After all the sweat and grime over six days, Kabir Waraich and co-driver Gagan Sachdeva of Gerrari Offroaders, saw their perseverance getting rewarded as the Indian duo took third place on the podium, which also ensured their automatic entry into the prestigious Rainforest Challenge Malaysia to be held in November.
As the inaugural edition of the Force Gurkha RFC India came to an end on Thursday, Malaysia’s Tang Eng Joo (co-driver Tan Choon Hong) emerged champions, followed closely by another Malaysian team of Mervyn Lim (co-driver Hamizan Bin Abdul Hamid).
But it was the diehard Indian duo of Waraich and Sachdeva, which was chasing a dream and much more. The team, which was trailing initially, climbed to third spot in the Predator Stage and managed to hold their ground thereafter.
Commending their performance, Ashish Gupta of Cougar Motorsport, said, the duo had shown there was plenty of talent to be harnessed in India. “These two people came together, strategised and conquered the challenges.” The six-day event was divided into four stages — Prologue, Predator, Terminator and Twilight Zone.
The course was designed in such a manner that the level of difficulty increased as the challenge progressed with each ‘Special Stage’ testing the driving and recovery skills of the participants under extreme off-road conditions.
Incessant rains notwithstanding, 23 teams competed in the mud and slush, attempting to complete the ‘Special Stages’ in the shortest possible time.
The Predator Stage tested the resolve of the service teams as there were many breakdowns along the way. But the toughest stage was the Twilight Zone, which commenced early morning on the last day of competition, and none of the teams could complete their routine. This meant that the leading team in the Terminator Stage was the winner.