The stage is set for the 2013 Ganatra/JCB National Rally Raid Championship’s opening round to be held in Naro Moru this Saturday and Sunday.

Organisers, Rallye Sports Club (RSC), have had a penchant for venturing into picturesque and new territories and this time round, the attraction is at foothills of Mount Kenya.

According to RSC chairman, Dave Macharia, the new route “is something totally different, a set-up devoid of rocky stretches but with quite a number of rough patches and fast sections.”

The event will feature two legs. The first leg, on Saturday, February 9, has a short, curtain-raising 30-kilometre drive around the scenic Naro Moru terrain. Sunday’s (February 10) Leg Two will be the day for real action and will see competitors embark upon a 46kilometer stage to be twice.

Scrutineering for each category will take place on Saturday from 09:00 to 12:30 at the headquarters at Mt. Kenya Leisure Lodge.

Late scrutineering may be allowed but must be arranged with the Technical Stewards beforehand.

Competitors must present helmets, protective clothing,medical kits, safety blankets and documents for inspection at scrutineering.

Renewing his rivalry

Reigning Car Class champion Nish Lakhani and his quad counterpart Shazar Anwar are upbeat and looking forward to the forthcoming Raid with great expectations.

Rajesh Maini, who is renewing his rivalry with Nish in his Range Rover 4×4 contraption, sounded quite upbeat of his prospects as the countdown for the Rallye Sports Club (RSC) organised event continued in earnest.

Although no one knows what’s up their sleeves, this should be known at Mount Kenya Leisure Lodge in Naro Moru which plays hosts to the event’s start, finish and prize giving.

The good news is JCB country agents- Ganatra Plant & Equipment Limited- are back as official sponsors for the Raid season. What’s more, new competitors and cars are expected to inject some zest into the already enthralling setup.

While Nish will be going for a record four Car Class Championship titles, Shazar- son of three times former Kenya Rally champion Azar Anwar- has a benchmark for an unprecedented six championship wins! Nish had this to say when asked to remark on his preparations: “I’m looking forward to this season and gunning for our 4th title!

“We are using the same car (Land Rover High-Breed) with a few changes we have made. Teeku and I have done some rallies together now and we are gelling much better.

The Sport (Rally Raid) is growing at a tremendous rate and there are a number of new cars coming in, so will be more competitive and more fun!”

Maini exuded confidence on his part: “We are frantically rushing to finish our car for next weekend! I’m looking forward to renewing our rivalry with Nish.”

I’m also looking forward to competing against all the newcomers. Rally Raid is a rapidly growing sport going from strength to strength,” said Rajesh.


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Courtesy of Daily Nation

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