Five years ago, a handful of people in India may have actively discussed truck racing in India. Today, conversations are plenty, and the sole yearly event, Tata T1 Prima truck racing is highly anticipated. With Grandstand and paddock club being full house, it’s 2 days of ample entertainment to keep bustling audiences entertained, with truck races scheduled in good measure.
The first of the four races of the day was in Super Class Category. While Pitamber from Uttar Pradesh was a winner, Shivnihal Singh and Gurujant Singh took second and third position on the podium. This was a 10 lap race with the circuit shortened to 3.1 kms as against a regular 5.13 km.
Pitambar was in Truck No. 7 and he sped ahead of the rest in the early laps leading the way right upto the chequered flag. Pitambar’s fastest lap time was clocked at 1:50:950 with an average speed of 99.86 kmph. Malkeet Singh, 34, of Uttar Pradesh came in second with fastest lap at 1:50.597, while second runner up Bhag Chand, 32, from Rajasthan who clocked fastest time at 1:50.597.
The second race – Champion Class Category was won by Nagarjuna A from Andhra Pradesn while Malkeet Singh and Bhag Chand claimed second and third positions. The drivers selected in this category were based on participation at Season 3 of T1 Prima Truck Racing Championships with 10 drivers shortlisted to participate in this event under this category.
In Pro Class Category, 12 international driver from Britain and other European countries were seen participating and it was David Vrsecky of Team Dealer Daredevils who emerged in first position. He was followed by Gerhard Korber and David Jenkins taking second and the third position. Pro Class race was scheduled for 10 laps but had to be called off after lap No 6 as Ryan Smith’s truck was stuck in the gravel trap at Corner 3.
T1 Prima Truck Racing Championship is India’s only truck racing championship. It is organized by Madras Motor Sports Club while safety and performance standards are set as per British Truck Racing Association. Indian truck drivers were put through a T1 Racers Program, training and selection program conceptualized by Tata Motors.
It was also at the 2017 T1 Prima Truck Racing Championship that Tata Motors unveiled its new 1000hp T1 PRIMA race truck, though it did not participate in the events. This 1000 hp truck is developed jointly by Tata Motors and Cummins and it gets powered by a 12 liter ISGe Cummins engine mounted on the centre of the chassis resulting in equitable weight distribution. The diesel engine offers 1000 bhp peak power at 2,600 rpm and 3,500 Nm torque at 1,600-2,200 rpm mated to a 16 speed transmission from ZF. Acceleration from 0 to 160 kmph is achieved in 10 seconds and Tata Motors states that this is the most powerful truck built in the country to date.