Pune: The windswept region in Kethanur in the outskirts of Coimbatore is a perfect setting for rally enthusiasts to get the much needed hours behind the wheels.
No wonder Pune rally driver Sanjay Takale chose this very location to get finer lessons on grip ahead of the FIA World Rally Championship rounds that he is planning to take part in, later this year.
“Learning never ends and so I wanted to get as much time behind the wheels as possible in Coimbatore which has set up a rally park and fast emerging as an viable option for rally enthusiasts to learn nuances of rallying,” explained Takale.
And, who better than the three-time Asia-Pacific Rally Champion Gaurav Gill to be coaching rallying.
“One has to accept he is the fastest Indian in rallying and has shown over the years that he has in him the spirit to win,” said a modest Takale--himself the 2013 Asia-Pacific Rally Champion in Production Car class.
After years of rallying in the Asia and Pacific, Gill first turned to coaching last October when he held his first rallying lessons in Coimbatore and Takale was the first one to grab the chance.
“There is a lot to learn always as one cannot get the grips over the things in just two days in a rally prepared car that is different to what I drive in the Asia-Pacific region, said Takale.
“So when Gill decided to hold his second class, I latched on to the opportunity because this time he was concentrating more on the grip of the car,” Takale told Sakal Times in an interview after returning from Coimbatore.
Braking distance of a car depends on the situation and course condition, which is also important and this region in Coimbatore near Palladam is ideal to get grip over some of the tricky issues with rallying,” said Takale.
4 students, one teacher
Takale was one of the five rally drivers who signed up for the course with Gill including the fellow Pune rally enthusiast, Byram Godrej, Delhi’s Mohit Kohli, Dayrus Shroff from Mumbai and Bengaluru’s Durva Chandrashekar.
“This kind of courses will help improve Indian rallying as such schools were missing in India till now. It was nice of Gaurav Gill to impart his knowledge with all of us,” said Takale.
The idea behind having such a rallying school has led to setting up three rally parks across India—the first being in Coimbatore.
“The rally park in Delhi will be launched mid-April and that will be a parmanent facility,” Gill informed.
And, the third rally park by the Gaurav Gill Advanced Training Academy is set to come up in Pune.
“Gill said he wanted to share the knowledge and the best techniques that he acquired over the years to young people and mould champions out of them,” shared Takale, who worked on how to keep higher RPM while driving as it helps to keep car steady.
“Driving the car smoothly is an art and since I am preparing for the WRC such lessons will always help me to tick the necessary ‘to do list’, which is very much important going ahead, he said.