"BMC provides their world-class air-filters to enhance the performance of the car. Racetech India also provides technical support to the team."
Pune, June 11 - The Pune-based Team Slideways Industries (SI) will field five cars for the first round of the FMSCI Indian Rally Championship to be held in Nashik June 13-15.
Backed by Sanjay Ghodawat Group of Institutions, Pinnacle Group and Golden Sparrow Corporation, Slideways Industries looks to repeat its 2013 success where the team won the FMSCI-INRC team championship.
It was a major achievement considering the team was new to the series and was competing in a brand new car.
Four rally enthusiasts - Aniruddha Rangnekar, Byram Godrej, Rohan Pawar and Sirish Chandran - launched Slideways Industries in September 2012. The team was the first to build, prepare and compete in the rally series with the Volkswagen Polo.
Making its debut at the 2013 South India Rally, the Slideways Polo took victory in the 1600cc class, the first time a brand new rally car won on debut in over seven years.
Buoyed by the success, the team ramped up its activities and entered seven Polo cars in the INRC, making it the largest team in the championship.
The Slideways Industries Rally Polo is built to a Group N (production class) specification and runs a 1.6-litre engine upgraded to over 130bhp with the addition of a Race Dynamics Motorsport ECU.
It runs on 15-inch JK Rally tyres for excellent grip on gravel and tarmac stages, a Quaife limited-slip front differential for improved traction, can tackle six-foot-high jumps at over 130kmph thanks to a Reiger 3-way adjustable rally suspension and has an FIA-spec roll cage for safety, among other extensive modifications.
For the 2014 IRC season-opener, the Mahindra Adventure Rally of Maharashtra in Nashik, Slideways Industries will enter two Polo for Byram Godrej (co-driver AG Somayya) in the 2000cc class and Sirish Chandran (Nikhil Pai) in the 1600cc category.
With the team looking to enter all possible classes, Aniruddha Rangnekar (Arjun Mehta) will compete in the new Pre-2007 class in the Baleno.
The 2013 season was incredible for us. We debuted with an all-new car and were on the top step of the podium from the very first rally, said team principal Rohan Pawar.
We developed the VW Polo at break-neck speed, expanded the team and eventually the Team Championship was just reward for the hard work put in by the engineers and the excellent driving of our crew.
We now look forward to a strong 2014 IRC season which begins in Nashik, the home rally for our team, considering we are based just 160 kilometers away in Pune.
Recent developments mean that the much-anticipated R2-spec Polo will not be seen in action, but in Group N, there will be battles galore and our team is geared up for the challenge, Pawar added.
Also making its debut in the team will be Garima Avtar, who will be piloting a Slideways Polo on her IRC debut. This will be the only all-woman crew in the IRC and is sure to attract interest to the sport.
Mumbai-based Hrishikesh Thackersey is another driver who will be opting for Slideways Industries' Arrive and Drive package, where the team takes care of all logistics, car preparation, service, testing and support so that the driver only needs to come to the rally location and drive.
For the 2014 season, JK Tyre continues its association with the team by supplying top-flight rally tyres in both tarmac and gravel specifications for all the team cars.
Slideways Industries also continues to enjoy Volkswagen Motorsport's support as part of their customer-sport rallying activities. Speedworks and OWS continues to be the team lubricant partner, Race Dynamics provides their Motosport-spec Electronic Control Units.
BMC provides their world-class air-filters to enhance the performance of the car. Racetech India also provides technical support to the team.
The Nasik Rally is the only tarmac rally on the calendar and the team will be closely watching the skies and hoping it stays dry for another week so that fans can enjoy a thrilling high-speed battle in the hills outside the city.