Top 10 contenders
J. Mangat (Subaru N12)
R. Ssebuguzi (M'bishi Evo9)
C. Fitidis (Subaru N12)
D. Mubiru (Subaru N14)
E. Munghereza (Subaru N4)
W. Bukenya (M'bishi Evo9)
P. Lwakatakaka (Subaru N8)
S. Ssemujju (Subaru N11)
N. Mutebi (Subaru N11)
A. Ashraf (Subaru N 4)
By Douglas Mazune
Ponsiano Lwakataka’s seemingly worn-out Subaru N8 has robbed the driver of his usual chest-thumping rhetoric going into the Mbarara Rally that starts with a super special stage in Masaka today.
Lwakataka, whose car has broken down in his past three outings, will have to make do with it until he switches to the new mid-season.
The Mbarara Rally is the opening round of the 2013 National Rally Championship.
"My car is old and less powerful but it is not completely worn out. I usually aim to whip my rivals two minutes in each competitive section but since the car is old, I will be a couple of second quicker," Lwakataka stated.
"I want to prove that it is the driver but not the car which wins a race.”
The chatty driver pointed out that Jas Mangat, Ronald Ssebuguzi, Duncan Mubiru, Wycliff Bukenya and Nasser Mutebi are the men to beat this season.
“I would even be happy with a podium position so that I score some points and keep tabs on other championship contenders,” Lwakataka stated.
The event that will start with a super special stage at Pine Ridge racing circuit in Masaka has attracted 31 crews including a BIDCO sponsored female crew of Leila Mayanja and Farida Ndagire in a Mitsubishi Evo3.
Mayanja, a White Star brand ambassador, will be flagged off in 18th position, just two positions behind her husband Omar Mayanja (Toyota RX) and one place further behind her cousin Arthur Blick (Subaru N10).
After covering two runs at the super special, the crews will tackle a competitive section between Masaka and Lyantonde before heading to Lake View Hotel in Mbarara for a night stop.
On Sunday, drivers will cover seven sections in Mbarara and Bushenyi including a spectator stage near Mbarara town.
This stage will be covered three times.
Rally fans are looking forward to the event.