26-Yr-Old Maxine Wahome Wins Naivasha Safari Rally Championship

Maxine Wahome participates in the WRC Rally in Naivasha.
Maxine Wahome participates in the WRC Rally in Naivasha.
Capital Group

26-year-old Kenyan rally driver Maxine Wahome emerged victorious on Sunday, June 26, in the ongoing championship in Naivasha.

Wahome emerged top in the World Rally Championship-3 (WRC-3) category beating her fellow Kenyans Jeremy Wahome and McRae Kimathi to 2nd & 3rd spots respectively.

The rally driver made her debut in the championship this season and since last week, she topped the all-Ford Fiesta Rally3 field by 25.6sec ahead of Kimathi who is an FIA Junior WRC regular.

As of Friday, Wahome had risen up the ranks to the top spot.

Kenyan rally driver Maxine Wahome
Kenyan rally driver Maxine Wahome.
Capital Group

On the same day,  Jeremy Wahome bowed out of the race after he encountered an engine control unit issue on the Loldia opener.

The WRC-3 junior category is the arrive-and-drive still forming part of the World Rally Championship whose participants must be born on or after January 1, 1993, and contest using the Ford Fiesta Rally3 cars.

Speaking at the Safari Rally final Podium, President Uhuru Kenyatta congratulated Maxine Wahome for her win promising to support her in her future championships.

"I want to congratulate our very own Maxine Wahome. You have proved that the world of motorsport is not the world of men but mankind.

"We congratulate you as the WRC category 3 and promise you our continued support as you work your up the ranks not just in the Safari Rally but through the WRC ranks globally. We shall stand with you, keep up the spirit and the encouragement," stated the Head of State.

In the same sport, Singh Rai emerged as the top Kenyan driver in the WRC-2 category and ranked number 12 overall in the 2022 WRC Safari Rally.

In the category,  Kajetan Kajetanowic, a Polish national, emerged the winner after claiming the top spot since the opening day.

Kalle Rovanperä, 21, was crowned the overall winner of the Safari Rally followed by Welsh rally driver Elfyn Evans and Takamoto Katsuta respectively.

In his closing remarks, Uhuru also hailed the organisers for holding the event in its second year running since it made a comeback in 2021.

"We are here today to celebrate the second year running that we have hosted the return of the Safari Rally back on the WRC circuit. To say how happy and proud we are to be together with all our partners and racing lovers across the globe.

"Mine is to congratulate every single participant. As I said when we started, the price is not in winning but in how you win," Uhuru added.

Kenya will host the Safari Rally every year until 2026 as per the sealed agreement with the International Automobile Federation (FIA).

Kenyan Rally driver Maxine Wahome
Kenyan Rally driver Maxine Wahome.
Kiss FM