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GURU NANAK RALLY TO DECIDE CHAMPIONSHIP

Tundo takes title fight to the wire

Tundo and his partner Tim Jessop retained the KCB Eldoret Rally in extremely muddy conditions to take the 2019 KNRC title race down to the wire.

In Summary

•Fears that Chager would seal it in Eldoret evaporated after the third stage when Tundo opened a three-minute lead and clung onto the top until the last flying finish.

•Tundo's victory in the high altitude terrain now hands him a slim chance to defend his crown.

Carl Tundo navigated by Tim Jessop in their Mitsubishi evolution 10
Carl Tundo navigated by Tim Jessop in their Mitsubishi evolution 10
Image: Samson Ateka

Champion Carl 'Flash' Tundo has vowed to fight every inch of the way in his bid to eclipse leader Baldev Chager when the Kenya National Rally Championship culminates with the KCB Guru Nanak Nanak Rally on December 15.

Tundo and his partner, Tim Jessop, retained the KCB Eldoret Rally title in extremely muddy conditions to take the 2019 KNRC title race down to the wire.

Fears that Chager would seal it in Eldoret evaporated after the third stage when Tundo opened a three-minute lead and clung onto the top until the last flying finish.   

Tundo savoured his second victory of the season in his R4 Mitsubishi Lancer Evo10, Chager was second as Onkar Rai, in a VW Polo, completed the podium dash.

"We are not relenting in our hunt for the title although Chager has a comfortable lead. The plan is to attack in Guru Nanak and finish ahead of him. I am happy for the results in Eldoret which has taken the title down to the wire," said Tundo, who beat Chager by a massive 10:08 minutes.

"I prayed for the heavens to open but not as much rain as we witnessed in Eldoret this year. The stages were fun to drive, all in all, a good day at the office. We are still in the hunt for the championship, although with an outside chance."

Chager suffered gearbox gremlins on the very last stage of the Western Kenya Motor Club-organised round. But despite Tundo's late charge, Chager needs just a top 10 finish at the Guru Nanak edition to recapture the title he lost a few years ago.

He has a  20-point advantage over Tundo at 62. 

Rai, who alongside Chager will be proceeding to the East African Safari Classic Rally, confirmed his availability for Guru Nanak.

"I have never been a fan of wet races. We tried as hard to be good but Boldy (Chager) and Flash proved quite fast. We will enter the Guru Nanak hoping to give them a run for their money," said Rai.

KCB Group Regional Business Director and MD – National Bank of Kenya, Paul Russo said: “It has been a challenging race with the heavy downpour experienced throughout the night and the better part of the day, but I am very proud of the teams who have shown fighting spirit."