The ‘Home of Champions’ is synonymous with celebrated Kenyan middle and long-distance runners, it will be a different ball game altogether.
Rightly so, the hills around Uasin Gishu and Elgeyo Marakwet will reverberate with the roar of turbo-charged and normally aspirated machines when the seventh and penultimate round of the 2018 Kenya National Rally Championship roars into life.
The 2018 Eldoret Rally will revisit the high-altitude terrain used by Western Kenya Motor Club last year. The designated spectator stage will be based at Chemweno farm where a 5.5km stretch is being earmarked for hair-raising thrills. The event will be flagged off at Sikh Union Club in Eldoret from 8am onwards on Saturday after which rally traffic will tackle a 37km transport road section through to the opening stage at Chemweno.
Ceremonial finish will take place at Chemweno Farm, which is also the venue for the service park and headquarters. Scrutineering and reconnaissance will take place a day prior at Sikh Union Club.
Three stages, Chemweno, Farm and Forest will be repeated to compete a 142km competive loop and a 36 per cent liaison distance totalling 83.10.
The shortest stage is the 5.5km Chemweno spectator run with the longest being the 34km Forest segment. This year’s rally has attracted a good chunk of top drivers including currents leader Carl “Flash” Tundo. Onkar Rai , the legendary Ian Duncan, and Baldev Chager, among others.
The KNRC Two Wheel Drive class is expected to feature the likes of Sarit Shah and Daren Miranda while defending the S Class welcomes back former Champion Chandrakhant ‘Chandu’ Devji up against Nikhil Sachania.
Chandu said he has quite a number of cobwebs to shake off as he returns to top -flight action after many months in the cold.
“I have no plans of doing more rallies. I have decided to do Eldoret after being persuaded to do so by Western Kenya Motor Club (WKMCl” Prodded to explain his game plan, Chandu added: “The essence will be to bring the car back home in one piece,’ Chandu added.
He will reunite with with Julius Mwachuya in their Group S Championship winning GC8.
“Standards have been set and only the sky’s the limit. It’s been quite a while but all in all we hope to make it back with zest and vigor,” said Chandu who last participated in the 2016 edition of Guru Nanak Rally.