Drivers snap up Safari Rally slots

By Gilbert Wandera: Tuesday, June 11th 2019 at 00:50 GMT +3 | Sports

 

Carl Tundo navigated by Tim Jessop driving Mitsubishi Evolution at Kedong Ranch in Naivasha during the ARC Safari Rally last year. [Stafford Ondego/www.sportpicha.com]

A record 31 cars have so far been entered for the World Rally Championships Candidate Event/Africa Safari Rally.

The entries include nine foreigners and proves the interest the event is generating as the country gears up to return to the World Rally series.

Belgian Giancarlo Davite navigated by Sylvia Vinevogel of Burundi is among the foreigners who have registered. He will race in a Mitsubishi EVO X.

Another foreigner is Ugandan Duncun Mubiru.  The Ugandan known as ‘Kinkane’ in local rally circles rolled spectacularly at Kedong Spectator stage last year less than a kilometre to the finish but still managed to finish sixth overall in the regional challenge.

This will be his sixth Safari appearance having managed seventh position in 2014.  Despite being a household name in Ugandan motorsport scene, Mubiru is yet to win a national title.

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Other Ugandans who will be in contention include Kepher Walubi/Antony Mugambwa who will race in a Mitsubishi Evox, Ronald Ssebaguzi/Leon Ssenyange also in a Mitsubishi Evox and Yassin Nasser/Ali Katumba.

 According to organisers, all top Kenyans who are in Zambia leg of the ARC have confirmed their participation led by current and former Safari champions Carlo Tundo and Baldev Chager.

They will drive Mitsubishi Evolutions X. To spice up competition in the top order will be Onkar Rai in a Skoda Fabia R5 and Karan Patel in another Mitsubishi Lancer EVO X.

One of the youngest drivers in the line-up is McRae Kimathi, 24 in a Mitsubishi EVO X. He made his Safari debut in 2016 before his car succumbed to mechanical problems. He is also a consistent autocross participant.

Elsewhere, the fifth round of the KCB Autocross Championship came to a dramatic close on Sunday at Jamuhuri track.

The event attracted a record 21drivers who competed in Bambino  2wd turbo, 2wd Non-turbo 4Wd turbo 4ed non-turbo, peewee, open class and quad class.

Drivers completed in three heats ahead of the prize-giving ceremony later in the evening.

In the 2WD Non-Turbo class, Zameer Verjee, Sahir Mughal, and Samir Nanji finished first, second and third respectively.

Zameer defied the muddy track to clock 05:12:89 in three heats. The Bambino class attracted Yuvraj Rajput, Tsorav Soni, and Iliyun Mughal.

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