THE KCB Safari Rally is set to live up to its great image, with more than 60 cars dusting it up over the next three days.
Rwanda’s national champion Davite Giancarlo, who is navigated by Sylvia Vindevogel in a Subaru Impreza, will be flagged off sixth while Christakis Fitidis in a Subaru Impreza N12 and Olivier Costa in a Subaru Impreza N11 series will be flagged off in 11th and 14th slots respectively.
Mitraros Elefter pulled out at the last minute after his Subaru got a mechanic problem.
According to the Clerk of the course, Dave Macharia, Leg 1A is as a hair-raising 2.5Km spectator stage designated to run at Jamhuri Park this afternoon.
Day two will then see drivers racing on a flat-out run around Thika Coffee Mills, Bombo, Makuyu, Kirwara and Ndakaini with a competitive distance totaling to 171.30Km.
On Sunday, cars will race through the challenging Kipeto and Maili Tisa areas covering 134.20km in competitive sections.
The event’s past winners Lee Rose, Carl Tundo and Azar Anwar head the list of local (Kenyan) drivers while Zimbabwe’s Jamie Whyte, fresh from winning the Kobil rally of Tanzania, the opening round of the African Rally Championship (ARC) heads the list of foreign drivers.
Defending Champion Carl ‘Flash’ Tundo will be seeking to take his third Safari scalp after winning the event last year in Athi River and in Mombassa in 2004.
Peter Horsey, the first Kenyan driver to qualify for the Pirelli Young Star Driver Championship last year, is also among the top seeds vying for glory at the 58th edition to be held over Easter (April 2-4). Makuyu and Thika will witness rally action, with the presence of drivers from Zimbabwe, Uganda and Rwanda.
The Safari rally counts as the season-opener of the 2010 KCB East African Rally Challenge (EARC), second round of the FIA African Rally Championship (ARC) series as well as a round on the Kenya National Rally Championship (KNRC).