its very first participation in an off-road event of the toughest nature, Pune-based
Force Motors’ Team Gurkha bagged the first two positions. The event, truly the
mother of all off-road events in the world, the Rain Forest Challenge India
2014, saw Force Motors participating for the first time with three of its
souped up ‘4X4X4’ Force Gurkha vehicles.
The event held in Goa from August 8 to 14, 2014, was the first edition
of the internationally acclaimed Rain Forest Challenge (RFC).
No. 120 driven by Tan Eng Joo and navigator Tan Choon Hong claimed overall
victory with 1877 points after six days of extremely tough action in the
natural terrain around Goa. Gurkha No. 107 with Mervyn Wei Shiong at the helm
and navigator Abdul Hamizan Hamid were edged out for the win by a solitary
point and had to rest content with 1876 points for second overall. Both the
winning Gurkha vehicles were neck to neck throughout the six day event which
had a total of 23 cars coming under starter’s orders.
third Gurkha vehicle No. 121 with Sanjiv Singh and navigator Jay Shridhar could
only go on to bag 8th position overall.
three participating Force Gurkha vehicles for the RFC were specially modified
to meet the demands of top notch off roading given that the Rain Forest
Challenge is ranked among the world’s ten toughest motoring events. Powered by
the Mercedes-Benz licensed power train of 2.2 FMTech Common Rail Direct
Injection engine and the G-32/5 gearbox, front rigid axle, long travel heavy
duty shock absorbers, hydraulic steering adapted from the Balwan agricultural
tractors from the Force Motors stable, these vehicles managed the toughest
terrains with great ease.
fact, every major driveline aggregate was from within the Force Motors
portfolio and was put in place by the engineering prowess and proven
reliability of the Force Motors R&D team.
Firodia, Managing Director of Force Motors said that he was extremely delighted
with the results. “This was a first of its kind event for Force Motors, we
wanted to prove the off-roading capabilities of the Force Gurkha; we have not
only achieved that but have also secured the top 2 positions. While a large part of this success goes to
our drivers, it would not have been possible without the hard work and
relentless efforts of all our team members. We are proud of the results
achieved,” he said.
Rain Forest Challenge was first launched in Malaysia in 1997 and at present has
a presence in seven countries including Italy, Russia, Sri Lanka, Vietnam,
Tunisia, China and Australia.
Picture from Left to right:. David Metcalf,
Ashish Gupta, Mervyn Shiong, Prasan Firodia MD Force Motors, Abdul Hamizan
Hamid and Luis J Wee, Founder Rainforest
Challenge / courtesy Force Motors