Safari Rally Kenya 2024 – Day Three Report – Sunday

The final day then for this year on the amazing roads in Kenya and the crews faced 74km’s over six stages. Gregoire Munster returned to the action and would open the road throughout the final day.

First up was the super rough SS14 Malewa 1 – 8.33 km, a stage with not just rocks but also bedrock throughout the stage, between sandy sections. Thierry was fastest from his teammate, Ott and Esapekka. Both Takamoto and Esapekka suffered punctures in the stage though. In WRC2 Gus was fastest from Oliver and Kajetan and the three remained in the top positions in the category.

Into SS15 Oserian 1 – 18.33 km, which was not only longer, but also faster. Elfyn was quickest from Ott and Thierry. Oliver was again fastest in WRC2 from Gus and Nicolas. The Brit was feeling much better today and managing his pace on the stage.

The final morning stage then, SS16 Hell’s Gate 1 – 10.53 km a well-known stage and is super-fast as well. Elfyn was fastest in the stage from Ott and Takamoto. There was drama for Thierry as he hit a very, very large rock in the stage, breaking his right-rear suspension. Once again Oliver was fastest from Gus and Nicolas in WRC2.

After the service break it was back to SS17 Malewa 2 – 8.33 km and Thierry was again fastest from his teammates Ott and Esapekka. Elfyn lost a huge amount of time but was taking it easy over the rocky roads. In WRC2 Oliver was again fastest from Gus and Charles Munster.

The second run of SS18 Oserian 2 – 18.33 km saw Ott go fastest from Thierry and Esapekka, whilst Elfyn lost a huge amount of time which was odd given that he was fastest in the stage earlier. Oliver was again fastest from Gus and Nicolas in WRC2.

Time then for the final stage, SS19 Hell’s Gate 2[Power Stage] – 10.53 km and Thierry was fastest from Ott, Esapekka, Kalle and Elfyn. It was a surprise to see Kalle set a time that ultimately put him ahead of Elfyn in the power stage points, but of course the crews do not get the split times in the cars and have not for some time. In WRC2 Oliver was fastest from Gus and Kajetan.

Let’s take a look at the top ten and hear from the drivers.

Final Overall Classification – Safari Rally Kenya

1 K. Rovanperä J. Halttunen Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 Hybrid 3:36.04.0
2 T. Katsuta A. Johnston Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 Hybrid +1:37.8
3 A. Fourmaux A. Coria Ford Puma Rally1 Hybrid +2:25.1
4 E. Evans S. Martin Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 Hybrid +4:20.2
5 T. Neuville M. Wydaeghe Hyundai i20 N Rally1 Hybrid +10:17.5
6 G. Greensmith J. Andersson Škoda Fabia RS +18:05.4
7 O. Solberg E. Edmondson Škoda Fabia RS +19:28.5
8 O. Tänak M. Järveoja Hyundai i20 N Rally1 Hybrid +21:02.0
9 J. Serderidis F. Miclotte Ford Puma Rally1 Hybrid +26:13.3
10 K. Kajetanowicz M. Szczepaniak Škoda Fabia RS +26:34.4

Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT

Kalle Rovanperä

“It’s special to be able to win the Safari for the second time. This event is so tough and it’s also a legendary one for Toyota: we have always been good here and we are still continuing that record. Like they say in Africa, the car in front is always a Toyota. A big thanks to the team, because everybody made a big effort to make the car work so well. I think we did a good job, I think you cannot do a better Safari than what we did, with no issues and clever driving. Today was difficult, having to drive the roughest stage on the calendar twice when you have a huge lead, trying to avoid everything, it’s not easy. We just needed to stick to the plan, and it worked out.”

Takamoto Katsuta

“It’s a very nice feeling to achieve this second place and to be on the podium again in Kenya. It was a tough rally like always, so we need to say a huge thanks to the team because they prepared very well, and the car was working so well. I made some mistakes yesterday and we got the punctures, but I could always trust the car. When we needed to push, we were able to push, and the times were good. Reliability is a strong point for Toyota and I’m very proud to drive this car.”

Elfyn Evans

“It’s not been an easy weekend for us. At least we could reach the end of the rally, which is a positive thing, but we wanted more from this weekend. Today we had good speed at points but there were just a few little issues, so we didn’t get as many points as we’d like. The first loop was not easy: the opening stage was extremely rough, and we were probably too conservative there compared to the others. In the Power Stage we gave it a go but already in the first half it was very difficult.”


Hyundai Motorsport

Thierry Neuville

“A good weekend, but for sure we could have done better. Unfortunately, we got hit by some problems but despite this, we kept fighting. Today there was an opportunity to take loads of points – we scored 11 out of 12, so we’re satisfied to be the second-best performer today. We would have loved to get more, especially after three consecutive difficult years here in Kenya. Still room for improvement but we have managed to increase the lead in the championship and got a good road position for Croatia. On to the next one!”

