In this issue CRANK clicks its heels and is privileged to offer a crisp salute to some members of the cycling fraternity who epitomise grit and determination. Their passion and pursuit for cycling against all odds is an inspiration.
Lt Col Gaurav Dutta
Ride: Giant SCR 1
Guts, grit and glory are in any case a make up of a soldier and is no different for Lt Col Dutta. While on the call of duty at the LOC in J&K Lt Col Dutta lost his left leg in an anti personnel land mine blast in 2001. A sports enthusiast from childhood and a junior national rowing champion, Col Dutta made this incident which could have been life altering for many into a temporary setback. The army helped him to get back to sports and the artificial limb center designed the required prothetics for him. He even represented India in International wheelchair and amputee World Games and won a bronze medal in Golf!
Lt Col Dutta has taken to serious cycling only recently as he got interested in triathlons.He is prolific on the triathlon circuit having complted 7 sprint distance and 2 super sprints.His ride is a Giant SCR 1. He loves the camarderie amongst the partcipants at all these events and has made friends and offered advise to many. Being a soldier of the most discilpined army of the world mental and physical conditioning come naturally to him and stand him in good stead
From Pune to Thonnur to Goa he has completed many triathlons. He is heartened to see so many events happening and the opportunity they offer the particpants. “I am 48 years old and intend to do a Olympic Triathlon next year and hope to be physically ready for Half Iron Triathlon in 2018, when I turn 50”
All CRANK can say to you Colonel Saab is, ”Salaam and all the best”…and keep inspiring !
Ride : Merida Hybrid
Divij, now based in Bangalore epitomises what sportsmen are made of. Having lost an arm to an elevator mishap in childhood Divij did not let that come in the way of his sporting pursuit. A Cricketer who has represented the West Bengal under 16 team Divij is a born again cyclist. Although he started only recently he is loving it and regularly commutes to work and takes part in amateur competetions. “I love the thrill and It helps me focus, keeps me mentally fresh and is a great way to stay in shape too”, says Divij. A fitness bum to the core Divij trains with a focus on the core, back and leg muscles more than the upper body. He cycles and does his crossfit circuit workouts daily, keeps a check on his diet and generally leads a healthy lifestyle
Divij has completed some interesting and gruelling rides like the Manali to Leh, Bangalore to Malpe to Kudremukh and many other which include some long distance brevets. He has modified his bike to suit his condition. The gear mechanism on the right side has been moved to the left. He uses only the rear brakes while riding and not the front ones. He is now intending to get on to a road bike and is on his way to figuring out modifications that will suit him
A confident youngster with great dreams and who has everything that takes to realize them is what we think of Divij. “I intend to represent the country in all para-cycling events, and am on the look-out for opportunities that would enable me to do the same”
All the best Divij…Ride n Roll !!!
Bharath Godwa Kallare
Ride SCOTT Sportster 40
Meet Bharath from Puttur in Karnataka. A passionate cyclist from childhood, Bharath lost his right arm in a collission with a bus while he was riding a cycle and when he was only 12. After overcoming the initial shock of losing a limb, Bharath settled back to now a different life through sheer determination and hard work. “Everything yet nothing changed for me after that accident”, says Bharath. He bunced back and excelled at all extra curricullar activites at school just like before and later got involved in his families business and life moved along. But somehwhere inside he felt that vacuum which was because he was unable to relive his childhood passion of riding a bike. There was also the memory of the accident and trauma that kept him away from the bike besides the supposed impracticality of it all
That was until last year when he decided to give wind to his passion and bought himself a spanking new hybrid a SCOTT Sportster 40. As it is the lightweight frame and a super responsive disc brake makes the ride smooth but Bharath has made some practical modifcations and customisation to suit his condition. Being a right hander, after the accident Bharath had to depend on his left arm for dexterity which he achieved successfully with some effort. In line with this Bharath has modified his bike in a way that the basic controlling features are on the left side handle. He changed the handle for additional stability and designed both the front and back break levers in such a manner that they are placed together on the left of the handlebar. He has switched to tyres with wider diameter to increase stability. Small innovative tweaks and Bharath is back on the saddle with his original passion ! “I was born to be on a bike” , says Bharath and you can experience that exhileration when he says that. And Bharath is not just your weekend rider, he is a daily commuter inspiring others to do the same….cheers Bharath and as we say…keep riding and smilin
Kabhi Jindagi Se Nahi Harna” (Never get disheartened by your life situations) are the lines of Shekhar Goud who is reattempting a 4000 km Leh to Kanyakumari cycling expedition after failing to complete the first time
Shekhar has had a kind of a back from the dead experience when after a gruesome fall over high voltage electricity lines he was left for dead by a rather irresponsible medial staff. Shekhar literally walked out of a mortuary but the negligence and late treatment cost him two of his limbs. An arm and a leg had to be amputated. A modest background made matters worse financially but the The Artificial Limb Bank Foundation of India came to his rescue and soon Shekhar was picking at strings in his life that were frayed. The foundations Mohana Gandhi encouraged him to be a blade runner and he has already completed 14 full marathons in addition to brevets and ultra cycling
Shekhar is a picture of grit and determination. He wants to represent India in the Tokyo Para Olympics
We salute him and wish him all the luck.
Binay Kumar Sahu
41-year-old Binay Kumar Sahu is a familiar face in the cycling community. His cycle is his second home and is loaded with sleeping tents, utilities and bicycle spares. Binay lost a limb in an unfortunate accident attack but has not let that keep him away from cycling. He is prolific rider, almost an ambassador and clocks several kilometers daily. He has undertaken several long cycling tours like Bangalore to Leh Ladakh and promotes various social causes such as Swatch Bharat and other environment related causes about which he is passionate with almost a nationalistic fervor. Binay wears his passion on his sleeve and that brings out a feeling of charity even amongst complete strangers to towards him and his causes. In a recent such incident in Pune a complete stranger bought him a brand new bike and refused to even tell Binay his name!
“The best part about cycling is that cycling it helps build mental and physical abilities and in turn helps to lead a beautiful life. I feel everyone should ride a cycle at least for 5 km a day”, says Binay
We ditto that Binay. Keep that passion going