FAQ's for 4X4's and MotoQuads
The route for this year will be revealed in July 2011.You would be spending at least three days above an altitude of 15000ft ! On one front, these six days will test qualities of endurance, ingenuity , physical and mental toughness. On the other side will be tested, dramatically, the levels of vehicle preparation and planning for the unexpected !!
Which version of the Raid should I opt for…. how difficult is it ...
The Raid de Himalaya 2011 will run two versions, concurrently, as last year - 'X-Treme' and the "Adventure Trial".The X-Treme version on a scale of 1 to 10 would rate an 9 in terms of difficulty.The Adventure Trial version would rate a 7. It is suggested that all first timers participate in the Adventure Trial this year and then move on to the X-Treme levels next year. However this is not cast in stone and first timers may be permitted for the X-Treme version after being assessed by the "Participation Committee" of Himalayan Motorsport for competence. You are taking on the mightiest mountains in the world at altitudes where nothing much survives. You need to be physically fit and mentally strong. The unexpected lies around the next bend and it need not always be pleasant!! Our earlier "Raids" attracted a wide array of vehicles……both motorcycles and 4 wheelers. The drivers and the riders ranged from first timers to professionals. The program is drawn such that it offers a reasonable degree of challenge each day and yet allows sufficient time to recover for the next. A well-prepared car and a generally fit person can easily cope up with the rigours of our event and all that the high altitude route has to offer. "Through the night" driving is not part of the plan. We try and get to our night halts by early evening, but it is possible you may finish with headlights on, especially if you are running late. Each day normally starts just after sunrise, though this year a few Legs will be flagged off at dawn! However some competitors in past years have driven through the night when plagued with problems. Though not encouraged, this can give you a fresh perspective on life ! There is a special camaraderie that springs from long distance events, and meeting up at the end of the day is very much a part of the flavor of the event. That and the fact that the moment the sun goes down, Ladakh changes in 15 minutes from a scenic landscape to a deadly cold one, are the main reasons to get everyone safely in before sunset !
How do I prepare….
The Raid Office team can help you –from the choice of car or bike, how to prepare it, personal preparations, recce plans, medical advice-you have the support of an experienced team behind you. The Raid Office is available to answer your questions. Vijay, Atul, and Manjeev- all having driven in many long distance events aim to give you as much "back-up" support for your planning as possible. Just write to Himalayan Motorsport at firstname.lastname@example.org
for any assistance. Though you may decide to take it as it comes and fix things as they break, our advice is that it is better to set off with a totally reliable car than have to seek workshops for a rebuild, halfway. You should endeavour to set off, knowing that the car has been fully prepared with all of the Raid Office advice notes taken into account by your workshop during car preparation. Finally, you are flagged off with the peace of mind of knowing that you have the support of a highly experienced organization as your back-up. Downloading the pre event scrutiny form will give you a good idea of what makes up the compulsory safety modifications that have to be made to your car or motorcycle.
Our Medical team is highly experienced and we issue "Health Notes" in the run up to the event to help you prepare well. The medical lists will give details of what all you must carry to battle High Altitude Sickness as well as sunburn.
What cars are best.....
As this is primarily an off road marathon event any vehicle having a decent ground clearance, 4 X 4 capability and the capacity to take a beating for 7 days would be the best. Our T1 Group allows you to practically mix and match engines , gear boxes and chassis of any vehicle with another, to produce the finest tailor made weapon for this terrain !!!! However as a lot of the course is tarmac you must keep in mind that a Maruti Esteem won the event outright in 2000, being well ahead of all the 4X4 vehicles entered ! This hasn't been repeated subsequently so unless you are preparing a Baja buggy for the event stay with the 4X4 options! What needs to be done to make the vehicles ‘Raid worthy’…. The Raid Management requires that the motorcycles and 4 wheelers are prepared to internationally acceptable safety standards. The bike entrants need to prepare the motorcycles keeping in view the Regulations detailed in the National Competition Rules (NCR) under the section for two wheelers. The Supplementary Regulations provide for certain modifcations that are permitted for this event, due to the extreme nature of the terrain traversed. These will override the NCR as and where specified. It is recommended that you order your copy of the NCR by logging on to the net and mailing email@example.com
to order your copy of the NCR for 2 wheelers. The 4 wheel category vehicles need to follow the FiA rules which can be either downloaded from the FiA site at Federation Internationale de l'Automobile
or from this link for the FiA Cross Country Vehicles Regulations. On the FiA site one should download Art 281 through to 287 for the General,Safety and Technical regulations for Cross Country Cars i.e T1, T2, and T4 for Cross Country Trucks. Adobe Acrobat 6 would be the optimum reader for the PDF Files that these documents are encoded in. The cars or trucks have to be equipped with a roll cage, 4 point seat belts, electrical cut out switch on the exterior of the vehicle, fire extinguishers and the passengers need to wear helmets. Downloading the pre event scrutiny form for cars will be of great help here.
In addition to our "NO OFFROAD POLICY since 2002, this year will see the first time that rally 4x4;s, cars and moto-quads will be introduced to an Environmental Scrutiny. What this means in short is that the vehicles need to be within the legal sound limits. The decibels will be measured at scrutiny. Further whenever they are parked in Parc Ferme or being repaired anywhere they will need to first spread a tarpaulin underneath to catch any oil, grease, coolant etc that they may be leaking. We need to be more careful with Mother Earth....we need to play hard but green!!! Additionally, all participants need to bring along a sleeping bag at the pre event scrutiny, without which a start will be denied. The sleeping bag needs to be suitable for temperatures as low as –10 degrees centigrade. It is compulsory to carry it on board on each day of the event.This is primarily to ensure you stay warm even on the coldest pass, in the event of a breakdown, as you wait for the sweep vehicle to rescue you !
Who can enter….
Just about anyone who has a regular driving license and obtains the Competition Driving License from the Federation of Motor Sports Clubs of India (FMSCI). This must be done well before the pre event scrutiny i.e the 28th Sept 2011. Contact us on e mail for the license forms at: firstname.lastname@example.org
or better still; Download the FMSCI Competition License Forms for 2 wheelers and the Medical Forms , follow instructions and send to the FMSCI with the required draft payment. Download the FMSCI Competition License Forms for 4x4's/Cars/Trucks. For license fee please navigate the required links.Your doctor will fill out a basic health format...included in the forms ...and you can forward the document directly to the FMSCI as the case may be. Photocopy of your civil drivers license need to be attested by a notary public along with required annexures.
How do I acclimatise and can I do a route recce .....
The route will be finalised by the middle of July 2011. All those who submit their entries, with complete documentation, will receive a copy of the Road Books / or recce notes to do an entire route recce if they wish. However, it is not necessary nor practical in terms of both costs and time, to do the entire route beforehand. Just a few stages, two weeks before, and above the 4000 mtrs mark would give you an idea of the terrain and acclimatise you for the event.