Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed has said the recent extension of the Safari Rally’s stay in the World Rally Championships (WRC) will help expose Kenyan drivers besides marketing the country.

Ambassador Mohamed who was speaking after the arrival at JKIA on Wednesday morning from Monaco where they signed historic agreement to have the Safari Rally in the World Rally Championship until 2026 noted that the new agreement reflected the huge response to last year’s event from fans in the country.

“I’m delighted to have come back with this deal and I’m sure Kenya as a country and a rally-loving nation will have its drivers exposed, and the WRC Safari Rally will market the country,” the CS said.

Safari Rally Kenya will remain on the FIA World Rally Championship calendar until 2026 after a three-year extension to the current contract was signed in Monaco on Sunday.

WRC Promoter managing director Jona Siebel said last year’s Safari return to the WRC strengthened the desire of both parties to ensure the rally was a key championship fixture for the long-term.

“It’s by far the longest contract we have ever signed and this sends a strong statement,” he enthused. “After a break of 19 years there was a very strong comeback last year and there was a high motivation from both sides to make this long-term partnership happen,” he noted.

In June 2021,the WRC returned to Africa for the second time since 2002. The Safari of old has evolved to fit the modern-day WRC, but its character remains with challenging closed dirt roads, stunning picture-postcard scenery and exotic wildlife. Competitors can expect rocky and rutted tracks and unpredictable weather which could transform dry and dusty trails into glutinous mudbaths.

By Fred Azelwa.