London to Cape Town World Cup Rally 2012

The Long Way Down - Against the Clock


Nairobi, Kenya


Little rest in Nairobi

The only rest-day in 14,000 kilometres has failed to live up to its name. 

Most crews have been hard at work restoring their cars for the remaining 10 days. Two local rally service vehicles appeared in the car park this morning and provided welding and facilities for repairs to anything that required a workbench. Everyone has been impressed witnessing the legendary Kenyan bush-mechanics at work, first hand.

For most it's been a worrying case of tracking down suspension spares as well as welding up broken bits. Even the travelling organisation vehicles were in a sorry state, and clearly unable to go much further, so the Nairobi rest-day could not have come soon enough.

Among those now looking very anxious are Owen Turner and Matt Fowle who ordered new shock absorbers to be couriered in. The sun is now setting behind the Acacia trees, and it looks like they will be setting off in the way they came in  ...without any rear dampers. Their vital parts are tied up in red- tape at customs.

Rally leader Andy Actman has broken front suspension. He has discarded the worn out Koni Raid shocks and for the rest of the route will run standard Toyota springs and shocks bought off the shelf from the local dealer.

Among the cars missing from the hotel but in Nairobi and planning to re-start tomorrow. The Peugeot 504 of Jean-Pierre and Mireille Demierre are rebuilding their suspension and the BMW535 of Renger Gulliker and Pim ‘t Hart is in town with the crew fixing their split sump… broken for the second time on the road from Marsabit.

Talking of shock absorbers, cars 10 and 45, Datsun and Porsche, have received a one-hour penalty for non-period shock absorbers. Cars in the classic classes have to run period-specification parts.

It's a shorter day tomorrow - alas we are leaving Kenya …a pity, we all feel we should have spent longer sampling "God's own rally-country".


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