The first round of the FMSCI Indian National Rally Championship is all set to start on 22nd March. Commonly known as the AVT Premium South India Rally, the event has brought back together all biggies along with their legendary vehicles. The event has been slated to take place from 22nd to 24th March. Organized each year by the Madras Motor Sports Club, the AVT Premium South Rally has brought-in all big shots from this domain that have gathered with around 37 vehicles.
The three day event schedules three different phases that are concluded by a Super Special Stage. The event will take place on the much known Madras Motor Race Track that is known for conducting various National Racing Events.The chief sponsor of this program is the A.V. Thomas Group of Companies.
For the first time in the history of Indian National Rally Championship, Samir Thapar from Delhi will be steering a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 10. Vivek Ponnusamy will join Thapar as his co-driver, it is to be noted that Thapar will be riding this race track after a big gap of ten years. Also, Samir is the only entrant to participate in the Indian Rally Championship category, this category includes only four wheel drive vehicles that have engines up to 2500cc (turbo excluded).
The introductory SUV trio is being led by Gaurav Gill who has been a National Champion of 2011 rally. The two other participants completing this trio are Sunny Sidhu (PV Srinivasa Murthy) and Lohitt Urs (Bonnie Thomas). All the three will be driving XUV 500. The trio will be complemented by one more participant Sanjay Agarwal from Bangalore who will be riding a Gypsy.
Other than Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 10, the other car to make debut in INRC is Volkswagen Polo. Two out of the three Volkswagen Polo that are included in 1600cc class of INRC will be piloted by Arjun Rao (Satish Rajagopal) and Sirish Chandran (Nikhil Pai). The third one will be becoming a part of Junior INRC category, and will be directed by Rohan Pawar (Nitin Jacob) from Pune.
In the 2000cc genre, Dean Mascarenhas (Shruptha Padival) from Mangalore will be taking the driver’s seat for the first time. Also, previous champions and veterans like Amittrajit Ghosh (Ashwin Naik), Bikku Babu (George Verghese), and Rahul Kanthraj (Vivek Bhatt) will be complementing the category.
The junior section of INRC has this time registered as much as 14 entries that is a higher figure in comparison to 2000cc and 1600cc genres that have managed to include nine entries each.
On an whole, the INRC National Championship will consist of two major groups – Group N, that includes vehicles up to 2000cc and 1600cc. Apart from it, three other genres will be included – the Indian SUV Rally Championship (includes vehicles up to 3000cc, including Turbo), the Indian Rally Championship (excluding Turbo, four wheel drive, up to 2500cc), and the Junior National Rally Championship (Group N 1600cc open only for those born after 1st Jan, 1985).
The total distance to be covered by entrants during the rally is roughly 300 Kms, 117.5 Kms out of this will be in competitive range. The center of this event will be the Madras Motor Race Track at Irrungattukottai, this place will also serve as Rally head office and Service Park.
Talking of the three stages, one of the stages will be the dirt track stage that will extend to a distance of 9 Kms while the Super Special stage will be limited to 3.2 Kms distance that would include running over the race circuit itself. The other two physical phases have been placed in IVRCL premises and a 700-acres Aavisa Golf Complex each having a coverage distance of 11 Kms and 17 Kms respectively.