s the typical discount that, one of my long-time trackchasing sponsors, gives us. Sometimes we save even more.



The first day of the trip was complete. There had been some significant angst over whether or not we were going to make the flight from the West Coast to the East Coast of United States without having to shell out a major part of our vacation budget. Priority Pass bought us both breakfast and dinner. Priceline got us a great hotel. We were off to the races… in Antigua and Barbuda.




Thursday, May 23, 2019



We woke up to sunny skies in Miami, Florida. There is not much airline service between the United States and the country of Antigua and Barbuda.



The major international airport in Antigo is the V.C. Byrd International Airport. It’s located in the capital of the country, St. John’s. Months ago we had booked our roundtrip airfare from Miami into St. John’s.



The one-way flying distance in air miles from Miami to St. John’s is 1,330 miles. That’s about the same flying distance as from Los Angeles to Dallas, Texas. You can easily buy a round-trip ticket from LAX to DFW for $300 or so. A round-trip ticket from Miami to St. John’s runs about $1,000!



I retired from gainful employment nearly 17 years ago. At that time we looked at our savings. I knew that we would never have a company pension. I hoped that whatever we had saved would last us a lifetime. So far, 17 years later, it has. However if we spent $1,000 per person on every 1,330 mile round-trip airline trip I don’t think our savings for retirement would’ve lasted this long!



I “bought” our airline tickets from Miami to St. John’s using American Airlines frequent flyer miles. I’ve earned more than six million miles with American up to this point. However, most of those miles are long gone with family vacations for five from years ago. For this I needed to spend only 60,000 miles for both Carol and me to fly round-trip from Miami to St. John’s. That saved us $2,000 in cash. I don’t know if you’ve used frequent-flier miles all that often. Spending only 60,000 miles to save $2,000 is a fantastic deal. It might have been one of the very best frequent-flier mile deals I’ve ever had.



We arrived in plenty of time for a 10:35 a.m. flight leaving Miami. The airport was packed but by using our TSA Pre-Check capabilities we cleared security easily.



Airport security dumped us off right in front of the Corona Beach House restaurant. Wouldn’t you know it? The Corona Beach House was a member of the Priority Pass program. We stopped in there and had the first $60 worth of breakfast and cocktails at no charge. I love Priority Pass!



We were still early for our flight. That being the case I used my Alaska Airlines Lounge membership to get us into the American Airlines Admiral’s Club. Alaska has lounges in only about five airports. However, my Alaska Airlines Lounge membership lets us get into all of the American Airlines Admiral’s Clubs as well, which total about 75 worldwide.



I spent been a little time with the Viena restaurant manager, Jonathan, getting our bill fixed from last night. He could not have been more helpful and offered to buy us drinks this morning. Thank you Jonathan.



Today’s flight from Miami to St. John’s was overbooked. Airlines routinely sell more tickets for a flight if they can than they have seats. They count on some passengers not showing up. However, today everyone and more showed up. That was a problem for American Airlines. That was not exactly a problem for us. It would turn out to be an opportunity.



How was American Airlines going to handle an airplane that seated 150 passengers where they had sold 160 tickets? They would ask for full volunteers to give up their seats. In order to get a “volunteer” to take a later flight they would offer them a voucher for future travel as well as meals and a hotel room at no charge for the night.



On the way to the airport this morning American Airlines called me and asked if we would give up our seats for a $400 airline credit per person. We could use the credit anytime over the next one year. I told him that we were not interested.



When we got to the airport I asked the agent if they were still looking for volunteers. They were. They weren’t getting any. American had now increased their offer to $675 per person. That was enough to get us interested. We ended up accepting a total of $1,350 in airline credit as well as vouchers for lunch, dinner and breakfast and a complementary hotel stay near the airport.



I didn’t want to lose a day of being in Antigua and Barbuda but money can be a strong motivator. With $1,350 in flight credits we can pretty much take our next vacation for free with the airlines.



We were re-booked on the flight leaving at the same time as today’s flight but tomorrow. I quickly got in touch with my WhatsApp buddy McGyver. He had planned to meet us at the airport today. I apologized for the one-day delay and McGyver graciously understood.



All of a sudden we had a full day to do something fun in Miami Beach. What would that be? One of the things that came to mind immediately was a tour of the Florida everglades on an air boat to see alligators. However, we had done that a couple times in the past so we passed on that option today.



I did some searching around on TripAdvisor. I came up with the idea of doing a food tour in Little Havana, the Cuban section of Miami Beach. Unfortunately, that tour was completely sold out. However, the tour group had another tour leaving at 5 p.m. tonight. This would allow us to sample the ethnic food of South Beach a very eclectic area of Miami Beach. I booked the tour for us.



This tour turned out to be a whole lot of fun with a group of about 15 people. Our tour guide, Ria, was comical, knowledgeable and entertaining. We stopped at six different restaurants for food and drink. At each stop we spent 15-20 minutes. Ria explained the history of the food we were enjoying, the restaurant’s background and the architecture of South Beach. Do not miss the photos on this one!



The tour began in a Bolivian restaurant. There we dined on ceviche, empanadas and a Bolivian specialty drink where cream soda is mixed with beer! Nope didn’t care for that.



The Lario’s on the Beach restaurant was part of the tour. It’s owned by singer Gloria Estefan. We went into several hotels just to view their lobbies all done in the art-deco architectural style made famous in Miami Beach.



In a way South Beach reminded me of the French Quarter in New Orleans. There was a full on party atmosphere and it wasn’t even dark yet. It was starting to get wild and alcohol moved things along at a rapid pace.



The tour moved along to an Italian eatery called Rosetta’s. They served all kinds of pastries and breads. Now it was time for dessert and coffee. We stopped at Mammamia for Italian gelato. Our final location of the tour was Abuela’s Cuban Kitchen. They served coffee as their specialty. I don’t drink coffee but Carol does. Ria, our guide said the famous drink from Abuela’s was coffee with an extreme amount of sugar in it. Carol wouldn’t try it. She doesn’t like sugar. On the other hand I LOVE sugar. I didn’t even taste the sugar in the coffee sample we were given!



When the three-hour tour was finished we joined a couple of women we met on the tour for a walk around South Beach. One woman was a single traveler from Australia. She is trying to see all of the major tennis tournaments across the world. The other woman was a traveling nurse who has had assignments in virtually every spot in the United States. It’s fun to meet new people.



From downtown South Beach we grabbed an Uber ride back to our hotel at the Holiday Inn at the Miami Beach International Airport. This was the hotel American Airlines had given us for volunteering to give up our seats on our flight today from Miami to Antigua and Barbuda. We will try again tomorrow to get this international trackchasing trip going.





Friday, May 24, 2019


You might think that all we do is eat on these trackchasing trips. It is true that sampling the culinary fair from all of the unique places we visit is a highlight of our traveling adventures.



This morning we had our Priority Pass sponsored Air Margaritaville breakfast in the Miami airport. Of course, this included piña coladas and bloody marys. When you can have drinks like that on your vacation for breakfast you’re having a pretty good vacation.



The three-hour flight from Miami to St. Johns was uneventful. When we landed at the V.C. Bird International Airport a gentleman greeted all of the passengers by singing a live version of the song, “Everything’s gonna be all right”. After arriving into Antigua and Barbuda it was! Don’t miss the video.



The first item on the agenda after clearing border control was getting our rental car. We were renting from Avis. The rate was a reasonable $40 a day or so with unlimited mileage. On an island as small as Antigua we weren’t going to be driving all that far.



I was in for a small surprise. I needed to pay $20 U.S. for a temporary Antigua driver’s license. I’ve got to give who ever thought of that credit. What a great revenue enhancement idea! Not TOO expensive; just right.



I must tell you our rental car left a little bit to be desired. We were given a Suzuki SUV with a very simple license plate number of “R199”. The car only had 39,000 miles on it but it had seen it’s better days.



I asked the Avis rental car agent what model year the Suzuki was. His reply was simple, “2006 or 2007”. This was the first time I had ever rented from a major rental car company and received a car that was 12-13 years old!



