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10th Maruti Suzuki Desert Storm to kick off from 20 Feb

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MUMBAI: Car manufacturer Maruti Suzuki is set to flag off its annual desert motorsport event, Maruti Suzuki Desert Storm, on 20 February from New Delhi.

In its 10th edition, Maruti Suzuki Desert Storm would pass through the rugged, inhospitable and challenging terrains of Rajasthan and Gujarat. Ace rallyists will compete against each other on the TSD (Time Speed Distance) format (barring Xtreme category) to cover over 3500 km, in a span of six days.

In terms of route, the rally has done a 180 degree flip by starting from New Delhi as against Ahmedabad the previous year.

Maruti Suzuki Desert Storm builds on the night rallying experience by integrating it in the first leg itself. Night rallying was introduced last year. After flag off from New Delhi, the rally will undertake the testing night rallying leg before entering destinations such as Sardarshahar, Bikaner and Pokaran.

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 25 February in Ahmedabad.

Maruti Suzuki has also fielded its employee teams for the rally, including an all women team driving the all new Swift. For the first time, this year‘s rally would see introduction of truck category. Four AMW, trucks will compete in the Endure category.

Maruti Suzuki chief GM marketing Shashank Srivastava said, "Maruti Suzuki Desert Storm has had an interesting and fascinating decade long journey. From a humble beginning of a few aspirants‘ way back in 2002 to over 280 enthusiasts now, the rally has emerged as one of the most sought after motorsports events in the country. Every year we face the challenge of bringing more excitement and thrills in the rally. Our core team tries to build on this aspect either by adding newer routes or new categories and even modifying routes making them more challenging to drive on for the rallyists."

"It is these sustained efforts in motor sports that have made our motorsports events Maruti Suzuki Raid-de-Himalayas, Maruti Suzuki Desert Storm and Maruti Suzuki Dakshin Dare popular picks. It is heartening to see an ever increasing participation of motorsport enthusiasts every year in these rallies."

Built around the time-speed-distance (TSD) format, the rally has been designed to offer an unadulterated joy of off-roading to motorsport enthusiasts. Depending on the endurance levels, the rally has been split into 3 categories: Xtreme, Xplore and Ndure. At all levels, it tests the nerve and grit of all participants and their machines.

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