NAKURU, Kenya, March 10- Charging on his home-turf, the three-time Safari Rally winner and twice national champion racked-up his second successive win of the season to lead his Dalbit Petroleum team mate Alastair Cavenagh to a scintillating 1-2 podium finish.
Such was the drama and exhilaration as curtains came down on the KCB Biashara Banking Rally in Lake Bogoria region of the Great Rift Valley.
Having taken an impressive scalp in Nyeri last month, Tundo was on cloud nine upon driving into Lake Bogoria Spa Resort regroup promising to tackle the rest of the season in similar spirit and fashion.
With defending champion Ian Duncan kissing the event goodbye on CS3 with a burst radiator, Cavenagh and Tundo handed spectators a bonus of sorts what with some fierce exchanges separated by seconds.
Three time national champion Azar Anwar was happy with third and candidly admitted that Tundo and Alastair were out of this world.
“I am very happy with the 1-2 Dalbit team finish. It was a fierce battle and quite exciting that we were swapping the leadership with Alastair considering that he was first on the road,” said Tundo.
Cavenagh was all smiles. “This was really close. We pushed the car knowing that we had to be very careful and from the mood in first stage we knew it was going to be very fast, so we were level headed,” said Alastair.
Onkar Rai came fourth followed by Raaji Bharij. Bharij caused quite a stir on the spectator stage when he went through and finished the rally on three wheels.
“We broke a shock 20km from the end of CS5 and drove all the way in transport,” said Raaji.
The rally saw most of the crews come face to face with the Great Rift rocks with some describing it a real tough challenge.
Fahd Bary of Nakuru blew a radiator while Issa Amwari rolled on the opening stage.
From the onset, Tundo drove like a man possessed and led the pack after the first two stages.
But Cavenagh snatched the lead from Tundo at end of SS3 when he briefly enjoyed a 10 seconds cushion.
The leaderboard changed again as Tundo recaptured the lead from Cavenagh at the end of SS4.
Sammy Nyori (Toyota Vitz) retired in the latter stages of CS1 when the left wheel and hub came off.
While Tundo and Cavenagh engaged in a closely contested fight, Azar Anwar and Hardeep engaged in a rare battle for the poidum dash. Azar was 3:42 minutes behind Cavenagh at the end of CS3.
Nakuru town MP Lee Kinyanjui flagged off the first four cars outside KCB Menengai branch in Nakuru.
Fans and officials kept abreast of rally updates in real time courtesy of Rift Valley Motor Sports Club’s (RVM&SC) new website www.rvmsc.com and Car Track who are monitoring the movement of all rally cars from the Rally HQs at Lake Bogoria Spa Resort.
Those who turned up at the 1.2kilometer spectator stage at the Spa were treated to some exhilarating displays of rallying artistry. The cars repeated the spectator stage twice.
Provisional overall Results
1. Carl Tundo/Tim Jessop (EVO9) 01:50:09
2. Alastair Cavenagh/Gavin Laurence (EVO9) 01:50:19
3. Azar Anwar/J. Ngigi (EVO8) 01:59:02
4. Onkar Rai/R. Chagger (Subaru N12) 02:09:46
5. Raaji Bharij/G. Mayes (EVO9) 02:11:57
6. Jaswinder Chana/Ravi Chana (Toyota Celice GT4) 02:13:50
7.Don Smith/Bob Kaugi (Subaru N12) 02:14:26
8.Ben Muchemi/Evans Mwenda (EVO6) 2:15:05
9.Hardeep S. Rehsi/Ravi Soni (EVO9) 02:17:07
10.Charles Hinga/Noriss Ongalo (EVO7) 02:17:27
11.Manvir Baryan/S. Yusuf (Subaru N16) 02:19:16
12.Anwar Pandya/Ken Masoni (Subaru N10) 02:22:02
13. Izhar Mirza/Zahir Shah (EVO9) 02:45:59
14. Jaspreet Chatthe/Gugu Panesar 02:54:5