Mangaluru, Nov 05, 2018: The Kolkata-Mangaluru team of Amittrajit Ghosh- Ashwin Naik respectively have been crowned at the top position at the round 3 of the Indian National Rally Championship held on the hilly terrain of Arunachal Pradesh on Sunday.
The champs were positioned at 9th slot on Satruday but overnight they had improved their position to 3rd slot and catapulted to Number one position on Sunday late afternoon due to some expert steering of Amittrajit and deft navigation by Ashwin. The duo were driving a Mahindra XUV. This victory comes in even when the resounding victory they had in the European Rally Championship at Greece earlier this year.
In a stroke of luck overnight leader on Saturday Gaurav Gill had pulled out of competition due to a mechanical issue with his car. Combined with this slice of luck and mostly due to the expert rallying tactics Amittrajit and Nayak made it to the top honours on the ramp at Itanagar capital city of Arunachal Pradesh. The ace rallyists had been see sawing between second and third positions in sub section 5, 6 and subsection 7, clocking an amazingly top timing of 00:57:33.6.
It was 5.9 seconds faster than INRC second position with Phalguna Urs and Srikanth, giving them the victory. The Snap Racing pair, who were hot on Gill’s tail all of Saturday, didn’t have a fruitful second day, managing only two fourth-place and one fifth-place finish in the stages.
Phalguna’s drive was still good enough to earn his team the INRC 2 win. Former champion Karna Kadur (with PVS Murthy) made a valiant charge, taking the second place in SS6 and even winning SS7 but that could only fetch him the runner’s up trophy.
Recounting the gruelling drive through the misty mountains, river fringes and dense forests of one of the seven sisters of the North Eastern states Amittrjit said “taking the ninth position at the beginning of the rally was bearing on us heavily, It was due to a technical issue, But I and Ashwin kept pushing until we managed to bounce back to the pole position,” a victorious Amittrajit said.
On Sunday too the duo suffered as they lost much time already gained due to change of tyres for the extremely wet conditions of the roads but the track dried up by the time they were ready to hit the road, Gaurav Gill might have pulled out which might have worked for the duo but Gaurav will be back with a new resolve in the next two rounds of the Indian National Rally Championship, he is a tough competitor, but we have decided to give him a tough run”. Ashwin Nayak told.