Pearl of Africa rally returns in May with ‘yellow card’

Speed Champ. Manvir Baryan (R) and Drew Sturrock on the podium after winning the Pearl of Africa Rally in 2017. PHOTO / JOHN BATANUDDE 

What you need to know:

  • According to Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FiA)-ARC calendar, the Pearl Rally will be held on May 13-15 and will be the third round of the 2022 season. It has previously been held in August.

The Pearl of Africa Rally – the Africa Rally Championship (ARC) hosted by Uganda – is set to return this year.

According to Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FiA)-ARC calendar, the Pearl Rally will be held on May 13-15 and will be the third round of the 2022 season. It has previously been held in August.

The season will start in Ivory Coast next month then head to Kenya in April. After Uganda, drivers will race in Tanzania, Rwanda, Zambia and South Africa.

The Pearl Rally was last held in 2019. The Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns meant that Uganda’s biggest rally event wasn’t held for two years.

Kenya’s Manvir Baryan is the last winner here as he went on to lift the African title. However, organisers here must improve greatly as the international body, the FiA, has previously warned on safety glitches hence issuing a ‘yellow card’.

Still valid

That ‘yellow card’ is still valid. Ernest Ziwa, the assistant general secretary at the Federation of Motorsport Clubs of Uganda (FMU), promised better organisation.

Organisers have already started to work. FMU is to hold an FiA safety training for all clubs and officials on January 14-16.

Safety delegates will be picked from these participants.

“We have a lot of fans which makes safety a problem. But, from this training we are going to use the Argentina module on fans,” Zziwa stated.

Argentina does host a World Rally Championship (WRC) which attracts some of the biggest crowds in the world.

Also, the fixing of the Pearl rally has forced FMU to adjust the dates of the eastern rally from March 25-27 to 11-13. That will allow locals to prepare for the Kenya Equator rally.

The National Rally Championship (NRC) season starts in Mbarara on January 21-23.

ARC CALENDAR

Feb 26-27: Rally Bandama 
(Cote D’Ivoire)

April 1-3: Equator Rally (Kenya)

May 13-15: Pearl of Africa Rally (Uganda)

July 22-24: Rally of Tanzania (Tanzania)

Sept. 23-25: Mountain Gorilla Rally (Rwanda)

Oct. 23-25: Zambia International Rally (Zambia)

Nov. 17-19: Rally of South Africa (South Africa)

 [email protected]  ug.nationmedia.com

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