The second day of the Maruti Suzuki Desert Storm saw many up and downs in leadership positions across categories. While Suresh Rana & Ashwin Naik maintained their position, the surprise of the day was the withdrawal of Lt Col Subodh Verma & Col. Rajesh Singh whose car suffered an unfortunate mechanical failure. Even in the MotoQuad category, overnight leader Pramod Joshua dropped to third position and the pole position was grabbed by Raj Singh Rathore.
The second day was tough for the participants as the terrain conditions faced were even more inhospitable than that in the preceding leg. Over 410 km long second leg took off from Bikaner, before hitting the inhospitable sand dunes at 'Jalwali' on the outskirts and continued till 'Jaimalsar'. The rally now sees a tough fight for second position between Anwar Khan & Shahdab Pervez and and 2010 champion Aabhishek Mishra & Hanuman Singh Sisodia.
The second stage of the second leg which started from 'Nokhra' and ended at 'Baap' pushed the drivers and their machines to the maximum under the hot blazing sun. By the time the participants reached Jaisalmer, the destination for today, the day’s drive had sapped the energy levels on most rallyists.
The 320 kms long first leg involved driving through the night across a river bed containing loose sand, gravel, boulders, and a terrain dubious beyond one’s imagination. The leg started off at Sardarshahar at 1230 AM and traversed through Garbdesar, Siwani, Lunkaransar and finally culminating at Bikaner .
The first day of the Maruti Suzuki Desert Storm lived up to its name by providing the ultimate challenging experience to its participants The rally became its toughest yet with as many as 11 cars dropping out during the course of the first leg. Suresh Rana & Ashwain Naik, Lt Col Subodh Verma & Col. Rajesh Singh and Anwar Khan & Shahdab Pervez were leading in the top spots in the Xtreme category on the first day.
Maruti Suzuki Desert Storm has built on the night rallying experience by integrating it in the first leg itself. The challenge of night rallying was introduced to the event last year. In its third leg, the Rally would cover treacherous terrains of the great Thar Desert in Jaisalmer and drylands of Bhuj. Here on, the rally would enter the marshy landscape of the great Rann of Kutch in the final lap. After six action packed days, the rally will culminate on February 25th in Ahmedabad. The 3500 km long rally will truly be a unique multi terrain driving adventure.