NATIONAL rally champion Davite Giancarlo is in upbeat mood ahead of the Sasol Rally which gets underway today in Mpumalanga, South Africa.
Davite and navigator Sylvia Vindevogel are taking part in the second round of the Africa Rally Championship (ARC) after finishing third in the opening round of Bandama rally in Ivory Coast in March.
Davite’s target is to become the first Rwandan to lift the continental crown (this year) having finished third in last year’s edition which was won by 20-year-old Zambian Jassy Singh.
In Bandama rally, the Italy-born ace drove his favourite Subaru Impreza N10 ‘Umuleti’, but this time round, he will be driving a Mistubishi Evo 10 which he used in most races last year.
In last year’s Sasol Rally, Davite, driving the Mitsubishi Evo 10, was unfortunate as his clutch failed to dis-engage but luckily finished third.
However, Vindevogel is confident the Mistubishi Evo 10 will bring pride to the nation after being worked on ahead of the race.
“But we are going to give it (Sasol Rally) our all, we know the route very well and given the presence of competitive teams, we hope to show them what Rwanda can do,” she added.
The Sasol rally presents an intriguing scenario for the ARC season’s longest and arguably toughest round, which this year will include 14 special stages (four on tarmac and 10 on gravel) covering over 200 kilometres.
The event has attracted quite a number of top African drivers including former champion Essa Mohammed of Zambia in a Subaru Impreza WRX N4 and Kenya’s reigning Division 2 champion Jaspreet Singh Chatthe ‘Jassi’ cruising his Mitsubishi Evo X.
Winner of 2014 Bandama Rally Gary Chaynes from Ivory Coast will be navigated by Romain Comas de Miranda in a Mitsubishi Evo 10.