Desert Storm: TVS Racing's Adrien Metge reigns supreme

TVS Racing's Adrien Metge produced a phenomenal display to win the 2019 Desert Storm on Saturday.

Adrien Metge enjoyed a dream run, never once relinquishing his overall lead position across all stages despite the extreme heat, to win the Desert Storm on Saturday.   -  Special Arrangement

A dominating performance from French rider Adrien Metge saw TVS Racing win the 2019 edition of Desert Storm here on Saturday.

Metge enjoyed a dream run in the rally, never once relinquishing his overall lead position across all stages despite the extreme heat. The final stage, which spanned across 220 km, saw the riders brave a dust storm and navigate through the dunes of Jaisalmer.

India's Dakar star CS Santosh of Hero Motorsports breathed fire down Metge’s neck in each of the stages, surpassing him a few times too, but eventually finished two minutes behind the Frenchman with TVS's Abdul Wahid Tanveer rounding up the podium in the Group A (upto 450 cc category).

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Adrien Metge interacts with Hero Motorsports' CS Santosh at the Desert Storm on Sunday.   -  Special Arrangement

In the same category, TVS Racing’s R Nataraj finished at a commendable fourth while Aishwarya Pissay finished at P16 despite a DNF in stage 3.

After the win, Metge said, “I am delighted to have won Desert Storm. Today was a short stage and I covered the route in good time as I have become familiar with the Jaisalmer terrain."

He added, “There was a dust storm early in the stage but I kept my cool and put my A Game in motion to secure this win for TVS Racing. The support of the crew was fantastic throughout the rally and kept me going. I want to thank the entire TVS Racing team for their support."

In the four wheeler category, defending champion Aabhishek Mishra of Team Sparky's Garage proved to be in a league of his own as he dominated each leg to claim the coveted title for the fourth time in the Xtreme Category.

The 30-year-old from Jaipur thus became only the third driver to defend the his Desert Storm title, an FMSCI-approved event, along with six-time winner Sunny Sidhu and Suresh Rana.

The three champions – Mishra, Metge and Chauhan – and other podium finishers, category winners and special award winners, were felicitated at a glittering prize distribution ceremony at the Jaisalmer Marriott Resorts & Spa late in the evening on Saturday.

Among the key awards, the Team Trophy (Xtreme Category) went to Team Army Adventure Wing, Team Trophy (Moto) to TVS Racing, Team Trophy (Ndure) to Team Army Adventure Wing. The Coupe des Dames (Best Female Contender) Awards were claimed by Khyati Mody in the Xtreme category, Aishwarya Pissay in the Moto category and to Capt. Abhilasha Singh in the Ndure category.