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Hit the road Dinesh Reddy: ‘One can still ride fast and be responsible’
Hit the road Dinesh Reddy: ‘One can still ride fast and be responsible’

Dinesh Reddy fuels his need for speed with Red Rooster Racing

Dinesh Reddy was always interested in motorsports as a child, but was at boarding school. “I had no opportunity or ride or drive, and being the only son of my parents, it was a total no no.” As a wide-eyed 12-year-old, Dinesh used to see foreign riders at Kolar and it was love at first sight. “Over the years, with the humdrum of family and children, work and business, the passion for motor-racing and biking took a backseat. Later, I decided to commit to racing after some friends and I decided to do a weekend ride.” That was around six years ago when Dinesh was still the former director of Nutrine Confectionery. “I just rode for 200 metres and the bug had bitten me.” His first superbike was the Honda 929 Fireblade. “It was a bunch of like-minded bike riders who got together and made racing our religion.” The group aged from 20 to their mid-40s grew from eight to 35.

After testing the track in Sriperumbuthur and highways in and around Chennai, they knew that though there was an element of risk in racing, responsible riding was important. “One can still ride fast and be responsible”, he maintains. The group started doing 200-300 km rides once a month in Chennai. “Every Sunday, a group of six riders meet and then we began interacting with younger talented riders who didn’t have the support, direction or sponsorship.” Then, the buzz grew and Dinesh, who is currently on the board of K-Sense Technologies and Suryakiran Enterprises, made time for his passion.

“We then decided to set up Red Rooster Racing to promote Indian rally in the international level.” Red Rooster was started to give the motor racing and biking circle who have been riding informally an identity and a platform for sponsorship and recognition. Red Rooster have participated both in the four-wheeler category of Indian National Rally Championship and JK Tyres Circuit Racing in the Premier class of 1600cc Formula Roll On.

In the two-wheeler category, they have participated in the Malaysian Super Series which is the 1st level of international racing for bikes and Ucal Roll On categories.

Finding the right infrastructure is another project for Dinesh. “It is a huge project where we have identified about 120 acres of land outside Bangalore which is a big challenge of setting up a world-class karting facility with the right equipment so that our riders can have space to practice.” Red Rooster Racing also plans to set up modification shops for cosmetic facelifts and engine rebuilding.

Dinesh Reddy also went on a 57-day bike trip around India travelling through 20 states, climbing mountains as high as 17,000 feet and covered nearly 17,000 km with Navroze Contractor and Bari Kumar, captured in “Bharat Parikrama” — A Journey Around India, filmed by Sanjiv Shah.

Says Dinesh about motorsports in India, “We are still in the nascent stage and scratching the surface, compared to the Scandinavian countries, U.K., Italy and the U.S.A. But there is a potential for talent that needs to be tapped. It just takes the right environment with avid motorsport fans and sports channels broadcasting rallies.” Dinesh wants to get the basics going first. “We have decided to promote the older, experienced talents for recognition, while we train the younger lot.” Dinesh, who loves the Ferrari and McLaren, says that big names like Vijay Mallya go a long way in bringing recognition to the sport in India. “Racing is about the sheer exhilaration of speed, control and technnology and it is extremely de-stressing. It was, is and will always be our religion.” Email dr@redroosterracing.com or visit www.redrooster racing.com

This column features those who veer off the beaten track.

AYESHA MATTHAN

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