Team Tata dominate Hornbill Rally
Kohima, Dec 6 : Team Tata Motors dominated the fourth round of the JK Tyre-FMSCI Indian National TSD Rally Championship as Bangalore-based husband-wife combination of Satish Gopalkrishnan and Savera D'Souza emerged winners in the Overall and Pro-Expert categories here Thursday.
Gopalkrishnan and Savera, winners of the first round in Bangalore, picked up 25 points that moved them from third to second in the Overall standings with a tally of 60, behind leaders Karthick Maruthi and Sankar Anand (Team Mahindra) from Erode who finished seventh overall but fifth in the class.
In the Pro-Stock class, another Bangalore pair of Chidananda Murthy and navigator Sujith Kumar BS, also of Tata Motors Full Throttle team topped the charts followed by team-mates Kanth Gowda and Kuriakose Elias Parel and MD Ganesh Moorthy and M Prakash.
Full Throttle also swept more awards as the team was adjudged "Best Institution" while its team members Dimapur's Philip Lam was declared Best Navigator and Tsote Their of Kohima, driving a Tata Xenon won the special award for "Maximum Zero" penalties.
Adding to Full Throttle's silverware was Nitoka Chopy and Philip Lam from Dimapur in a Tata Indica, who won the top honours in the Novice class.
"We had a good outing and the route was excellent with a good mix of tarmac and dirt. Also, the pace was fairly brisk and that made it exciting.
"Also, the warmth and goodwill of the local people here, besides of course the Hornbill Festival, added to the ambience. We really enjoyed the event," said Gopalkrishnan who along with Savera is acknowledged as one of the top pairings in the Time-Speed-Distance format of rallying.
The Bangalore duo, driving a Tata Indica Vista, returned a penalty time of 46 seconds, finished seven seconds ahead of private entrants Nirmal Das and Chandan Sen in a Maruti Gypsy while Jagmeet Gill and Yogesh Gupta of Team Volkswagen and driving a Vento, finished third in one minute, one second.
Murthy and Sujith, recorded their third outright win in the Pro-Stock class following their triumphs in Bangalore and Ranchi to take their championship tally to 90 points.
"We tried a new formula for our calculations and it worked. Thanks to Satish (Gopalkrishnan), we were able to try out this option and obviously, we are happy to have won here. The route and terrain were just perfect," said Sujith.
Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio and his Cabinet colleagues presided over the prize-distribution function.
The results (provisional): Overall/Pro-Expert: Satish Gopalkrishnan / Savera D'Souza (Team Tata Motors Full Throttle) 1 (46secs); Nirmalya Das / Chandan Das (Pvt) 2 (00:00:53); Jagmeet Gill / Yogesh Gupta (Volkswagen) 3
Pro-Stock: Chidananda Murthy / Sujith Kumar BS (Team Tata Motors Full Throttle) 1 (00:01:12); Kanth Gowda / Kuriakose Elias Parel (Team Tata Motors Full Throttle) 2 (00:01:18); MD Ganesh Moorthy / M Prakash (Pvt) 3 (00:02:05).
Novice: Nitoka Chopy / Philip Lam (Team Tata Motors Full Throttle) 1 (00:14:19); Tokavi Hojo / Adu Keditsu (Pvt) 2 (00:16:05); S Moa / Y Temong (Pvt) 3 (00:21:58).
Best Institution: Team Tata Motors Full Throttle. Maximum Zero In Rally: Tstote Therie (Team Tata Motors Full Throttle). (IANS)