Zambia star Leroy Gomes, navigated by Urshlla in a Ford Fiesta R5 will lead the quest for the Africa Rally Championships, of which Safari rally is part of the circuit.
Ugandans Anthony Mugambwa and Leon Ssenyange will drive in a Mitsubishi EVO X. “We expect a bumper entry by the time the entries for the iconic event close on June 19,” said Kimathi.
Briton Lloyd will be joined by Kenyan Adrian Cavenagn in Ford Escort in the classic category.
The event will count towards the third round of FIA African Rally Championship (ARC) after Rallye Bandama of Cote d’Ivoire, York Rally of South Africa (formerly Sasol Rally) and this weekend’s Gomes Zambia International Motor Rally.
It will also run as a candidate rally for the World Rally Championship (WRC) with the noble objective to return to the global stage next year.
Lloyd is no stranger to the Safari and Kenya National Rally Championship having already featured in several events.
Alongside Africa champion Manvir Baryan of Kenya who is yet to hand in his entry, three-time Uganda Rally champion Ronald Ssebuguzi is also back and will partner with Leon Ssenyange in an Evolution 10.
Defending champion Carl Tundo, who makes his Zambia ARC Rally debut this weekend, is expected to field the Menengai-sponsored Mitsubishi Lancer EVO X navigated by Tim Jessop.
Kenya is keen to have the Safari Rally readmitted in the World Rally Championships after it was dropped in 2002 for lack of government support and sponsorship.