SIDI: The Safari Rally will be held in a modern WRC format 

Monday June 22 2020

Rally driver Oliver Solberg (right) with his father Petter Solberg (left) who is a former World Rally Championship driver and Safari Rally Project CEO Phineas Kimathi share a moment during 2020 Rally of Monte Carlo on January 20, 2020 in Monaco. PHOTO | POOL


While the original Safari Rally was notorious for its ultra-long route and stages, the current organisers of the new version have adapted it for a modern World Rally Championship (WRC) format according to the demands and requirements initiated by the FIA officials.

Traditional open-road competitive sections have been replaced by smoother special stages in private estates and conservancies and a comprehensive safety plan is in place to support a rally which is organised to the current WRC format.

However, the gravel roads are demanding and also giving spectators, competitors and tourists to striking images of African wildlife and stunning landscapes."

With the WRC status back in its place, Kenya becomes the only country in the African continent to hold such a high profile prominence in the world of motor rallying.

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For safety reasons, all rally drivers and their co-drivers must wear flame-resistant clothing including underwear, helmets and frontal head restraint during the competition. Approved neck restraint devices and flame resistant clothing will be checked at scrutineering.

Drivers can take off the gloves in the liaison section, its mandatory for both drivers to remain belted throughout whilst in the rally car (with the exception of vehicle re-fueling).


All the members of the crews must be present at the prize giving. Crews who are not present at the prize giving may forfeit their prizes; however, the final results will not be modified.

The protest fee set by the Kenya MotorSport Federation (KMSF) is Sh20,000.
If the protest requires the dismantling and the reassembly of different parts of a car, the claimant must pay an additional deposit of Sh50, 000.

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All rally cars (especially extended homologation cars) must comply with the 2020 Safety Article 253 from Appendix J.

In addition, particular attention should be given to: 1. The safety Roll cage padding for all roof bars (New in 2020), 2. Fire extinguishers must be serviced by the manufacturer or an authorised agent with a proof certificate. Fire Extinguishers filled by any other will not be permitted. 3. All cars must have FT3 safety Fuel tanks with couplings for fillers. An adaptor may be used.
Did you know that…..

The World Rally Championship is a rallying series organised by the FIA, culminating with a champion driver, co-driver and manufacturer?

The driver's world championship and manufacturer's world championship are separate championships, but based on the same point system.

Until now the Safari Rally has only played as a strong part of the African Rally Championship series since being dropped out of the WRC status in 2002. 

Kenya returns to the WRC series next year.

Abdul Sidi is a veteran motorsports cor- respondent, rally navigator, and motor- sports coach. [email protected]