Adventurous Mahindra Monsoon Challenge Rally 2019 Ends on a High Note in Ooty
Mangaluru : Country’s motor rally ‘Mahindra Monsoon Rally’ being in its 9th edition this year, which was flagged off from Forum Fiza Mall-Mangaluru ended on a high note at Gem Park Hotel in Ootacamund aka Ooty during the weekend. The rallyists covered little over 600 kilometers which is also the longest route of all the eight editions before. The winners in three different categories took home prizes worth Rs. 4 lakhs and glittering trophies in a grand prize distribution ceremony held at Gem Park an uptown hotel in Ootacamund (Ooty) city. Santhosh and Nagaraj the overall champions of the rally were one of the firsts to do podium finish.
The Mahindra Monsoon Rally (formerly Monsoon Challenge) has been put together by the Indian Motor Sports Club and Mahindra Adventure Intitiative co-ordinated by ace rallyists Ashwin Naik and Musa Sherief both Mangalorean born national and international rallyists. “Popularity of the rally was going up every year and this time we had 41 teams. IMSC and Mahindra have given us unflinching support in organising the rally” said Naik and Sherief speaking to Team Mangalorean
The monsoon which had taken a lean patch this year did behave well for the motorists who took the most difficult interior routes. Selvin Jose from the Mahindra adventure initiative said that the the vehicles from the Mahindra stables were rugged and reliable and all the rallyists had smooth rallying. The three day rally was held on the TSD ( Time ,Speed, and Distance ) format rally started from Mangaluru and traveled through Mysore, and again started from Mysore and finished in Ooty. Totally 41 participants across the country took part in this rally. There were seven different categories that included, All ladies, couples, corporate, Doctors, Novice, Amatuer and Professional class- and the total cash prize and trophies were worth Rs 4 lakhs
The Mahindra Monsoon Challenge is the first rally in the country held during the peak of monsoon and is fast gaining attention of the International drivers. Launched by the Mahindra’s adventure initiative nine years ago has become benchmarks of sorts in the world of motor sports. Indian Motor Sports Club, Federation of Motor Sports Clubs of India (FMSCI) and Mahindra Adventure initiative have together given this event an international dimension of rally rules and standards. According to Selvin Jose, there has been improvement of rallying spirits among the participants in every edition of Mahindra Monsoon Challenge and the event was getting bigger and better- and this year 41 drivers took part, which is a big number so far.
Mahindra wasn’t kidding when they named this particular event as the Monsoon Challenge. Hosted in the Southern part of India, the Monsoon Challenge lets you truly experience the intensity and beauty of Indian monsoons in all its glory. The 2019 edition of the Monsoon Challenge was held as a drive from Mangaluru to Ooty, covering nearly 600 kms. Now when you think of a route like this, you’re usually thinking of taking a straight and direct expressway route from A to B. And while that would be the quickest route, Monsoon Challenge 2019 had a different route charted out that would let the drivers drive little on expressways and national highways and more on state highways while taking them through the lush green environs of Karnataka/Tamil Nadu.
In the process, taking these brave hearts through rather beautiful and untouched landscapes of the region in all its monsoon beauty. And to make things interesting, Mahindra hosts the Monsoon Challenge to be a Time, Speed, Distance rally that allows Mahindra customers to bring in their own Mahindra car and take part in the event. The drivers had the good experience of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu while driving through villages located literally in the middle of nowhere as they drove through their designated route that went from Mangaluru all the way up to Ooty.
