- INCRC final round poised on knife-edge
- Tight battles for titles on the anvil
- Covid-19 protocols to be in effect at MMRT
Chennai, November: The abridged MRF MMSC fmsci Indian National Car Championship 2020 draws to a close with the third and final round being held at the MMRT this weekend behind closed doors due to the prevailing pandemic with government-mandated Covid-19 protocols in place.
The two-day, seven-race programme, kicks-off on Saturday, November 28 and concludes the following afternoon. The track, which received a drenching from cyclone Nivar earlier in the week, has recovered well for the races to be held as scheduled.
The titles in all four categories – the premier Indian Touring Cars, Super Stock, Formula LGB 1300 and the MRF Saloon Car series – are up for grabs with very little separating the contenders, both individual and team championships.
Reviewing the season thus far, MMSC president Ajit Thomas said: “A few months back, at the height of the lockdown, we couldn’t even visualise resumption of the National championship. However, with the government easing the restrictions thereafter, we decided to kick-start motorsport activities after a nine-month break, even if it meant drastically scaling down the various National championships.
“We began last month by conducting the two-wheeler Drag races and followed it up with the Round-2 of the four-wheeler championship three weeks back. We put in place strict safety measures such as face masks, physical distancing, thermal screening and hand sanitizing besides restricting entry only to competitors, their helpers and officials. Unfortunately, we had to also exclude our friends from the Media who, nevertheless, extended wide coverage for which we are grateful, as also to our title sponsors, MRF Tyres.”
As for the Championship stakes, the ITC class has Coimbatore’s Arjun Balu (Race Concepts) enjoying a 35-point lead over Goan Keith D’Souza (FB Motorsport) going into this weekend’s triple-header with a maximum of 75 points on offer. The two front-runners are followed by Jeet Jhabakh (FB Motorsport) from Hyderabad (52) and team-mate, Kolhapur’s Dhruv Mohite (45).
The situation in the Super Stock category is much tighter with Mamallapuram’s Raghul Rangasamy (Prime Racing) ahead of Rithvik Thomas (Race Concepts) from Bengaluru by just one point.
Momentum Motorsport’s Tijil Rao (72) and Chirag Ghorpade (62) lead the pack in the Formula LGB 1300 category that will have four races over the weekend with a maximum of 100 points up for grabs. Trailing the duo are DTS Racing’s Viswas Vijayraj (52) and former champion Arya Singh (42).
The MMSC-promoted MRF Saloon Car series (Toyota Etios), run by Arka Motorsport in conjunction with FB Motorsport, witnessed extremely close competition in the first round earlier this month with all three races producing different winners. So much so, a mere six points separate the four contenders – Diljith TS (55), A Balaprasath (54), Chandresh Tolia (52) and Chetan Korada (49).
The weekend programme will be streamed live on MMSC’s Facebook page.
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