Christakis Fitidis’ memory of the 2017 Pearl of Africa Uganda Rally will forever remain vivid in his rally career; the event was a great milestone as he drove his way to a maiden Uganda rally championship title.
The 65-year-old was the best placed local driver behind event winner Manvir Baryan from Kenya. Fitidis scored maximum points that got him closer to the title which he eventually won.
In this year’s edition of the Pearl Rally which is due on 20-22nd July, Fitidis is equally optimistic for a better results.
“I am not changing my strategy. Same thing like last year. Targeting the top five finish while I try to closer in to the podium positions.
However, Fitidis confesses the race will be tougher than last year.
“This year will be tough for us. With Mangat around and the competitions he brings. I don’t expect to have it so easily like last year. But we shall still not give up on our target.
“We know the Skoda is coming, but it will be in it’s own race. We expect Manvir to control the race again. But this time I believe the crews will reduce on the margin,” he added.
Fitidis and co-driver Eric Nzamwita suffered their first misfortunes of the season in the last round in June. Broken studs caused their withdrawal in the Fort Portal Rally; that would be their first non-finish in two years.
“We really dropped in points after Fort Portal rally. It was rather a service crew mistake and not mechanical.
“But that was a quite a lesson learnt. Next time they will be more careful and serious in the service. But we are still hopeful.”