63rd KCB Safari Rally to cross five counties in a test of endurance

By samson ateka
Mar 17, 2015

This year’s KCB Safari Rally has been designed to offer crews a scintillating 50-50 mix of public and closed road stages and will traverse five counties in a deliberate move aimed at reverting to the old-type endurance format which made it the “world’s toughest” in the 1980s.

Five countries which make up the route course of the 63rd edition of the Safari Rally 2015 over the Easter weekend (April 3-5) are Kiambu, Nairobi, Laikipia, Meru and Machakos.

Speaking during the official launch of the 63rd edition of the event, Kenya Motor Sports Federation Chairman JS Vohra said unlike previous events held over the past one and a half decades, this year’s Safari is intended to be an endurance event totaling 900km distance. The function held at Sarova Panafric also unveiled co-sponsors for the 2015 KCB KNRC series.

Vivo Energy is the newest co-sponsors of KNRC coming in as the official fuel partners. ICEA Lions are in the third year as the official insurance partners. ALS will provide chopper services over the sixth year running and Galleria Shopping Mall who will provide the scrutineering venue.

“We are excited by the fact that the event is returning to the old Easter holidays date, so teams get ready for yet another spectacle in the serene Mount Kenya, Machakos and Athi River regions,” said Vohra.

Rally starts April 3

Deputy Clerk of the Course Nazir Yakub said the venues and the number of counties the rally is visiting hasn’t happened since the 1980s

. “Recently as in the last 10 years, Safari has been a speed-dash fast event. We are going back to long marathon endurance events. The cars today have been designed for very short fast stages. I won’t use the word disfavor for current crop of cars, I guess this year’s Safari will favor people with endurance experience both in terms of the number of hours in their vehicles and reliability,” said Nazir.

“As for the public stages they are all going to be marshaled with the help of county governments and we will be given the security apparatus needed to control the flow of traffic into the stages,” said Nazir.

The start of the rally is at KICC on Friday 3rd April. From there, cars will be heading straight to Machakos area. “We will be identifying the two stages there (in Machakos). We will also be coming back to Portland Cement and hopefully, we will be running that twice and then back to the KICC,” added Nazir.

Saturday morning, there will be an early morning start and straight into Lengetia which is located near Naro Moru. Cars will then go past Nanyuki then do the Loldaiga, finish the Loldaiga, come out head further off north to a village called Efi which is at the start of Ngare Ndare Forest.

There will be a public viewing stage at Meru ASK showground, said Nazir.