Kenya must work on safety to return to rallying calendar


Action at the 2017 East African Safari Rally. (PHOTO/www.eastafricansafarirally.com)
Action at the 2017 East African Safari Rally. (PHOTO/www.eastafricansafarirally.com)

In Summary

  • The head of motor sport governing body the FIA on Tuesday encouraged Kenya to meet the road safety regulations necessary for the country to rejoin the World Rally Championship.
  • FIA president Jean Todt said he was keen to see Kenya once again feature on the international rally circuit.

The head of motor sport governing body the FIA on Tuesday encouraged Kenya to meet the road safety regulations necessary for the country to rejoin the World Rally Championship (WRC).

FIA president Jean Todt said he was keen to see Kenya once again feature on the international rally circuit.

“You deserve to have your rally back in the calendar. But you need to deliver (on) the job,” said Todt, who is making his third visit to Kenya since it declared its intention to return to the WRC three years ago.

Kenya was ejected from international rallying after the 2002 race over road safety, organisation and financing concerns. Since then no African event has featured in the WRC, something Todt wants to see change.

“If you deliver, you will get the rally in the calender, but if you don’t deliver you will not get it,” said Todt, who is also the UN’s Special Envoy for Road Safety.

“The new standards of rallying must be respected. What was possible back when events ran on open roads is not possible these days with the growing human population. Rallies must now be organised on closed roads to minimise fatalities,” Todt said.

“In this respect I am expecting the Kenyan Safari Rally to be the pioneer and the leading example of road safety in the continent. We must stop this carnage and fatality on the road, where Africa is the leader,” he said.

Kenya government said it has earmarked $2 million (1.6 million euros) to help get the Safari Rally back on the official championship circuit.

 

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