As the agent and I went around the car inspecting it we noticed all kinds of scratches, both tail lights were cracked and some of the roof rack was missing etc. etc. I said to the agent, “Is it true that if I drive this car like a maniac I can bring it back in just about any condition and it won’t be any worse than it is right now?”. The agent nodded his head in the affirmative.



The nice thing about this trip was that my iPhone was going to work in Antigua and Barbuda almost exactly like it does in the United States. That meant I could make phone calls at no charge. I could use my phone to text, check the weather and also use it for GPS. My AT&T phone plan has unlimited data whether I’m in the United States or traveling abroad as long as I use the AT&T international phone plan when I’m outside the United States. That cost is $10 per day and it’s the best $10 that I could possibly ever spend.



My main contact in planning this trip in advance was a fellow by the name of McGyver. McGyver was a race driver and also the cofounder of the Crabbs Raceway where we would be watching our racing this weekend. McGyver and I had communicated via telephone and also WhatsApp several times in advance of our visit to Antigua and Barbuda.



McGyver was planning to meet us at the airport upon our arrival. After we are checked out our rental car I gave him a call and he came right over. The rental car agent had given me a restaurant recommendation of a place called to Touloulous. The restaurant was close to the airport. Carol and I would drive over there and McGyver would meet us for a drink.



I use the Waze GPS system. I am absolutely amazed at how this program is so accurate whether we are in Tunisia, Montenegro or Antigua and Barbuda. Antigua and Barbuda would be a very difficult place to navigate without GPS.



On the ride over to the restaurant we got our first taste of the roads on the island of Antigua. To put it bluntly the roads aren’t very good. As a matter fact, I can never remember driving on the worse roads anywhere in the world.



The country of Antigua and Barbuda gained its independence in 1981. They used to be under the control of Great Britain. That being the case everyone drives on the left side of the road with right side steer cars. I’ve driven on the left side of the road quite a bit, primarily in the U.K. and Australia. It’s not all that difficult once you get the hang of it but you do have to pay attention.



Touloulou’s restaurant would give us a good indication about what virtually every restaurant we ate here was going to be like. It was essentially a wall-less building with the roof.



The weather in Antigo is hot and humid. Hot and humid weather is just about my least favorite type of weather other than bitter cold with a strong wind. To top it off I didn’t even bring a hat to fend off the sun in this very warm Caribbean climate. That was dumb on my part.



However, when we were in the shade and there was a nice breeze the weather was quite comfortable. That was the case at Touloulous.



Carol and I ordered off of what was called the “snacks” menu. The snacks menu was a series of appetizers. We chose breaded calamari, chicken wings, steamed dumplings and sweet potato fries. The servings were large and the food was delicious. Just as we were wrapping up McGyver appeared.



MacGyver and his lovely partner Jani arrived with their four and one-half month old son, Leo. Jani is originally from Germany. She is also a race car driver. We sat around drinking rum punch and soon it seemed as if we had all known each other for a very long time. Being able to meet with local people from the countries we visit is probably the highlight of virtually any trip we make.



Luckily for us we would get to have dinner with McGyver and Jani for the next two nights. They were a fun loving couple that like to debate between the two of them the topics of the day from racing, to the best ideas around restaurants, and the like. Real nice folks.



Following our food and drinks we went over to our beachfront hotel called the Buccaneer Beach Club. I had reserved this place on VRBO. We originally had a reservation for four nights. However, when we volunteered to delay our arrival into Antigo by a day that meant we would only be staying at the Buccaneer Beach Club for three nights even though we paid for four.



I must admit that at this stage in life Carol and I are not really “beach people”. Nevertheless, when she joins me on the trip I want us to stay in nice places and the Buccaneer Beach Club hotel was well above average, especially with its location right on the water. What body of water? The Caribbean Sea!



We had eaten our appetizers at about 4 p.m. A few hours later we were getting the munchies. Luckily for us just outside the entrance to our hotel was a fish and chips place called “Chippies“. It was run by a lady from Michigan and her husband. She had come down to Antigua on vacation about 30 years ago and never returned to the Wolverine snow and rain.



Customers simply sat outside of a small food trailer on plastic chairs and tables. It was dark now. A nice breeze made for a very comfortable Caribbean evening. The food was decent. Chippies only took cash. This would be the first place where our American “cash drain” would begin.




Saturday, May 25, 2019



Obviously one of the very best things about international travel on a trackchasing trip is doing things that don’t have anything to do with the racetrack. These visits are a great way to observe the local culture, eat the food and meet the people.



We have traveled a lot. Sometimes it is challenging to come up with something to do that we have never done before. My buddy McGyver had just the unique activity… it was certainly something that we had never ever experienced.



We didn’t have much in the way of eastern Caribbean dollars, the official currency of Antigua and Barbuda. We hoped to use U.S. dollars or credit cards whenever we could. Sometimes when we paid for things with U.S. dollars we were given change in eastern Caribbean dollars. Right now about $0.37 of U.S. currency in needed buy one eastern Caribbean dollar.



Obviously McGyver has a lot of contacts in his home country. Although originally from Grenada he’s been in Antigua and Barbuda a long while. When he’s not racing he’s doing pool landscaping as in the development and design of swimming pools. I would’ve loved to of seen one of his creations but we didn’t have time on this trip. McGyver’s company is called, “Waterscaping LTD”.



One of the other racecar drivers is a fellow whose family runs a place called, “Stingray City“. No, this has nothing to do with Corvettes! Stingray City is all about their customers interaction with stingrays, a cartilaginous fish related to sharks.



I must tell you that I am not really a “water” guy. Yes, we live in a modest seaside cottage with a great view of the Pacific Ocean, but typically I am more for looking at the water rather than being in the water. Years ago we lived in one development that had a community swimming pool. We were there for six years. I never went in the pool one time! Nevertheless, we have owned a couple of homes with inground swimming pools.



McGyver made arrangements for Carol and me to be the guest of the owners of Stingray City. It was sort of comical when I, not being a water guy, was trying to convince Carol that getting in the water with a horde of stingrays would be a good idea. What could go wrong right? At that point I was more for it and she was more against the idea. You should know that I never go snorkeling when given the opportunity on our vacations.



We were staying in the northwest section of the island of Antigua. On this trip we would not have the opportunity to visit the island of Barbuda at all. The Crabbs Raceway as well as Stingray City were located on the eastern side of the island. Just driving over to Stingray City this morning would give us our first education of what the island of Antigua looked like.



I hope you have the time to look at the photo albums that I provided from our visit. You should be able to see the dropdown menu for the photos and video of this trip. I think you’re going to be absolutely amazed at the bright, shockingly bright, paint colors used on residential homes and commercial buildings. We loved these paint schemes.



The weather during our entire trip to Antigua was warm and humid. That is Caribbean weather. That would make getting into the water very comfortable situation. The water temperature in the Pacific Ocean is usually in the 60s.



Once at Stingray City we were given a very short school on the dos and don’ts of handling stingrays. You might remember that the famous crocodile hunter Steve Irwin was stung in the heart from a stingray and died at the age of 44. That was on my mind when I asked my questions of our stingray class instructor.



We were told that under normal conditions we would have nothing to fear with stingrays. We would be in water about four feet deep. We were told to shuffle along with our feet on the bottom of the Caribbean Sea floor so that any nearby stingrays could sense that we were coming their direction. I wouldn’t say I felt 100% comfortable at that point but if you don’t try things new things then you won’t have much of an adventure will you?



About 40 tourists, some of them local folks, were loaded into three speed boats. Off we went into the Caribbean at a fast rate of speed for about five or ten minutes. We then reached the area where we would be playing with the stingrays.



A bunch of us got in the water quickly. We were soon having stingrays, that must have measured five feet across or so, swimming through our legs and passing us in all directions. I just kept telling myself that I am in this business for the adventure. This was a pretty good adventure.



It wasn’t long before Carol saw that I was having so much fun that she reversed her position and decided to get in the water herself. Soon the both of us were for frolicking with stingrays and having the time of our lives. All the other families were enjoying themselves on a beautiful warm Antigua morning.



