Various teams from Kenya, USA, Bulgaria, UK, Zimbabwe, Oman and South Africa are competing for the ultimate prize in the mini East African Safari Classic Rally set to kick off at the Waterfront Karen.
The 3-day event will cover over 1,000 kilometres across the tough Amboseli terrain synonymous with the world’s greatest classic rally. This mini rally is being held as a precursor to the 10th edition that is set to take place on 10th –18th February 2022.
Leading the Kenyan team will be Eric Bengi and navigator Gatimu Mindo. They competed in this year’s 2021 WRC Safari Rally and will be competing in the East African Safari Classic Rally for the first time in an iconic rally car, the Datsun 180B. Other marquee rally brands such as Porsche, Ford, Skoda and Peugeot are joined by “Raid” vehicles including cars and buggies from CR-T and Land Rover.
In consultation with the Ministry of Health, the event competitors, organisers, sponsors and support staff will adhere to strict COVID-19 protocols including mandatory and regular PCR tests, social-distancing and wearing of masks.
“The day is finally here. We have undertaken all efforts to ensure the safety of drivers, rally enthusiasts, passersby and wildlife, whilst putting on a magnificent show. Amongst other criteria, our course is designed to avoid populated areas and heighten general safety awareness among drivers and the community,” said Event Director, Tash Tundo said.
“As a significant group of people, we have taken our responsibility with regards to COVID-19 particularly seriously, creating one of the largest sporting bubbles in Africa.” added Tundo. That sporting bubble will also bring significant investment into hard-hit, tourism sensitive economies such as Amboseli, with over 1,000 hotel rooms being occupied and an injection of more than $1 million into the Kenyan economy.
Whilst the local economy benefits, the eyes of the world will be able to follow the rally through new technology innovations including live-tracking of vehicles, available at the rally website and across its social media platforms including Facebook and Instagram.