Raid-de-Himalaya Flagged off From Shimla
The 14th edition of the Raid-de-Himalaya, one of the world’s toughest off-road motor rallies, was flagged off amid much fervor yesterday.
The rally is witnessing the participation of around 260 participants in the four and two wheeler categories, who would be braving the inhospitable terrains and hostile weather conditions of the Himalayas.
Vice-President of the Himalayan Motorsport Association, Manjeev Bhalla, said participants will cover a distance of 1,800 kilometers in six days before reaching Leh, the terminating point.
[quote]”This year our event is running over six-days, we start off in Shimla today and finish in Leh on the 12th. The prize distribution is on the 12th evening at Leh itself. The total distance the rally will cover will be about 1,800 kilometres, of which 600 kilometres are competitive mileage and then we have three and a half days in Himachal. We go from here to Manali, from Manali we head for Kaza, we spend one-day in Kaza itself and then make our way to Pang in Ladakh and from Pang we go to Leh,” said Bhalla.[/quote]
The tough route this year goes through some of the highest motorable passes and human settlements in the world.
These include Darcha (3360 mts), Keylong (3440 mts), Leh (3524 mts), Kaza (3650 mts), Dhanka (3894 mts), Losar (4079 mts), Rumtse (4300 mts), Kunzum La (4551 mts), Komik (4587 mts), Pang (4600 mts) & Wari La (5313 mts).
Motorists will compete across three categories: X-treme 4-wheelers (50 teams), X-treme 2-wheelers (34 participants) (both Xtreme 2W and 4W categories cater to professional motorsport enthusiasts), and 60 teams in the Adventure Trial category for amateurs. There are 14 foreigners participating this year from Austria, Netherlands and UAE.
The Maruti Suzuki Raid-de-Himalaya invites participation in three categories: Moto Xtreme, Adventure Trial and Bike Xtreme categories. The participants are grouped in different categories depending upon their prior experience, endurance levels and expertise in handling the escalating difficulty levels.