Speaking to Team Mangalorean Dr Prashanth Marla ( Medical Director of A J Hospital & Research centre, aho along with hismco-driver had won the IInd place in Corporate category said, “There were times (briefly when the rain would stop) when you could see across the horizon without any human settlements in sight. As we reached Mysuru after a long drive stretching across the lush green landscape of Karnataka, we may not have performed optimally at the TSD rally, the Monsoon Challenge gave us a nice opportunity to see parts of the country we would never have otherwise seen for the route was a well charted out one that abandoned the National Highways for the most part and took us through some very scenic areas. Through this rally we also send out a message about assault on doctors. Kudos to the organizers for a job well done”
This coastal region on the Western seaboard of India has given its own gift to the world of motor rallying, the first one to be organized in the monsoon anywhere in the country. The nineth edition of the Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd. (M&M) with 41 rugged vehicles from Mahindra stables rolled into the rain soaked, mud and rock splintered roads of Western ghats and the coast. These 41 vehicles, driven by seasoned rallying men who took this test for men/women and machines, took them through some of the trying conditions in the fringe areas of the mighty Western Ghats. Narrow and not so good roads, heavy to very heavy rains, low visibility and also sometimes slippery roads due to mudslides were the few perils to mention. The recce of the track conducted by ace rallyists Ashwin Naik and Moosa Sherif of Indian Motor Sports Club have thrown these challenges, and they were the ones who coordinated with Mahindra Adventure on this initiative.
Team Mangalorean also spoke to a few rallyists, who shared their experience on this Rally. Mangaloreans Dr Vikram Jain from Prasad Nethralaya Specialty Eye Care Clinic -Mangaluru, who was joined his partner Dr Ganesh MK from Father Muller Hospital-Mangaluru, having won the Second place in “Doctors Category” driving Mahendra Bolero said, ” This is the third time that I have taken part in Mahindra Monsoon Rally-in 2018 I had won the I place in Doctor’s category, and IInd place in 2017. Me and my partner are overwhelmed at this big win this year. This rally gets better and better each year, and this year it has improved immensely. Well organized, good hospitality, perfect route maps/instructions, made our experience a worth one. We feel proud to be Mangaloreans, since this Challenge is happening from Mangaluru. I am looking forward to take part in the Mahindra Monsoon Challenge 2020″
Mangaloreans Dr Raghavendra Pidamale and Dr Muralidhar Rai who won the the First place in Doctors Category category said, ” This is the third time we have taken part in this Challenge. In 2017 we came fourth, but it feels good to win the first spot this year. The Challenge was well organized, routes well marked, instructions well mentioned, and above it was a pleasant and scenic journey, without any problems. We loved the entire route driving through the picturesque nature. Will try this Challenge next year too”.
Mangaloreans Sandeep D’silva (from Infosys)and Raviraj (from KMC Mangaluru Marketing Dept),, having won the IIIrd place in ‘Corporate Category” said, ” Even though we have taken part in other Mahindra rallies like Off Roading in Sept 2017, this is the second time we competed in TSD event. Fantastic arrangements, Very good routes, map nicely done, it was easy to find the route and destination, and the hospitality was awesome. We will party hard tonight having won the II nd place in pour first try in TSD event. Looking forward for the 2020 Challenge”
Ashwin Naik ace international rallyist and Musa Sherief president of the FMSCI said the monsoons put the drivers and their co drivers to ultimate test against the natural forces mainly the pouring rains and misty conditions. They appreciated the ruggedness of Mahindra vehicles that took the punishment of the driving condition in monsoons battered roads and the special night driving segment which has been introduced specially this year.
Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd. (M&M), India‘s leading SUV manufacturer was the brain and muscle behind this rugged event. The Mahindra Adventure Monsoon Challenge 2019, known to be the biggest TSD (Time, Speed, Distance) rally on the circuit with the most rewarding prize money on offer of Rs 4 lakhs was indeed a successful one with 41 drivers taking part. This road-trip was one of a kind for the participants who took one of the most scenic routes to reach their destination in Ooty. The Monsoon Challenge wasn’t merely a rally for deriving some adrenaline rush but was also an occasion to become one with nature. The rally which passed through a rain soaked region blessed with one of the most beautiful natural spectacle’s encompassing a picturesque landscape all-around, was a memorable experience for all these drivers. Aided by their trusted Mahindra vehicles, this rally offered budding motor-sport enthusiasts an opportunity to test their endurance and overcome challenges