2018 Independence Quattro Drive: The preparation
Since the first edition in 2013, Overdrive's Independence Quattro Drive has been at the frontier of celebrating the special occasion that is August 15th. While it's all about the big day, for Team OD the planning starts months, and months, in advance. Lucky for us though, the Independence Quattro Drive, in its sixth year, runs like a well-oiled machine, so here's how our tribute to the Indian Army unfolds, in typical OD fashion.
T-minus 1 month
Plans are finalised team rosters made, participants signed up, cars arranged for it all starts coming together. This year, like in the past, IQD is set in majestic Ladakh, where even in August the windchill can make you reach for a couple of layers of insulation. This means the team also makes runs to their favourite sporting goods stores to stock/replenish their supplies of warm clothes. Vision specialists ZEISS is onboard, supplying the team and participants with DriveSafe lenses to cut down glare in poor light situations. So, another round of visits to the optician followed to determine the exact specifications for the lenses. So far, so good.
T-minus 24 hours
The team drives down from Delhi to Chandigarh with our support vehicles for the drive. With our base set at the excellent Hyatt Regency, it's a comfortable place to set our carefully laid plans in (a flurry of) motion. Our Audi fleet gets the full set of IQD stickers, and a thorough once over at Audi Chandigarh. We've first hand experience of their reliability but it helps to get all bases covered. From the dealership, it's a series of quick runs for the fleet to be fitted with radios, supplies to be bought, much-needed medical supplies included, tyres to be fitted and fresh engine oil.
Once again, Michelin has provided the fleet with tyres for the drive. The cars are running their Latitude Sport line, ultra-high performance SUV tyres designed to offer great grip. Total Lubricants provided engine oils to ensure that our SUVs run stress-free, even in the most challenging conditions we expect to encounter. Speaking of, a big challenge in these dusty conditions is keeping your car's glass area clean, and Vista Car Care has supplied a range of solutions to take care of the windows and to put the shine back to the cars after all the hard driving we'll be doing.
A fun group of participants join us, and the mandatory briefing session from the Ed covers the basics convoy driving, our route, staying hydrated and, most importantly, to have fun. Our route plan will take us from Chandigarh to Leh via Manali.
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