What you need to know:
- Nyayo can have another chapter for the good of the general sporting disciplines including motorsport
- Of course, there is no room for rallying or autocross races, but the expansive parking space at Nyayo, laid out in perfect cabro, is ideal for drift motor racing
- Nyayo could become the spiritual home of drifting followed by other facilities across the country as the government continues to refurbish stadiums across the country including parking spaces
The newly refurbished Nyayo National Stadium, has come a full circle to serve the wider sporting fraternity.
Renowned for hosting football grudge matches, political, religious, and social events, Nyayo can have another chapter for the good of the general sporting disciplines including motorsport.
At the beginning it was a track and field venue gifted to athletics by Derek Erskine, the first chairman of Kenya Amateur Athletics Association (KAAA), the forerunner of Athletics Kenya (AK).
Of course, there is no room for rallying or autocross races, but the expansive parking space at Nyayo, laid out in perfect cabro, is ideal for drift motor racing.
Drifting is the fastest growing branch of motorsport internationally held in limited open space in other parts of the world like decommissioned airstrips.
However, young people at the spur of the moment, either driven by boyhood bravado, peer pressure, or alcoholic, challenge each other in the dead of the night at parking spaces of shopping malls or public roads.
Statistics have shown such stunts sometimes go terribly wrong resulting in accidents and fatalities.
This culture has caught up with young Kenyans particularly in Nairobi who use any available space to ply their trade or travel long distances to Masinga in Eastern and Kajiado where space is available.
But Nyayo could become the spiritual home of drifting followed by other facilities across the country as the government continues to refurbish stadiums across the country including parking spaces.
Bird's eye view
The premises is secured by a perimeter fence which will give spectators the perfect bird-eye view to watch the action uninhibited, secondly drivers will have the peace of mind to do their activities without fear of endangering themselves or spectators
Thirdly, this will be a major forward step for the Kenya Motor Sports Federation, KMSF, to help bring motorsport closer to Kenyans following the resurgence of the sport occasioned by the return of the Safari back in the FIA World Rally Championship next year and beyond.
The FIA has also recognised the importance of this niche to serve the young population who may not have the financial might to compete in highly expensive racing events.
It will also dissuade them from doing these stunts in public areas or open roads. The federation has even started the Inter-Continental Drifting Cup to give the discipline an international appeal.
Drifting is inexpensive also. One does not need a powerful car.
Neither is speed the underlying factor, for the course, whether 500 metres or more, is designed to test skills of drivers in-car control including the much-cherished donut spins and burning rubber.
Equally important is the fact that the owners of small or big cars be it a Toyota Vitz or Toyota Mark X can challenge faster cars.
Drifting can also be the opening lessons for aspiring racing drivers to acquire split-second proper judgment, eventually evolving into competent rally drivers once released in the high octane of rallying.
Drifting has a cult following in Japan where it was started over 30 years ago and rapidly gained popularity across the globe with 40 countries affiliated to the FIA having their own championships.
The rules are simple, intentionally triggered by over oversteer, according to the FIA regulations.
Results are determined by a number of factors such as line, angle as well as style and speed.
A total of 100 points, awarded by a panel of three judges, is up for grabs in each of the qualifying sessions.