2015 Gulf Monsoon Scooter Rally: Team Mahindra's Shamim Khan takes fourth victory

Defending champion R Nataraj had to retire early due to a mechanical failure in his scooter

Overdrive August 10, 2015 13:53:27 IST
2015 Gulf Monsoon Scooter Rally: Team Mahindra's Shamim Khan takes fourth victory

It seems like deferring the 26th edition of the 2015 Gulf Monsoon Scooter Rally was a good idea " because the rain gods had been only sparingly merciful in Mumbai until August 9, 2015. While it wasn’t a full-blown downpour, the showers were enough to render the 35km track in Navi Mumbai treacherous and challenging enough for the participants and their wee (but capable) scooters. Organisers Sportscraft (in association with Gulf Oil) had ensured the track was riddled with gravel, winding loops, hairpin bends and water logging " basically impediments familiar to most Mumbai commuters " but cranked up a few notches. The rally was flagged off at 9am by Nilesh Garg, channel sales head, Gulf Oil from K Star Hotel in Navi Mumbai.

Despite the perils of the track, three-time champion Shamim Khan clocked in at 31 minutes 59 seconds and bagged his fourth victory at the Gulf Monsoon Scooter Rally. The Team Mahindra rider from Nashik surged ahead of the other 39 contenders and was consequently the winner in the 160cc four-stroke category.

Second fastest time was claimed by Pinkesh Thakkar from Team Ceat who completed the rally course in 33 minutes and 45 seconds. His Kinetic Honda also brought him a victory in the 81cc to 110cc two-stroke category. The second runner-up who finished the rally a close 9 seconds later was TVS Racing’s Syed Asif Ali on a TVS Wego.

Four-time champion and rally veteran Manjeet Singh Bassan couldn’t make it to the overall winners' list but he did manage to win in the 111cc to 160cc class. The Team Ceat rider’s LML Vespa completed the course in 35 minutes and 37 seconds.

Defending champion R Nataraj (TVS Racing) had to retire early, right at the first Time Control, thanks to a mechanical failure in his scooter. While newbie Mohammed Ali Khan couldn’t make it to the podium, his skill on the Suzuki Swish he was wielding saw him placed fourth at the finish of the rally. The Bhopal rider clocked an impressive time of 34 minutes, 32 seconds and took home the late Firdosh Vajifdar trophy for novices in the Gulf Monsoon Scooter Rally. The prizes were given away by Commissioner of Police Navi Mumbai, Shri Prabhat Ranjan.

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