Kenyan Safari on as KMSF look to pass FIA audition

Finn Tapio Laukannen in action at the KCB Kajiado Rally on Saturday, February 27, 2016. PHOTO/Attex ...
Finn Tapio Laukannen in action at the KCB Kajiado Rally on Saturday, February 27, 2016. PHOTO/Attex Sport

The Kenya Motorsports Federation (KMSF) will be crossing their fingers with hope that this year’s Safari Rally rouses the International Automobile Federation who are considering reinstating the competition to the World Rally Championship circuit in 2019.

Representatives from FIA will observe this year’s Safari edition with the world motor sport governing body having already approved supplementary regulations set by the KMSF.

A record 25 foreign drivers have registered to attend this year’s event which makes a comeback in the African Rally Championship (ARC) after a two-year absence.

The Kenya National Rally Championship defending champion Tapio Laukannen will lead a host of other regional drivers at the annual carnival set to be held on March 17 and 19.

Laukannen will be joined by Kenyans Manvir Baryan; who has enlisted the services of British navigator Drew Sturrock in a Skoda Fabia, Don Smith and Ben Kaugi who will be driving a Subaru N14 model, and Onkai Rai and Gareth Dawe who will be behind the wheels of a Skoda Fabia.

Former National Champion Carl “Flash” Tundo will also be in the line-up with his Mitsubishi Lancer Evo10, same as Jaspreet Chatte who will be navigated by Gurdeep Panesar and Baldev Chager who is a former Safari Champion.

Veteran Ugandans Jas Mangat and Joseph Kamya have entered a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 10. Christadis Fitidis of Uganda will be Navigated by Rwandese Eric Nzamwita in a Mitsubishi Evo9.

Zimbabwe will field five cars in the Safari led by Jassy Singh and Sajir Khan in their Subaru N14. Other Zimbabweans who will be joining in the assault include Muna Singh Junior/Zunaid Singh (Subaru N14), Leroy Gomes/Urshilla Gomes in a Subaru Imprezza N140, and Kleevan/Eric Small Gomes who will be driving a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo10.

Other drivers will be from Tanzania, Rwanda and Zambia.

Safari exited the World Rally Championships in 2002.

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