The recently held JK Tyre Himalayan Drive 2013 TSD (Time-Speed-Distance) Rally covered Eastern regions of Sikkim, West Bengal, Darjeeling Hills and the pristine Eastern Himalayas. The three-day event was flagged off on March 22, 2013 from Siliguri’s City Centre and concluded on March 24th, 2013.
The JK Tyre Himalayan Drive 2013 was the first ever motorsport event organised in the Eastern Himalayan Region, by Just Sportz Management Pvt. Ltd. with support from the Government of Sikkim, West Bengal and GTA. The event attracted more than 50 drivers and navigators from Kolkata, Siliguri, North Bengal, Darjeeling and Gangtok. SK. Ajgar Ali (Driver) and MK. Mohammad Mustafa (Navigator) won the Rally, while Soham Hazra (Driver) and Nirav Mehta (Navigator) and Subir Roy(Driver) and Amit Saha (Navigator) took second and third positions respectively. Mr. Bibhas Bhattacharya is the only local participants to complete both the Leg successfully. “The JK Tyre Himalayan Drive 2013 was certainly a challenging event that tested man and machine to the maximum. The Rally route was breathtaking and I thoroughly enjoyed participating in this event,” said Soham Hazra.
The 400km long rally traversed through the beautiful, lush green landscapes of West Bengal and the mountainous terrain of Sikkim & Darjeeling Hills, including tea gardens, dense forests and the majestic Tista River. The rally was a whole new adventure for drivers and navigators and helped them explore the unchartered hills and valleys of the Eastern India. The rally drivers not only got a chance to experience panoramic views of the snow-capped Eastern Himalayas, including the majestic Kanchenjunga, the third highest peak in the world, they also got an opportunity to get a glimpse local culture and lifestyle of Nepali, Bhutia, Lepcha and other people of the region.
Mr. Sanjay Sharma, Head – Motorsport, JK Tyre & Industries Limited said, “The JK Tyre Himalayan Drive 2013 was a new milestone in the promotion of motorsport in the Sikkim, Darjeeling and North Bengal region. We have already made a mark in Bhutan through our Indo-Bhutan Car Rally and through these activities, we aspire to take the sport to every nook and corner of the country. It was a memorable experience for all of us and hopefully, there will be many more to come.”
Mr. Tamal Ghosal, Director of Just Sportz Mangement Pvt. Ltd. and Clerk of the Course (COC) of The Himalayan Drive said, “The Eastern Himalayas have a great potential for adventure sports and a TSD rally is the first step to unleash the prospect of motorsports in the region. We are thankful to enthusiastic Governments of West Bengal, Sikkim and GTA who helped us in executing this one-of-a-kind rally. After the success of this grand feast of thrilling action and adventure in West Bengal, Sikkim and Darjeeling hill areas, we are positive that our endeavours would encourage cross country motorsport events which would be second to none in the world.”
The rally route was for the most part on hill roads that are as high as 9500 feet above sea level. Day 1 of the rally saw the drivers covering a distance of 120km from Siliguri to Gangtok after the flag off. On the second day of the rally, the drivers covered 185km from Gangtok to Darjeeling while on March 24 they headed back to Siliguri, covering 110 km and concluded a journey filled with adventure, thrill and sport.
The Himalayan Drive was also supported by Servo (IOC), Radio Misty, Sikkim Tourism, Telegraph and City Centre, Siliguri.