Amos wins Safari Classic

Italian driver heads Porsche 1-2-3-4 with 10-minute victory on grueling nine-day, 1000-mile event

Eugineo Amos23EASCR254

Italian driver Eugenio Amos has taken his first East African Safari Classic Rally win, after safely navigating the endurance event’s ninth and final leg in his Porsche 911 on Monday afternoon.

The 38-year-old led home last year’s winner, Kenyan driver Baldev Chager, also in a 911, who finished the rally 10 minutes 45 seconds behind winner Amos.

Completing the all-Porsche podium was Kris Rosenberger, who finished a further 18m20s back after 1000 miles of competitive action across 24 stages over nine days, with only a single day of rest.

British driver Bonamy Grimes finished fourth in his 911, while the first non-Porsche home was former World Rally Championship driver and 1994 Safari Rally winner Ian Duncan, who brought his Datsun 280Z to the finish fifth.

Another duo of WRC fame – Jourdain Serderidis and co-driver Grégoire Munster – finished 18th overall, despite running as high as fourth after the rally’s sixth day.

Amos took the lead of the Safari Classic on last Tuesday’s SS8, overhauling South African Geoff Bell, who would eventually fall out of contention after his Datsun 240Z hit trouble on leg four, the next day.


From there, Amos built his lead to over 20 minutes as the crews reached day five.

The Italian’s biggest challenge came during Saturday’s seventh leg, as local driver Chager managed to cut Amos’s lead from 19 minutes down to just 11.

But any hopes of Charger retaining his crown were soon dampened, as Amos held his still comfortable lead all the way to the finish to claim his maiden victory in this grueling test of speed, endurance and navigation across some of the world’s toughest terrain.

After completing the rally, winning driver Amos said: “It’s been a hell of a ride, even the last day was tricky but we said we’d take it easy. It was raining, we had to [use] like second gear and third all the time but we somehow managed to survive.”


Runner-up Chager noted the extreme challenge this year’s Safari Classic presented, commenting: “I can tell you the most difficult rally I have done, even being local. Anything and everything that could be thrown at you was done.

“We thought the last stage we would just drive through, the rains said: ‘No, no, wait a minute.’ It was so tricky you could [hardly] see beyond the bonnet. Everything was steaming up; big drops on the side.”

Words:James Bowen