Ryan Champion recently tackled the East African Safari Classic Rally, one of the world's toughest rallies which took place over eight days and 4200 kilometres in Kenya and Tanzania successfully reaching the finish of the event.
Unusually for Ryan, he found himself in the co-drivers seat for the rally when ask to coach Harrogate's Richard Jackson through the event. Ryan said, "Whilst co driving is not my usual role, the chance to compete on the Safari Rally was one I just could not turn down! I work in the winter as an instructor for Below Zero, an ice driving programme run by Tuthill Porsche. Richard was driving one of 17 Tuthill prepared Porsche 911's on the event and it was an opportunity I didn't want to miss as I am unlikely to ever drive on the rally as, because of its length and geography it is an expensive event to contest."
Despite breaking the steering on the 911 half way through the event after hitting a rock, the crew successfully reached the end of the incredibly rough rally which started in Mombasa before heading into Tanzania, around Kilimanjaro, up to Niarobi and Kenya's Rift Valley before returning south to finish in Mombasa.
Ryan commented. " It is without doubt the toughest rally I have ever competed on. The stages are just so rough but also very long with several being around the hundred mile mark and we did at least three per day! It was a fantastic experience to see Africa that way and other than our steering issue which lost us over four hours, the car was just brilliantthroughout the event. I will definitely go back if I get the chance." Ryan drove the final days Safari stages after Richard injured his hand on a stage made very rough by recent rain.