Category Archives: Safari Rally

Sebastian Ogier, defending champion, excluded from 2024 Safari Rally Kenya

Sebastien Ogier, the defending Safari Rally champion and an eight-time world champion, is set to miss this year’s Safari Rally edition scheduled to be held in Naivasha between Thursday, March 28 – Sunday, March 31. The defending champion was conspicuously absent from the team unveiled by Toyota to take part in the competition.

According to the roster released by Toyota, their trio for Safari Rally features double world champion Kalle Rovanpera, Elfyn Evans, and Takamoto Katsuta. Sebastien was expected to defend his title, which he claimed after managing to hold off Rovanpera in a thrilling finale last year.

Despite Sebastien’s absence, Rovanpera is expected to light up the competition and turn around his season. His 2024 season has been clouded with setbacks after crashing out of the lead in Sweden.

Rovanpera, however, is expected to make a comeback at the Safari Rally. This year’s edition will be Rovanpera’s fourth appearance since Safari’s comeback to the WRC calendar in 2021.

He has already tasted victory once in 2022 when he led a historic Toyota 1-2-3-4 sweep ahead of Elfyn by 52.8 seconds. Katsuta completed the podium ahead of Ogier.

The CS noted that Kenya is keen to support local drivers to also dominate the race. Kenya is exploring possibilities of launching training schools for upcoming rally drivers in a bid to regain the days when Kenyan drivers competed well.