The Apollo Tyres Bad Road Buddies drive and off-roading experience was the tyre company’s first attempt at building a strong community of 4×4 and SUV owners. The inaugural edition of the event was an intricately planned two-day episode that gave the owners and the respective media a delightful experience.
The event was a combination of a short drive experience and an off-road experience along with an interaction with the master blaster himself, Sachin Tendulkar and the Vice Chairman and MD of Apollo Tyres Ltd, Neeraj Kanwar.
The drive from Goa to Dandeli and back along with the off-road experience at Quepem was planned and executed by the highly respected and experienced team at Cougar Motorsports. Dandeli is a small town in western Karnataka, close to 199km from our start point in Goa. The team had two vehicles ready for us at the venue, a Tata Nexon equipped with Apollo Alnac tyres to drive to Dandeli, and a Tata Hexa 4×4 fitted with their Apterra series of all-terrain tires to drive back to Goa.
The usual drive to Dandeli takes three hours. Due to the usual route, through the border being shut for maintenance, the convoy would have to take the longer route through Kolem and Canacona which increased our drive time by an hour and the distance by another 60-70km. After a brief 100kms, it was time to leave Goa, something the convoy was not ready for, but had to.The Bad Roads however, did not come up yet. We were still on beautifully paved roads with sharp twisties that went on through the Anshi national Park. The Apollo tyres had adequate grip to keep the car on the road even during a sticky situation. With the trip ODO reading 210 kms, we had reached our camp for the night, the whistling Woods Resort.
Day two saw us travelling back towards Goa, to a small town of Quepem. The convoy was back on the Ramnagar – Karwar route that led to the national highway 66 running towards Canacona. The guys at Cougar Motorsports, had setup four off-road tracks for the participants to experience. Track A and B were suitable for 2-wheel-drive cars, while C and D could only be taken on by 4×4 or AWD equipped SUVs. Interestingly, the area where the tracks were setup was a campsite for the Rainforest Challenge which is also organized by Cougar Motorsport. After a long day of off-roading, and travel back to camp in Goa. The event concluded with a lively performance by the rock and roll band, ‘Parikrama’ in the evening at the beautiful Cidade de Goa by the beach.
Speaking on the occasion, Neeraj Kanwar, Vice Chairman and Managing Director, Apollo Tyres Ltd said, “We wanted to provide budding off-roaders and enthusiasts a platform to come together and discover the roads less travelled across the vast Indian terrain. Bad Road Buddies is a special initiative curated by Apollo Tyres for them. We are extremely excited about our first edition of #BadRoadBuddies. This would also help the off-roaders experience the Apollo Apterra tyres, which are designed to tackle the rough roads with ease, making the journey more thrilling.”