Nairobi (IANS) The three-time APRC champion Gaurav Gill was forced to retire from the Safari Rally Kenya on Friday due to engine problems.
Seven times INRC title holder and the Arjuna awardee fell victim to the deadly 'Fesh Fesh' dust that the Safari Rally is dreaded for, which led to engine damage.
The JK Tyre Motorsport backed driver Gill showed tremendous pace by winning the shakedown, Stage 1 and Stage 3 in WRC2 in his Skoda Fabia R5.
Gill, returning to the global stage after a gap of three years, was a strong contender for the Safari Rally podium in WRC2. However, the grueling opening day led to Gill's retiring from the rally prematurely as his Fabia came to a halt when his engine inhaled huge amounts of sand.
"Deeply gutted to have dropped out from this legendary rally. But as with all events, this was a great experience, I had the pace to match the front runners," said Gill. "I thank my sponsors for this amazing opportunity, the love, and support received from the Kenyan Indian community beside well-wishers back home was overwhelming."