20 March 2017

Tanzania: Shanto, Huwel Eye Iringa Rally Title

THE arrival of winning machines; Ford Fiesta and Subaru N11, confirms the bounce back of the famous Stado Rally team for Iringa Rally on April 22-23.

The team's three members Sameer Nahdi Shanto, Ahmed Huwel and Davis Mosha have confirmed the full time comeback and all three will be in Iringa, according to Shanto.

Shanto, the 1990s hero, said Huwel's much awaited Ford Fiesta arrives in Dar es Salaam from US while his car; Subaru Impreza N11 was already in Morogoro and ready for the two-day thriller.

Shanto, who won Kilimanjaro Rally twice in 2005 and 2006, said he will race in Iringa under the navigation of Rahim Suleiman.

"We are back to teach the young drivers how to drive rally cars as we believe a skilled rally driver is better than unskilled driver with a faster and stronger car," said Shanto during an interview over the weekend.

Shanto is optimistic about his chances of winning Iringa Rally again due to the new breed of rally cars that have proven a lot faster and quicker, among them Mitsubishi Evos and Ford Fiesta models.

He said his familiar Subaru N11 is however proven ideal for dusty road races. However, Shanto wants to prove many critics wrong by dominating the Iringa Rally in an old-fashioned Subaru Impreza, which helped him clinch Kilimanjaro Rally titles twice during his glorious days.

Stado Rally Team was formed in early 2000s by a group of five drivers and the name is an acronym for Sameer Shanto, Saleh Balhabou,Thabit Thalal, Ahmed Huwel, Davis Mosha and Omar Bakhresa.

With three of them back to active rallying, only two of them; Omar Bakhresa and Saleh Balhabou are yet to announce the comeback.

Iringa will host the second round of this year's National Rally Championship (NRC) series on April 22 and 23 this year, featuring crews from five regions of Tanzania.

Stado Rally team, will however, have to overcome the threat from young drivers especially Dharam Pandya, Jamil Khan, Randeep Birdi who have dominated the show for the past five years.

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