Last chance for Takale to close in on championship leader
Sanjay Takale is 19 points behind Atthayut Patchapredapat leaving him no way but to go all out in the penultimate round in Phetchabun province in Isuzu v Toyota battle over the weekend
Pune: Having weathered torrential rains and slippery conditions in Round 2 in August, Pune’s international rally driver Sanjay Takale has resolved to go all out in the third and penultimate round of the Thailand Rally championship, which will be run in Phetchabun province on Saturday and Sunday.
“I am 19 points beind the leader Atthayut Patchapredapat and if I don’t take my chances now then podium finish will slip out of my hands,” is how Takale described the points position going into the Saturday’s start.
“My aim always is to finish the rally, but now that the championship is into the final stage I intend to make it count in this penultimate round,” Takale said about the strategy he would adopt going into the penultimate round.
Atthayut will be behind the wheels of highly made up Toyota, which has shown greater control over the slippery terrains against Isuzu DMax utility vehicle that Takale will be driving for Delo Sports team. Takale is on 41 points to 60 of Atthayut, while Wichawat Chotrawee is third with 39, something that the 2013 APRC Production Cup champion will have to keep a look out for.
“With the final round scheduled for next month, I will have to go flat out through the course to keep my chances alive for podium finish in the season-ending rally.”
Among the co-drivers though, Takale’s navigator Thanyaphat Meenil, has a chance to grab Co-driver’s title if they finish at least second on Sunday. Meenil leads the championship and is on 41 points--11 ahead of second-placed Peerapong Sombatwong.
Takale has weathered several challenges over the last two rounds--he was stuck to wrong choice of tyres in Round 1 in the rally held on Thailand-Cambodia border where he finished second.
1. Atthayut Patchapredapat 60; 2. Sanjay Takale 41; 3. Wichawat Chotrawee 39; 4. Amnuay Chaikham 28; 5. Chibortang Wahlang 11.