‘We are mechanical engineers and can do it far better than boys’

Sanjay Jadhav
Friday, 1 February 2019

Picture this: An off-roading paradise which has all the elements on offer, right from mud pits, to rocky terrains, challenging ascends, crossings, crawlings and everything that one would prefer not to encounter while driving on roads.

Pune: Picture this: An off-roading paradise which has all the elements on offer, right from mud pits, to rocky terrains, challenging ascends, crossings, crawlings and everything that one would prefer not to encounter while driving on roads.

As many as 85 engineering college teams had descended with their All Terrain Vehicles at the NATRiP facility in Pithampur for the 12th Mahindra BAJA SAEINDIA 2019 out of which the determined girls of Team Zenith 5.0 from Cummins College Of Engineering, Karvenagar, clearly stood out as they finished on an impressive note completing the endurance race.

A walk around their pit revealed their energy and passion they had for the event.
 
Komal Salgar, captain Team Zenith 5.0 threw light on their preparations from the start till making it to the endurance race, in an interview with Sakal Times.

“This is our seventh year of participation in BAJA SAEINDIA. This year we were ranked 14th in virtual BAJA and we completed all the dynamic events and the endurance race successfully. The event has been a challenging one. The tasks were difficult but not impossible.

There was good competition from teams such as Team Nemesis from College Of Engineering Pune, Team Predators from DY Patil Akurdi and Team Pirhana Racing from MIT, who have been impressive since the last few years,” Komal said.

“Being a girls team it is not at all difficult. We are mechanical engineers. We are at par with the boys. We are a totally passionate team of 25. It is not about boys and girls. We are mechanical engineers and we can do it far better than the boys,” Komal opined.

Asked about the support that the team got Komal said “No one can do anything without support. Our parents, college and out sponsors have supported us in all possible ways. We are here only because of them. Parents are the most important factor in this. They have allowed us to work round the clock. The college has been very supportive and has given us all the facilities.”

“We started our preparation for this event in April 2018. The designing and analysis part of our vehicle took almost two months. Then we went through the virtual round in Punjab. There we ranked 14th among 400 teams. Then the gate of manufacturing opened where we took two months after which we tested our vehicle for almost two to three months. And now we have made it here,” Komal said.

Shivani Rajopadhye, one of the drivers of the team, had a thrilling experience. “It has been a thrilling and amazing experience. Me and my co-driver were driving at distributed events so we managed accordingly. The rock crawl was a new event this time. We could not complete it fully but the experience of driving was amazing. The suspension was really good, the track was a difficult one. Overall the endurance and the entire event has been really good.”

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