A word with Raid de Himalaya champion, Suresh Rana

Suresh Rana, the one name which has made five consecutive wins in Raid-de-Himalaya, offers his recipe for success to motorsport aspirants as

Mind should always be faster than the machine.”

You can see him driving white Maruti Gypsy (HP-66-1111) with “RANA” written on the driver’s window, Rana talks to winds in his darling gypsy to win numerous rallies. Planning to give chance to others Rana might not compete in the RAID, he said. If he happens to be on the RAID, he will not be seen in his Maruti Gypsy. You’ll see him in his newly sponsored 1600cc Maruti Baleno.

Know him better in his own words in shape of this interview:

Disha Singh: How does it feel to make fifth consecutive Raid de Himalaya win?

Suresh Rana: I feel on top of the world. Its just great.

Disha Singh: The idea of motor-sports was given to you by somebody else, is that true? Can you throw some light upon your motor-sports journey till date?

Suresh Rana: Motorsports was always in my blood. Managing a local garage I literally breathed engines 24×7. This was fuelled by watching WRC/ WSC events on television. It was also when raid officials spotted me driving maruti gypsy in my area, and suggested me to take part.Hence the inspiration. I participated in the raid in 2001 when the event was started.

Disha: For those who don’t know your achievements, kindly enlist for them?


Raid De Himalaya 2001:  over all 6th 3rd in-group N with carburetor gypsy

Raid De Himalaya 2002: overall 2nd 1st in-group N carburetor gypsy

Raid De Himalaya 2003: over all 5th 1st in-group N carburetor gypsy

Raid De Himalaya 2004: over all 1st with MPI gypsy

Raid De Hiamalya 2005:  over all 1st

Desert storm 2004:  2nd in gypsy

Sjoba thunderbolt 2004:  2nd in gypsy

Sjoba thunderbolt 2005:  2nd in gypsy

INRC Delhi round 2005: 2nd in gypsy cup

Disha: Who are your prime inspirations?

Rana: I draw my inspirations from the mountains. Since this a sport nobody is keen about its difficult to draw inspiration sitting in a remote valley of the Himalayas. I am more or less self inspired.

Disha: What do you think about motorsports in Himachal Pradesh and in India?

img_3323Rana: I think Himachal has great potential for motor sports. The Himalayan Car rally was one of the best rallies in the world. And it makes me wonder when will it start again. The rugged roads , amazing scenery, high altitudes and friendliest of people make it an ideal destination for testing man and machine. The HP government should do something to promote this sport and state as an international arena for car rallied.

Disha: What is your dream?

Rana: It would be great to be the INRC ” Overall Champion ” in 2009. I have won the championship just in the gypsy category. A dream is also to see this sport getting more popularity in our country.

Disha: Does Suresh Rana fear from something?

Rana: Yes I am very afraid of getting injected. 🙂

Disha: Your most unforgettable moments?

Rana: The worst memory was when the raid got stuck in Sarchu (the Himachal& J-K border towards Ladakh) and we all had to be evacuated. It was pretty grim as we could not do anything to the forces of nature. It was near death experience and the happiest moment also came in the same episode of being evacuated.

Disha: What do you do off-the-wheels?

Rana: I run a motor garage and am planning to start India’s first ” Mountain Rally School” in Kullu.

Disha: Who is Suresh Rana in flesh and blood?

Rana: Suresh Rana is a simple human being deriving pleasures from small things in life and enjoying every moment that God life has to offer.

Disha: What problems are you facing and would wish the Government to do something about them, for the well of this daring sport?

Rana: I think Sponsorship is the main problem we small town daredevils face. Not being able to connect to the corporate world leaves us fund starved at the end of this very expensive sport. The Government should plan some serious sporting routes in Himachal and promote is as a key adventure sports activity.

Disha: Finally, your suggestion to the newbies in the world of motorsports?

Rana: Enjoy motorsports while remembering ” Mind should always be faster than the machine” . Play safe.

(Thank you Suresh for sparing your precious time with us.)

Raised in Shimla and originally from Mandi district, Disha wears many caps which includes being part of a lead team of a fast growing IT company based out of Chandigarh. Earlier Disha was associated with My Himachal and visits Shimla regularly.

Join the Conversation


  1. says: neha

    good one Disha.

    It is always encouraging to see small town daredevils making it big….

    Hopefully, sponsorship wouldn’t be a problem for him from now on.

  2. says: Amitoj Duggal

    in my opinion this unbeaten streak of winning 5 consecutive titles, is no lesss than Lance armstrong winning tour de france 6 times or roger federer winning Wimbledon 4 times in a row..
    excellent 🙂

  3. Well following the raid for the last ten years I have never seen a hero like our own Suresh Rana. You make every Himachali proud every time you zoom onn on your gypsy. Hope things turn up the way you wants them to.

    Im shore Suresh is capable of not just topping in the INRC he can shorely scare the competition in events like WRC, Dakar and Baja..

    Great going and good luck.


  4. says: Vishal Rana

    Congrats Mr. Rana and wish you all the best for your future…

    I love this quote
    “Mind should always be faster than the machine” love this quote… ”

    Good work from myHimachal by making this event’s presence to the world through web…


    Well, that’s is a great feeling for all of us and Lots of Congratulations to Rana bhai ji for a great 5th Win. wishing you many more wins in future ….

  6. says: Amit Sharma

    Congratulations Mr Rana…

    Great job done… I think the secret of you regular winning is in you Quote… Mind sould always be faster then machine….

  7. says: vishal chopra

    Dear Mr. Rana………Himalayan Rally is not even 1% of the Kenyan safari rally, I suggest you should try the Kenyan rally once in your life time, it will give you a chance to witness what a Safari Rally is.
    Suggestion, A maruti Gypsy will not be a good machine for you.

    Grow up guys…..look at more competative rallying.


    1. says: Avnish Katoch


      People who participate in International rallies are supported by financial muscle also. What Suresh does in Raid De Himalaya with very little resources and then also beat some of the top guns who again in Raid De Himalaya also come with great support, is just phenomenal.

      If we start criticizing our very home grown talent that forget about Kenya, there wont be even Raid for them.

  8. says: sumit singhal

    Hi I was wondering how can u do that Mr suresh rana . And can I get come souvenirs of raid.??

    Congratulations Mr Rana…

    Great job done… I think the secret of you regular winning is in you Quote… Mind sould always be faster then machine….

  9. says: Ravi

    i live ur Quote “Mind should always be faster than the machine.”
    i ask a doubt to u that how i can run my car in himalayan rally & how i can achieve a rally driver license

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