Motor sport

Don Smith Wins Africa Rally Championship

Don Smith (R) and his navigator Bob Kaugi (Net photo)

Kenya rally driver Don Smith was confirmed the 2016 African Rally championship (ARC) winner after his closest competitor Muna Singh Junior failed to finish the race on Saturday.

Smith navigated by Bob Kaugi needed just to finish the V-Shell Pearl Africa rally to clinch the crown and that’s exactly what he did – finishing ninth.

Smith’s major rival at the African crown was Zambia’s Muna Singh Junior but retired after five stages with his fuel tank reportedly leaking.

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Smith came into the Pearl of Africa rally with 79 points, website 22 points above Muna Singh Junior and needed to just to finish the event to win the ARC title.

But the joy came early enough for the Kenyan driver as his major competitor could not go beyond the fifth stage.

The results meant another Kenyan driver won the prestigious African title after Jaspreet Chatthe who took it last year.

It was bad news for most of the local drivers who dropped out before the end of the event.

Duncan Mubiru who won the super special stage in Busiika on day one developed a mechanical problem in the early stages while Ronald Ssebuguzi who was vying for the National Rally championship (NRC) had similar problems and also bowed out at stage three.

Desh Kananura who finished on the podium last year dropped out despite being in the lead after stage two.

Other drivers who retired included Ambrose Byona, Geoffrey Nsamba, Ahmed Ashraf and Eddie Mukiibi.

Hassan Alwi won the 2016 V-Shell Pearl of Africa rally clocking 02:41:03 while Arthur Blick Junior came second at 02:41:53.

The podium positions were completed by Christakis Fitidis who came third in 02:48:58.

Top five crews

Hassan Alwi/Enock Olinga

Arthur Blick Junior/Unisan Bakunda

Christakis Fitidis/Eric Maxime Nzamwita

Omar Mayanja/Hussein Mukuye

Ismail Shemohammed/ Vihir Patel


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