BAHAWALPUR: Bahawalpur Four by Four (4x4) Club’s chief Zain Mahmood Chaudhry emerged as the new champion of the 19th Cholistan Jeep Rally at Derwar on Sunday.

In the second and final round of the ‘Prepared’ category’s pool A, Zain maintaining his supremacy in the first round (held of Friday), beat his arch rival Nadir Magsi, whose vehicle broke down during the race on Sunday.

This provided an opportunity to Mr Zain to carry the day and prove his driving skills, when other experienced drivers like Jaffar Magsi and former champion Sahibzada Sultan stood second and third, respectively.

According to unofficial results Dawn collected from the venue, Mr Zain covered the total 462kms distance in three hours and fifty-one minutes (3.51 hours). He received thunderous applause at the finishing line by the waiting spectators.

He was followed by Jaffer Magsi, (a relative of Nadir Magsi) and former champion Sahibzada Sultan. Mr Jaffer and Mr Sultan covered the total distance in four hours and four minutes (4.4 hours) and four hours and nine minutes (4.9 hours), respectively.

Earlier, on Friday, Mr Zain had won the first round of the ‘Prepared’ category, when he had covered the 231kms distance in one hour and fifty-one minutes(1.51 hours), although he had stood third in the qualifying round held on Thursday.

In pool B of the Prepared category, Asad was adjudged first with 4.14.27 hours while Mr Gohar and Mr Irfan were declared second and third with 4.26.58 hours and 4.35.4 timings, respectively.

In pool C, Mr Bewarag stood first, followed by Falak Shair and Dr Hassan. In pool D, Mr Zafar, Mr Taj and Mr Umer were declared first, second and third, respectively.

In the women drivers category, Ms Mahem Shiraz was declared first, while Ms Dina Patel and Ms Lalin were placed in the second and third positions, respectively.

Meanwhile, at the Dilwash Stadium, the spectators also enjoyed 50kms-long dirt bike race for the first time, in which 24 bikers, including four from Afghan riders, participated.

The event concluded with the prize-distribution ceremony where Bahawalpur Commissioner Dr Ehtasham Anwar Mahar, Deputty Commissioner Zaheer Anwar Jappa and other dignitaries gave away prizes to the position holders of different categories.

It was preceded by horse and camel dances, besides a cultural show featuring known folk singer Arif Lohar and other performers from Bahawalpur and Rohi (Cholistan).

Published in Dawn, February 26th, 2024

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