India’s most popular rally event, the Raid de Himalaya has stepped into its 18th edition in Manali. This year, a total of 9154 teams participated in the rally which includes 29 cars in the xtreme category, 79 bikes and 46 cars in the adventure category. This season Raid de Himalaya starts in Manali from there the rally would cover driving/riding through challenging terrains of Kaza-Sarchu-Leh and the event will end in Manali again.
The rally is a 7 day long event which will cover a total of around 2,000kms by the end. Maruti Suzuki Raid de Himalaya takes place at an extremely high altitude of upto 17,500 feet with temperatures hovering around minus 15°C. The extreme conditions of Himachal and Jammu Kashmir tests the vehicles, as well as the participants to their extreme. The participants competes in three categories such as Cars Extreme, Bikes Extreme and Adventure Trial respectively. The Xtreme category is the most intense form of motorsport rallying which tests both the driver and their cars and they need to be at their best to perform in this category.
Adventure is far less competitive than the extreme category and it is mainly for amateure drivers. It ensures to retain the experience of competitive motorsport.
The organisers always scrutinize each and every car along with the participants to avoid any mishap. More than 200 Scrutineers and Stewards with their current Scrutineer and Steward Licenses from the FMSCI will be making sure that the rally is completely safe and would be looking for setting a new standard in the Indian motorsport arena.
The winner of the previous edition of the Maruti Suzuki Raid de Himalaya was Raj Singh Rathore and his navigator Amber Udasi who participated in the Xtreme four-wheeler category with the Polaris. The winner of the Adventure category was Jagmeet Gill and navigator Chandan Sen.