Kenya National Rally Championship leader Jasmeet Chana aka Iceman heads into the second half of the season on Rally Nanyuki in August with a good feeling in his Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X and a massive 54-point lead over his nearest rival McRae Kimathi.
Navigated by his sibling Ravi Chana, the reigning Group N Champion romped home in second overall position on KNRC Safari Rally category behind Carl “Flash” Tundo to extend his lead after four events in Machakos, Voi, Nakuru and Naivasha’s Safari which counted towards the fourth round of the KNRC series..
Although the closest challenger is 54 points adrift of the Iceman, he refuses to rest on his laurels in his quest for a maiden KNRC title and his immediate aim is to win Nanyuki leg.
“Rally Nanyuki is always an exciting round for many of us, and I’m always excited to take on its unique and challenging gravel,” said Chana who won his first career KNRC round in Nakuru last year.
Jasmeet secured Rubis Energy sponsorship for WRC Safari 2023 and will also be backed for the National season with a brand well known for its Castrol oils.
Also supporting Jasmeet’s spirited course for the season is Cloudpay who have come on board to ensure he delivers the title which eluded him on the last rally last year.
“We’ll be happy that we will be able to compete again in August in the high-altitude Mount Kenya region after Safari which was a very challenging event. It’s certainly going to be a demanding rally with very technical roads. But the Mitsubishi Evolution X has always given me confidence at these speeds with incessant pre-event testing that we always do, I have a good feeling in the car.”
It was Jasmeet’s 4th podium of the 2023 KNRC circuit and his second top two this season, having already boosted his campaign with victory in Nakuru last month.
Last year, Jasmeet lost the title to Karan Patel on homestretch in Voi and is looking to lay his hands on the title in 2023. He is one of the few KNRC drivers to have won virtually all KNRC categories, from 2WD, to Group S, Group N, Division 3 and Division 1.
“I had a very good feeling after the Naivasha fesh fesh and we drove cautiously to earn the all-important points for the championship. Luckily, that paid off and this is a really good feeling,” Jasmeet concluded.
KNRC SAFARI RALLY RESULTS
1.Carl Tundo/Tim Jessop (Skoda Fabia Rally1) 2:09.18.4
2. Jasmeet Chana/Ravi Chana (Evolution X) 2:33.37.5
3. Nikhil Sachania/Deep Patel (Evolution X) 2:36.25.1
4. Issa Amwari/Dennis Mwenda (Evolution X) 2:39.31.5
5. Samman Vohra/Alfir Khan (Skoda Fabia Evo) 2:51.12.1
6. Josiah Kariuki/John Ngugi (Subaru Impreza) 2:57.46.0
7. McRae Kimathi/Mwangi Kioni (Ford Fiesta Rally3) 2:59.06.7
8. Natasha Tundo/Chantal Young (Subaru Impre/za) 3:00.26.9
9. Amman Shah/Rahil Shah (Subaru Impreza) 3:14.07.4
10. Tinashe Gatimu/Caroline Gatimu (Mitsubishi Lancer) 3:16.11.1
11. Minesh Rathod/Jamie McTavish (Mitsubishi Lancer EVOX) 3:18.29.8
12. Andrew Muiruri/Edward Njoroge (Subaru Impreza) 3:27.21.2
13. Pauline Sheghu/Linet Ayuko (Subaru Impreza) 3:30.31.8
14. Edward Maina/Anthony Gichohi (Subaru Impreza) 4:19.00.0
KENYA NATIONAL RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP DRIVERS STANDINGS AFTER SAFARI
1.Jasmeet Chana 114POINTS
2 McRae Kimathi 60
3 Nikhil Sacania 44
4 Carl Tundo 39
5 Kush Patel 34
6Karan Patel 34
7 Amman Shah 33
8 Jeremiah Wahome 30
9 Hamza Anwar 26
10 Izhar Mirza 23
11Issa Amwari 23