KAMPALA. The crews of Jas Mangat/Joseph Kamya and Arthur Blick Jr/Unisan Bakunda, both in Mitsubishi Evo Xs, have thrown down the gauntlet on their rivals after claiming the first two places in the Lato Milk-sponsored Mbarara Rally over the weekend.
The two former NRC champions shared the eight competitive sections (CS) with Mangat winning five and Blick Jr three. But their performance, like the rest of other competitors, was overshadowed by the death of Boda Boda rider Benson Tumusiime. His passenger Innocent Kabigumira was left critically injured after they were run into by Mangat.
The incident, which led to the premature end of the event, happened in Kachampare trading centre in Rubare district.
The death of the Tumusiime follows that of another fan during the Kiggwa Kw’olwo fundraising sprint for Ponsiano Lwakataka’s new car.
A Toyota Corolla RX driven by Dr Godfrey Nsereko rammed into the crowd killing one person on spot and injuring nine.
In Mbarara before the start of day two, Mangat declined to hit the road without a route opener and it was left to Godfrey Aine Sodo (Evo IX) to volunteer.
However, Sodo was still servicing his car by the time the leading drivers were on the road for the final two sections thus Mangat had to open the route. The rest as they say is history.
The drivers have consistently complained about their safety and the fans during events.
One way of controlling fans is to have two to four sections being repeated. This helps fans not to move like in Mbarara where they had seven different CS spread all over.
There have been too many accidents in the past one year and it is an issue FMU, relevant authorities and stakeholders must address ahead of the CMC rally set for March 8-10.
It does incerasingly appear like safety awareness among fans ought to be re-emphasized.
NRC POINTS STANDINGS
Mangat 100 pts
*Blick Jr 70
Blick Jr’s car is classified as a Group S car.
Mangat (4) CS1, CS2, CS5, CS7, CS8
Blick Jr (3) SSS1, SSS2, CS6,