Raid-de-Himalaya, which is set to take place between Oct 10 and Oct 16, has 164 teams in the fray, with 277 participants accounting for the maximum participation ever.
The six day event will traverse a distance of 2,000 kms through the vigorously undulating terrains in the Western Himalayas. The event will conclude on Oct 16, at Manali with the prize distribution.
There are three versions of the event that are chosen based on skills, namely Xtreme, Adventure Trial and Bikes Xtreme.
While Xtreme is the toughest version available for the 4-wheeler drivers with prior rallying experience, Adventure trial will run on the same challenging route and is for those motorsport enthusiasts, who do not want the stress and competition from Xtreme participants. The third, Bikes Xtreme is the two wheeler version of Xtreme.
Maruti Suzuki Raid-de-Himalaya will pass through the most inhospitable terrains in the Western Himalayas.
The route covers some of the highest motorable places in the world, including Kaza (3600 mts), Tabo (3050 mts), Komic (4275 mts) in Spiti valley and Patseo (4830 mts), Sarchu (4551 mts) in Lahul valley, and the formidable Baralacha la (4883 mts).
Besides boosting of a high participation across categories - namely X-treme 4-wheelers (43 teams), X-treme 2-wheelers (51 teams), and 70 enthusiast teams in the Adventure Trial category for amateurs, the 12th edition of the event has also
reported uptrend in female participants along with participation from across the age groups.
The 2010 event has 11 female participants as against to six female participants in 2009 event.
Coming to the age factor, the oldest participant in the 4 wheeler section this year is 60-year young Harvijay Singh Bahia, in his Grand Vitara while the youngest participant is Apurva Kaushik, 20 years. co-driving a Maruti Suzuki Gypsy.
Some star participants of the year's event include 2009 champion Major Amarinder Brar in his Maruti Suzuki Gypsy, who will try to reclaim his title.
This, whoever, won't be easy for the defending champ as will face stiff challenge from Suresh Rana who is a veteran of five Maruti Suzuki Raid-de-Himalaya.
The star among the bikers is Ashish Saurabh Moudghil, who has been a regular participant since 2006.
2009 winner of Coup De Dame Trophy Ms Chander Suta Dogra will also be participating with Pragya Singh as her navigator.