Gill-Sherif set to clinch overall championship

Gill-Sherif set to clinch overall championship

It was a day of celebration for Team Mahindra Adventure as they not only topped the charts finishing 1-2-3, but also virtually assured Gaurav Gill and Musa Sherif the 2014 Indian Rally Championship overall title after the first leg of the Mahindra Adventure-IMG 40th K-1000 Rally near Tumakuru on Saturday.

After the first leg, the pair of Sunny Sidhu/ PV Srinivasa Murthy in Mahindra XUV500, lead the pack with 01:05:12.2 to their name, while Gill/ Sherif are placed second, two seconds behind the leaders in 01:05:14.4. Mahindra’s third pair in the rally,
Amittrajit Ghosh/ Ashwin Naik, are third with 01:06:42.0 to their credit.

Requiring a podium finish to win the title, Gill showed no signs of complacency as he kept his teammates Sidhu/ Murthy on their toes throughout the race. The 31-year-old also enjoyed the lead for a while, but an electrical problem to the vehicle forced him to settle for the second place, two seconds behind the leaders.

“It was not a great day. We had a comfortable lead but there were electrical problems with the cooling fan and the car began to overheat. Due to this, we had to nurse the car but managed to stay in second place. Hopefully, we will be able to get the lead on Sunday,” said Gill after the day’s action. Arjun Rao Aroor and Satish Rajagopal in their Volkswagen Polo R2 were forced to retire earlier in the day after the car suffered an engine failure.

Meanwhile, the IRV 2000 class saw Karna Kadur-BS Sujith Kumar in their Mitsubishi Cedia lead after leg one with a time of 01:07:26.4, while championship leaders Rahul Kanthraj-Vivek Bhatt ended at 01:08:19.0.

The IRC 1600cc class saw Phalguna Urs-Anoop Kumar in their Volkswagen Polo take the first leg lead with 01:06:50.5 to their credit, while Hrishikesh Thackersey-Ninad Mirajgaonkar were second with 01:08:48.8.

In the FMSCI 1600 class, Adith KC-Harish KN in their Honda City VTec lead with 01:09:18.9, while Aniruddha Rangnekar/ Nitin Jacob in their Maruti Baleno are placed second with 01:15:15.20 to their name.

Positions (After leg 1): IRC: Sunny Sidhu/ PV Srinivas Murthy (Team Mahindra Adventure, Mahindra XUV500) 1:05:12.2, 1; Gaurav Gill/ Musa Sherif (Team Mahindra Adventure, Mahindra XUV500) 01:05:14.4, 2; Amittrajit Ghosh/ Ashwin Naik (Team Mahindra Adventure, Mahindra XUV500) 1:06:42.0, 3.

IRC 2000: Karna Kadur/ BS Sujith Kumaar (Mitsubishi Cedia) 1:07:26.4, 1; Rahul Kanthraj Vivek Bhatt (Mitsubishi Cedia) 1:08:19.0, 2; Byram Godrej/ Somayya AG (VW Polo) 1:09:06.8, 3.

IRC 1600: Phalguna Urs-Anoop Kumar (VW Polo) 1:06:50.5, 1; Hrishikesh Thackersey/ Ninad Mirajgaonkar (VW Polo) 1:08:48.8, 2; Vikram Devadasen/ Chandramouli (VW Polo) 1:10:13.7, 3.

FMSCI 1600: Adith KC/ Harish KN (Honda City Vtec) 1:09:18.9, 1; Aniruddha Rangnekar/ Nitin Jacob (Maruti Baleno, 01:15:15.20); 3. Parag C Dhiwar/ Aditya R Dhiwar (Maruti Baleno) 1:15:35.0, 3.

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