Published On: Mon, Mar 21st, 2016

Jagat Singh and Nagarjuna won the first ever Indian TRUCK RACE

 

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By J. Binduraj, on-the-spot from Budh International Racing Circuit, Greater Noida

Twenty nine year old Nagarjuna of Kesarpilli panchayat in Andhra Pradesh  never ever imagined that one day he would participate in a racing championship amidst the roaring crowds in an international racing circuit to  win the championship and become a national hero. This Indian truck driver who used to run his Tata Prima truck upto 24 hours at a stretch while on duty,  have won the maiden race T1 PRIMA TRUCK RACING Championship held in Budh international racing circuit in Greater Noida on March 20th 2016. Competing in the SUPER CLASS category comprising of some of the most experienced drivers, these drivers were selected through one of the most comprehensive training and selection programs, for Indian drivers, from Tata Motors fleet customers’ operations across the country in last December.

Nagarjuna was not the lone hero.  Thirty one year old Jagat Singh of Haryana too won the first ever Indian truck race championship at the T1 Prima Truck Racing Championship Season 3. This is the first time that Tata motors is organizing Indian Truck driver’s race along with British truck racer’s PRO class race. David Jenkins, Rick Collett and Graham Powell finish First, second and third in the PRO Class.

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Mat Summerfield of TEAM CASTROL VECTON

The racers rode Tata Prima 4038.S  in the T1 Prima Truck Racing Championship, with the massive power of 370 BHP @ 2100 RPM and a top speed of just over 130 Km/h. To make these Prima trucks fit for racing, key modifications were made to meet a mix of safety and performance needs as per guidelines from the BTRA.

Trained by some of the best race instructors in India, roped in by MOMA, over a period of three months, the T1 PRIMA race attracted of over 50,000 people, with the ‘Heroes of the Highways’ taking home the highest price money ever for an Indian motorsports event – Rs 10 lakhs being awarded to each of the first place winners, of the two SUPER CLASS category races.

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Having finished fourth in the first 8-lap race of the two PRO CLASS races comprising of international drivers, David Jenkins of TEAM TATA TECHNOLOGIES took top honors in the final 20-lap race, with Rick Collett and Graham Powell both from TEAM TATA CUMMINS, taking second and third place respectively, in an action packed race held on March 20, 2016.

Mat Summerfield of TEAM CASTROL VECTON, winner of the first 8-lap race, clocked the fastest lap of 1:50:691 seconds, in the second race, around the 3.1 kilometers race track.

The 12 Indian drivers selected for Season 3 of the T1 PRIMA TRUCK RACING CHAMPIONSHIP were Rabinder Yadav, Rajkumar Mahato, Nagarjuna A, Bacchu Singh , Bhag Chand, Jitendra Singh, MD Parvez, Jagat Singh, Anand, Mohd. Iliyas  and Malkeet Singh. While Season 3 witnessed Indian drivers competing in black PRIMA race trucks, which were identical to each other – in look and built, the 12 coloured trucks competing in the PRO CLASS of the T1 PRIMA TRUCK RACING CHAMPIONSHIP SEASON 3, represented six teams, who participated in the previous two seasons of the championship, with one new team – Tata Motors Finance.

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Tata Motors has also partnered with some of the country’s leading automotive brands, for Season 3 of the T1 PRIMA Truck Racing Championship like WABCO (Official Braking Technology Partner),  JK Tyre  (Official Tyre Partner), Castrol ( Official Lubricant Partner), Cummins ( Official Engine Technology Partner), Tata Motors Finance (Official Commercial Vehicle Financing Partner) andTata Technologies  (Official Technology Partner)

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Ravi Pisharody, Executive director, Commercial vehicle Business unit, Tata Motors flagging of the race (left); R Ramakrishnan, senior Vice president, Product Strategy and Planning and Customer care (Left)

Alongside some edge of the seat action at T1 2016, Season 3 also hosted some of the country’s most prominent names from the music and entertainment scene. From the sensational Hip Hop heartthrob Badshah to the vivacious damsel of melody, Neeti Mohan, the scintillating Garima Yajnik, with her foot-tapping Indo-western numbers and last but not the least, the ruling diva of Bollywood music, with her memorable feast of melody and dance numbers, Sunidhi Chauhan, were few amongst the many other surprises that T1 season 3 had to offer.

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The T1 PRIMA TRUCK RACING CHAMPIONSHIP is organized by MMSC (Madras Motor Sports Club) and is inscribed on the calendars of FIA (Federation Internationale de l’Automobile) and FMSCI (the Federation of  Motor Sports Clubs of India) with safety and performance standards being followed as per the guidelines of the BTRA (British Truck Racing Association), who also play in role in the selection of the best British and European Race Truck Drivers, that compete in the T1 Championship.

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Singer Neeti Mohan at her best in racing circuit

Tata made significant changes to Prima for making its racer versions. The changes were in fuel tank, brake cooling system, propeller shaft guards, racing seats and safety belts, exhaust, steering wheel among others. The trucks have gone through multiple quality checks and tested at Tata Motors Jamshedpur’s world-class testing facility, for high speed run and control, with many key  modifications made to meet a mix of safety and performance needs. For Season 3 of the T1 PRIMA Truck Racing Championship, Tata Motors has undertaken significant changes, for increased performance and safety.

 

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