AGRA: Digvijay Singh and his co-driver MK Mokhtiyar won the second Agra Taj Car Rally that traversed through the hinterland of Uttar Pradesh for two days before culminating in the walled city of Taj Mahal, here today.
Sachin Singh and M Prakash finished second ahead of third-placed Harshvardhan Singh and G Natrajan in an event organised over the weekend.
The rally, conducted on TSD format (time, speed, distance) also saw the presence of differently-abled drivers including Arjuna award winning athlete Deepa Malik. Overall 72 entries were received for the event organised by Uttar Pradesh Tourism.
The rally route included exotic locations such as the Lion Safari in Etawah, Chambal ravines, National Highway No. 2 and Agra on day one, before the caravan moved on to the Agra Fort, Chambal Valley and Chambal Wildlife Sanctuary, Jarar and Brara on the concluding day.
India's ace rally driver Gaurav Gill, who was invited for the prize distribution ceremony said: "The rally created lots of buzz across the national rally scene and witnessed healthy participation, both professional and amateur. With much enthusiasm, all the participants presented an excellent balance of time and disciplinary skills.
"I am confident that the magnitude of the rally will rise in times to come that will allow UP to promote tourism in a much grander scale."
The event had some international flavor to it as well.
Kyati Modi, a rally participant from Dubai, said: "The rally has been an exciting journey. There were lots of challenges due to the geographical conditions and tricky checkpoints but the demanding moments kept the excitement going.
"I've been a part of various car rallies but this one was really a tough ask for me as it made me to push beyond my limits."
The rally was organised in a point-to-point format where the drivers had to drive with precision between pre-decided control points. Calling for greater coordination and keen lookout of routes, the rally judged the teams on their sense of judgement and presence of mind, thus scrutinising their drivability and manoeuvring abilities. Traversing through very challenging terrains, the rally left small margins for errors.