Force Gurkha Rainforest motor race starts off in Goa

Panaji:A total of 30 teams from across India are expected to participate in the third season of the Force Gurkha Rainforest Challenge, one of the top 10 toughest motor races globally, organisers said on Friday. The top Indian driver of the competition will win an automatic entry to the Rainforest Challenge (RFC), the global event to be held in Malaysia later this year. Sponsored by Force Motors Ltd., the India Chapter of the Malaysian RFC is the country's first and toughest international off-road motorsport event and is currently counted in the top three in the RFC Global series which has 25 editions worldwide. "With the participation numbers growing at an immense rate year-by-year, the offroad motorsport community in the country has definitely accepted the concept of RFC wholeheartedly," said Luis J.A. Wee, founder and creator of The Rainforest Challenge told reporters here. "Moreover, going by the tremendous response that the inaugural editions of RFC North India and South India regional chapters received earlier this year, I strongly feel that the days are not too far when off-road motorsport will be considered among the major popular sports in India." The third edition will feature four competitive legs namely Prologue, Predator, Terminator and The Twilight Zone - in different parts of Goa till July 29. While the Prologue Special Stages (SS) will be held at the Rajiv Gandhi IT Habitat in Dona Paula followed by the Predator and the Terminator stages at Quepem (Cavorem) in South Goa and then finally concluding with the Twilight SS at Sattari (Morlem) in North Goa. "In the last two editions we restricted the participation numbers to 25. However, the response this year was so overwhelming that the registrations were closed two months prior to the event and even some of the RFC India pioneers could not make it to the list," says Ashish Gupta, founder and director, Cougar Motorsport Pvt. Ltd one of the organisers of the event. "Since we did not want to overlook those who have been a part of this journey from the beginning, the organising committee extended the list after much deliberation and finally 30 teams are going to compete in the event this year." "This is a major boost for an event which is merely three years old in India and says a lot about the growing interest in off-road motorsport in the country," he added.