Dirang (Arunachal Pradesh): The fourth edition of the JK Tyre Arunachal Festival of Speed promises to be an exhilarating affair with the freshly crowned India Baja champions, Gaurav Chiripal and Raj Singh Rathore, battling it out for top honours this weekend.
The multi-discipline racing bonanza, in the backdrop of the picturesque Dirang Valley, assumes importance as accomplished rallyists from across the country will be seen pushing themselves and their mean machines to the limit from April 15 to 17.
Among other stars in the fray, ten-time Raid De Himalaya champion Suresh Rana and seven-time Desert Storm winner Sunny Sidhu will be the men to watch out for. National autocross champion Amanpreet Ahluwalia and INRC regulars Sandeep Sharma and Sanjay Agarwal will also aim to make their presence felt once again.
The North-East will pose its own challenge with Raid de Himalaya winner Lima Jamir leading the charge. As many as 30 rallyists will line up on Friday for the first stage, the Autocross. Organised by the Motorsports Club of Arunachal and sponsored by the state government, the championship will involve three categories off-road racing: Autocross, Sprint and Hill Climb.
Divided into three stages, the AFOS sponsored by the government of Arunachal, will see the participants tackle a 6.8 km-long dirt track on the first day. In the second stage, they will face a sterner test as race through a 9-km stretch through the perilous hills in the midst of lush green forests. The last stage will consist of an 8-kms dirt track and a 1-km tarmac.
Speaking about the importance of the championship for the North-East, Lhakpa Tsering, Motorsports Club of Arunachal president, said: “The Arunachal Festival of Speed not only gives a chance for upcoming rallyists in the region to rub shoulders with the best in the country but also offer the fans here world class racing action.”
C> K> Duarah