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R Natraj wins Rally of Baroda
May 01, 2017
Baroda, April 30, 2017: The 2017 Desert Storm champion R Natraj braved a tough fight from privateer Sanjay Kumar and the untested course in Baroda, to win the maiden two-wheeler rally in Gujarat, on Sunday.
Competing in Class 1, R Natraj from Team TVS Racing took firm grip over the conditions after a tentative start and logged penalties of just 45.30 seconds to emerge winner, in the Round 1 of the MRF MOGRIP FMSCI National 2W Rally Championship here.
Riding TVS RTR450FX, Natraj was the star attraction in the absence of Aravind KP and Abdul Waheed Tanveer, both of whom are flying out to Morocco for the Dakar Challenge Rally of Merzouga.
“The stretches were very rough. A lot of roots were jutting out on the course, which made us ride slow. I hope next time around the stretches will be longer and flowing allowing us to ride fast,” said Natraj after receiving his top prize.
Bengaluru’s Sanjay Kumar, who rode the Honda CRF450, nonetheless gave a tough fight to Natraj, who won all the four stages set out for the championship.
As many as 36 riders started in different categories on Sunday at Hotel Comfort Inn near golden Chokadi in Baroda. The action began at the Gugaliyapura in district Waghodia and with the track proving tricky the spectators from Baroda and the adjoining areas enjoyed the thrilling sport.
TVS Racing had a fruitful outing as Imran Pasha won the Class 3 title on his RTR160cc and Rajendra RE took the Class 4 crown on RTR 2004V bike.
Aishwarya PM, the Bengaluru girl, who won the National Racing title last year, won the Ladies class on her RTR 2004V bike riding for TVS Racing team.
“It was a great event to start with. We are heading to Indore for the second round next weekend,” said Shyam Kothari, Director of Godspeed Racing, the promoters of the event.
Provisional overall classification:
Class 1: 1. R Natraj (TVS Racing, RTR 450FX) 45.30 seconds.
Class 1A: 1. Sanjay Kumar (CRF450) 48.54, 2. Yashrah Rathore (Husqverna350).
Class 2: 1. Mahesh Chandu (YBX125) 1:01:10, 2. Pradeep N (YBX125) 1:04.58.
Class 3: 1. Imran Pasha (TVS Racing, RTR 160CC) 52.28s, 2. Sachin D (Hero Impulse) 53.53, 3. Febin Jose (TVS Apache) 55.16.
Class 4: 1. Rajendra RE (TVS Racing, RTR 2004V) 50.08s, 2. Shardul Sharma (Hero Impulse) 53.57, 3. Amit Belgaonkar (TVS Apache) 1:04.02.
Class 5: 1. Neeraj Samarth (Duke 390) 57.58s, 2. Venu Rameshkumar (Duke390) 1:05.31.
Class 6: 1. Vineet Sharma (Enfield Bullet) 55.38s, 2. Shreekanth Komana (Enfield Classic500) 59.16, 3. Prabhu Mohan (Enfield Classic500) 1:00.47.
Class 7 (Scooter): 1. Syed Asif Ali (TVS Racing, Wego) 57.08, 2. Shrekharan Erimal (Aprilia SR150) 1:03.33, 3. Nilesh Thakre (Mahindra Rodeo) 1:04.22.
Class 8 (Ladies): 1. Aishwarya PM (TVS Racing, RTR 2004V) 1:06.30, 2. Fazeela U (Apache RTR200) 1:11.20, 3. Sarah Kashyap (Himalayan) 1:18.54.
Class 9 (Locals): 1. Vipul K Prajapati (Hero Impulse) 58.00s, 2. Priyank Mahadik (Hero Impulse) 1:09.39, 3. Divyesh Mistry (Hero Impulse) 1:10.36.
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