CHITRADURGA/PALAKKAD: A botched riding challenge snuffed out the life of a youngster, Mithun Ghosh of Ottappalam, after his motorcycle met with an accident at Chitradurga on Wednesday. His family was informed of the death, that occurred at 7 am, by the Karnataka police after his bike hit a truck from behind at Palavvanahalli bridge on the Pune-Bengaluru National Highway on Wednesday.
Police also said rash and negligent driving of the Tamil Nadu-registered truck led to the accident as its driver applied the brakes suddenly. Mithun could not control his bike and hit the truck at an enormous speed resulting in his death on the spot. Aymangala police are investigating the case.
Mithun, 22, son of Sugathan of S R K Nagar in Palappuram, was a final-year B Tech student in automobile engineering at the Nehru College, Pampady. His body was handed over to his parents and it will be brought to Palappuram on Thursday morning.
Mithun had left home at 6 pm on Tuesday saying he was going to Coimbatore. The riding challenge, given by the US-based Iron Butt Association (IBA), involves long distance endurance motorcycle riding. Mithun had posted videos of his motorcycle adventure on Instagram, with his task being to complete 1,624 km in 24 hours. The odometer reading of the motorcycle while beginning the journey and after completion should be fed online by the competitor as per the rules of the challenge.
The popular slogan of the IBA is the 'World is our playground'. Attracting enthusiasts to the challenge, the association's website contains stories on long distance riding, apart from technical information regarding the art and science of long distance riding.
Mithun's plan was to go to Bengaluru from Ottappalam, and onward to Hubli, before returning. The family members unearthed the details of the journey, along with maps, from his room after receiving the phone call from the police.
The deceased is survived by parents Sugathan and Priya, and sister Mithra. His mother was the headmistress of the Government High School in Akallur.
What is Iron Butt Challenge
The IBA has membership in a traditional sense. Monthly newsletters are sent to subscribed members. There are no mandatory yearly dues, although members can voluntarily pay an annual fee to become a premier member. Premier members receive occasional news and information from the IBA staff, early notice of some events, additional chances to enter some events, discounted entry fees for some events, and access to special areas of the web-based discussion board.
The IBA is a loose-knit organisation with only one way to earn membership: ride one of the several rides the IBA certifies. The minimum is the Saddle Sore 1000-1,000 miles (1,600 km) in 24 hours or less. Entry into the Iron Butt Rally is by lottery only and every lottery entry must be an Iron Butt Member first. Rally workers and supporters (and premier members, as mentioned above) are granted extra chances in the lottery process. A certain number of entrants are drawn from pools that include volunteers, veterans and premier members. Those that were not drawn from those are then put in with other applications and the remainder of the entrants are drawn from that pool.
The Association also hosts Bun Burner 1500, Bun Burner Gold, 50 cc Quest, National
Parks Tour Master Traveller Award and the coveted 10/10ths Challenge and other longer themed rides on different routes around the world.