Urs looks to extend lead in INRC

The third round of the FMSCI Indian National Rally Championship -- Coffee Day Rally -- will commence here on Friday with Lohitt Urs expected to rule the roost.

The Team PGA Horizon R3A driver won the K-1000 after putting on a brilliant drive, and given the fact that he has had over two months since the last rally was run to prepare his car, he will have his eyes set on an encore to extend his lead on the championship table. Other drivers, however, were ruing the fact they were too rusty from not having driven in a long time.

As far as the terrain is concerned, Chikmagalur is considered by almost every driver as one of the best rallies in India and by the looks of it, that opinion is not going to change. The two physical Special Stages of Birur (12.5 km) and University (18 km) will be run thrice Saturday while the Super Special Stage of 2.5 km at the Amber Valley school grounds will be held on Friday afternoon. The total rally distance is 367 km of which 94 km comprise the Special Stages.

“Last year, the average speed in the Birur stage was 94 Kmph and we expect the same this time around,” said Farooq Ahmed, vice-president of Chikmagalur Motor Sports Club when the rally was unveiled last week.

Zuhin A of Team Kajah Motorsport, the only entrant along with co-driver Moosa Sherif, in the IRC class driving a Subaru Impreza WRX STi will once again be the cynosure. Another driver, who the crowd will be particularly interested in, is Mangalorean Dean Mascarenhas (navigator Shruptha Padiwal) in the Junior INRC class (Maruti Esteem).

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