Lwakataka wins Mbarara Rally
Posted Monday, February 11 2013 at 02:00
Just like last year, Christakas Fitidis came second after one hour and 50 minutes.
Ponsiano ‘Maffu Maffu’ Lwakataka overcame numerous obstacles and emerged winner of the two-day Mbarara Pine Ridge Rally yesterday. In his ‘old’ Subaru N8, Lwakataka clocked one hour, 44 minutes to finish first among the less than 15 drivers who completed the 461. 36km. “It is a good win for me and I am happy,” Lwakataka said moments after leaving the cockpit.
This is not only the first but also the toughest of the six National Rally Championship (NRC) calendar events.
Over the past two years, winning in Mbarara has turned out to be a good omen for drivers as they usually go on to clinch the NRC title. Susan Muwonge won the Mbarara event in 2011 and clinched the NRC title while Jas Mangat also did the same last year.
And Lwakataka hopes to follow suit this time round. “I hope I have the luck and go on and win this year’s NRC,” he said. “My car is not the best but I will fight and give my best,” the two-time NRC winner (2005&2007) added.
Just like last year, Rwandese Christakas Fitidis came second after one hour and 50 minutes. He believes he would have done better had the route been much more secure.
“The route was good and competitive but it was not secure,” Fitidis said. “We encountered animals like cows and other motorists along the way.” Ronald Ssebuguzi failed to complete after he knocked a bodaboda rider. After day one’s 144km through Katovu-Lyantonde, reigning NRC champion Jas Mangat was in the lead. But he failed to finish after his car’s shock absorbers failed to function with three sections left.
The route had 182.15km of the competitive section and there were ten super stations. Of the 27 drivers who started on Saturday, only 21 managed to participate yesterday. Wycliff Bukenya, Shaffique Semujju and Nasser Mutebi all did not complete.