Rock n Rolla
As if Kohima’s beaten roads were not enough, the Off-Road Challenge featured mountainous terrain
JUST WHEN YOU THOUGHT all the action was done with, after the ninth edition of the JK Tyre Hornbill Motor Rally came the ever-so-treacherous Off-road Challenge. The event, organised by JK Tyre Motorsport and the Nagaland Adventure and Motorsport Association (NAMSA), was the first time an off-road event has been added to the Hornbill Motor Rally. The challenge was held on December 5th, 2018, exactly a day after the famous TSD Rally. While the rally cars went about traversing the 55km route, teams were prepping their off-road spec 4x4s for the gruelling event. Almost all of which, were Maruti Suzuki Gypsys, built to take on the mountains of Kohima.
Each of the teams were allowed to have two cars each, with a driver and co-driver (who acts as a spotter too). The teams would have to work together to get through obstacles that have been set considering the highest difficulty. With the help of his co-driver and spotter, Neiketoulie Meyase, Aviu Rutsa hustled his Maruti Suzuki Gypsy through every stage with absolute form. Big rocks were no problem for the local duo. Also displaying immense skill were the duo of Rudkuobetvo and Pete.
The course was barely 1.5km long, but featured six demanding challenges and obstacles. Yanger Lushand along with codriver Maken Lepden tried their best to overthrow the leading team, but put in just enough effort to grab the first runner up position along with teammates Bento Swu and Bovito Kiho. Coming in as second runners-up was the team of Ikweithing (Justin) and Kenrak Thou along with Irietui and Elu.
As important as the navigator is during a rally stage, an off-road challenge cannot be dealt with, without a spotter. The best spotter silverware was awarded to Abemo Yanthan while Aviu Rutsa was awarded for the best off-road build at the event. ⌧
Above: The Maruti Suzuki Gypsy seemed to be the weapon of choice for most off-roaders in the North Eastern region