TSD rally launched

Inaugural meet in Blore

JK Tyre marked their potential return to rallying by joining hands with Berunda Adventure Club in conducting the JK Tyre-FMSCI Indian National TSD (Time, Speed, Distance) Rally Championship.

JK Tyre, who shifted their focus from rallying to road racing, have their plates full with a series of road racing events throughout the year but have decided to title-sponsor this event in what seems like an attempt to return to their rallying roots. 

Even though head of JK Tyre motor sport Sanjay Sharma did not concede that a return to the Indian National Rally Championship was the way forward for JK Tyre, he did hint at the possibility during the press conference held in Bangalore on Tuesday.

As far as the TSD championship goes, the inaugural round will be held in Bangalore on August 18 and 19 while five other rounds -- for which the dates were not announced -- will be held in Ranchi, Chandigarh, Jaipur, Hyderabad and Coimbatore respectively.

INRC participants will be a part of the event while new-comers and corporate clients too can take part in the event where ‘speed is not requisite whereas safety is’. Some of the giant manufacturers such as TATA Motors and Volkswagen have already confirmed their participation while Mahindra, Maruti and Ford might also join the mix.

The Bangalore leg will cover an approximate distance of 265 kilometres, starting from Golden Gate Properties in Yeshwantpur. “We have succeeded in taking motor sport to the next level in India with various championships. We, however, wanted to replicate success in reviving rallying and hence we have taken up this project. We are not looking at short-term benefits. This will be a long-term project and hopefully we can do well,” said Sharma, who also surprisingly lauded ‘rivals’ Team MRF for sticking it out in the rallying circuit against all odds.

K Prasad, three time winner of the Raid-de-Himalaya and CEO of the Berunda Adventure Club, said: “The participants who vie for the championship have been divided into  two classes -- Pro-expert and Pro-stock -- while each round will have a seperate category for corporate teams and first-timers.”

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