An East African Asian, Shehkar mehta, with his partner, lofty Drews, won the 21st East African Safari on Monday (23 April) in the closest ever finish to this toughest rally event in world motor sport.
NAIROBI &MUA SPRING FARM, KENYA (APRIL 29, 1973) (REUTERS)
GV PAN Car no. 17 along muddy road
MV PAN Car no. 23 along muddy road
MV PAN Car no. 15 along road & spins off
CU Mud tracks on road
GV Crowds push car no. 15 on to road
MV PAN Car no. 3 along muddy road
MV Winning Datsun on to ramp surrounded by crowds
CU Damage on Datsun
SV Japanese girl watching
SV Winners: Lofty Drew on left & Mehta on right seated on car
MV Member of the runner-up Datsun team seated on car with girl
SV Driver out of car & surrounded by press
SV Scot playing bagpipes as car no. 20 arrives on ramp (2 shots)
SV Only women drivers to finish rally
Initials ESP/1942 ESP/2003
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Background: An East African Asian, Shehkar mehta, with his partner, lofty Drews, won the 21st East African Safari on Monday (23 April) in the closest ever finish to this toughest rally event in world motor sport.
Both Mehta and Drews, driving a Datsun 240Z, finished the 3,000-mile (5,000 kilometre) course in a tie on penalty points with a Swedish pair, Harry Kalstrom and Claes Bilstam, who drove another Datsun. But first place was awarded to Mehta and Drews because they travelled furthest in the five-day event (19-23 April), and incurred the least number of penalty points (406) in doing so.
The Japanese datsuns emerged clear winners of the team trophy. Aside from finishing first and second, another of their cars -- driven by Tony fall of England -- came in fourth.
Sharing the top six final placings with the three Japanese cars were the French Peugeots. The Swedish driver, Ove Andersson, driving a Peugeot 504, came in third with 527 penalty points.
Of the 89 cars which set out from Nairobi last week (Thursday, 19 April), only 16 survived the punishing five days of driving over roads which the organisers called "plan bad to abominable."
SYNOPSIS: After five gruelling days, cars competing in the East African Safari Rally passed the last checkpoint near Mua Spring Farm.
A total of eighty-nine cars took part in the Rally, which began last Thursday in Nairobi...but only sixteen managed to survive the 3,000-mile course, described by organisers as being "plain bad to abominable."
The winning car was a Datsun, one of fifty entered by the makers, Nissan Motors.
Damage done to the car penalised it four hundred and six points. ...But that plus the car's mileage enabled Shehkar Mehta, on the right, and Lofty Drews to come on first.
Finishing behind Mehta and Drews was another datsun, driven by the Swede Harry Kallstrom. Altogether, three Datsuns finished in the top six.
The other three positions went to Peugeots which drive, as usual, a steady, relentless rally. But they were far behind the Datsuns on penalty points. Datsuns were also winners of the team trophy.
The 21st East African safari Rally also had two women contestants. But neither finished within the allotted time.