Finland’s Tapio Laukkanen and Pasi Torma are back on their winning ways following their victory in the KCB Eldoret Rally on Saturday.
Laukkanen, who has struggled since winning the opening round of the 2015 KCB Kenya National Rally Championship in Kisumu earlier in the year, bounced back to his usual form to register his second victory on the Kenyan soil since his rally debut this year.
The former British and Finnish champion proved unbeatable despite a puncture in the second stage of the competition, which could have cost the Subaru Impreza driver victory of the fifth round of the KCB-sponsored series.
“It is nice to win after all the bad luck I have had in the last few rallies. Safari Rally was a disaster for us. We were lucky to finish this event despite problems with the engine and the two separate punctures. Luckily, the punctures happened towards the end of the competitive stages where we chose not to change the wheels,’’ said Kaukkanen.
He added: ‘’It was our intention to try and keep close to the leaders in the championship. This result will definitely help as we have more rallies to look at. We live for Finland tomorrow night. I am happy for the whole team.”
The Ford Fiesta crew of Rajbir Rai and Tim Challen grabbed the second position after dicing for the overall lead with Laukkanen for most of the competition.
The former Uganda Rally champions posted a similar result in the recent KCB Kajiado Rally. The young driver has already proved a winning material and ready to follow the steps of his dad, Sarbi Rai, who is the former national champion. He won both the Nakuru and Kisumu events during the 2014 KNRC contest in addition to his glory in Uganda. “I don’t think I would have been able to match Tapio with that speed and the two-minute lead he had already taken take a lot earlier. I am very happy the position here in Eldoret,’’ said Rai.
Uganda’s Jas Mangat and his navigator David Israel of Ivory Coast were the best-placed foreign crew in the third place, giving Mitsubishi its best spot.
Courtesy of nation.co.ke