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Dakar Rally 2015: The real Odyssey before - or how to be at the Start in time. | 29.08.2014


Defender Challenge: Rd 5 of the series by Bowler takes place this weekend. | 29.08.2014


Rally dos Sertões: Honda HRC riders finished first part of the marathon stage. | 29.08.2014


Rally dos Sertões: Top 10 cars mixed after hardest stage - Spinelli still leader. | 28.08.2014


Rally dos Sertões PHOTOS: Impressions from the Marathonrally in Brazil (77). | 28.08.2014


Rally dos Sertões: Two X-Rally NWM Ford Ranger in good 2nd and 4th position. | 28.08.2014


Baja Poland: Poland to welcome 112 competitors in Baja Poland this weekend. | 28.08.2014













































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Rainforest Challenge: RFC´s Taprobana 4x4 Challenge Sri Lanka unleashed.






The recently concluded Taprobana 4x4 Challenge 2011 (T4X4C) which comes under the global RFC series for the first time this year; saw an invasion of foreign competitors, including foreign media, spectators and marshals to the country. The event was held in Sri Lanka from 8th to 14th October attracting international 4x4 communities to witness the showdown of well prepared man and off-road machines.

Malaysian RFC Champion Team Loo Foo Siong & Edward Benggon, the only Malaysians who have won both The Rainforest Challenge (RFC) and the Borneo Safari was the team to watch from the very first day. Siong/Benggon had no problem finishing at the top. Their driving style was a treat to watch where they also bagged the special Camaraderie Award, dedicated towards their assistance extended to many local competitors in sorting out mechanical issues in the thick jungles of Monaragala.

The 8 other foreign entries from Australia, Austria and Malaysia came well equipped and prepared for 4x4 battle which saw them sweeping the top slots without any issues during the Prologue Special Stages (SS) on 8th Oct. However, as the competition progressed over the six days, it was evident that the Lankan spirit with less equipment on their 4x4’s could not be beaten so easily.

Siblings Jasilan and Kasilan Saleh from Sabah, East Malaysia finished second overall. The humble brothers took on the challenge with good pace, winching their way through in a Toyota Land Cruiser LJ 70 with minimum modifications compared to the rest of the foreign 4x4’s.

This machine was running a four Cylinder - 5L engine common to most Toyota "Dolphin" vans on our roads. Then one would expect the rest of the placing to go to the Supra Engine powered Toyota’s, but it was not the case where the dominant Sri Lankans, Team 106 Suresh Chathuranga & Raveendra Sanjeewa emerging third overall, Team 107, Raveendra Rathnasiri & Harsha Kumara fourth overall and our Sri Lankan 4x4 Champion Team 105 Indika Sanjaya & Naveen Marapana finishing sixth overall.

These local teams including Osanda Maligaspe Team 102 have had previous international exposure that proved to be formidable opponents in our local terrain. Team 150, Sihara Thilina & Thusitha Sri Kumar, a relatively new comer to the sport proved that local knowledge was good enough to go up against the giants finishing fifth overall. This year’s RFC T4X4C has sent a message internationally that the Lankan terrains are one of the most challenging and quite technical to overcome.

The Prologue SS, held at a rock quarry in Korothota, Kaduwela, was a surprising thriller for both local and foreign competitors. The venue was excellent for sponsors branding, the SS varied and technical and the spectator crowds simply overwhelming. So technical and hard were SS that out of 30 entries recorded, only 22 survived the Prologue and were able to make it to the Jungle Stage.

The first leg of the Jungle Stage at Radhana Wewa - Monagragala saw another four vehicles exiting due to technical failures which couldn’t be fixed without external assistance. The 4x4s that were not prepared well and more importantly, the teams who did not preserve the vehicles found themselves exiting the event at early stages.

The mentally and the physically strong teams moved on deeper in to the Jungle Stage. A unique feature of the T4x4C is that once the teams have committed to the Jungle Stages, they are not allowed any back up assistance. They could only assist or receive assistance from fellow competitors, encouraging the camaraderie spirit regardless of the team being represented. The event also brings about different teams with their own unique personalities.

Many came to compete while some joined the competitors to explore the adventure side of it and test their capabilities. Father and son combination, Captain Themiya Abeyawickrama with his son Pansilu put on a display of how to maneuver and survive a tough event of this sort with a 1.8 Lire Maruti Gypsy, having a great time getting through obstacles that was normally troubling the big guns.

This year’s event proved that it was the men behind the wheels and not so much the machines when it came to scoring as the Special Stages (SSs) were set up for technical driving skills and it was frustrating for the ones who are used to high horsepower and a heavy right foot.

The event had everything the organisers hoped for, everyone who drove in to the jungle to drive out and a long awaited rain that finally broke out on the last day of the Jungle stage at Moneragala. The foreign Teams were amazed with the Lankan jungles and the picturesque campsites and confirmed their participation for next year’s event too.

A colourful awards ceremony was organised by the Four Wheel Drive Club (FWDC) - Sri Lanka at The Mount Lavinia Hotel on14th of October which was attended by all the International & local competitors, foreign & local media, sponsors and invitees.

