WRC Safari Rally 2021 preview: why we’re excited about Kenya’s return Car News

And it is this rich history that makes the Safari so special. The rally is all about extremes: not just extreme weather conditions – which can range from apocalyptic heat to torrential rains – but also breathtaking scenery.

The Safari is arguably the most photogenic rally in the world, with iconic footage from the past recording cars jumping towards the backdrop of Mount Kilimanjaro, watched by members of the Masai tribe.

It was always the rally where crews interacted the most with local life, as it took place on open roads – alongside normal traffic – on competitive sections that lasted for hundreds of kilometers. Observation helicopters were radioed to cars to warn of upcoming dangers (which could include a herd of elephants) and the terrain was almost unimaginably rugged.

To cope with the conditions, the teams built tailor-made cars, with reinforced bodies, daytime running lights and “snorkel” exhaust pipes for the numerous water points. Think of it as a cross between the Dakar and the Cannonball Run, and you more or less get the picture.

Much of the appeal of Safari was that it was fundamentally lawless – there is even a popular legend that a well-known manufacturer cheated by swapping an entire car halfway through the Age of the group B – but that’s also why it fell off the WRC schedule. Essentially, the Safari had to change to accommodate modern sensibilities. And we are here today.

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This notice was published: 2021-06-24 23:01:24

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