Just to add an element to the adventure we were offered the opportunity to feed the stingrays. Folks who wanted to do that would get a piece of squid that looked a lot like the shape of a hotdog. We were told to hold the squid in our hand with about half of it showing above our fist. The stingray would come by and sort of suck the squid out of your hand. Again, what could go wrong right?



I knew the guy made the whole process sound a little bit easier than it actually was. When the stingray came by to get the squid from me I actually felt his teeth brush against the top of my mostly closed fist. That was an unusual feeling but not so unusual that I didn’t do it a second time.



Carol tried it as well and had pretty good luck. Then at one point we were making our way back to the boat to kind of finish up our day. One of the stingrays swam up to Carol and began sucking on her forearm as if it were a squid! This “attack” broke the skin and the wound began to bleed. The staff was there with plenty of first aid and soon her injury was cleaned and bandaged and she was good to go.



This is what Wikipediahad to say about the safety of interacting with string rays: 



“Stingrays are not usually aggressive and attack humans only when provoked, as when a ray is accidentally stepped on. Contact with the stinger causes local trauma (from the cut itself), pain, swelling, muscle cramps from the venom, and later may result in infection from bacteria or fungi. The injury is very painful, but seldom life-threatening unless the stinger pierces a vital area. The barb usually breaks off in the wound, and surgery may be required to remove the fragments.



Fatal stings are very rare. The death of Steve Irwin in 2006 was only the second recorded in Australian waters since 1945. The stinger penetrated his thoracic wall, causing massive trauma.



I would say that if you ever get to visit the island of Antigua visiting Stingray City is a must. You’re going to have a great time and be able to do something that you’ve likely never done. The water is crystal clear and the staff is most helpful. We loved Stingray City. Thanks to McGyver and his friends for setting it up for us. One of the best things about Stingray City was when the tour was finished everyone got to drink an unlimited amount of rum punch as we all relaxed and told her stingray war stories. The punch was actually pretty strong and really hit the spot.



As we were driving along the island we saw something that I can’t recall seeing any place else. There were billboards telling of people who had died recently. The deceased’ picture and their name were on these billboards as well as the year they were born and the year they passed away. Actually when I think about it that’s a fairly effective way of spreading the word.



McGyver had recommended a couple of other activities following our visit to Stingray City. We had time for these stops before we headed over to the Crabbs Raceway for the afternoon’s rally sprint racing. On his recommendation we went to Devil’s Bridge just to see the view. For lunch McGyver told us about a great place called Mama’s Pasta that would be on the way.



Pretty much all of the Antigua restaurants that we used on this trip were “open air” locations. There were no indoor air-conditioned facilities. Everywhere we ate the food was excellent. At Mama’s Pasta they offered up various meat and fish dishes as well as pizza. Of course I had to go with a piña colada just because I was in the Caribbean on vacation!



Our entrées were excellent. Don’t miss the photos of Mama’s Pasta. We also got to meet both  “mama and papa” of Mama’s Pasta. Mama does the cooking and papa does the serving. Mama and papa treated us well.



From there we made our way past cemeteries and used car lots until we arrived at Crabbs Raceway. This track is newly constructed. They’ve only been racing here for 2-3 years. The club was able to lease the land from the government. The location used to be part of a U.S. military base.



There are two kinds of racing programs offered at the Crabbs Raceway. The first is rally sprint. The second is rally cross. All of the racing today, Saturday, would be with the rally sprint program. Tomorrow’s action was reserved exclusively for rally cross.



Under trackchasing rules rally sprint racing doesn’t count. Why? The rules say that any race limited to two competitors does not count. I think that rule was put in place to eliminate drag racing. I would not have done it that way but then I wasn’t a “founding father” of trackchasing.



With rally sprint racing only two drivers race at once. On the other hand, rally cross racing does count. With the Crabbs Raceway program 4-6 cars would compete in each event throughout the day during Sunday’s rally cross program.



We would have full access at today’s racetrack. This included the spectator area, the paddock as well as the clubhouse. The clubhouse had comfortable sofa like seats and a roof to block out the strong Caribbean sun. They also served run punch!



McGyver had explained to me that over the past two or three years the club brought more than 30 BMW racecars into Antigua. These cars came from the United Kingdom. They are outfitted in the most professional manner. Individual racers purchased these cars for racing at the Crabbs Raceway.



A food truck, which seems to be permanently located based upon its flat tires, sells food in the spectator area. They also have food concessions and drinks and a live bar at the clubhouse. It’s pretty much necessary to get in your car and drive from the clubhouse to the spectating area which is located next to the paddock.



I’m going to guess the track’s length is about a mile or maybe just a little bit longer. The track is a dirt road course with some minor elevations here and there. Today they were using the configuration that has an elevated crossover.



All of the drivers that we met were very friendly and willing to talk about the race program. They welcomed us to the track. There were four female pilots including Jani, McGyver’s partner and Tiffany (above) his daughter.



I would recommend you look at my YouTube video to see what today’s rally sprint racing action was like. Later in the afternoon the entire program would be shortened because of rain. That actually concerned me just a bit as regards tomorrow’s racing but I knew that we had time to sleep on it.



From the races we drove into downtown St. John’s, the capital of Antigua and Barbuda. Frankly, the downtown area didn’t look very prosperous. Unfortunately just moments after we arrived and parked our car it began to rain.



We actually went downtown to try to buy postcards for Carol. One of her hobbies is sending postcards to family and friends from our trips. We looked all over St. John’s and didn’t have any luck whatsoever in finding any postcards. We did get wet from the rain. Very wet. However, I was committed to finding those postcards. It was Carol who finally called off the dogs. At the time I didn’t give the current rain situation too much thought.



A little bit later McGyver and Jani gave us a call inviting us out to dinner. They had a great place in mind called Papa Zouk’s. In addition to newborn Leo they brought along their son, Diego (above right). What a great young 10-year-old. He’s already competing in sailing regattas. Diego was a quiet but well-spoken and well-mannered young man. We were very impressed with McGyver and Jani’s family.





Sunday, May 26, 2019




Yesterday the last portion of the rally sprint races had been canceled because of the rain. Then overnight at about 3 a.m. I was awakened by the rain. I still didn’t give it all that much consideration as to its potential impact on today’s racing. I figured we’re on an island. An island is sand. Sand drains well. Then I went back to sleep.



When we woke up it was a typical blue sky, warm Caribbean morning. Then McGyver and I started messaging each other. From the tone of what he was saying to me there was no guarantee they were going to race today.



This was the potential problem. Yesterday’s rally sprint racing didn’t count because trackchasing rules don’t allow us to consider racing limited to two competitors. Only today’s rally cross racing, which features 4-6 drivers in each race, is acceptable by trackchasing rules.



I often say that it is the race that brings us to all of these countries around the world. Once we get to the country it’s the people, the sites and the experiences and the food that really put the finishing touches on a foreign trip. However, it is the race that brings us to the country.



We hopped in the car and began the drive over to Crabbs Raceway. When we left our Buccaneer Beach Club hotel we didn’t know for sure if they were racing today or not. I have never ever been rained out of a foreign country first track visit. Was that record in jeopardy today?



On the way to the racetrack we passed by the North Sound International Raceway. That’s the dragstrip in Antigua. There was nothing happening at Northside today.



The wet and muddy rain conditions at the raceway were being muted somewhat by the hot sun and the strong breeze. I really do think they came close to canceling the program. Track officials had arrived in the early morning and dug trenches to help the water drain off the racing surface. At the last minute they decided they could make a go of it. Carol and I breathed collective sigh of relief!



McGyver and Jani are two of the leading and most popular drivers at the track. We also got to meet up with McGyver’s daughter, Tiffany. She is one of four female pilots out of a group of about 16 cars that showed up today. Although several drivers I talked to said they liked rally cross racing just a bit more than rally sprint racing today’s muddy conditions might have limited the field.



It was fun seeing so many brightly colored cars in the paddock. Most of the cars were BMWs acquired from the UK. In a very short time the Crabbs Raceway has built a good looking dirt road course and a strong field of very professional racing machines. That’s not easy to do but they’ve done it.



