Mangat, Ssebuguzi Re-ignite Rivalry at Martyr's Day Rally

sebuguzi_954224009 geneva;”>Apart from their tight title race (Ssebuguzi currently leads Mangat by just one point after three rounds), the two top drivers will be in a battle of disproving each other on who commands better skills behind the wheels of the Mitsubishis. For Ssebuguzi, the 2006 and 2009 national champion, the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 9 is as familiar having enjoyed most of his competitive career successes in the same machine.

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It will, however, be a different atmosphere for Ssebuguzi this weekend with pressure from an opponent in Mangat, famed for crazy speeds and gusto while in the cockpit. Mangat, who has been competing in a Subaru N12B, drives the newer (more powerful and reliable) Mitsubishi Evo 10 for the first time. He acquired it early this month in a bid to boost his double bid for retaining the NRC title and winning the African championship crown.

This is going to be a turf event after local federation releasing the penalties for drivers who failed to go by rule of the game in the 2nd round of the National rally championship (Freedom city challenge rally), Fitidis, Lwakataka and Duncan fellow victims and hence were docked off some points.

“It’s an exciting machine. I call on the fans to come and enjoy the event this weekend,” Mangat told yesterday about the condition of his new acquisition.

However, the 2012 champion cautioned fans to abide by the safety guidelines and watch from the demarcated viewing points while in the route on Sunday.

“My appeal to them is to stay far away because we’ll be going flat out,” he added.

The two-day rally, covering total distance of 277 kilometres (147 kilometres of competitive sections), promises to be a thriving event with a number of other title contenders breathing fire. Duncan ‘Kikankane” Mubiru (Subaru N12B), third in the NRC leadership and hugely experienced Christakis Fitidis (in another Subaru N12) have also vowed to go for maximum points to keep their championship dreams alive.

Thirty-eight cars will be scrutineerd this morning at Seeta Kobil fuel station ahead of the sprint stage tomorrow. Event organisers Eastern Motor Club (EMC) have engaged regular and traffic police officers to ensure maximum safety, both at the sprint and in the routes.

NRC standings

1. Ronald Ssebuguzi 186pts

2. Jas Mangat 185

3. Duncan Mubiru 171

4. Ponsiano Lwakataka 165

5. Christakis Fitidis 121


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