The just concluded World Rally Championship has rekindled old memories of the once popular event during Easter holidays when Kenyans lined up in both rural and urban streets to have a glimpse of the racing cars.
Residents of Kiambu have lauded the move to bringing back the championship into the country saying the event play a key role in uniting the nation socially through sports.
The return of the rally after almost 20 years evokes memories way back to the 70s and early 90s when the Easter Season was rainy.
“We are very excited that the rally is back,” Peter Mbugua told KNA from his cyber cafe along Biashara Street in Kiambu.
Even though he had never gotten to see the cars zoom past with his own eyes, Mbugua who grew up in the 80s reckons that the event brought a sense of pride and excitement to Kenyans.
“We would watch the likes of Patrick Njiru and Ian Duncan on television as they left the starting point,” he says. “It was inspiring to watch as an indigenous Kenyans competed on the world stage with rally heavyweights of the old days.
It was a particularly exciting moment for Kiambu residents as the rally vehicles drove at high speed past Ndumberi, Githunguri and Githiga during the good old days. “We would wait, day and night for the vehicles to drive past,” Evans Njoroge who grew up in Kiambu in the 90s explains.
He further lauded the government for bringing the event back to the country. Taking part in it, he says, will raise the country’s global standing, earning its fame and respect among other nations of the world.
Joseph Mugo, who also had the privilege of experiencing the euphoria that came with the event in the past thanked the government for lobbying for Kenya to host the event. “Even though we are going through a lot as a country at the moment, this is a moment to be proud of,” he said. “On this specific thing, they have done a good job.”
Mugo says that even though the event is not being held in Kiambu, the effects of this event will be felt there and in every other part of the country. “It may even help boost the economy especially now during Covid-19,” he says.
By Lydia Shiloya and Duncan Mutwiri