I’m going to recommend that you take a look at my photo albums as well as my YouTube video of the racing action from the Crabbs Raceway in Crabbs, Antigua and Barbuda. I think that’s the best way for you to get a good sense about the racing.



We were delayed getting into Antigua when our scheduled aircraft ended up being overbooked. The airlines offered us a tidy sum to travel just one day later. That knocked our overnight stay from four nights to just three nights. Luckily for us, McGyver and Jani joined us for drinks and food each night. This made the trip extra special. 



You might be getting a fairly strong impression that these trips are all about meeting people, having lunch or dinner with them and just enjoying the social life of people who come from cultures much different than our own. If you get that impression that’s because it’s true.



Both McGyver and Jani had been at the racetrack for a full 12-hour day, maybe more. In the hot and humid Caribbean climate that makes for a pretty full day when you’re getting in and out of your hot race car and competing in 6-8 races or more.



Nevertheless, again McGyver and Jani invited us to join them at a local pizza and steakhouse just up the road from where we were staying. This restaurant has been in business since 1977 as Pari’s Pizza and Steakhouse. It was owned by Mike Mckie, one of the drivers competing today.



The interior of this restaurant was the nicest of any we visited during the trip. It was extra special to have the owner come over and visit with us at our table for several minutes. Every one of the people I met connected with the Crabbs Raceway was enjoyable to talk to.



I had one of the very best pizzas I’ve had in a long time at Pari’s. The “crush” drink was fantastic as well. I had a couple of those. At the end of our meal it was sort of disappointing to know that we weren’t going to have the company of McGyver, Jani and their friends anymore at least for this trip. Nevertheless, we might see them again. Stay tuned on that one.




Monday, May 27, 2019



Our racing program in Antigua and Barbuda was now complete. We would be leaving the country today bound for Miami, Florida. Right now there is only one flight a day from St. John’s, Antigua and Barbuda to MIA. We would be on that flight leaving at about 3 p.m.



However, we still had time for some touring of the island. We had spent most of our time on the north side of Antigua and Barbuda. McGyver had recommended we visit the town of English Harbor. That small town was on the far sound end of the island of Antigua.



Wikipedia provided some additional background that I found interesting.



“Antigua is located in the Leeward Islands. It has an area of 281 square kilometres (108 sq mi). Its coastline is 87 kilometres (54 mi). The highest place on the island is 402 metres (1,319 ft).



Over 32,000 people live in the capital city, St. John’s. The capital is situated in the north-west and has a deep harbour which is able to accommodate large cruise ships. Other leading population settlements are All Saints(3,412) and Liberta (2,239), according to the 2001 census.



English Harbour on the south-eastern coast is famed for its protected shelter during violent storms. It is the site of a restored British colonial naval station called “Nelson’s Dockyard” after Captain Horatio Nelson. Today English Harbour and the neighbouring village of Falmouth are known as a yachting and sailing destination and provisioning centre. During Antigua Sailing Week, at the end of April and beginning of May, an annual regatta brings a number of sailing vessels and sailors to the island to play sports.



On 6 September 2017, the Category 5 Hurricane Irma destroyed 90 percent of the buildings on the island of Barbuda. Residents were evacuated to Antigua.



We continued to be both impressed and amazed at the bright colors dotting the island homes. These were BRIGHT yellows, blues and pinks. Don’t miss the photos.



The roads on Antigua and Barbuda are in rough shape. I can’t really recall being anywhere with worse public roads. We would end up driving our Avis Rental Car Racing Suzuki SUV just 123 miles over the three days we had it. It seemed like 1,023 miles!



When we picked up the car the tank was a little bit more than half full. The rental car agent told us to return the car with half a tank of gas. Folks, it’s a lot more difficult to return a rental car with a half tank than a full tank!



I had read travel reports that said Antigua and Barbuda gas stations often didn’t take credit cards only cash. We were beginning to run out of U.S. funds. On most of our travel adventures we use credit cards for EVERYTHING saving our cash.



When we did stop for gas in English Harbor I was happy to learn they would take our credit card. Gas sold for the equivalent of $4.62 U.S. per gallon. It was odd to me anyway that gas prices are not advertised anywhere on the station property. I could only guess how much fuel, based upon the miles we had driven, it would take to move the fuel gage from virtually empty to a half tank. I chose eight gallons. That was probably a gallon or two too much. Oh well, sometimes the bear eats you and sometimes you eat the bear.



Our next stop was the V.C. Bird International Airport. Our somewhat brief visit to Antigua and Barbuda was coming to an end. The terminal building looked to be nearly brand new. In checking I found the terminal had come on line in 2015. Clearing border control took a bit longer than normal but we were still early for our flight.



We still had a twenty-dollar bill in Eastern Caribbean (EC) dollars. By the way it takes about 1 Eastern Caribbean dollar to get 37 cents in U.S. currency. We spent the twenty EC bucks at a bakery and on postcards in the terminal. We would leave Antigua and Barbuda with no ECs!



With a bit of time before our flight left for Miami we entered the Priority Pass sponsored Executive Lounge inside the terminal. Wow! What a nice lounge. I’ve been in well over one hundred of these and this was one of the best. We dined on lots of gourmet specialty foods that would get us to dinner in the Miami airport tonight.



Our three-hour flight from St. John’s to Miami was uneventful. Those are the best kind. However, MIA was a zoo with passengers coming into the country from all over the world.



I often hear from travelers, usually inexperienced travelers, that airline travel is a hassle. I have averaged being on three flights a week, EVERY WEEK, since I was twenty-three. That’s saying something since I didn’t fly on my FIRST airplane until I was twenty-one!



I guess for the traveler who isn’t familiar with the systems and/or technology used to navigate airline travel the process can be a hassle. It’s isn’t for me.



Today it looked like passengers trying to clear border control in Miami were in for a wait of an hour or more. Carol and I both have “Global Entry” membership. It took us less than five minutes to clear border control. Yep. No hassle for us.



From there we went to have dinner at the Air Margaritaville restaurant. The eatery is located “landside” at MIA. I love their casual food and quick service. Did I tell you we ate dessert at every meal? The first $56 was on Priority Pass. Even in an airport you can eat pretty well on that kind of a stipend.



Then we hopped on a hotel shuttle to the Aloft hotel near the Miami airport. Aloft is part of the Marriott chain and I have Titanium status with Marriott. Of course, I used Priceline to get an excellent price on this unique hotel brand. I really enjoy staying in Aloft hotels.



Carol and I had an early wakeup call for tomorrow morning. We would both begin in Miami and then head in opposite directions. With that in mind it was off to bed with a big day of travel tomorrow.






Tuesday, May 28, 2019


Today was “get-a-way” day. Carol was headed back to our modest seaside cottage in the sleepy little village of San Clemente. I was headed to Austin, Texas.



We stopped at the Corona Beach House restaurant in the Miami International Airport (MIA). This was a Priority Pass restaurant we had used earlier in the trip. Speaking of Priority Pass, we had used approximately $500 worth of their food and drink at the restaurants and airline clubs they offer during our nearly weeklong trip. That’s a pretty fantastic value for the worldwide traveler.



Carol was traveling on a confirmed airline ticket back to SoCal. I mention that because I would normally fly on a standby basis. However, I always want Carol’s travel experience to be as easy and stress-free as possible. Flying on a paid ticket fits the bill for her.



She would first board a plane for Dallas (DFW) from MIA. Then she would connect to a flight to the John Wayne Airport (SNA) in Orange County, California. This presented a logistical challenge as well as an opportunity. Our car was parked at LAX some 40 miles from where Carol would land.



No problem with any of that. Carol would grab an Uber ride from SNA back to San Clemente. That meant my car would be waiting for me at LAX when I arrived from, most likely Canada, at the end of my trip.



If you’re going to have successful travel experiences you had best be flexible. If there are two traveling the more “technically capable” each is the better. This solution worked really well for Carol and me as well.



Carol’s flight left in the morning. My standby flight to Austin, Texas wasn’t departing until 2 p.m. That gave me plenty of time for some power walking through MIA. The Miami airport is a big place and perfect for walking. By the time I boarded my flight I had nearly met my daily goal of four miles of walking.



