The local motorsport governing body Federation of Motorsport Clubs of Uganda (FMU) has finally announced its decisions on the 2020 competition.
This year’s motorsport season came to a halt in March following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. Only two events had been covered in motor rallying and only one in motocross.
Resumption proved impossible following tough demands attached by the government on the re-opening of sports activities in the country.
This week, FMU announced that it will carry the motor rally calendar into 2021 with the motocross championship set for a new start.
“FMU assessed all chances of an earlier resumption with its covid-19 task force but it was indeed difficult to hold any event in the current situation.
“To have a fair judgment to crews that had participated in the two events, we decided to extend the season to 2021,” said Reynolds Kibira, Chairman of the Sporting Commission.
“The decision was based on our regulations which require the federation to organize seven events from which drivers must accumulate points,” he added.
The season will start in March next year with round three in Masaka. The seventh-round will be held in November.
The decision has however attracted mixed reactions from the rally crews.
Current NRC leader, Fred Busulwa remains dissatisfied by the decision.
“I think all the crews that had participated have been cheated. I believe they could have sealed the season in a better way.
“FMU is not fair at all, at least they could have called us and explained in detail about their options and we also share our opinions,” he says.
Busulwa and Joseph Bongole are top of the leaderboard with 130points, 20points ahead of second-placed Omar Mayanja.
Unlike Busulwa, two-wheel-drive category leader, Ibrahim Lubega feels carrying the competition into the new year was a good decision.
“I was happy about the decision. At least I have a chance to win my title after covering the seven events.
“My championship would be undermined if I was crowned based on two events. I am now looking forward to fighting for the title in the new season,” he said.
Two-time NRC champion Ponsiano Lwakataka is however concerned with the placement of events.
“The first event next season is set for March. I believe this is so close given the uncertainties expected after the elections.
“To be on a safer side, the federation should have considered a later date after March,” he explained.
Reigning NRC champion Yasin Nasser also weighed in on the decision.
“Personally, that is not the best decision I wished for since we were all looking forward to a new start.
“We now have no options but to follow what is at hand.
“We just have to pray that the season is not interrupted again next year,” he said.
Anthony Mugambwa, co-driver to Ronald Sebuguzi believes the decision is likely to cause uncertainties in the championship.
“Next season is still uncertain given the corona effect and the political situation we are headed for.
“They say the federation must hold seven events, so what will happen in case the situation doesn’t favour the remaining five events.
“The best option would be canceling the season and remaining optimistic into the new season. Of course it may seem unfair for some, just like this decision is,” he asserted.
Unlike the rally championship, champions in motocross were declared based on results from one event.
“Motocross rules say, a championship is a series of events or a single event. And besides, our championships are age-based, meaning some riders will have to upgrade next year.
“Given the regulations, we decided to award the season winners basing on that one event,” explained Kisitu Mayanja; Deputy Vice President in charge of motorcycling.