Let the Journey Begin... Text : Divya Goyal
Consider journeying across Indian highways amidst the local traffic of Rajasthan, Kerala and the Northeast in an AUTORICKSHAW. Designed for short distances, the participants of the ‘Rickshaw Run’ will use this three-wheeler with seven horsepower at 5,000 rpm to embark upon a long-distance journey across the deserts of Jaisalmer, villages of Kochi and the unpredictable terrain of Shillong, Meghalya.
he first ever ‘Richshaw Run’ took place back in 2006, organised by The Adventurists, a UK-based company run by The League of Adventurists International Ltd., who aim to make the world less boring while simultaneously making money for charities. In the inaugural event, 34 teams drove from Kochi, in the South of India, to Darjeeling, in the northern Himalayas and back. This event was an unsupported adventure with no designated route and no back-up of any kind. “There is no support from our side. We do have a team of people, in case of a real emergency, but that is all. Our events are not holiday packages, they are real adventures and though great fun, should not be taken lightly,” warned Matthew Dickens, Event Manager, the Rickshaw Run. “Teams sleep wherever they choose. Some teams bring tents and camp, other teams try their hardest to find a 5-star hotel each night, depending on their preference and of course their budget! Most teams simply stop before it gets dark and before they get too tired - wherever that may be,” he added. With this in mind, the participants are simply required to make it to the finishing line, preferably within the designated two week period and preferably in one piece! India as a whole throws enough challenges at the participants. The roads can sometimes be non-existent, the traffic conditions which they are totally not used to and of course, rickshaws being rickshaws are extremely prone to breaking down. The teams immerse themselves in the local culture as much as possible, so as to get the most out of the trip. Indian hospitality is something that blows away each and every team, every time and makes the trip not only memorable, but also possible for most of the participants. If you are thinking that this is an extravagant race then Dickens informed otherwise, “The event is not a race in the slightest, in fact we here at The Adventurists find races rather
Facing Page: Contestant revering the Indian spirit and culture Top: Participant tearing through a crowded Indian street Above: A group showcasing the Indian spirit in tricolour
AN INDIAN JOURNEY
Published on Jan 23, 2012