A new route. Six days of challenges. Terrain that changes constantly. Extreme grit for the contestants. The 2017 Maruti Suzuki Dakshin Dare concluded in Pune, after man and machine had negotiated the undulating terrain of Chitradurga and Belgaum in Karnataka and, for the first time, Kolhapur in Maharashtra.
After the flag-off in Bengaluru, over 180 participants took on the 2,200-km challenge. There were more than 10 women rallyists who took part this year, with Bengaluru’s Harshitha Gowada becoming the youngest woman participant at Maruti Suzuki Dakshin Dare in the last three years; the all-woman team of Anu Rana and Meenakshi also left its mark. As in the last edition—which took Maruti Suzuki Dakshin Dare to western India with the inclusion of Goa—the route was new, and pushed the rally beyond its boundaries. There were five legs in all, each designed to test the skills and nerve of the rallyists. Maruti Suzuki, which has been a frontrunner in motorsports for the last 19 years, has ensured that the rally—like its other motorsports activities—is accessible to enthusiasts and professionals, as well as city spectators.
Tarun Garg, Executive Vice President Marketing, Maruti Suzuki India Limited, said, “Over the last nine years, Dakshin Dare has grown tremendously and has been able to gain a strong foothold in the motorsport community in South India. The increasing number of participants from across the country is a testimony.&rd