Africa’s sole leg of the World Rally Championship (WRC), the Safari Rally, concluded Sunday in the Great Rift Valley, Kenya.
French driver Sebastian Ogier emerged the winner after longtime leader Thierry Neuville’s dreams were shattered alongside his car’s suspension.
Japan’s Takamoto Katsuta maintained his constant improvement to claim his first WRC podium in second to seal Toyota Gazoo Racing’s fourth 1-2 result of the season, widening its manufacturers’ championship lead to 59 points.
WRC3 leader Onkar Rai was Kenya’s best performer at seventh, ahead of fellow support category drivers Karan Patel and Carl Tundo.
The Safari lived up to its reputation as one of the world’s iconic motorsport events. Rocky and sandy gravel tracks around Lakes Naivasha and Elementaita in the Great Rift Valley provided a brutal test, while stunning scenery, exotic wildlife and enthusiastic locals portrayed Africa at its best.
It championship was returning to Africa and Kenya after a 19-year absence.