Defending Quad class champion Shazar Anwar and his buggy counterpart Tejas Hirani have declared that they are more than ready for this weekend's National Rally Raid slated for Soysambu as they plot on how they shall rule the roost yet again.
Also looking forward to the anticipated muddy challenge in the Rift Valley cauldron are Sean Wilcock and Nish Lakhani who are the defending champions in the Bike and Car classes respectively.
Nish, who recently won round 1 event in Naro Moru, returns with his crowd-pleasing "Kenya Cat" machine that has reigned supreme in this championship for three years in a trot.
"From all indications its going to be a high adrenaline event but one punctuated by rains. Wet conditions suits me better and I enjoy them very much. With the first win under our belt we are in an ebullient mood and are confident we'll make it two achievements in a row. The competition is growing in stature and we are getting better and better at every event, so we will not take anything for granted and will have to push for honours from the word go," exclaimed Nish.
Car class driver Adin Haq "Paps" who finished second in the season opener is oozing confidence of his prospects in the Range Rover eBowler which he is fine-tuning to suit the weekend's conditions.
Round one of the rally raid cannot pass as the best of starts for the Adin's Paps Rally Team.
However, Adin and his navigator Stuart Cohen are getting their car ready for the weekend's round and have fitted in a new fox racing suspension. Paps says the car is still under development and should pull some surprises if all goes according to script this season.
"After a tormenting and punishing Day 1 action in Naro Moru, we had a really good and memorable run on the final day with some slight overheating problems. All the same we endured this trying time and had a good run which enabled us scale the ladder from 6th to 2nd place overall," said Adin.
The event will be organised by Rift Valley Motor and Sports Club (RVM&SC).
Raid headquarters will be entered at Mbweha Camp. Day One on Saturday makes up Leg One which is approximately 60km.
Day Two on Sunday comprises of Legs Two and Three totalling approximately 160km.
Entry to the Conservancy will be Ksh 500 per adult and Ksh 200 for children.
As the final phase of preparations conclude, riders, drivers and their navigators have been bubbling with confidence hoping to rake in more championship points.
Shazar, son of three times Rally Champion Anwar Anwar, anticipates improved reliability from his Bombardier 650DX machine which he has been using for the past few years.
Sibling rivalry is also sure to add some admirable zest and zeal to this event with Adil Vaiani taking battle to his brother Arafat in the Quads Class. One of the fastest rising youngsters Tejas Hirani will be navigated by rally co-driver Riyaz Ismail in a new two-seater Rage buggy. Tejas has for the last one year driven a Magi-Bug which is also a two-seater car.
Arafat will be riding a Renegade 800 while his brother Adil is on a Honda 700TRX.
Rajesh Maini is among those expected in the Car class and will be entering a Range Rover Hybrid. Joost Zuurbier will be navigated by Shameer Ole Yusuf in a Tomcat. Those expected in the Bike class are Mbaabu Muturi (KTM520), Ragu Muraya (KTM525) and Andrew Waititu (KTM450). .
JCB GANATRA NATIONAL RALLY RAID CHAMPIONSHIP AS AT ROUND 1-NARO MORU
1. Nish Lakhani 80
2. Adin Haq 60
3. Sammy Jessel 50
1. Tejas Hirani 80
2. Ian Duncan 40
3. Alex Gibbs 33.33
1. Vincent Boulanger 80
2. Shazar Anwar 60
3. Christian Collette 50
1. Sean Wilcock 80
2. Robbie Calder 60
3. Gerald Taylor 50