Insane Motorsport-endurance rickshaw rallying











Yep, that's how the organizers of this event describe their "Rickshaw challenge".

As part of the fund-raising programs for the free school that I am associated with, we provide logistical support annually for the Bangalore run of the challenge.

The thirteen autos arrived yesterday evening to our school to park their autos and were to leave this morning at a flag-off from the school.

Bangalore isn't the small town it used to be and the traffic, traffic rules and road-conditions make it an extremely ardous affair to navigate through! The rickshaws promptly lost their way in trying to reach the school from the map provided with two of them breaking down enroute!

Anyways, they all made it to the school, parked and made their way to the hotel for the night. Came back (hopefully refreshed) this morning to our school, after an introduction of our school, some speeches, a flag-off from the local MLA Mr. Ramalinga Reddy - they were off to Mysore.

They were directed to find their way to the NICE road and take a smooth exit out to Mysore road. Problem: on reaching there - found the NICE road is too upmarket for them and doesn't permit autos on its carriageway :-)

So... all of them now were on their own - having to figure out how to get out of the city. Not easy, if you ask me.

Driving to work, I found one of the autos stranded on the roadside near the Bannerghatta road junction on Hosur road - broken down and getting repaired. The two rallyists (!) Alexis and Marie from the UK found someone to guide them to a repair shop - but somehow they were guided to a place half-way into town!

They showed me the map in thier lonely planet and said the map didn't show the place they were at - which is a common problem in Bangalore since the city has been growing faster than they can update the maps. Anyways, all ended well - I got them some directions, an updated map and helped them get back on to the right route.

The great thing about this challenge besides the fun for the participants is that they donate part of the money raised to projects like ours. This is their website - http://rickshawchallenge.com


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