I took the VERY long walk down to the Avianca VIP Lounge for some travel planning time. There is a constant progression of rental car reservations, airline flight planning and the like to keep my travel schedule humming. Airline clubs are the perfect place to get that done. I stopped at the Air Margarita restaurant for lunch using Priority Pass. I think that might have best my fourth visit of the trip there!



Soon I had boarded a flight to Texas and was landing in Austin. I hung out in the American Airlines Admirals Club until daughter Kristy and grandchildren Mitch and Astrid came by to pick me up. I get down to Austin about once a quarter for a day or two visit. I would also get the chance to see our son Jim, who now lives in Austin as well as 9-month old Cecelia.



This had been another fine international adventure. I’ve really got to thank McGyver, my main man from Antigua and Barbuda. From start to finish he made sure that our visit to his country was going to be an outstanding one. A trip like this to a foreign country is made so much more complete when you have friends on the ground. McGyver, thank you and your family and your friends so much. We had a great time.



Good day from Antigua and Barbuda and other points involved in the trip.












RLR – Randy Lewis Racing Lifetime Trackchasing Countries



# 1 – UNITED STATES OF AMERICA – Peoria Speedway – Mt. Hawley, (oval) – Track #1, Peoria, Illinois – circa 1954 (age 5)


# 2 – CANADA– Cayuga Speedway (oval) – Track #174, Nelles Corner, Ontario – July 31, 1988 (Dick Trickle winner)


# 3 – AUSTRALIA– Parramatta City Raceway (oval) – Track #180, Granville, New South Wales – November 17, 1989 (accompanied by Carol)


# 4 – UNITED KINGDOM – Northhampton International Raceway (oval) – Track #378, Northhampton – June 26, 1999 (accompanied by Carol, Kristy, Jim)


# 5 – NETHERLANDS– Driesum Racetrack (oval) – Track #839, Driesum – May 5, 2005 (accompanied by Roland Vanden Eynde)


# 6 – BELGIUM– Bellekouter oval (oval) – Track #841, Affligem – May 8, 2005 (accompanied by Roland Vanden Eynde)


# 7 – FRANCE– Circuit de Croix en Ternois (road course) – Track #843, Saint-Pol sur-Ternoise – May 8, 2005 (accompanied by Roland Vanden Eynde – 2ndnew country in one day!)


# 8 – GERMANY– Nurburgring (road course) – Track #844, Nurburg – May 13, 2005 (accompanied by Carol, Roland Vanden Eynde)


# 9 – NEW ZEALAND – Western Springs Speedway (oval) – Track #1,134, Western Springs – December 26, 2006 (accompanied by Carol)


# 10 – MEXICO – Triovalo Bernardo Obregon (oval) – Track #1,281, Tiajamulco de Zuniga, Jalisco – October 14, 2007 (accompanied by Carol, J.J., Roger Ward)


# 11 – BARBADOS – Bushy Park Racing Circuit (road course) – Track #1,296, Bushy Park – December 9, 2007


# 12 – THAILAND – Bira Circuit (road course) – Track #1,300, Pattaya – January 19, 2008


# 13 – SOUTH AFRICA – Durban Grand Prix (road course) – Track #1,315, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal – February 24, 2008 (accompanied by J.J. and Will Van Horne)


# 14 – JAMAICA – Dover Raceway (road course) – Track #1,322, Brown’s Town St. Ann – March 24, 2008


# 15 – SWEDEN – Sturup Raceway (road course) – Track #1,335, Malmo – May 10, 2008 (accompanied by Carol)


# 16 – DENMARK – Ring Djursland (road course) – Track #1,336, Tirstrup – May 11, 2008 (accompanied by Carol)


# 17 – CZECH REPUBLIC – Automotodrome BRNO (road course) – Track #1,381, Brno – September 13, 2008


# 18 – AUSTRIA – Lambrechten Stock Car Track (road course) – Track #1,382, Lambrechten – September 14, 2008


# 19 – IRELAND – Tipperary International Raceway (oval) – Track #1,388, Rosegreen – October 26, 2008 (Carol and I visited this track earlier in the year)


# 20 – GUYANA – South Dakota Circuit (road course) – Track #1,390, Timehri – November 2, 2008 (accompanied by Carol)


# 21 – CHINA – The Guia Circuit (road course) – Track #1,392, Macau – November 16, 2008 (accompanied by Carol)



# 22 – COSTA RICA – Autodromo La Guacima (road course) – Track #1,398, La Guacima – November 30, 2008


# 23 – ANDORRA – Grandvalira Circuit (road course) – Track #1,404, Port d’Envalira – January 17, 2009


# 24 – ARGENTINA – Circuito Efren Chemolli (oval) – Track #1,406, Buenos Aires – January 31, 2009 (shared with Jerry Fisher)


# 25 – QATAR – Losail International Circuit (road course) – Track #1,408, Doha – February 13, 2009


# 26 – BAHRAIN – Bahrain International Circuit (road course) – Track #1,410, Sakhir – February 27, 2009 (accompanied by Carol)


# 27 – UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – Dubai Autodrome (road course) – Track #1,411, Dubai – February 28, 2009 (accompanied by Carol)


# 28 – COLOMBIA – Autodromo de Tocancipa (road course) – Track #1,415, Tocancipa – March 22, 2009


# 29 – SPAIN – Motorland Aragon (road course) – Track #1,416, Alcaniz – March 28, 2009


# 30 – PORTUGAL – Circuto de Murca (road course) – Track #1,417, Murca – March 29, 2009


# 31 – ICELAND – Kapelluhraum (road course) – Track #1,420, Hafnafjorour – April 25, 2009 (shared with Will White)


# 32 – HUNGARY – Hungaroring (road course) – Track #1,426, Mogyorod – May 8, 2009 (accompanied by Carol)


# 33 – SWITZERLAND – Hock Ybrig (road course) – Track #1,427, Hoch Ybrig – May 9, 2009 (accompanied by Carol)


# 34 – ITALY – Vighizzolo d’Este Stock Car Track (road course) – Track #1,428, Vighizzolo d’Este – May 10, 2009 (accompanied by Carol)


# 35 – DOMINICAN REPUBLIC – Autodromo Mobil 1 (road course) – Track #1,515, Santo Domingo – December 6, 2009 (accompanied by Carol)


# 36 – MALTA – Ta’Qali Race Track (road course) – Track #1,521, Ta’Qali – February 7, 2010 (accompanied by Carol)


# 37 – FINLAND – Lake Pidisjarvi Ice Track (road course) – Track #1,524, Nivala – February 20, 2010


# 38 – JAPAN – Suzuka Circuit (road course) – Track #1,530, Suzuka – March 21, 2010


# 39 – CHILE – Autodromo de Interlomas (road course) – Track #1,531, Temuco – April 18, 2010


# 40 – MOROCCO – Circuit de Marrakesh (road course) – Track #1,535, Marrakesh – May 1, 2010 (accompanied by Carol)


# 41 – BRAZIL – Circuit de Caruaru – Aryten Senna (road course) – Track #1,540, Caruaru – May 16, 2010 (accompanied by Carol, Jerry Fisher and Katina Spencer)


# 42 – ESTONIA – Laitse Rally Park (road course) – Track #1,571, Laitse – July 24, 2010 (accompanied by Carol)


# 43 – LATVIA – Bikernieki (road course) – Track #1,572, Riga – July 25, 2010 (accompanied by Carol


# 44 – GUATEMALA – Autodromo Pedro Cofino (road course) – Track #1,580, Alotenango – August 15, 2010


# 45 – EL SALVADOR – El Jabali (road course) – Track #1,582, Quezaltepeque – August 22, 2010 (accompanied by Carol)


# 46 – ROMANIA – Bradu (road course) – Track #1,603, Bradu – October 16, 2010


# 47 – BULGARIA – Closed Route – Burgas (road course) – Track #1,604, Burgas – October 17, 2010 (accompanied by Lyubomir and Plamen Simeonov)


