I have only entered one East African Safari Classic Rally in 2019.
Greatest event was the Safari Rally from 1970 to 1990. Those, to me were the real years of test of man and machine. Between 5 and 6,000kms in 5 days, few hours of sleep, night time driving. But most importantly homologation was very strict and considered the privateer as well, 5,000 units had to be made and even for the ‘special’ exemptions 400 units had to be made. This made rallying cheaper and works parts were available for privateers which enabled them to be competitive against the works cars.
I would like to rally in Kenya and maybe Morocco; nowhere else.
I did a few seasons in the UAE and then mostly East Africa.
Best result was 5th in the Top Fry Classic in 2018 in a Ford Escort Mark 1.
Relationship to Navigator: A very good friend, Aslam and Arshad Khan we go a long way back, to the 70’s.
The Safari Rally means everything, just entering and being able to start is already a dream come true. From the age of 10 right up to 30 The Safari Rally was the event of the year, six months before the event we spent every evening and weekend working on the car, looking for help with service, sponsorship, borrowing tyres, rims et al, then the rally most occasions we retired, then the next six months were spent on talking about the past safari….our world revolved around the Safari.
I love Africa, was born in Nairobi and lived in Eldoret for 18 years. Now I am thinking of where in Kenya I will retire, maybe Watamu.
I started off in a very old Datsun 1000, then a Datsun 1600 sss, Datsun 1200 Pick-up, numerous Datsun PA 10’s, Mitsubishi Lancer, Ford Escort’s, Subaru RX and Impreza, a Nissan 240RS and recently a VW Polo R5.
My Favourite is the Datsun PA 10; it’s just a super car to drive.
Fun experience: In one long rally, I had a very experienced navigator. After the third day, I noticed that, during the stage, he was having a swig of Vodka every once in a while. When I asked him, he replied ‘you are so slow so keep my concentration I need the Vodka’.
Age started rallying: 23
Have entered the East African Safari Classic Rally in 2003- serviced for Aslam Khan and Arshad Khan in the Datsun 180B, 2005- navigated for Aslam Khan in the 180B, 2007- Navigated for Aslam Khan in the Ford Escort Mark 1, 2009- entered to navigate Gianluca Ciaraldi but had to pull out on the 11th hour as my passport was stuck with the UK Home Office and I could not leave the UK. 2011- Navigated British Historic Champion Simon Tysoe in the wettest and toughest of all Classics. 2013- did event as three-day advance car. Once i finished my duties i ended up as marshal for the rest of the rally and drove 12500km at the end of the rally. 2015- Navigated for Kailesh Chauhan in the Ford Escort Mark 2, 2019- Navigated Aslam Khan in the Porsche 911.
All events have been great! Earlier ones were more fun, and I would say the 2005 event was by far my favourite. It was not as competitive as it is today. It was also quite long back then, 4500km. We got to do stages in the Kerio Valley which was quite breathtaking. We covered lots of different parts of the country back then. 2011 was also a great year too. It was wet and muddy and i spent a lot of time digging and pushing in the mud. It was a true safari. Jim Heather Hayes also had to jump in a river and save my life.
I would like to rally in Bulgaria, New Zealand, Morocco and the British Historic Rallies.
Have rallied in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Zimbabwe
Best Result was 11th Overall in the East African Safari Classic Rally, KNRC 1st Overall and Internationally 2nd overall in Rwanda.
Relationship to driver: Good friend
The Safari Rally us the heritage of our country, it was part of our family. Dad and Uncle were heavily involved and i grew up seeing them prepare for the world's greatest rally.
Africa is my home.
I have driven in a Subaru Legacy, Subaru Impreza GC8, Subaru N8, Subaru 10, Subaru N11, Subaru 12, Mitsubishi Evo 6,7, 9,10, Datsun 180B, ford Escort Mark 1, ford Escort Mark 2, Datsun 240Z, Porsche 911.
Every car I have navigated has been special in its own unique way, my favourite modern car is the Mitsubishi Evo 10, my favourite classic car has to be the Porsche.
Fun experience: Every Classic for me has been fun and enjoyable but 2019 EASCR was the most fun for me. We got it right this time, we drove the rally with minimum damage to the car. The rhythm in the car was top notch, the service crew were on point.