A final word from RFC Chief, Luis J.A.Wee: "When I was here in 2009, I said Sri Lanka has the potential to join the global 4x4 circuit. Today in 2011, this is now a reality. A special appreciation must be made to the FWDC Event Director Sean Hameed and his dedicated committee for organising such a spectacular event showcasing Sri Lanka’s hospitality, diversity, authenticity as well as the country’s great outdoors. Collectively, everyone, from participants to officials, media to sponsors - you have made it for Sri Lanka."

2011/10/21 | 00:06 CET | ARTICLE: MR/SY/WEE












Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results CARS & TRUCKS SS05 on Thursday | 29.08.2014 03:33 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results BIKES & QUADS SS05 on Thursday | 29.08.2014 03:24 | NEW




Dakar Rally 2015: The real Odyssey before - or how to be at the Start in time. | 29.08.2014 02:40 | NEW




Defender Challenge VIDEO: Impressions of the series by Bowler Rd 4 Wales | 29.08.2014 01:31 | NEW




Defender Challenge: Rd 5 of the series by Bowler takes place this weekend. | 29.08.2014 01:27 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões: Honda HRC riders finished first part of the marathon stage. | 29.08.2014 00:47 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Mitsubishi Petrobras Team crews SS04 Wednesday | 28.08.2014 17:10 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Official no comment rally video of SS04 Wednesday | 28.08.2014 17:08 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões: Top 10 cars mixed after hardest stage - Spinelli still leader. | 28.08.2014 16:33 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões PHOTOS: Impressions from the Marathonrally in Brazil (77). | 28.08.2014 04:57 |




Rally dos Sertões: Two X-Rally NWM Ford Ranger in good 2nd and 4th position. | 28.08.2014 04:48 |




Baja Poland: Poland to welcome 112 competitors in Baja Poland this weekend. | 28.08.2014 02:20 |




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results CARS & TRUCKS SS04 Wednesday | 28.08.2014 01:56 |




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results BIKES & QUADS SS04 Wednesday | 28.08.2014 00:44 |




Rally dos Sertões: KTM’s Marc Coma hangs on to overall lead in dos Sertoes. | 27.08.2014 23:48 |




Rally dos Sertões: Paulo Gonçalves clinches victory in SS04 - the longest stage. | 27.08.2014 23:32 |




Desafío Inca: German manufacturer battle - X-Raid Mini vs SAM Mercedes CC | 27.08.2014 19:26 |




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results CARS & TRUCKS SS03 on Tuesday | 27.08.2014 18:33 |




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results BIKES & QUADS SS03 on Tuesday | 27.08.2014 18:29 |




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Mitsubishi Petrobras Team crews SS03 on Tuesday | 27.08.2014 17:55 |




Rally dos Sertões: Both Ford Rangers reached top speeds above 175 km/h. | 27.08.2014 17:07 |




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Onboard with X-Rally Ford Ranger Baumgart / Cincea | 27.08.2014 16:35 |




Rally dos Sertões: Stagewin for Toyota´s Varela in S3 but Spinelli still leader. | 27.08.2014 16:19 |




Rally dos Sertões: Goncalves - "Hope to ride hard without making mistakes" | 27.08.2014 16:00 |




Rally dos Sertões: Marc Coma wins again in Bikes and remains the leadership. | 27.08.2014 15:35 |




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Mitsubishi Petrobras Team crews SS02 on Monday | 26.08.2014 19:14 |




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Official no comment rally video of SS02 on Monday | 26.08.2014 18:57 |




Baja Poland: X-raid with four Mini All4 Racing - chase for World Cup continues. | 26.08.2014 17:21 |




Baja Poland: Overdrive Racing with five Toyota Hilux and Nasser Al Attiyah. | 26.08.2014 16:45 |




Rally dos Sertões: Mitsubishi´s Spinelli / Haddad the new leader in the cars. | 26.08.2014 05:17 |




Rally dos Sertões: Gonçalves wins SS2 in Bikes but Coma still overall leader. | 26.08.2014 05:02 |




Rally dos Sertões PHOTOS: Nice impressions from the first days in Brazil (79) | 26.08.2014 04:53 |




Baja Poland VIDEO: Official trailer of the Baja Poland FIA CC World Cup 2014 | 26.08.2014 04:32 |




Donaldson CC: Test of character for the teams at South African Vryburg 450 | 26.08.2014 03:49 |




Rallyraid: Kamaz Master legend Ilgizar Mardeev tragically died in an accident. | 26.08.2014 03:09 |




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results CARS & TRUCKS SS02 on Monday | 26.08.2014 02:30 |




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results BIKES & QUADS SS02 on Monday | 26.08.2014 01:59 |




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Driving onboard with Overdrive Toyota Hilux of Verala | 26.08.2014 01:46 |




Rally dos Sertões: Honda´s Paulo Goncalves wins second stage in the bikes. | 26.08.2014 01:28 |




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Official no comment video of SS01 Sunday (crash) | 26.08.2014 00:56 |




















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