Chennai, 21 Dec 2014: Karthick Maruthi and Sankar Anand clinched the National title in the Pro-Expert Category in the last and ninth round of the Indian National TSD (Time, Speed, Distance) Rally Championship that concluded at Sriperumbudur, near here, on Sunday.
In an exciting run to the post, both the teams had a neck and neck battle and clocked identical time penalties of 46 seconds. Team Tata Motors’ Ajgar Ali and Mohammad Musthafa, who led by four points before this round but their rivals, Maruthi and Anand, took the National honours winning the tie-breaker with eight zero penalty times compared to six of Ali-Musthafa. In TSD rallying, the time closer to zero penalty determines the winners. Ali-Mohammad lost by three points on 166 while Maruthi-Anand garnered 169 with the first place. Another Team Tata Motors entry of Srikanth GM and Chandrashekar M finished third in the Pro Expert category, losing out by just two seconds.
However, Team Tata Motors swept the Pro-Stock Category scoring a 1-2-3. Kolkata pair of Saurav Chatterjee and Ashoke Kumar Basu won the class in the MRF Chennai TSD Rally, attracting a total time penalty of two minutes, 25 seconds.
Meanwhile, Chidananda Murthy and BS Sujith Kumar (In the file picture posing with the car), with a total time penalty of 02:43 minutes lost the last round despite winning the National title with a round to spar. With the second place today, they amassed 192 points. This is their third Pro Stock National title in a row. Somashekar D/ Chandar (Team Tata Motors) finished third with a penalty of 09:42.
“We tried our best but we are happy to get another `1-2-3′ for Tata Motors. We are happy that the National title is ours for the third year in a row and the hat-trick is definitely special,” said Chidananda Murthy.
Sujith Kumar added: “It would have been nice to clinch a win in the Chennai event and finish the season with a bang. However, we are the National champions for this year too and that is what matters.”
Results: Pro Stock: 1. Saurav Chatterjee/ Ashoke Kumar Basu (Team Tata Motors, 02:25 minutes penalty); 2. Chidananda Murthy/ BS Sujith Kumar (Team Tata Motors, 02:43); 3. Somashekar D/ Chandramouli (Team Tata Motors, 09:42).
Pro Expert: 1. KP Karthick Maruthi/ Sankar Anand (00:46 seconds penalty); 2. Ajgar Ali/ Mohammad Musthafa (Team Tata Motors, 00:46); 3. Srikanth GM/ M Chandrashekar (Team Tata Motors, 00:48).
Eom/Tata Motors press release