New rules leave FMU and drivers divided

Africa Rally Archives
FMU president Dusman Okee trying to calm down Dr Ashiraf Mohammed (driver) following a disagreement on medical rule

The Federation of Motorsport clubs of Uganda (FMU) commenced the 2018 season with a symposium between drivers and officials on Sunday at Lugogo.

The symposium was intended to take drivers through the new regulations prior to the season opener.

However, the meeting ended up sowing dissension between officials and drivers over certain rules.

In the new rule for 2018, the accepted deviation from a rally route was extended from five metres to one hundred metres.

Competitors however argue that the change will encourage cheating.

“This rule will give ways for someone to cut off some distance as long as they keep within the a hundred metres. So some guys can do it intentionally basing on the rule interpretation,” said Hussein Mukuye, a co-driver.

Anthony Mugambwa, another co-driver says interpretation of the rule will be key.

“How the law makers interpreted it is the big issue. They have to change the statement of the rule to suit its interpretation,” he said.

Africa Rally Archives
Drivers and officials at the symposium

Another rule that attracted attention was the eligibility to compete in the Clubman Rally Championship (CRC).

All drivers in their first years of competition shall be required to partner with co-drivers also competing in their first season.

Seasoned co-drivers will forfeit points if they navigate any driver in the CRC category.

Competitors however say the rule does not foster competition.

“That rule is not helping anyone to get the required experience if you let the crew to comprise of only new people.

“New drivers at least need somebody who has been there. It helps then in gaining experience,” said former NRC champion Ponsiano Lwakataka.

Leon Ssenyange, a former CRC winning navigator added, “I think this is just going to create confusion. Besides, our rule book does not have separate classification for co-drivers. A driver and co-driver all get the same points.

“But limiting new drivers to unexperienced co-drivers is recipe for disaster.”

Africa Rally Archives
Leon Ssenyange (co-driver) stresses his point.

The technical arm of the federation is expected to give feedback on the drivers concerns before the first event due 26-28 January in Mbarara.

2 Comments

  • Sharipha get your facts right.Please refrain from wrong reporting.In the photo,there was no confrontation between Mr Dusman and myself,but we were trying to calm the drivers and navigators.Please correct and cease to write wrong things.

  • Dr, theres no wrong reporting in that story even on that photo caption. I was in that meeting and I know what exactly prevailed.

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