Printed On Sep 10, 2021 09:00:00 AM
We get a style of the artwork of racing, in a bid to qualify for the TVS Younger Media Racer Programme.
Motor racing is one thing I’ve been in awe of, ever since I used to be little. To me, it represents man and machine working in concord to extract the utmost efficiency out of each, in pursuit of glory. It is usually one of many massive the reason why I made a decision to change into a motoring journalist, to expertise the world of motorsports from as shut as attainable.
And there gained’t be a more in-depth strategy to expertise that than collaborating within the TVS Younger Media Racer Programme (YMRP), for which I used to be drafted in to characterize Autocar India. The TVS YMRP, now in its fifth iteration, lets members from varied print and on-line media homes have a correct go at racing from the saddle of a race bike. Thoughts you, this was simply the coaching and qualifier spherical. Solely the Prime 12 riders out of the 15 taking part could be chosen to participate in three race weekends, which might happen over the subsequent couple of months. So, the stress was on even earlier than I touched down in Chennai.
It’s essential to know the foundations and rules earlier than venturing out on monitor.
We arrived on the Madras Motor Race Monitor (MMRT), which is simply outdoors of Chennai, good and early in anticipation of the lengthy day forward. Our trainers for the programme had been TVS Racing’s Harry Sylvester, Jagan Kumar and KY Ahmad. Harry guided us via the speculation classes, which concerned understanding the flags and the foundations of the racetrack. He additionally identified the perfect gears we ought to be in for each nook, how we must always transfer our physique whereas on the bike and method braking.
Studying nail the right race begin, forward of the upcoming races.
Following the speculation classes, we received acquainted with the equipment we’d be utilizing. They had been race-prepped TVS Apache RTR 200 4Vs with customized free-flow exhausts, tweaked suspension and new tyres, together with contemporary engine internals after the earlier season of racing. These bikes regarded so darn cool, with the racing quantity an all, and sounded even higher. I used to be simply raring to have a go on them and really feel like Valentino Rossi, flying across the racetrack with my knees and elbows scraping the bottom. Or not less than that’s the picture I had in my head. However all these desires had been squashed as quickly as I hit the monitor for our first sensible coaching session.
As if visiting MMRT for the primary time, in addition to driving a motorcycle on the monitor for the primary time, wasn’t sufficient, the monitor was nonetheless damp in locations as a result of heavy rainfall that came about the night time earlier than. This solely elevated the problem and my nervousness. The rain additionally meant that we’d be utilizing the shorter membership circuit, as a substitute of the total format, because the latter a part of the monitor nonetheless had puddles on it.
Nonetheless, I attempted my greatest to navigate round these damp spots and comply with our instructors, Jagan Kumar and KY Ahmad, who had been main on track-prepped TVS RR 310s. We shadowed the professionals for a few laps, who instructed us on the perfect racing strains, turn-in factors and braking factors across the lap. And because the laps tumbled and the monitor dried out, I began to get snug with each, the bike and the racetrack. We had been then additionally briefed on race begins, after which the coaching a part of the programme concluded. Following this, we had been allowed 15 minutes of free follow to learn to put a quick lap collectively utilizing all of the methods we’d learnt.
It took fairly a couple of laps earlier than I used to be in a position to lean this a lot. Now to work on the physique place.
I went into the timed qualy session with the only real objective of qualifying for the subsequent spherical, however I might be mendacity if I didn’t say that I wished to be as excessive up on the grid as attainable. And with my confidence rising with each lap, I did. I began pushing the bounds a bit additional, making an attempt to brake later and carry extra velocity via the corners than earlier than. By the tip of the session, I used to be moderately happy with my efficiency.
With the coaching programme full, I’m now licensed able to race!
To my shock, the outcomes had been introduced and I used to be declared to be first, with a lap time of 1:22:688. Positive, I had the load benefit over my fellow opponents, however I’d prefer to assume a serious cause for this consequence had been the issues I learnt throughout the idea and sensible coaching of this programme. I left MMRT with a way of accomplishment and feeling like I turned a greater rider than I used to be. Plus, it doesn’t damage to have the bragging rights over your friends, even when it’s short-term. Now, I simply can’t wait to be again in Chennai to participate in my first-ever race weekend. Thrilling instances forward!