Gaurav Gill wins K-1000 Rally, clinches fifth Indian National Rally Championship
Gaurav Gill, with navigator Musa Sherif, won the K-1000 Rally to take the MRF FMSCI Indian National Rally Championship in Bangalore on Sunday.other sports Updated: Jan 21, 2018 22:22 IST
Mahindra Adventure’s Gaurav Gill annexed his fifth MRF-FMSCI Indian National Rally Championship trophy as he sped away to a grand victory in the MRF 43rd K-1000 Rally, here today.
The three-time APRC champion underlined his class and control once again, winning all the five special stages without having to look too much into his rear view mirror. He recorded an overall timing of 00:55:41.6 minutes, almost three minutes ahead of the second finisher, to take his final tally to a perfect 100 points.
Gill, along with co-driver Musa Sherif (110 points), has been unbeaten in the MRF INRC 2017, romping home in each of the four rounds that he had taken part in. He missed round 4, the Rally of Chikmagalur, as it coincided with his assault on the APRC, but that didn’t stop him from being crowned the undisputed king.
“It was a perfect day, a perfect finish for us,” Gill said.
“The first couple of stages were slippery but we managed to handle them well; we controlled the rally thereafter,” he added.
INRC 3 champion Dean Mascarenhas, despite rolling into a ditch in the first Super Stage and falling behind by over 16 minutes, managed to take the second place in the overall standings.
Dean (and Shruptha Padival), who entered the sixth and final round with a slim outside chance of upsetting Gill, picked up a puncture in SS2 too but hung on to keep pace with the rest of the field in the remaining stages.
But the initial meltdown meant that he finished eighth (3rd in his category) and could add only four points to his final tally.
It didn’t affect him in his category though, as he had already sealed the INRC 3 trophy in the last round itself.
Defending INRC champion Karna Kadur, however, took advantage of familiar home conditions to force his way to the third position in the K-1000. It ensured him two podium finishes too, the second place in his INRC 2 category and the third place in the overall Championship.
Arjun Rao finally showed his true class, taking the second place in the rally but he had to be content with a sixth-place finish in the Championship.
As expected, Rahul Kanthraj claimed the INRC 2 trophy, despite finishing third (fourth overall) in his category.