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Rally returns to Meru for the first time in 9 yrs

Rally returns to Meru as county hosts penultimate leg

NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 24 – The penultimate round of the Kenya National Rally Championship (KNRC) will be held in Meru on November 9 as the event returns to the county for the first time in nine years.

Meru Governor Kiraitu Murungi, Clerk of the Course Hellen Kagendo, launched the event that will count towards the seventh and penultimate round of the Kenya National Rally Championship.

During the event Meru spectators will savour spectacular action as outgoing Division 1 champion Eric Bengi and his lady navigator Tuta Mionki ruffle feathers on home soil.

Others include KNRC Division Two current leaders Issa Amwari with his partner Job Njiru.

Ken Nteree will also enjoy home advantage in the 283.42km event.

Onkar became the first ever driver to rack up a hat-trick of wins in the Nakuru Rally history after he eclipsed Tundo in a last stage shootout at the expansive Gicheha Farm.

KCB Bank Central Regional Sales Manager Emphantus Mundia and Meru Branch Manager Patrick Mutuku said the bank have injected over Sh1 billion sponsoring the rally since 2003.

Mundia added that the bank is sponsoring this year’s KNRC to the tune of Sh20 million.

“This is huge way of growing the Country’s sport. We are proud to be associated with the Meru Rally as part of our long-term Motorsport sponsor since 2003,” Mundia said.

Kagendo on her part said this year’s event is running on eighty per cent open roads and on grounds of Safety and are not encouraging any spectators on the rally route when stages are live but their designated spectator viewing point for all to savor a safe and enjoyable race.

“As organizers of the event, we are overly excited to traverse the picturesque Meru County terrain after a 9 years hiatus. Meru last hosted a round of the Kenya National rally Championship in 2010 and got overwhelming support from the authorities and locals,” Kagendo said.

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Carl “Flash” Tundo and Tim Jessop raise the dust in their Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 10. Photo/COURTESY

Kiraitu, during the launch of the Rally at the country headquarters, l hailed the organizers of the occasion and asked Meru rally lovers to come out in large numbers to cheer.

He said his government is committed to supporting sports and tourism in the county.

“We shall have scrutinizing, where rally cars will undergo pre-event examination.

The rally will be flagged off on Saturday 9th November at KCB Nkubu Branch then head straight into Competitive Sections where crews will drive at hair-raising speeds in a bid to “separate the boys from men”.

We will have a total of 11 competitive stages where 2 stages will be run once, 3 repeated twice and the spectator stage designated for public viewing 3 times. This will enable spectators catch up with high octane action for the better part of day,” Kagendo said.

There will be a short transport road section 9.15km through to Competitive Stage 1 which is a 26.24km stretch centered at Kiraitu Road.

Top Rally driver Carl ‘Flash’ Tundo

Thereafter crews will tackle the 19.26km CS2 Kinoro Tea Factor stage in Nkubu where fast and furious action is anticipated.

Rally traffic will then proceed to 5.00km CS3 Spectator Stage at the Meru ASK ground through Meru town main road.

After the spectator stage, they will undergo first Service at ASK Meru for about 20 minutes then into Kenya-Re located on the vast Meru Forest area.

Rally Cars will then traverse towards Ntugi-Muungania then back to showground.

The Service Park where competitors return to repair their cars will be visited thrice prior to the finish at the ASK Meru.

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The Total Competitive mileage is approximately 158.4 Kms which amounts to 54.75% of the total distance of 283.80km.

There is a total of 128 Kms of transport road section which we refer to as liaison distance which links the competitive stages.

The Finish and Prize Giving will be held at ASK Meru.

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