The variety of paths that lead to a Safari Classic entry never cease to amaze!
Up to 60 take part on every Safari Classic Rally, each with its own crew of people around it, so the community of past and present competitors has hundreds of stories to tell.
Scott Armstrong will be tackling November’s Kenya Airways East African Safari Classic with Harpal Sudle in the co-driver’s seat. Scott has saved and prepared for years to take part in Safari, doing his first Safari Classic as a mechanic in 2009 and again in 2015 on Nick Mason’s 260Z.
“I was born and raised in Kenya,” says Scott, adding: “We lived there until I was seven years old, when my family moved to the UK. My dad was a big rally enthusiast and took me to watch the Safari Rally, always bringing his camera along too.”
As he grew up, Scott became increasingly obsessed by a photo his dad had taken of Shekhar Mehta in the Datsun Violet in 1982. “Cars have been my passion since childhood and I have always loved rallying. Slowly the dream emerged to follow in Shekhar’s tyre tracks and do the Safari Rally in the same type of car,” said Scott.
“Scott sent me to Tanzania to source this rally car,” says Harpal, adding: “It was used in the original Safari, as what we think was a recce car for the works team. We bought the shell plus parts and shipped them back to the UK. Our car for the Classic includes much of that parts haul. Scott’s dream has been 10years in the making and I am excited to be part of it.”
The Safari Classic Rally will be run in Kenya and Uganda from November 23 to December 1.