COIMBATORE: There aren’t many takers for motorsports in India, and numbers are worse when it comes to women. But there are a few women trying to grab the bull by it’s horns, despite ineffective setups, inadequate sponsors, and lack of training and knowledge. One such girl is Bengaluru’s Aishwarya Pissay.
She only took to racing three years back, but has come a long way since. Right from joining a training academy to becoming the most sought after name on the women’s circuit, the lanky girl has been striking the right chords. She even managed to garner a couple of sponsors, but is looking out for more.
“I joined Apex training academy in 2015, and have improved performance a lot since. It was courtesy some notable performances that TVS came forward and offered me a sponsorship. I have a private sponsor as well, who generally takes care of my safety equipment. But there are still departments where I need financing, be it travelling expenses or boarding and lodging. If these things are taken care of, my performance will surely improve,” Aishwarya said.
Though it’s still early days for the promising rider, she has been making a mark with her performances. And it wasn’t a surprise to many when she won the first round of the MRF MMSC FMSCI Indian National Motorcycle Championship for women at the Kari Motor Speedway in Coimbatore. “This is the first nationals for women, and I hope women’s motorsports grows from here. The standards of women racers will improve if this becomes a regular event.”
The 21-year-old is also a cross-country rallyist, and is the only woman in the country to do both cross-country and track racing. But this fact doesn’t go down well with experts in the field. “Races happen round the year. The first half is reserved for rallies, and the second is for track racing. A lot of people are against me doing both, but I don’t see a problem there. I have the full support of my trainers,” she added.
Aishwarya is determined to change the face of women’s motorcycle racing at any cost. She had earlier taken a year’s break from college to concentrate on her racing career, and is now contemplating giving up a job opportunity as it may rob her off a lot of crucial training time.
“Racing is what I want to do in life. There was a time when I took a break from college just to concentrate on racing. Now I have a job offer, which will help me financially, but then I would lose out on time that could be used for practice. So I’m not sure about taking up the job,” she concluded.