Sigiriya Rally cross 2017, the final gravel race meet of the 2017 season was worked out today (1st) at the Sri Lanka Airforce, Sigiriya Rallycross track in Sigiriya.
Organized by Sri Lanka Automobile Drivers Assosiation (SLADA), this race meet was of huge importance to the gravel racing fraternity of the country as the title holders of several events were to be decided depending on the results of their performances at the Sigiriya Rallycross.
The crowd favorite, the two MX Racing over 250cc motos at Sigiriya Rallycross were to decide the Rider who would be crowned as the National Champion in the event for 2017. Jacques Gunawardane was on the lead in the run up to the race day with veteran Gayan Sandaruwan in second place and reigning Champ Ishan Dassanayake in the third place needing two 1st place finishes if he is to defend his title.
Jacques had been impressing with some aggressive riding to be crowned champion at Gajaba Supercross while iconic Sandaruwan had picked up momentum during the latter part of the season having been sidelined with a injury at Vijayabahu Supercross during the early part of the season. Dassanayake who had a good start with a win at Fox hill Supercross showed signs of fading away with injuries hampering his title hopes. Matter of fact Dassanayake’s participation at Sigiriya Rallycross came at the eleventh hour due to the shoulder injury he picked up at Gunners Supercross.
Dassanayake managed to win both motos and was crowned as the Champion Rider at Sigiriya Rallycross and with it also secured the National title for the year 2017. In the first Moto he had to see off Gayan Sandaruwan’s challenge as Sandaruwan was at Ishan’s tail for the majority of the Race. Evon Gurusinghe was placed third while Jacques Gunawardane was placed fourth ahead of Buddika Kasun who finished fifth. On the second Moto however Ishan looked in control from the onset of the race and controlled the pace of the race really well. He had no problems as he lead from the get-go to comfortably clinch the top spot while Evon Gurusinghe getting ahaead of Sandaruwan was placed second. Jacques and Kasun finished in the same positions as the first Moto. It was a great display of superiority by Dassanayake who clinched his thid first place finish of the day having already won the Mx Racing upto 125cc event already.
Kushan stamps his authority in the big league.
Kushan Peiris who is the new kid on the block in the SL GT Cars upto 3500cc event, yet again proved that he belonged amongst the heavyweights of racing in Sri Lanka and didn’t stop there as he went onto collect his second beat driver title of the year. Kushan was placed pole on the starting grid having clocked the best time on qualification day. In the first Moto of the event, leading driver Ashan Silva managed to get the better of Kushan and held his own to control the race and win it despite Kushan’s brave and sometimes separate attempts to get back on the lead. Veteran Aravinda Premadasa was placed third with Pasindu Peiris and Ushan Perera finishing fourth and fifth respectively.
In the second Moto of the day first race winner Silva faced a mishap in the first gravel area near the exit from the tarmac stretch and Kushan managed to get the lead of the race. Youngster pounced on the opportunity and got into a commanding lead breaking away from the rest of the cars to give him a comfortable lead. Meanwhile Ashan managed to fight his way back to the second spot but didn’t have enough left to make a push for the top spot as Kushan was running a speedy race in front. Pasindu earned the third placed after lengthy fight against Janaka Dias who had to be satisfied with a 4th placed finish. Ushan was placed fifth in the second Moto as well.
Kushan’s performance in the two motos in the SL GT event apart from his wins in the SL H and the Ford Laser events earned him the best driver title at Sigiriya Rallycross.