Team MRF's most-celebrated driver, Gaurav Gill (co-driver Musa Sherif), kept his cool right through to take the top honours in the third round of the FMSCI Speed-INRC Rally of Coimbatore at the PSG Ganga Naidu Charities Trust grounds here on Sunday.

Starting the day with a 29-second edge, the international star quickly switched to the cruise control mode.

“I am a professional and I need to drive fast. But with the road so rough it is good to nurse the car,” he said.

“I have been running into mechanical problems quite often under rough conditions. It does not do anything good to my career. So, I decided to play it safe all the way.”

He was obviously delighted. “I felt good winning because the car is prepared here. I like to thank J. Anand for his fabulous support.”

Arjun Balu (co-driver Sujith Kumar) of Coimbatore celebrated as well, finishing a creditable second.

“We lost a lot of time on the first three stages yesterday because of the wrong choice of tyres. That proved costly. But we turned it around after the tyre change. The organisers have also done a remarkable job on the stages. So everything played a role in our second-place finish today,” said Arjun.

The results (provisional unaudited partial classification): Overall: 1. Gaurav Gill & Musa Sherif (Team MRF) 1:37:34.6s; 2. Arjun Balu & B.S. Sujith Kumar (MRF) 1:38:12.7; 3. Karna Kadur & Somonnito Ghosh 1:44:45.7.

2000cc (Group N): 1. Karna Kadur & Somonnito Ghosh 1:44:45.5; 2. Vikram Devadasen  & A.G. Somayya (Pvt) 1:43:56.4; 3. Sirish Chandran & Nikhil Pai (Team Overdrive) 1:44:45.7.

1600cc: 1. C.G. Balram & Santosh Kumar 1:55:58.4 including 10 sec penalty; 2. Prakhyat Shirole& Rupesh Kholay (pvt) 1: 56:38.0; 3. Siddhartha Rangnekar & Nitin Jacob 1:57:13.4.

1400cc (Star Cup): 1. A.M. Karan & S.N. Shanmuga (Kari Motorsports) 1:52:40.2); 2. Vikram Rao & S. Dinesh 1:57:00.0; 3. Vineeth Vincent Tom & Sob George 1:57:37.1.

Gypsy – Stock: 1. Sanjay Agarwal & E. Shivaprakash 1:53:14.3; 2. Shafeeq-ur-Rehman & Adhiraj Bardhan 2:00:00.2; 3. John K Philip & Philip Thomas 2:09:51.1.

Keywords: Team MRF

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