# 48 – SOUTH KOREA – Korea International Circuit (road course) – Track #1,605, Yeongam, Jeollanam-Do – October 24, 2010


# 49 – PHILIPPINES – Batangas Racing Circuit (road course) – Track #1,608, Batangas – November 21, 2010


# 50 – NORWAY – Lyngas Motorbane (road course) – Track #1,648, Lier – April 30, 2011


# 51 – MALAYSIA – Sepang International Circuit (road course) – Track #1,656, Sepang – May 28, 2011


# 52 – INDONESIA – Sentul International Circuit (road course) – Track #1,657, Babakan Madang, Boder – May 29, 2011


# 53 – LUXEMBOURG – Alzingen (road course) – Track #1,711, Alzingen – September 4, 2011 (accompanied by Carol)


# 54 – POLAND – Tor Slomczyn (road course) – Track #1,713, Slomczyn – September 11, 2011 (accompanied by Carol)


# 55 – SINGAPORE – Marina Bay (road course) – Track #1,714, Singapore – September 24, 2011 (accompanied by Carol) 


# 56 – URUGUAY – Piriapolis Grand Prix (road course) – Track #1,724, Piriapolis – November 12, 2011


# 57 – SRI LANKA – Pannala Race Track (road course) – Track #1,732, Pannala – February 12, 2012


# 58 – ECUADOR – Autodromo Internacional de Yahuarcocha (road course) – Track #1,736, Ibarra – March 11, 2012


# 59 – SLOVAKIA – Slovakia Ring (road course) – Track #1,742, Orechova Puton – April 29, 2012


# 60 – MONACO – Circuit de Monaco (street course) – Track #1,746, Monte Carlo – May 13, 2012 (accompanied by Carol)


# 61 – CROATIA – Automotodrom Grobnik (road course) – Track #1,762, Rijeka – June 23, 2012


# 62 – PERU – Autodromo La Chutana (road course) – Track #1,802, Lima – October 21, 2012 (accompanied by Carol)


# 63 – GREECE – Serres Circuit (road course) – Track #1,807, Serres – November 4, 2012


# 64 – RUSSIA – Moscow Central Hippodrome (oval) – Track #1,824, Moscow – February 23, 2013 (accompanied by Carol)


# 65 – LITHUANIA – Marijampole Autokross Track (road course) – Track #1,842, Marijampole – May 12, 2013 (accompanied by Carol)


# 66 – INDIA – Buddh International Circuit (road course) – Track #1,915, Noida – October 27, 2013 (accompanied by Carol)


# 67 – GEORGIA – Rustavi International Motorpark (road course) – Track #1,916, Rustavi – November 10, 2013


# 68 – TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO – Larry Gomes Stadium (road course) – Track #1,928, Arima – January 26, 2014 (accompanied by Carol)


# 69 – TURKEY – Istanbul Park (road course) – Track #2,035 Akfirat (accompanied by Carol)


# 70 – AZERBAIJAN – Streets of Baku (road course) – Track #2,037, Baku (accompanied by Carol)


# 71 – SERBIA – Usce (road course) – Track #2,224, Belgrade (accompanied by Carol)


# 72 – BOZNIA AND HERZEBOVINA – Zaluzani (road course) – Track #2,235, Zaluzani (accompanied by Boris Miljevic)


# 73 – PANAMA – La Chorrera (road course) – Track #2,290, Circuito Internacional de Panama (accompanied by Carol)


# 74 – ZIMBABWE – Bulawayo Motorsport Park (road course) – Track #2,291, Bulawayo


# 75 – NAMIBIA – Desert Raceway (oval) – Track #2,369, Walvis Bay – 2017


# 76 – MACEDONIA – Skopje Street Course (road course) – Track #2,386, Skopje – 2017


# 77 – UKRAINE – Autodrome Chayka (road course) – Track #2,387, Kiev – 2017


# 78 – BELARUS – Stadium Zarya (oval) – Track #2,421, Minsk – 2018


# 79 – MALDIVES – Hulhumalé Racing Track (road course) – Track #2,425, Hulhumalé – 2018


# 80 – BOLIVIA – Autodromo Santa Cruz (road course) – Track #2,429, Santa Cruz – 2018


# 81 – Moldova – Colonita Autocross (road course) – Track #2,503, Colonita – 2018


# 82 – Saudi Arabia – Ad Diriyah E-Prix (road course) – Track #2,514, Ad Diriyah – 2018


# 83 – Tunisia – Belvedere Circuit (road course) – Track #2,547, Tunis – 2019


# 84 – Montenegro – Auto Kros Zlatica (road course) – Track #2,548, Podgorica – 2019


# 85 – Antigua and Barbuda– Crabbs Raceway (road course) – Track #2,553, Crabbs – 2019




The International Big 3 country count.


  • . Randy Lewis, San Clemente, California USA – 85
  • . Roland Vanden Eynde, Vilvoorde, Belgium – 52
  • . Carol Lewis, San Clemente, California USA – 48




The year 2019 is turning out to be a fantastic year for international trackchasing. Tunisia, Montenegro and now Antiqua and Barbuda are in the books. What an eclectic combination of foreign travel experiences those countries provided!



Are there any more foreign travel itineraries on the horizon? I can’t really promise and I’ve learned that even trying to predict the trackchasing future is impossible. My best advice? Stay tuned.






The three most important trackchasing comparisons to me are:



Total lifetime tracks seen


Total “trackchasing countries” seen


Lifetime National Geographic Diversity results




Total Lifetime Tracks

There are no trackchasers currently within 710 tracks of my lifetime total. Don’t blame me.



  • . Randy Lewis, San Clemente, California – 2,553



Total Trackchasing Countries

There are no trackchasers currently within 30 countries of my lifetime total.


  • . Randy Lewis, San Clemente, California – 85




Current lifetime National Geographic Diversity results


  • Randy Lewis, San Clemente, California – 4.14









Antigua and Barbuda – FAST FACTS*



Provided by my friends at Wikipedia and others.




Antigua and Barbuda

Coat of arms

Motto: “Each Endeavouring, All Achieving”
Anthem: “Fair Antigua, We Salute Thee”

Royal anthem“God Save the Queen”



and largest city

St. John’s
17°7′N 61°51′W
Official language English
Vernacular language Antiguan and Barbudan Creole
Ethnic groups


91% African (Black)
4.4% Multiracial
1.7% European (White)
2.9% Other


76.5% Christian
12.2% Other
5.9% None
5.5% Unspecified
Demonym(s) Antiguan
Government Unitary parliamentaryconstitutional monarchy
• Monarch Elizabeth II
• Governor-General Rodney Williams
• Prime Minister Gaston Browne
Legislature Parliament
• Upper house Senate
• Lower house House of Representatives
• Associated State 27 February 1967
• from the United Kingdom 1 November 1981
• Total 440 km2 (170 sq mi) (182nd)
• Water (%) negligible
• 2016 estimate 100,963 (199th)
• 2011 census 81,799
• Density 186/km2 (481.7/sq mi)
GDP (PPP) 2019 estimate
• Total $2.731 billion
• Per capita $29,298
GDP (nominal) 2019 estimate
• Total $1.717 billion
• Per capita $18,416
HDI (2018)  0.780
high · 70th
Currency East Caribbean dollar (XCD)
Time zone UTC-4 (AST)
Driving side left
Calling code +1-268
ISO 3166 code AG
Internet TLD .ag
“God Save the Queen” is the official national anthem, but is generally used only on regal and vice-regal occasions.



Antigua and Barbudais a country in the West Indies in the Americas, lying between the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. It consists of two major islands, Antigua and Barbuda, and a number of smaller islands (including Great Bird, Green, Guiana, Long, Maiden and York Islands and further south, the island of Redonda). The permanent population numbers about 81,800 (at the 2011 Census) and the capital and largest port and city is St. John’s on Antigua. Lying near each other (the main Barbuda airport is less than 0.5° of latitude, or 30 nautical miles, north of the main Antigua airport), Antigua and Barbuda are in the middle of the Leeward Islands, part of the Lesser Antilles, roughly at 17°N of the equator.



