Tragedy strikes as Safari Rally veteran loses life at Burundi's Gitega Rally

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MOTORSPORTS Tragedy strikes as Safari Rally veteran loses life at Burundi's Gitega Rally

Festus Chuma 16:33 - 18.11.2023

Safari Rally veteran's tragic death halts the 2023 Gitega Rally in Burundi, leaving the motorsport community in sorrow.

The motorsport world was sent into mourning on Saturday after the 2023 Gitega Rally in Burundi came to an abrupt and sorrowful end following the tragic death of the talented driver Jean Jean Giesen.

The Automobile Club of Burundi announced the devastating news, sending shockwaves through the motorsport community and leaving a deep void in the hearts of fans, family, and fellow drivers.

In a heartful statement, the club said that this joyous occasion took a tragic turn when Jean Jean Giesen faced an unexpected health issue at the conclusion of a stage in the liaison, ultimately leading to his untimely demise.

"It is with deep sadness that the Automobile Club of Burundi announces the end of the 2023 Gitega Rally, which was held in the province of Gitega. This painful decision follows the tragic death of driver Jean Jean Giesen, which occurred following discomfort at the end of a stage in the liaison," the statement reads.

Despite the immediate medical attention provided by dedicated staff, Jean Jean Giesen could not be saved, and his passing marks an irreparable loss to the motorsport community in Burundi and beyond.

"The loss of this passionate driver leaves a huge void in the motorsport community of Burundi. Respect for our late Jean Jean Giesen is our top priority, and therefore all activities related to this rally are coming to an end," the statement continued.

Giesen made his debut in the prestigious Safari Rally back in 2017, where he showcased his talent as a co-driver alongside Mohammed Roshanali.

His presence in the 2021 Safari Rally, where he partnered with co-driver Kevin Mujiji, further solidified his reputation as a force to be reckoned with in the African Rally Championship circuit. 

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