Zeeshan Khan, on his CBR 600 superbike.
(Photo courtesy: Saurabh Sharma)
Bhopal: This 'city of
lakes' has a curious love affair with bikes, which unite the young
and old. And while motorcycle-enthusiasts regret the bike accident
which killed the son and nephew of former cricketer Mohammad Azharuddin, they say their passion for their mean machines will
not lessen a bit.
Bhopal, home to a two-time national champion in bike racing and
nine participants of the popular biking reality show MTV
Stuntmania, boasts of around a dozen superbikes.
The mean machines come in the price range of Rs.7 lakh-20 lakh,
with brands like Suzuki, Honda and Yamaha starting to offer their
latest models in the country.
But bikers say riding a superbike comes with its own set of
"While riding a superbike, one has to be careful as it can reach
100 kmph within seconds. But, then, that is the joy of riding
them. Yes, initially, it needs training from professionals and one
should wear the complete riding gear," Nura Khan, who has been
riding superbikes for the past five years and is the proud owner
of a Suzuki Hayabusa, told IANS.
The 30-year-old's Hayabusa GSX 1300 R is more powerful than the
GXS 1000 R which Azharuddin's son Mohammed Ayazuddin, 19, and his
cousin Ajmal-ur-Rahman, 16, were riding in Hyderabad last week.
While Rahman, who was riding pillion, died on the spot when the
bide skidded due to high speed, Ayazuddin died after battling for
life for five days.
Khan said one has to be extra careful with superbikes due to the
potent mix of speed and power.
"I ride the Hayabusa in the city during night hours and on
highways. Otherwise, the crowds and condition of city roads are
not conducive for such bikes," he said.
Zeeshan Khan, who was among the top five participants in this
year's edition of MTV Stuntmania, said: "When I heard about
Azharuddin's son's accident, I knew it was the rider's fault. A
bike is a machine and it moves the way you want it to."
"I love my superbike and bike riding. If I am outside home, I miss
my bike and when I return, even before meeting my family, I take
my bike for a spin," said the 20-year-old, who owns a Honda CBR
Another biker, Lucky, said motorcycle accidents involving
youngsters only show the parents' carelessness, who hand out the
powerful machines to inexperienced riders without thinking of the
Two-time national champion Muzaffar Ali, who started his career as
a mechanic assembling bikes and taking part in races, said he is
now looking to feature in the international circuit.
Bhopal's bikers are, in fact, gung-ho about the future.
Automobile engineer Nabeel Bari told IANS: "Bike riding is not
going to lessen in Bhopal. In fact, it will increase in the near
future as motor sports is going to get a more prominent place in
the Indian sports arena."
And he has two important tips for superbike-enthusiasts.
"While riding superbikes, two things should be taken care of. One,
its throttle, because of high BHP (brake horsepower), can pick
amazing speed. And, second, the handle of superbikes is longer
than other bikes; so while turning, one has to be more cautious,"
(Shahnawaz Akhtar can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)