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Event organisers starts preparations for next year’s World Rally Championship race

Thursday, August 26th, 2021 00:00 | By
WRC Safari Rally Media Safety and Route Co-ordinator Anwar Sidi drives through a section in Kedong Ranch on Tuesday INSET: Sidi (right) with Clerk of Course Gurvir Bhabra on Tuesday. Photo/PD/EDWIN OTIENO

Edwin Otieno

Preparations for the 2022 World Rally Championship (WRC) Safari Rally have already commenced barely two months after this year’s event was successfully staged in Naivasha.

Initial work involes the identification and proposals of new routes. Next year, the rally is expected to be slightly longer and tougher.

“We need to make sure we are able to correct any mistakes which were noticed in this year’s WRC Safari Rally. Some of the stages are worn out and need grading as part of our major assignments.

In total there will be 10 stages out of which nine will be done twice,’’ Gurvir Bhabra, the Clerk of the Course for the WRC Safari Rally told People Sport.

Regarding suggestions by rally fans that the Safari Rally be  spread across the nation, Bhabra was quick to respond to the suggestions saying it was impossible to move out of Naivasha for the time being.

He said: “We need at least 1,000 beds in hotels which are within sight of the Safari Rally Headquarters.

At the moment there are only three places nationwide that can accommodate this. It is Naivasha, Nairobi and Mombasa.

The Government has invested heavily in the Service Park which again is very attractive.’’

The stages are also within sight of a Service Park to make the competition easily managed.

For medication evacuation, the medical team in a helicopter does not have to spend more than 60 minutes to reach a hospital. This is one of the FIA rules that one has to face to host a WRC Event.

The latest recce was carried out in the Toyota Hilux Pickups which have been donated by Toyota Kenya.

Both Bhabra and Anwar Sidi, the Safari Rally Route Coordinator, used the pickup in the latest mission to inspect the stages.

Both the senior officials of the WRC Safari Rally expressed satisfaction with the Toyota Hilux Pickups: “We are very happy with the vehicles. They made our trip and mission comfortable.’’

Toyota Kenya provided the organizers with the two WRC Safari Rally Toyota Hiluxes.

The 00 and 000 cars are route inspection cars which were also used during the just concluded Safari Rally. The rally organizers were happy with the vehicles.

Sukhjiv Kular, the Sales and Product Training Manager at Toyota Kenya said he is happy the organizers have liked the Hilux.

Kular added: “The Hiluxes are the perfect pick up for both work and leisure, be it lugging around trade goods and supplies or filling the expansive rear bed with camping and outdoor equipment.’’

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