2,800 kms in 20 days all over South India? If you have a nice air-conditioned car, it would be cool. How about the humble autorickshaw?

Ouch! Those of you who bump along in autorickshaws on pot-holed roads of Indian towns will be wincing no doubt. But it is a matter of skill and stamina to drive something like this.

April 2nd, we have the Malabar Rampage.

The Malabar Challenge will require contestants to travel an approximate 150km daily, performing a variety of tasks on the way.

So who’s bright idea is this? Chap called Aravind Bremanandam. Apparently, he hit on this idea of automotive adventures as a means of creating greater level of engagement with the country.

“What is a very ‘India’ vehicle, I asked myself,” he says. “Ambassador cars, or maybe the Tata Indica — an Indian-made car. But really, coming to India and travelling in a car isn’t out of the ordinary.”

That was when Bremanandam zeroed in on the humble, home-grown autorickshaw — foreign tourists were even known to go gaga over its kitschy charms. And thus was born the now world famous Rickshaw Challenge.

The route map looks quite daunting but one of the participants and a popular blogger, Adrianna Tan says:

“I love India. I love autorickshaws. Put two and two together — a natural way of seeing India all over again. I’ve been to India many times. But to do it in an auto, while driving it… is completely different. I wanted to do it for the adventure of being on a road-trip in India’s most iconic vehicle.”

You can follow Adrianna’s progress at the rickrollshaw.com where using a variety of gadgets and telecommunication modes, including I suppose jungle smoke signals, will be giving blow by blow updates.

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