America’s Ken Block takes overnight lead as Classic Rally starts


America’s Ken Block in action at Eburru area in Nakuru County during Stage one of the 2022 East Africa Classic Rally on February, 10, 2022.[Courtesy]

King of drifts Ken Block clocked 2:35:52.7 to take an overnight lead as the 10th edition of the East African Safari Classic Rally (EASCR) revved-off in Naivasha yesterday morning.

The 54-year-old American social media guru was closely followed by defending champion Kris Rosenberger of Austria who came second in 2:36:44.1.
Kenya’s Baldev Chager timed 2:38:52.0 and was best among local drivers in third place.

Block, famed for his YouTube videos, bagged two of the opening three stages of Day 1 competition that traversed rough sections in Eburru, Elementaita, Poror, Kipsaos, Nyaru and Kiptagich in Nakuru County.

“I’m in this race because I want to win. The competition is tough but amazing. I came to Kenya to take part because this is the toughest rally on earth,” said Block who was making a debut in a Tuthill sponsored Porsche 911.
Block’s YouTube channel boasts of over 2 million followers.

Since 2010, his videos have been watched 178 million times. His Facebook has seven million followers and Instagram 6.7 million.

Frank Tundo, father to African champion Carl, rolled in section one in Eburru but soldiered on.

Another Kenyan driver, David Danglard, had a tough day after his Porsche developed mechanical gremlins.

Despite getting a puncture in stage three, Carl also continued with the journey to finish the sections. Phillip Kadoorie was forced to retire after their Porsche broke it’s distributor.

Day 2 of the gruelling rally today will see the drivers cover a total of 451km from Nakuru to Nanyuki. About 242km of the race will be competitive while 209km will be endurance.

On their way to Nanyuki, they will cover Stage 4 which is a 49.54km section between Ol Kalou and Ndaragwa.

This is a brand new stage, never used before since the inception of the EASCR. For photo lovers, this stage has ideal points on the escarpment for taking snapshots. Stage 5 that is stretching from Laikipia West to Moguni is 100.33km long.

This will be where the drivers challenge will intensify, with longer distances, furthest point north where the gruelling competition will visit.

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