A Red-letter Day in Indian Motorcycling
MotoGP was held at the Buddh International Circuit last month for the very first time. MotoGP on Indian soil was a momentous event for motorcycling in the country. The who’s who of MotoGP world championship were present on the occasion.
There were a few niggles, though, such as final track homologation which took place on the Thursday before the race weekend. This led to a lot of uncertainty as to whether the race would take place or not because some of the changes required to have the circuit homologated could not be executed in time. We must give credit to the folk at Fairstreet for the success of the event.
Last month we also took part in the first ride of the TVS RTR 310 in Thailand. During the ride I asked Vimal Sumbly, the head of premium biking at TVS Motor Company, the reason for holding events such as the launch of the electric scooter in Dubai and the RTR ride in Thailand outside India. The answer was simple: he said the idea was to make TVS a global brand, not just limited to the Third World countries but also significant to the developed countries and markets.
The RTR 310 naked version was long overdue after the launch of the RR 310. This one is aimed at the KTM with streetfighter specifications. You may turn over to page 32 for our first ride report.
Indian motorcycle manufacturers like Bajaj, TVS, and Royal Enfield have come a long way with their capabilities to make world-class bikes in terms not only of looks and design, but also of performance, handling, braking, and reliability.
If our two-wheeler manufacturers are capable of making world-class bikes, why can our helmet manufacturers not make world-class helmets? At present the irony is that people can buy the best motorcycles in the world but cannot protect themselves with the best protective gear. Why can our helmet manufacturers not make good helmets to compete with international helmet manufacturers?