Ian Duncan’s specially modified Toyota Hilux pickup is expected to take off ahead of 25 other cars in the fifth edition of the 2019 Kenya National Rally Championship KCB Nanyuki Rally set to rev off at 7am Saturday.
Duncan will be navigated by veteran Tej Sehmi and will also look to score points for the non-homologated Specially Prepared Vehicles (SPV) category which has attracted the likes Geoff Mayes in a Land Rover and physically challenged Nikhil Sachania in a hand-controlled Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X.
Second off the ramp will be defending champion and five-time Safari Rally winner Carl “Flash” Tundo and his partner Tim Jessop in a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 10.
Tundo who missed out on Kilifi Rally earlier in the month due to family issues is determined to make amends in his favourite rally.
Runaway leader Baldev Chager is seeded third ahead of back to back reigning African champion Manvir Baryan in a Skoda Fabia R5.
Manvir’s Skoda has swept the ground with all its opponents across the African continent and if his performance in Kilifi last weekend is anything to go by, then his challengers should be worried.
Onkar Rai on his second outing in the VW Polo is seeded fifth ahead of his elder sibling Tejveer Rai, Jasmeet Chana and Eric Bengi.
The 2.3km Batian View Stage will be the designated spectator viewing point as the other two sections –Loldaiga Hills and Ndovu — will be closed to spectators for safety reasons, according to event director Bimal Patel.
Loldaiga Hills has over the years been synonymous with Nanyuki Rally since the first KNRC event in 1998.
This year’s event has attracted eight drivers in the KNRC Premier Class, seven in the Division One category and six in Division 2.
What’s more, several drivers will be seeking vital points to enhance their championship hopes in their respective classes.
Daren Miranda leads the Formula Two Championship as he nurses dreams of winning his maiden title in his longstanding rallying career.
Tuta Mionki and Suzanne Zwager, are the only female rally drivers in the competition. Tuta is navigating Eric Bengi and Zwager is calling the notes for Geoff Mayes.
Bengi has had a long period to sort out his reliability gremlins after skipping the Kilifi leg but is backing off this time round in his bid to secure a maiden finish.
NAKURU RALLY START LIST – TOP TEN
- Ian Duncan/Tej Sehmi –Hilux Pickup
- Carl Tundo/Tim Jessop –EVO9
- Baldev Chager/Ravi Soni – Mitsubishi Evo1
- Manvir Baryan/Drew Sturrock –Skoda Fabia R5
- Onkar Rai/Gareth Dawe –VW Polo R5
- Tejveer Rai/Gavin Laurence -Mitsubishi Evo10
- Jasmeet Chana/Ravinder Chana -Mitsubishi Evo10
- Eric Bengi/Tuta Mionki – Mitsubishi Evo10
- Ammar Haq/Victor Okundi- Mitsubishi Evo10
- Sonahnjeet S. Puee/Adnan Din (Subaru)