Rally drivers grappling with sponsorship – Singh

ZAMBIA Motor Sport Rally commissioner Munah Singh says the number of participants in motor sport is going down due to the tough financial times.

And Lusaka Motor Club chairman Michael Daka says people should avoid racing on public roads but join motor sport to avoid wreckage on roads.

Speaking when they received sponsorship packages towards the hosting of the April 12 to 14 Cyber Guard Rally, Singh called upon sponsors to help struggling drivers.

“We understand a lot of competitors are going through challenges in terms of finances so we have seen that the entry numbers are kind of low. In Ndola there were 12 or 13 cars that started so it is something that the corporate world must look into and try and support the drivers and see if we can help in whichever way we can. But it is always nice to see that clubs are doing a fantastic job; they are bringing in new sponsors, they are keeping old sponsors,” Singh said.

“I kind of convince myself that it is a lot easier to keep fit by rallying than it is to go to the gym so I just kind of make the number and at the same time I use that opportunity to train navigators and whoever is interested. And this kind of helps motorsport as well. Not only do I enjoy myself but I also pass on something to the younger guys.”

Singh said Zambia had talented drivers who were full of energy.

“I strongly believe that Zambia has the best drivers, the best navigators; they are so keen, so young, they are full of energy and they have got good pace. The drivers have to literally sprint from start to finish and that is making the drivers quicker and it is also making them more reliable,” said Singh.

And Daka said the club was looking forward to organising better rallies despite the financial stress.

“Obviously we know that the economy is not doing too well, but we have to try to organise better rallies, safer rallies, therefore, the cost is going up. With this you can see new partners coming in. We are intending to have as many business houses as possible,” he said.

“We need to reduce the wreckage by stopping people from racing on public roads. If you want to race, come and race on the track. We want to see more people come into the sport.”

The total budget for the Cyber Guard Rally has been set at K95, 000 and Mount Meru has put up K15,000 towards the tournament.

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