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Drivers shift focus to Africa title

Thursday May 16 2019

Eric Bengi's Subaru will be flagged off second in the Nakuru Rally on February 2, 2019. PHOTO | FILE |

Eric Bengi's Subaru will be flagged off second in the Nakuru Rally on February 2, 2019. PHOTO | FILE |  NATION MEDIA GROUP

ABDUL SIDI
By ABDUL SIDI
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The 2019 KCB Kenya National Rally Championship (KNRC) season has taken a break, according to a rescheduled programme released by the Kenya Motor Sports Federation (KMSF) early this week.

And some of the local drivers, led by reigning KNRC champion Carl Tundo, will use the break to compete in the next round of the 2019 African Rally Championship due June 6 to 9 in Zambia.

There has been no KNRC event since the Kenya Motor Sports Club organised its rally in Nairobi in the first week of March.

Eldoret was scheduled to hold the next event in KNRC calendar in April, but the event was postponed. According to communication from KMSF, there will be no rallying competition in May and June until the major round of the Safari Rally takes place in July.

“Following representations from our Muslim brothers and sisters in the Motorsport fraternity, KNCR 4 will be rescheduled. KNRC 3 was already re-scheduled due to force majeure.

KMSF reorganised calendar

The KMSF Motor Sport Council will meet in June and reorganise the calendar as per its mandate. Consequently, please note that there will be no rally events in May and June until the Safari Rally, which is scheduled to take place in July,’’ the statement sent to journalists from KMSF reads in part.

Meanwhile, the break will allow some of the local drivers to participate in the next round of the 2019 African Rally Championship due to be held in Zambia from June 6 to 9.

The team of Kenyan drivers, considered one of the largest to have participated in a rallying competition outside Kenya, will be led by reigning KNRC winner Carl Tundo.

Tundo, driving a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 10 car, will be joined by Onkar Rai in a Skoda Fabia car, Baldev Chager (Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 10), Tejvir Rai (Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 10), Erick Bengi (Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 10) and Manvir Baryan (Skoda Fabia.

Baryan is the reigning African champion, who is also is leading the 2019 African Rally Championship Series, having won the opening round of the championship in Cote d’Ivoire and followed it up with a second place finish in South Africa.

A total of five crews, which will be sponsored by the Menengai Oil, will participate in the third round of the 2019 African Rally Championship to take place between June 6 and June 9 June in Lusaka.

Reigning KNRC champion Tundo who is also the Safari Rally title holder, said he was excited about the trip to Zambia.

“I just can’t wait to rally outside Kenya for a change. I thank the management team of Menengai Oil which has given me this amazing opportunity,” said Tundo.

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