A lot of thrilling and exciting moments are expected in this year’s Safari Rally that will be flagged off at Kenyatta International Conference center (KICC) tomorrow.
Men and women will be powering some of the greatest machines where drivers will bank on their skills, experience and efficiency of their cars to out-do each other when the rubber bites the dust in a two days fierce contest.
In their readiness for the tough task ahead, the all ladies team of Natasha Tundo and Chantal Young popularly known as Rally Chix are the only all ladies team and they are rearing to go full mode.
Coming from the popular rally family of Tundo, Natasha who has a vast experience in rally after navigating for seven years and being a driver for one year will be powering the Subaru N10 machine in a contest that is viewed to be one of the toughest. She says that they are more than ready and have prepared well for the competition.
“We are in good state for the competition. We’ve been waiting for this and so, preparations have been in top gear. Our car is in great shape, well serviced and ready to hit the terrains,” Natasha told The Standard FeverPitch in an exclusive interview.
The best driving performance of the team (sponsored by HAI powered by Liquid Telecom) came last year in Kisumu where they emerged 12th overall and being in one of the toughest sport like rally, there are a number of challenges and Natasha says theirs haven’t been a smooth journey in a male dominated discipline.
“We’ve had a number of number challenges in past season. First, with the car but thanks to HAI for the great support in making sure our car is in good condition. We have a new gear box and the car is in a really good condition. Secondly, it was a bit of challenge in trying to know my navigator (Chantal) well but yes, we now understand each other well and we are doing it like it should be,” she added.
Her words were echoed by her navigator Chantal who has been in the rally for five years and still proving to be one of the finest navigators in Kenya. “We are in great condition and ready to go full season and full speed. Challenges are there for navigators because we have to keep on our notes and be precise because when we get it right, the driver will have it right. I am still learning from top navigators and my driver as well but I must say the progress has been great so far.”
Natasha, who went into the rally history books to be the first ever brother-sister to have won a rally in Africa – after they won the Guru Nanak rally in 2012, is happy with the good fight they have been putting in the past seasons despite being the only ladies team in a sport that men have dominance in. “It’s a male dominated sport and there comes a challenge with that when we are few in that circle but we’ve been pushing really hard to march their standards and so far so good.”
After flagging off at KICC, rally fans will have a chance to be entertained in a 2km spectators show stage at Jamhuri Park – Ngong road from 8.30am.