The island of Antigua was explored by Christopher Columbus in 1493 and named for the Church of Santa María La Antigua. Antigua was colonized by Britain in 1632; Barbuda island was first colonized in 1678. Antigua and Barbuda joined the West Indies Federation in 1958. With the breakup of the federation, it became one of the West Indies Associated States in 1967. Following by self-governing on its internal affairs, independence was granted from United Kingdom on 1 November 1981.



Antigua and Barbuda remains a member of the Commonwealth and Elizabeth II is the country’s queen and head of state




Antigua is Spanish for “ancient” and barbuda is Spanish for “bearded”. The island of Antigua was originally called Wadadli by Arawaks and is locally known by that name today; Caribs possibly called it Wa’omoni. Christopher Columbus, while sailing by in 1493 may have named it Santa Maria la Antigua, after an icon in the Spanish Seville Cathedral.





Antigua was first settled by archaic age hunter-gatherer Amerindians called the Ciboney. Carbon dating has established the earliest settlements started around 3100 BC. They were succeeded by the ceramic age pre-Columbian Arawak-speaking Saladoid people who migrated from the lower Orinoco River.



The Arawaks introduced agriculture, raising, among other crops, the famous Antigua black pineapple (Moris cultivar of Ananas comosus), corn, sweet potatoes, chiles, guava, tobacco, and cotton.



The indigenous West Indians made excellent seagoing vessels which they used to sail around on the Atlantic and the Caribbean. As a result, Caribs and Arawaks were able to colonize much of South America and the Caribbean Islands. Their descendants still live there, notably in Brazil, Venezuela, and Colombia.



Most Arawaks left Antigua around 1100 AD; those who remained were later raided by the Caribs. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, the Caribs’ superior weapons and seafaring prowess allowed them to defeat most of the West Indian Arawak nations, enslaving some and possibly cannibalising others.



European and African diseases, malnutrition, and slavery eventually killed most of the Caribbean’s native population. Smallpox was probably the greatest killer. Some historiansbelieve that the psychological stress of slavery may also have played a part in the massive number of deaths amongst enslaved natives. Others believe the reportedly abundant but starchy, low-protein diet may have contributed to their severe malnutrition as they were used to a diet fortified with protein from the sea.



The Spaniards did not colonise Antigua because it lacked fresh water but not aggressive Caribs. The English settled on Antigua in 1632; Christopher Codrington settled on Barbuda in 1684. Slavery, established to run sugar plantations around 1684, was abolished in 1834. The British ruled from 1632 to 1981, with a brief French interlude in 1666.



The islands became an independent state within the Commonwealth of Nations on 1 November 1981, with Elizabeth II as the first Queen of Antigua and Barbuda. Vere Cornwall Bird Srbecame the first Prime Minister.



Most of Barbuda was devastated in early September 2017 by Hurricane Irma, which brought winds with speeds reaching 295 km/h (185 mph). The storm damaged or destroyed 95% of the island’s buildings and infrastructure, leaving Barbuda “barely habitable” according to Prime Minister Gaston Browne. Nearly everyone on the island was evacuated to Antigua.





Antigua and Barbuda both are generally low-lying islands whose terrain has been influenced more by limestone formations than volcanic activity. The highest point on Antigua is Mount Obama (formerly Boggy Peak), the remnant of a volcanic crater rising 402 metres (1,319 feet).



The shorelines of both islands are greatly indented with beaches, lagoons, and natural harbours. The islands are rimmed by reefs and shoals. There are few streams as rainfall is slight. Both islands lack adequate amounts of fresh groundwater.





Rainfall averages 990 mm (39 in) per year, with the amount varying widely from season to season. In general the wettest period is between September and November. The islands generally experience low humidity and recurrent droughts. Temperatures average 27 °C (80.6 °F), with a range from 23 °C (73.4 °F) to 29 °C (84.2 °F) in the winter to from 25 °C (77.0 °F) to 30 °C (86.0 °F) in the summer and autumn. The coolest period is between December and February.



Hurricanes strike on an average of once a year, including the powerful Category 5 Hurricane Irma, on 6 September 2017, which damaged 95% of the structures on Barbuda. Some 1,800 people were evacuated to Antigua.



An estimate published by Time indicated that over $100 million would be required to rebuild homes and infrastructure. Philmore Mullin, Director of Barbuda’s National Office of Disaster Services, said that “all critical infrastructure and utilities are non-existent – food supply, medicine, shelter, electricity, water, communications, waste management”. He summarised the situation as follows: “Public utilities need to be rebuilt in their entirety… It is optimistic to think anything can be rebuilt in six months … In my 25 years in disaster management, I have never seen something like this.”





The sandy soil on much of the islands has only scrub vegetation. Some parts of Antigua are more fertile–most notably the central plain–due to the volcanic ash in the soil. These areas support some tropical vegetation and agricultural uses. The planting of acacia, mahogany, and red and white cedar on Antigua has led to as much as 11% of the land becoming forested, helping to conserve the soil and water.





Antigua & Barbuda’s population (1961–2010). Number of inhabitants in thousands.




Ethnic groups

Antigua has a population of 100,963, mostly made up of people of West African, British, and Madeiran descent. The ethnic distribution consists of 91% Black & Mulatto, 4.4% mixed race, 1.7% White, and 2.9% other (primarily East Indian and other Asian). Most Whites are of Irish or British descent. Christian Levantine Arabs, and a small number of Asians and Sephardic Jews make up the remainder of the population.



An increasingly large percentage of the population lives abroad, most notably in the United Kingdom (Antiguan Britons), United States and Canada. A minority of Antiguan residents are immigrants from other countries, particularly from Dominica, Guyana and Jamaica, and, increasingly, from the Dominican Republic, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Nigeria. An estimated 4,500 American citizens also make their home in Antigua and Barbuda, making their numbers one of the largest American populations in the English-speaking Eastern Caribbean.





English is the official language. The Barbudan accent is slightly different from the Antiguan.



In the years before Antigua and Barbuda’s independence, Standard English was widely spoken in preference to Antiguan Creole. Generally, the upper and middle classes shun Antiguan Creole. The educational system dissuades the use of Antiguan Creole and instruction is done in Standard (British) English.



Many of the words used in the Antiguan dialect are derived from British as well as African languages. This can be easily seen in phrases such as: “Ent it?” meaning “Ain’t it?” which is itself dialectal and means “Isn’t it?”. Common island proverbs can often be traced to Africa.



Spanish is spoken by around 10,000 inhabitants.





A majority (77%) of Antiguans are Christians, with the Anglicans (17.6%) being the largest single denomination. Other Christian denominations present are Seventh-day Adventist Church (12.4%), Pentecostalism (12.2%), Moravian Church (8.3%), Roman Catholics (8.2%), Methodist Church (5.6%), Wesleyan Holiness Church (4.5%), Church of God (4.1%), Baptists (3.6%), Mormonism (<1.0%), as well as Jehovah’s Witnesses.



Non-Christian religions practiced in the islands include the Rastafari, Islam, and Bahá’í Faith.







Political system

The politics of Antigua and Barbuda take place within a framework of a unitary, parliamentary, representative democratic monarchy, in which the head of State is the monarch who appoints the Governor General as vice-regal representative. Elizabeth II is the present Queen of Antigua and Barbuda, having served in that position since the islands’ independence from the United Kingdom in 1981. The Queen is currently represented by Governor General Sir Rodney Williams. A council of ministers is appointed by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister, currently Gaston Browne (2014–). The prime minister is the head of government.



Executive power is exercised by the government while legislative power is vested in both the government and the two Chambers of Parliament. The bicameral Parliament consists of the Senate (17 members appointed by members of the government and the opposition party, and approved by the Governor-General), and the House of Representatives (17 members elected by first past the post) to serve five-year terms.



The current Leader of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition is the United Progressive Party Member of Parliament (MP), the Honourable Baldwin Spencer.





The last elections held were on 12 June 2014, during which the Antigua Labour Party won 14 seats, and the United Progressive Party 3 seats.



