Pune: Two days from the start of South India’s longest and one of the most challenging rallies, Anu Rana’s world is almost a “mess”.
A rally driver from Chandigarh, Anu is one of the few all-women teams who rally on the domestic circuits, and more importantly make it to the finish line.
Some 2166 kilometres from the starting point, Anu has been trying to wrap up her commitments back home before heading towards Bengaluru for a week-long rally, the Maruti Suzuki Dakshin Dare that will traverse through 2200 kilometres in the Southern India before ending in Pune on Friday, June 21.
“This is my third time in Dakshin Dare and I really want to do better than the last time,” Anu told Sakal Times in an interview. Anu had finished second in T2 class in her debut year in 2015 despite her car toppling once during the rally.
“It was scary, but we got up and got the vehicle ready and took the start next morning. Maintaining and nursing the car is part of rallying and I am up for it,” said Anu who usually has her sister as navigator.
“This year she is quite busy with her work and is unable to join me for Dakshin Dare. I will be driving with Meenakshi Purohit from Gujarat,” said Anu, who was initiated into rallying by her uncle Yogender Singh.
“My uncle gifted me this brand new gypsy and he insisted that I too take part in rallies just as my husband does,” said Anu. Once she had Gypsy in possession, Anu got it modified to the specification needed for rallying. Roll-cage was first and most visible change before fixing a other necessities needed for rally vehicles.
Describing her first Dakshin Dare as “pretty good”, Anu did one better by winning the Women’s trophy in 2016 even as she finished third in her category.
“I know this year the route and length of the rally is much difficult and now that it is ending in Western India, we will have to negotiate totally divergent terrains,” Anu said of the rally which for the first time will finish in Pune. Driving for Harjee Rallying, Anu said that the team has been her source of strength and commitment towards rallying.
Yokohama Tyres have stood by Anu for all these year and this year too she will be driving on Yokohama.