NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 22 – A total of 17 crews, six in the premier category, five in Division 2 and three each in Division 1 and 3 will start in the eighth round of the 2019 KCB Kenya National Rally Championship in Eldoret on Saturday.
Series leader Baldev Chager heads the seeded entry list, with his Kabras Sugar Racing team-mate Onkar Rai second.
Onkar and his new British co-driver Stuart Loudoun will drive a Volkswagen Polo R5 under Kabras Sugar Racing banner.
KCB Group Regional Business Director and National Bank of Kenya MD, Paul Russo said, “I encourage you all to come in numbers and support the drivers as they battle it out this weekend. This KCB Eldoret rally promises a riveting performance from all the drivers. Do not miss the action.
As a long standing sponsor, we are passionate about motorsport, we believe that our sponsorship will continue to re-ignite the motorsport spirit.”
Defending champions Carl “Flash” Tundo and Tim Jessop of Top Fry Racing are seeded third and will pilot the R4 Mitsubishi Lancer Evo10 which swept the ground with all and sundry in the Loldaigas.
Kabras Sugar Racing’s third driver Tejveer Rai will be behind the wheel of a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo10 and will be co-driven by Gavin Laurence who guided his brother Onkar to Meru victory. Notable absentees are reigning African Champions Manvir Baryan and Drew Sturrock who damaged their R5 Skoda Fabia in a high speed accident in Meru.
Baryan’s Skoda Fabia R5 was thrown into a series of rolls a few kilometers into stage 4. The African Champions were caught unaware when they hit an embedded rock at full speed which sent the Skoda into a nose dive followed by a series of nose-over- tail rolls. Baryan and Sturrock escaped serious injuries.
Meanwhile, a fabulous fight for the KNRC title is in prospect between Chager and Flash Tundo. Chager needs 24 points from the last two rounds to chalk up his first title since 2014. Tundo, on the other hand, must win both rallies and expect a retirement from his rival Chager on one of the rallies to take the title fight down to the wire.
The Western Kenya Motor Club organised round will see several drivers fight for points in various categories of the Championship.
Leader Issa Amwari of Keihin Racing and Minesh Rathod of A1 Auto Racing team will lock horns for KNRC Division Two points.
Also in the Division Two mix will be the current Two Wheel Drive leaders Daren Miranda and Wayne Fernandes, who hope to rack up more points in the high altitude event.
Daren and Wayne Fernandes have an unassailable 75points lead but have to run one the remaining two events to meet the 80% threshold for Championship success.
In the absence of Geoff Mayes who is away in China on a business trip, McRae Kimathi should dictate Division 3 pace. Mayes will be doing Guru Nanak in a different car as he’s already started to strip his Tomcat to get it ready for 2020.
McRae is determined to finish his year on a high.
McRae sits second on the KNRC Division Three log, nine points behind leader Mayes.
Kimathi junior savoured a career best 5th on his Meru home turf and will be aiming even higher in Uasin Gishu County this weekend.
The rally, which heads to the high altitude Kaptagat, Bugar and Salabin terrain, gets underway from KCB Kenyatta Street branch in Eldoret on Saturday from 7am onwards.
The service park will be based at Iten and spectator stage at Singore Girls.
- Baldev Chager 141
2 Carl Tundo 117
3 Manvir Baryan 91
4 Tejveer Rai 63
5 Onkar Rai 50
6 Ian Duncan 38
7 Izhar Mirza 33
7= Ammar Haq 33
9 Jasmeet Chana 29
10 Sohanjeet Puee 25
10= Karan Patel 25
KNRC DIVISION ONE
- Amaar Haq 104
2 Karan Patel 97
3 Sohanjeet Puee 78
KNRC DIVISION TWO
- Issa Amwari 107
2 Minesh Rathod 88
3 Daren Miranda 69
KNRC DIVISION THREE
1 Geoff Mayes 57
2 McRae Kimathi 48
3 Hussien Malik 38