Since 1949, elections have been won by the populist Antigua Labour Party. However, in the Antigua and Barbuda legislative election of 2004 saw the defeat of the longest-serving elected government in the Caribbean. Prime Minister Lester Bryant Bird, who had succeeded his father Vere Cornwall Bird Sr., and Deputy Robin Yearwood had been in office since 1976.



The elder Bird was Prime Minister from 1981 to 1994 and Chief Minister of Antigua from 1960 to 1981, except for the 1971–1976 period when the Progressive Labour Movement (PLM) defeated his party. Vere Cornwall Bird, the nation’s first Prime Minister, is credited with having brought Antigua and Barbuda and the Caribbean into a new era of independence.




Party elections

Gaston Browne defeated his predecessor Lester Bryant Bird at the Antigua Labour Party’s biennial convention in November 2012 held to elect a political leader and other officers. The party then altered its name from the Antigua Labour Party (ALP) to the Antigua and Barbuda Labour Party (ABLP). This was done to officially include the party’s presence on the sister island of Barbuda in its organisation, the only political party on the mainland to have a physical branch in Barbuda.





The Judicial branch is the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (based in Saint Lucia; one judge of the Supreme Court is a resident of the islands and presides over the High Court of Justice). Antigua is also a member of the Caribbean Court of Justice. The Judicial Committee of the Privy Council serves as its Supreme Court of Appeal.




Foreign relations

Antigua and Barbuda is a member of the United Nations, the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas, the Commonwealth of Nations, the Caribbean Community, the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States, the Organization of American States, the World Trade Organizationand the Eastern Caribbean’s Regional Security System.



Antigua and Barbuda is also a member of the International Criminal Court (with a Bilateral Immunity Agreement of Protection for the US military as covered under Article 98 of the Rome Statute).



In 2013, Antigua and Barbuda called for reparations for slavery at the United Nations. Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer said “We have recently seen a number of leaders apologising”, and that they should now “match their words with concrete and material benefits.”





The Royal Antigua and Barbuda Defence Force has around 260 members dispersed between the line infantry regiment, service and support unit and coast guard. There is also the Antigua and Barbuda Cadet Corps made up of 200 teenagers between the ages of 12 to 18.





Tourism dominates the economy, accounting for more than half of the gross domestic product (GDP). Antigua is famous for its many luxury resorts. Weak tourist activity since early 2000 has slowed the economy, however, and squeezed the government into a tight fiscal corner.



Investment banking and financial services also make up an important part of the economy. Major world banks with offices in Antigua include the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) and Scotiabank. Financial-services corporations with offices in Antigua include Price Waterhouse Coopers. The US Securities and Exchange Commission has accused the Antigua-based Stanford International Bank, owned by Texas billionaire Allen Stanford, of orchestrating a huge fraud which may have bilked investors of some $8 billion.



The twin-island nation’s agricultural production is focused on its domestic market and constrained by a limited water supply and a labour shortage stemming from the lure of higher wages in tourism and construction work.



Manufacturing is made up of enclave-type assembly for export, the major products being bedding, handicrafts and electronic components. Prospects for economic growth in the medium term will continue to depend on income growth in the industrialised world, especially in the United States, from which about one-third of all tourists come.



Following the opening of the American University of Antigua College of Medicine by investor and attorney Neil Simon in 2003, a new source of revenue was established. The university employs many local Antiguans and the approximate 1000 students consume a large amount of the goods and services.



Antigua and Barbuda also utilizes an economic citizenship program to spur investment into the country.





Antigua & Barbuda has a greater than 90% literacy rate. In 1998, Antigua and Barbuda adopted a national mandate to become the pre-eminent provider of medical services in the Caribbean. As part of this mission, Antigua and Barbuda built the most technologically advanced hospital in the Caribbean, the Mt. St. John Medical Centre. The island of Antigua currently has two foreign-owned for-profit offshore medical schools, the American University of Antigua (AUA), founded in 2004, and The University of Health Sciences Antigua(UHSA), founded in 1982. The island’s medical schools cater mostly to foreign students but contribute to the local economy and health care.



Antigua has two international primary/secondary schools: CCSET International, which offers the Ontario Secondary School Diploma, and Island Academy, which offers the International Baccalaureate. There are also many other private schools but these institutions tend to follow the same local curriculum (CXCs) as government schools.





The culture is predominantly a mixture of West African and British cultural influences.



Cricket is the national sport. Other popular sports include football, boat racing and surfing. (Antigua Sailing Week attracts locals and visitors from all over the world).



Calypso and soca music, both originating primarily out of Trinidad, are important in Antigua and Barbuda.





The national Carnival held each August commemorates the abolition of slavery in the British West Indies, although on some islands, Carnival may celebrate the coming of Lent. Its festive pageants, shows, contests and other activities are a major tourist attraction.





Corn and sweet potatoes play an important role in Antiguan cuisine. For example, a popular Antiguan dish, Dukuna /ˈduːkuːnɑː/ is a sweet, steamed dumpling made from grated sweet potatoes, flour and spices. One of the Antiguan staple foods, fungi /ˈfuːndʒiː/, is a cooked paste made of cornmeal and water.





There are two daily newspapers: the “Daily Observer” and “Caribbean Times”. The local channel ABS TV 10 is available (it is the only station which shows exclusively local programs). There are also several local and regional radio stations, such as V2C-AM 620, ZDK-AM 1100, VYBZ-FM 92.9, ZDK-FM 97.1, Observer Radio 91.1 FM, DNECA Radio 90.1 FM, Second Advent Radio 101.5 FM, Abundant Life Radio 103.9 FM, Crusader Radio 107.3 FM, Nice FM 104.3





Antiguan author Jamaica Kincaid has published over 20 works of literature.





The Antigua and Barbuda national cricket team represented the country at the 1998 Commonwealth Games, but Antiguan cricketers otherwise play for the Leeward Islands cricket team in domestic matches and the West Indies cricket team internationally. The 2007 Cricket World Cup was hosted in the West Indies from 11 March to 28 April 2007.



Antigua hosted eight matches at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, which was completed on 11 February 2007 and can hold up to 20,000 people. Antigua is a Host of Stanford Twenty20 – Twenty20 Cricket, a version started by Allen Stanford in 2006 as a regional cricket game with almost all Caribbean islands taking part. Rugby and netball are popular as well.



Association football, or soccer, is also a very popular sport. Antigua has a national football team which entered World Cup qualification for the 1974 tournament and for 1986 and onwards. A professional team was formed in 2011, Antigua Barracuda FC, which played in the USL Pro, a lower professional league in the USA. The nation’s team had a major achievement in 2012, getting out of its preliminary group for the 2014 World Cup, notably due to a victory over powerful Haiti. In its first game in the next CONCACAF group play on 8 June 2012 in Tampa, FL, Antigua and Barbuda, comprising 17 Barracuda players and 7 from the lower English professional leagues, scored a goal against the United States. However, the team lost 3:1 to the US.




  • Runners Sonia Williamsand Heather Samuel represented Antigua and Barbuda at the Olympic Games.
  • Brendan Christian, runner (100 m, 200 m)
  • Daniel Baileyrunner (100 m, 200 m)
  • James Graymanhigh jumper
  • Viv Richards, cricketer, scored the fastest Test Century
  • Brian Lara, cricketer, twice scored the World Test Record at the Antigua Recreation Ground.
  • Cricketers Sir Vivian Richards, Andy Roberts, Curtly Ambroseand Richie Richardson





The national bird is the frigate bird, and the national tree is the Talipariti elatum (Blue Mahoe tree).



Clare Waight Keller included agave karatto to represent Antigua and Barbuda in Meghan Markle’s wedding veil, which included the distinctive flora of each Commonwealth country. 




That’s all folks! Official end of the RLR – Randy Lewis Racing Trackchaser Report












  1. Hi Randy,

    Great stuff! It was really nice to meet you both & have a chat! Thanks for the great article!

    All the best!


    • Iain, Glad you liked my Trackchaser Report. Carol and I had so much fun visiting Antigua and Barbuda and meeting you and the others. You all have built a very impressive facility down there. Keep it up and go #409! Best, Randy

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