Carl ‘Flash’ Tundo navigated by Tim Jessop in a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X will be the first one off the ramp as the sixth leg of the 2018 Kenya National Rally Championship zooms off in Kilifi County today.
The Top Fry-sponsored driver will be attempting to kill two birds with one stone as he seeks to win his fourth consecutive rally of the season at sea level.
He leads the KNRC log on 100 points against ‘Flying Singh’ Baldev Chager who despite retiring on the belated third round at Lisa Farm, retained his spot on 71 points.
The rally, co-sponsored by KCB and Mombasa Cement Limited will be flagged off at Mombasa Cement Limited farm in Vipingo after which drivers will try out the coast terrain in remote parts of Kilifi. The cars will traverse Bamba and Ganze regions which have from time immemorial been synonymous with the Mombasa Motor Club (MMC) Rally.
Second off the ramp will be Onkar Singh Rai, who will be navigated by Gavin Laurence in a Skoda Fabia R5.
Sadly, coast fans will not witness the second R5 Skoda after reigning African champion Manvir Baryan decided to give the coastal tour a wide berth.
Manvir is away in London attending to a family function.
“I’m not very keen on the KNRC title this season as I will be missing out on two events. We are at the moment committed to recapturing the continental title and we shall be driving at the forthcoming Rally of Tanzania,” said Manvir.
Chager, who retired on the KMSC leg last month with a 1.30minutes lead, has been seeded third ahead of Subaru’s Eric Bengi, Tejveer Rai, Jasmeet Ghana and Farhaaz Khan. Bengi currently tops Group N ahead of of Farhaaz.
Home driver, Izhar Mirza aka Izzy, is seeded eighth ahead of veteran Frank Tundo and other two home boys, Ammar Haq and Piero Canobbio.
Ammar currently leads the KNRC Division log ahead of club-mate Sohanjeet S. Puee who incidentally tops the S Class category in a Subaru N10. The N10s which have won several rallies worldwide are running the local series on expired homologation and as such scoring towards Group S championship.
Sohanjeet will have his pace-notes called by Adnan Din who is a more experienced navigator on the KNRC front having previously co-driven the likes of Navid Khalid, Naushad Kara Lota and Imran Mogul.