TVS Motorsports rider Abdul Wahid Tanveer became the third Moto contender from India to qualify for ASO organized Dakar Rally 2018, to be held between Peru, Bolivia and Argentina, following a podium finish at the India Baja 2017 Dakar Challenge Series over the weekend, informed a press release.
The win also gave the 26-year-old a direct entry ticket into the Merzouga Rally to be organised in Morocco later this year, the release added. The event was organised by Northern Motorsport in the dunes of Jaisalmer in Rajasthan from April 7 to April 10.
Tanveer stood overall third in the Moto category, at the end of the six gruelling stages of the competition, behind winner Joaquim Rodrigues of Hero Motorsports and runner-up Aravind KP from TVS Racing. But since the top two had earned an automatic qualification through previous participation, the final standings brought a new Indian rider to the fore.
Elsewhere during the event, Gaurav Chirpal took home the top honours in the Xtreme (SUV) category as he partnered Karan Arya in a modified Maruti Suzuki Vitara. This win earns him a direct entry into MS Desert Storm to be held next year.
Chirpal was closely followed by Raj Singh Rathore with a difference of about five minutes. He was driving alongside partner Jeevarathinam J. The third position went to Himanshu Arora, who played pilot in a 1350cc Gypsy, the release concluded.
Moto Category: 1. Joaquim Rodrigues 04:45:22; 2. Aravind K.P. 05:10:46; 3. Abdul Tanveer 05:25:44
Xtreme Category: 1. Gaurav Chiripal/Karan Arya – 06:22:22; 2. Raj Singh Rathore/Jeevarathinam J. – 06:27:49; 3. Himanshu Arora/Chira Thakur 07:07:17