Balu-Sujith combine emerges triumphant

Balu-Sujith combine emerges triumphant

Motor Sport: K-1000: Team MRF drivers grab their first victory

Balu-Sujith combine emerges triumphant

Red Rooster Racing, meanwhile, lodged a formal protest with the Karnataka Motor Sports Club regarding the ‘illegal’ use of four bonnet scoops on the MRF cars, a protest overruled by the race Stewards.

“Red Rooster Racing intend taking their protest to the next level. They might file an appeal with the Federation of Motor Sports Club in India shortly,” KMSC president Praneet Perumal said.

Balu, who held a two-minute, 56-second lead over team-mate Gaurav Gill after day two, handled the car’s electrical problems with precision to finish ahead of Gill and Arjun Rao Aroor in the overall standings. though he came third in Super Special stage in two minutes, 11 seconds.

“It was a surprisingly tough course but it feels great to have wrapped this up,” said Balu.

 “I have finished second on three occasions, this is a completely different feeling. The car had persistent electrical problems. Our aim was to take the car through to the finish without too much stress, and we did that really well.”

The criss-cross track proved a bigger obstacle than the racers might have imagined. A softened surface because of the early morning drizzle meant the car’s could barely slip and slide through initially, but by the time the top car’s came out, the track had evened out.

Toughest tracks

Gill, with a reputation for having his foot stuck on the gas pedal through the toughest tracks, did not disappoint the 5,000-odd people who watched from distant terraces and nearby stands.

From start to finish, the Delhite came up some awe-inspiring turns to emerge fastest over the 2.5-km stretch. His two-minute, seven-second effort relegated Amittrajit Ghosh (2:9) to the second spot.

Indian cricket skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who was originally supposed to have flagged off the Super Special, was the star attraction despite arriving late.

The speed-struck Dhoni sat strapped in the passenger seat as first-time winner Balu drove him around the course.

The already impatient crowd went frenzy as speed-struck Dhoni walked onto the stage to hand Balu and Sujith their trophy but the real commotion began when people flocked around the car blocking the door.
Dhoni and Balu sat inside sharing a laugh or two as the police personnel made way for the door.

“It’s always fun to drive around someone who is new to the sport. He was very excited and I even took him out for an extra round. I asked him if he would take up the wheel but he turned down the offer,” said Balu.

Results: Overall/2000cc: Arjun Balu/ Sujith Kumar 1; Gaurav Gill/ Moosa Sherif 2; Aroor Arjun Rao/ Satish Rajagopal 3.

1600cc: Joseph C/ Royce 1; S Sujay/ Varun 2;  Rahul Kantharaj/ Vivek Bhat 3; 1400cc: Vikram Devadasen/ Nikhil Pai 1; Jose Francis/ Manoj M 2; Samarth Gowda/ Bharath SM 3.

RSC: Phalguna Urs/ Anoop Kumar 1; Raghuram CG/ Balram CG 2, Harikeshav Nambiar/ Ashwin Nadig 3.

Gypsy: Sandeep Sharma/ Anmol Rajpal 1; Kushwant Randhawa/ Harminder 2; Sanjay Agarwal/ Chetan Shivaram 3.

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