JK Tyres are all set to return to motor rallying and they have picked up promising talent Akhil Khushlani to drive for them in the K-1000 Rally to be held in Bangalore on August 8.
JK Tyres have kept away from rallying and focussed on racing in recent years, a period that saw motor sport administration in the country split between Federation of Motor Sport Clubs of India (FMSCI) and Motor Sport Association of India (MAI).
But now that the order has been restored, JK Tyres’ choice couldn’t have been better. Eighteen-year-old Khushlani is seen as a rising star. The Hyderabad boy, son of former bike racer Dinesh Khushlani, won the very first go-kart race he took part in as a nine-year-old, before going on to win all categories in his debut four-stroke go-karting championship.
Then he became the national champion five years in a row before moving to Rotax Max Challenge, where his talent fetched him a scholarship from BMW that helped him drive in the Formula BMW Asia Junior Championship last year.
It will be interesting to see how Akhil adjusts to rallying.
“I want to race as well as rally, though I’m more interested in racing. But first I want to find out what I am good at, and if I can do both, why not,” said Akhil.
Rashid meets Hamilton
Rashid Khan is an excited man these days. The chief mechanic of Meco Racing, the team owned by Akbar Ebrahim, had the most memorable day of his life this week when he met Lewis Hamilton in Mumbai.
Rashid’s team was specially flown in to Mumbai to help set up the Rotax kart that Hamilton drove on his promotional visit to the financial capital of India.
“I landed in Mumbai on Wednesday morning and worked till late. Hamilton was thrilled because he said the first kart he drove was a Rotax,” Rashid said.