2024 FIA World Rally Championship Round 3,
Safari Rally Kenya 2024, 27-31 March 2024
Thierry Neuville, Martijn Wydaeghe, Hyundai i20 N Rally1 Hybrid, Action during Day 3 of WRC Safari Rally Kenya 2024
Photographer: Romain Thuillier
Worldwide copyright: Hyundai Motorsport GmbH

Ott Tänak

“Our target was always not to push to the maximum, but to aim for the podium with a clean run, so our retirement on Friday was of course frustrating. Although we had to face a number of issues in the car and on the road our troubles had nothing to do with reliability. Our pace is definitely getting closer to the others. Croatia will be a completely different rally even to Monte-Carlo, so let’s see how we do. We want to get back on track; the championship is very young, but we need to get back into our normal rhythm.”

Esapekka Lappi

“The speed this weekend was good from the beginning, even yesterday when we were opening the road, so we need to be pleased with that. All of our cars were quite competitive in terms of pace but unfortunately reliability was not with us this weekend and that is reflected in the results. At least my team-mates were able to get a lot of points from today and it was great to get that 1-2-3 in the Power Stage. I am looking forward to my next event with the team.”


M-Sport Ford WRT

Adrien Fourmaux

“It’s been a fantastic weekend, the team have been doing a really good job the whole time, the car has been really reliable, and we had no issues at all with the car. I was really pleased with that, so congratulations to the team, the result belongs to them as well. Ok we have been sensible, but it has been really positive. For us it’s two podiums in two rallies and a really great start to the season, we are still third in the championship so now we need to continue. We have had one podium on snow, one on gravel, so we just need one on Tarmac now!”

Jourdan Serderidis

“We have finished 9th overall, so it looks like Kenya suits me quite well! M-Sport has had a very positive event for the whole team across Rally1 and Rally2, it’s been great to be a part of it.”

Grégoire Munster

“It’s not the result we expected, but I think we were driving carefully with a smart approach, and at the end it could have been a top five finish. Unfortunately, on Saturday morning we hit a rock and didn’t manage to repair the car, even though we really gave it our best. A bit disappointing but at least we were able to come back on Sunday to do the kilometres, grab the experience and take a couple of points for the championship. Even though it’s not the result we wanted, I think there’s still some positives to take home and we are already looking forward to Croatia and being back on Tarmac.”


Oliver Solberg

“I have to be happy with this result,” said the 22-year-old Oliver. “Of course, I am a little bit disappointed. I came here to win, but this rally is a big, big challenge and to come away with points for second and the championship lead is good.

“The chance to win was lost on the first day, when we got two punctures on two stages on Friday. But we said all of the time that this rally, the Safari Rally has some surprises and some excitement and that’s part of the appeal – it’s part of the challenge of this place.

“I absolutely love the rally; I love the people and the atmosphere around here. It’s just fantastic, every time you get out of the car you are surrounded by people smiling, wanting a selfie everybody is just happy and pleased to see you. It’s a very cool place and very cool rally and I’m already looking forward to coming back!”

“Like we said at the start of the year, we need to be strategic about the programme. I really want to win this title this season, it’s what everything is geared towards. So, that makes this event a success. We have points and the championship lead – and some fastest times which is nice.

“Once again, Elliott did a fantastic job on this event, he’s the best! And the team and everybody around me, I can’t thank them enough for the help and support in what we do. To come here and drive this car on these roads – it’s a pure pleasure.”


Kalle and Jonne have repeated their victory in this event after last winning in 2022. Takamoto took second place to repeat the feat from 2021 when the round returned to the championship. Finally, Adrien took a brilliant third place, his second ever podium as well. It was a clever and controlled drive from the Frenchman which delivered this result for him, Alex and M-Sport Ford team. Well, what an amazing rally and a very strong result for Toyota, taking another win.

Next up is Rally Croatia over the weekend of the 18th to 21 of April, when the crews get to tackle the first full asphalt rally of the season.


Here’s the points standings.


2024 FIA World Rally Championship for Drivers’ Standings
After round three

1 T. Neuville 67
2 E. Evans 61
3 A. Fourmaux 46
4 O. Tänak 33
5 K. Rovanperä 31
6 T. Katsuta 30
8 E. Lappi 23
9 O. Solberg 12
10 A. Mikkelsen 6



2024 FIA World Rally Championship for Manufacturers’ Standings
After round three

1 Toyota Gazoo Racing World Rally Team 131
2 Hyundai Shell Mobis World Rally Team 127
3 M-Sport Ford World Rally Team 72
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