The world oil shortage has not stopped Africa's toughest car race -- the Ethiopian Highland Rally.
SV Cars at starting point
MV Band PAN TO cars
MCU Crews and officials chatting
CU Car in Toyota team
CU Driver into Ethiopian entered car
CU PULL BACK Man flags off car No 1.
SV Car No. 2 away at start, helicopter overhead
MV Car No. 3 away
SV Citroen No. 15 round bend
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Background: The world oil shortage has not stopped Africa's toughest car race -- the Ethiopian Highland Rally.
Twenty four cars left the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa on Wednesday morning (December 12) for Akelle in the first leg of the 5,000 kilometre (3,125 mile) rally.
Five days later the cars which have survived the fearsome mountain course are scheduled to arrive back in Addis Ababa at the finish.
Ethiopian drivers won the event for the first seven years but in 1973 Englishmen Fall and Drews, in spite of major damage to their car near the end of the race, managed to reach Addis Ababa first. Home drivers Mario Sanges and Romano Ott maintained Ethiopia's dominance by winning last year in a Japanese Toyota. Both are driving Toyotas again this year but with different partners.
Two French Citroen S/4s have been entered for the first time. Most of the other cars in the Italian sponsored race are Toyotas or Fiats.
Addis Ababa's Lord Mayor Dr. Haile Ghiorgis Workineh started the race and he will present the prizes on December 19.
SYNOPSIS: Twenty-four cars were at the start in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa on Wednesday. The route is over three thousand miles long - longer than last year. Most of cars in the Italian sponsored race are Japanese Toyotas or Fiats.
Home drivers won the event for the first seven years but in nineteen seventy-one Englishmen Fall and Drews reached Addis Ababa first in spite of major damage to their car. Sanges -- who maintained Ethiopia's dominance by winning last year -- was first away.
Romano Ott, the other half of last year's winning pair, also took a new co-driver, but like Sanges he drove a Toyota again. Five days later, the cars which have survived the fearsome mountain course, will arrive back in Addis Ababa. Only ten of the original twenty-four cars finished last time.
Two French Citroen S-Fours have entered for the first time -- to try to challenge the hold Japanese and Italian cars have had on the rally.