The 13th edition of the Maruti Suzuki Desert Storm has been flagged off, with the rally slated to traverse over 2300 kilometers this time. The action kicked off at Sardarshahar, around 600 kilometers from Delhi, with a challenging long night stage where participants clocked 150 kilometers.
Driving a Grand Vitara, Delhi’s Abhishek Mishra clocked a time of 03:07:44 hrs, with three-time Desert Storm winner Suresh Rana, also piloting a Grand Vitara finishing a close second with a time of 03:12:00 hrs. He was trailed by Harpreet Bawa from Chandigarh who clocked 03:16:27 hrs.
In the XTreme category, vehicles covered a liaison distance of approximately 600 kms from Delhi to reach at the quaint region of Sardarsahar. Traveling around Sardarshahar, Kelania and Jaitpur village, the competitors left behind a trail of sandstorm while being enthusiastically cheered on by the local crowd gathered to see the cars whiz past them.
All eyes are on Suresh Rana who is eyeing for fourth Desert Storm title in the XTreme category in his Grand Vitara. In the Moto Quad category, CS Santosh is being closely watched by many motorsports enthusiasts, the only Indian to finish the Dakar rally. Sandeep Sharma, who was the first runner up from Desert Storm last year, crashed out of the competition due to a technical problem with his car.
On day two, the XTreme category vehicles will be geared up to move about 150 kms towards Bikaner where the second leg of the journey will be flagged off.
Results after leg 1: XTreme Cars
1. Abhishek Sharma 03:07:44 hrs
2. Suresh Rana 03:12:00 hrs
3. Harpreet Bawa 03:16:27 hrs