Rally world mourns Shekhar Mehta

The world of rallying is in mourning for Shekhar Mehta, the Kenyan driver best known for winning the East African Safari Rally (later the Safari Rally) on four occasions for Datsun, once with co-driver Lofty Drews and three times with Mike Doughty.

Mehta, born on 20 June 1945, made his competition debut in 1966. Other top results included a second on the Rallye Cote d'Ivoire and two third places on that event, plus two thirds on the Acropolis Rally (one with wife Yvonne). His best year in the World Rally Championship for Drivers was 1981, when he was classified fifth overall.

Mehta was also a strong ally of FIA president Max Mosley. The FIA released the following statement yesterday:

"The FIA extends sincere condolences to the Mehta family on the sad news of the death of Shekhar Mehta.

"Throughout his life Shekhar made an enormous contribution to motor sport, and rallying in particular, both as a successful competitor and as a highly respected member of the FIA. Shekhar's experience, commitment, sense of honour and humour will be greatly missed.

"Our thoughts are with the Mehta family at this difficult time."

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