The third stage of the Afriquia Merzouga Rally, which comprised a 230-km marathon stage, saw mixed fortunes for the Sherco TVS Rally Factory team in Erfoud, Morocco on Thursday.
India's Aravind K.P. put up a good show to finish the stage at P32 in the rally category, while Abdul Wahid Tanveer continued his strong show in the enduro category, finishing at P2.
The team's lead rider Michael Metge, who put up a solid performance in the initial stages, had to exit the rally due to technical reasons.
The marathon stage with no assistance comprised two phases. The first phase was a bit rugged while the second phase had some complicated navigations to cut through the complex labyrinth.
TVS Racing team manager B. Selvaraj said: "The riders had to go through a lot of ups and downs in the marathon stage. It is certainly disheartening to see Michael Metge exiting the rally at such a crucial juncture as he was performing his best to finish on top in the initial stages.
"Aravind K.P. had a decent run in the marathon stage which he finished with his bike in a good condition. It is great to see Tanveer maintaining his position consistently and eyeing a podium finish."
David Casteu, team manager, Sherco TVS Rally Factory Team, said: "Stage 3 was the toughest stage so far with varying terrains and for the fact that the riders had no help from the service crew.
"Michael Metge's exit is a big loss for the team and I hope he will come back stronger in the next rally. Aravind and Tanveer have maintained their positions and I am happy to see the progress they have made till now. The next stage will be equally tough as the riders will have to tackle labyrinth of tracks, which are bound to be complicated in terms of navigation."