Make vroom for her

Vinaya Patil
Thursday, 15 March 2018

Female bikers talk about their passion and challenges ahead of a superbike fest in the city.

A woman riding a motorcycle might have been a rare sight a decade or two ago, but not anymore. As women push boundaries in careers, sports and at home, biking is no exception. Women are not only using bikes to commute, but also to raise awareness and pursue it as a hobby and sport.

To acknowledge their hardwork, spread safety awareness and encourage young women to take up biking, Phoenix Marketcity in association with India Superbike Festival brings an event titled Venues on Wheels — Power to Women Bikers. The festival will promote women bikers and highlight the strength of a woman in today’s society. The term ‘Venus on Wheels’ signifies the rapid pace at which women today compete in all fields in this challenging world with emphasis on motorsport’s and riding!

Urvashi Patole, who started riding a bike 16 years ago with a Pulsar 180 cc, now rides the Royal Enfield Classic 500, Royal Enfield Himalayan, Hero Impulse etc. She says that being a female biker then was quite a challenge given the conservative society and lack of awareness. “The situation is much better now,” says she as she rides from Bengaluru to Pune, while adding that it’s still an uphill task. Having started riding at the age of 14, Patole went on to form Bikerni, a group of female bikers, in 2011.

Sharvari Manakawad, another biker at the event, too agrees. “There are a variety of challenges on the road, more so for women,” she says, adding that sole female riding long stretches is quite a task.

Speaking of these challenges, and the precautions one must take on the road, Manakawad says that the first and foremost thing any lady biker must remember is to not listen to too many opinions. “First do it yourself and learn. As a biker travelling to different places you get to learn so much. It’s a feeling of freedom and independence,” she exclaims.

“Absolutely,” seconds Maral Yazarloo (Pattrick), who just concluded her ‘Ride to be one’ bike tour around the world. Having a vast experience of riding across the globe, Yazarloo says that the few things that bikers must ensure are, “never ride in the night, and be extremely careful of the stops you take (restroom, snacks etc).”

Of utmost importance also, she says, is being covered in safety gear from head to toe at all times. “Do not try to be flashy with your attire when on long rides. It attracts unnecessary attention. Remember to carry on you your identity, blood group and emergency contact numbers in case of any untoward incidents,” cautions the founder of Lady Rider of India group.

All these bikers, along with a few others, at the two-day event, will enlighten aspiring bikers with their experiences of biking.
The festival is not just restricted to Superbikes, but also women owners of all two wheelers through a series of activities. The event will witness motorsport bloggers, prominent women from the field of motorsports along with two-wheeler bikers contributing to riding safety talks, participating in female biker rally, presentation by female travellers etc.

ST READER SERVICE
The two-day event will take place on March 17-18 at Liberty Square, Phoenix Marketcity with a host of activities around women bikers. To participate in the bike rally (open only for female riders), log on to www.isf.asia

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