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CHAGER BOWS OUT: Chatthe takes lead as top drivers retire on Day Two of Safari Rally

By Sidney Odero | Jun 12th 2016 | 2 min read
2016 KCB Safari Rally Jassi Chatthe navigated by Gugu Panesar in a EVOX during the 2016 Safari Rally in Elementaita on June 11. PHOTO: CORRESPONDENT

African rally champion Jaspreet “Jassi” Chatthe took an overnight lead of the 64th Safari Rally after wrapping up his day two drive with a 21 seconds cushion over speedster Rajbir Rai yesterday.

Several top drivers failed to master the dusty and demanding volcanic ash soil terrain in Elementaita and Soysambu.

Chatthe who is also last year’s Safari winner and defending Kenya National Rally champion took advantage after Rai ran into electrical problems on day’s 2km super special stage at Elementaita Lodge.

Chatthe’s navigator Gugu Panesar was all smiles after checking into the day’s last service.

Third was Finland’s Tapio Laukkanen who despite suffering three punctures closed the gap to sit in third overall ahead of Carl Tundo and Ian Duncan.

“The going was really good in the early morning run, but coming out of CS 5 and going into the last stage, we developed an electrical problem. We managed to get it done but lost time unfortunately,” said Rai.

Chatthe’s navigator Gugu Panesar said being first on the road slowed them quite abit in places they encountered wildlife.

“It’s been a good day. The stages were good. But it became rougher as the event wore on,” said Panesar.

Day two which is the events longest run claimed over 10 cars including Day one leader Baldev Chager, Quentin Mitchell with a broken shock and Issa Amwari with gearbox gremlins.

Youngster Karan Patel went off on CS2 and was unable to continue after he got stuck on a bush.

Other casualities were Tejveer Rai with a punctured radiator, Pietro Cannibio, Izhar Mirza (electrical), John Nganga, Jonathan Somen, Jansher Sandhu, Rehan Shah, Sammy Nyorri with a broken windscreen, McRae Kimathi and Moez Malik.

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