ASIA PACIFIC SHOWTIME WITH RFC SAKHALIN!
(The premier 4x4 motorsports event on Russias biggest island in the Pacific Ocean, sandwiched between the Sea of Okhotsk & the Sea of Japan, just north of Hokaido island).
With mosquitoes buzzing, soggy grounds, marshes, hot sunny spells with occasional dark clouds in the Summer heat and humidity, you might think that tigers or pythons could be lurking in the dense foliage? And that you are in tropical Malaysia?
No, wrong, you are on Russias biggest island of Sakhalin in the Pacific, where once again, a spectacular off-road competition took place during the end of July for this Russia Far East region.
But, yes, its Malaysian alright in the form of the racing format from the legendary Rainforest Challenge (RFC) of Malaysia. Since its successful introduction in 2016, RFC Sakhalin has become the top 4x4 racing event eagerly awaited not only by the off-road teams but also fans across the island and mainland. Its not to be missed event on calendar of Motor Sports Federation of Sakhalin region.
And so, they all assembled once again at Pushisty Airfield, Korsakov, Sakhalinskaya Oblast, the traditional race venue of the event. Due to the prevailing pandemic restrictions as in last year, only local teams totally 39 entries are allowed to participate in R1 (prototype), R2 (Modified Production) & R3 (Standard) racing categories.
However, even without any rival racers from the mainland as in previous editions for past 5 years, the locals have improved by leaps and bounds in hardware preparation, techniques and skills in this kind of off-road extreme sports.
From practically zero knowledge in both hardware & human software at the beginning in 2016, the islanders have become seasoned racers in extreme motorsports in a short span of time. They have also learnt, just like chess players, they can use strategic moves and right techniques of tackling the Special Stages (SS) and, when to go for the kill to get maximum points in any particular SS.
The establishment of RFC has helped to develop a culture of extreme motorsport on Sakhalin with its corresponding spin-off for the automotive and tourism industries too. They were also able to produce Team Sakhalin 110 (Khmelev Vadim / Konev Sergey) who finished 5th place in RFC Grand Final 2019 in Malaysia. Now, that says a lot on the development of quality and hardware here on this island.
From the word Go as 4x4 and ATV engines roared, winches whined, the adrenaline just kept on raging through the racing team during the 2 days of hard competition. From start to the finish whistle, the race was intense, the SS areas were filled with action, screams of delight by fans to see man and machine struggled against the obstacles. It was never a dull moment at the carnival atmosphere of RFC Sakhalin 2021.
For some, even their mean machines were no match for the unforgiving obstacles created by the organizer. And so they suffered mechanical breakdowns, numerous repairs into the night but, the spirit to keep on going to the finish line was at an all time high.
You can also say that off road racing has always been a big family affair, the coming together of like-minded people to meet and mingle with old and meet new friends enjoying the same passion. Its what we call, the RFC Tribe, where they can identify and where they belong. Thats why whenever we ask Who are we? in any of our RFCGS races, the answer back is a resounding RFC!
Just ask Anastasia Krasnukhina who spent her birthday during the event. How could I not come? To be in the best off-road competition on Sakhalin, join the team of marshals, support my husband, enjoying the camaraderie & celebrate my birthday with a bouquet in knee-deep mud, she smiled. This special feeling is shared by everyone here and also throughout the world of RFC Global Series (RFCGS).
It was another satisfying end to another event from RFC Russia (RFCRU) for the Asia Pacific zone for RFCGS. For the winners, they will have another test in the RFC Tiger Trial 2021 (12-15 Aug) in Primorye region on the mainland. And of course, the RFC Grand Final in Malaysia awaits all finalists of RFCGS at the end of Nov as always, but as in 2020 and this year, depending on the pandemic situation in South East Asia by that time.
Motor Sports Federation with the support from the Ministry of Sports (Sakhalin region), Youth Affairs Agency Sakhalin, Sports Training Centre Sakhalin, Regional Ministry of Digital & Technological Dev, Civil Defence agency, Protection Against Emergency Situations, Fire Safety & Administration of Korsakov urban district and Sakhalin Info News (portal). The partners of the event: "Neftegazsnab", the Motorcycle Centre "Start-DV" and "RESO-Garantia"
ข่าวประชาสัมพัน์อาร์เอฟซีอินเตอร์เนชั่นแนล.รุปภาพ: อาร์เอฟซี สะคาลิน 2021
RFC International press release. Photos: RFC Sakhalin 2021.
Rainforest Challenge website www.rfc-global.com