Attempting to rank the best drivers of the year is a bit more straight forward if you based on the points accumulated during the year as opposed using relative merits of competitors from different perspectives.
It’s still not an easy task. Factors to try and balance include the position of the driver in the national championship standings, strength of competitor, the crowd appeal, organisation and of course their performance.
While the order of the drivers can be considered to be quite important at the sharp end, much of this list is about giving the recognition that drivers deserve from variety of different series and that’s why its top 10 rather than top 5. Kawowo Sports’ Sharifah Ramah Namagoba ranks the top 10 drivers in Uganda during 2014.
10. Mzee Wycliff Bukenya / George Semakula
An exciting guy if I may say, despite his age he has consistently challenged the young blood. He may not have finished any rally this year but his existence in a competition would be felt from the drivers to the fans.
9. Eddie Mukiibi / Muzafulu Kadadi
His arrival in the game stiffened the competition in the 2WD more so between him, Otega and Leila. Driving a low fuel consumption car started a new approach in Uganda, ever since his introduction of the Vitz, a number of similar cars have started cropping up.
8. Ismael Otega / David Mwesigwa
He has participated in all the rallies throughout chasing the 2WD championship. He rarely has cases of retirement from the event and he has always finished on the 2WD podium.
7.Musa Kabega / Rogers Sirwomu
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With only four rallies to his name, Kabega has proved to be fast and competitive, besides having a well organized team, he has showed a good cause for a serious contender come next season.
6. Duncan Mubiru / Musa Nsubuga
After winning the season opener in Mbarara, so much was anticipated out of him competition wise. Unfortunately he faded from the national standings switching focus to ARC events in Tanzania, Rwanda and Kenya from where he didn’t perform to his and fans’ expectation. He retired from the Tanzania rally due to mechanical issues, finished third in Rwanda and seventh in safari rally Kenya respectively. He invested much and produced little.
5. Jonas Kasiime / Joseph Bongole
He has been out on the hills and was a serious championship contender who settled for second place in the NRC standings. He has been competitive though he dropped in the middle of the season after taking lead due to unknown issues.
4. Wilber Pole Pole / Mike Kizito
One of the new comers of 2014, he is fast, competitive and a fighter while in the cockpit challenging whoever comes his way. The sportsmanship he exhibited during the Independence rally was so outstanding, every fan must be having a fresh memory of the incident where he raced to the end of the section with his Co-driver seated on an open bonnet. He is credited for his soft heart for the game, he lent out his car to Jonas Kasiime during the Mosac rally in Mbale and also went ahead to participate to boost the competition since he was not scoring any points.
3. Irene Leila Blick / Anthony Mugambwa
The only female driver who has been consistent taking on the male challenge throughout the season beating all in the 2WD including some from the N class. Her performance has always raised controversies between her and Otega though never proven. She always finished on the podium of 2WD hence clinching the 2014 2WD championship.
2. Omar Mayanja / Leon Ssenyange
He has been a consistent driver, fast, competitive and a performer. If it hadn’t been for the mechanical breakdowns in the start of the season, Omar would have had several podium finishes. He was the only local driver who posted best times in the pearl Africa rally and won the independence rally.
1. Ronald Sebuguzi / Cedric Buzabo
He has been an enduring competitor throughout the season slamming the national rally championship (NRC) title for the third time after 5 years since he won his second title in 2009. He had a good finish record in all rallies. Out of the seven NRC events he won three and finished second thrice.
The other cream that would appear include John Consta, Fred Wampamba, Fitidis Christakis, Blackwidow, Susan Muwonge Shafik Semujju among others.
Some decided not to participate in all events due to unknown reasons, while others were let down by mechanical issues.