stars have been endorsing vehicles a lot in the past in fancy advertisements.
Very few take out time to participate in a motorsport rally. Things have
finally changed with Bollywood producer-director-actor Sohail Khan, brother of
superstar Salman Khan, competing this year in the 16th Raid De Himalaya 2014,
the highest rally raid of the world. The Raid is organised by Himalayan
Motorsport, the premier Shimla-based motorsport club
Sohail Khan is competing in the Adventure
category of the raid, along with about 240 top rallyists of the country. According
to a press release, the 16th Raid De Himalaya will have 50 competitors in Rally
Moto (motorcycles and quads), 41 teams in Rally Xtreme (4X4) and 51 teams in
Rally Adventure. Each team in the Xtreme (4X4) category and the Adventure
category comprise a driver and navigator.
his navigator, Sohail has picked Pune’s Rahul Sancheti, who ranks among the top
motorsport navigators in the country for TSD rallying. Sancheti, 42, has
earlier ranked first in the TSD categories of the Maruti Suzuki Raid De
Himalaya 2010 and the Maruti Suzuki Desert Storm 2011, two of the
highest-ranked rallies in the country.
Himalayan Motorsport Vijay Parmar said that Sohail Khan was keen on competing
in the Xtreme category, which is an all-out speed category, and a high-risk
sport. First-time competitors at the Raid are not allowed to compete in Rally
Xtreme, hence Sohail had to settle for Rally Adventure this year, which follows
the TSD (Time-Speed-Distance) format, and is considered to be the safer option
Raid De Himalaya is one of the two Indian motorsport events listed on the
off-road rallies calendar of FIA (Federation Internationale Automobile and FIM
(Federation Internationale Motorcyclisme) Geneva, Switzerland. Only 12
international motoring events world-wide are listed in this calendar.
of the past indicate that only about 25pc of the competitors are able to
complete the Raid. Given the route of the Raid this year, the number of
competitors who successfully make it to the finish line is expected to be even
The Raid will run from October 3 to October 11,
2014. Sohail will be part of Team Maruti, and will drive a Maruti Gypsy at the
Raid. The Raid will begin from Shimla. Competitors will drive on the jagged
rock-ribbed terrain along Chandra river to some of the highest human
establishments high above Kaza and Spiti. The latter half of the Raid will see
the rallyists descending from the slippery Baralacha La, 4,890 meters above sea
level and take the road from Darcha to Shingo La, the legendary pass which
guards the entry to the daunting Zanskar region near Kargil. The Raid will end
File photo of a Raid De Himalaya
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