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FIM MiniGP World Series India 2022: Bengaluru girl Nithila Das breaks new grounds and the gender barriers

Nithila Das

At an age when kids crawl with their toys, Nithila Das developed a passion for riding bikes and it was kind of a dream-come-true for the 12-year old when the Bengaluru-based girl made an impressive debut in the opening round of FIM MiniGP World Series India 2022 at the Meco Kartopia circuit in the Garden City.

Breaking the stereotype that motorsports is a male-dominated sport, Nithila broke the gender barriers to prove her class.

The FIM MiniGP World Series India, being held under the aegis of the Federation of Motor Sports Clubs of India (FMSCI) is part of the global programme, comprising 15 countries, and initiated by the FIM -- motorsport's global governing body for two-wheeler racing, in conjunction with Dorna Sports, the commercial rights holders of MotoGP.

All the five rounds are being run on karting tracks that meet minimum standards set by the FIM and FMSCI.

Each round comprises two races. In the first round held in Bengaluru on July 23 and 24, Nithila, who was the only girl among four riders who competed, completed both the races, finishing in sixth and fifth positions respectively.

"I'm so happy to have competed in a World Series. The bike was really powerful and I really enjoyed it. I thank my family, friends and relatives for the support they've given me which has helped to pursue my passion," said Nithila, the 7th Grade student of 21K school in Vasanth Nagar, Bengaluru.

Over to Hyderabad

Over to Hyderabad

Coming from a family who are hooked to motorsports, it will not be a surprise to know that Nithila's brother too is keen on following his sister into the sport, though he is ready to play the waiting game as the series is for the above 10 category.

The FIM MiniGP World Series India moves to Hyderabad for the next two rounds (August 20-21 and August 27-28) before returning to Bengaluru for the final two rounds (September 10-11 and September 24-25).

Road To MotoGP

Road To MotoGP

For the records, FIM and Dorna had together launched the MiniGP Series in 2021, as part of the Road To MotoGP programme.

The MiniGP India Series is expected to create a level-playing-field in which young riders can compete, gain experience and sharpen their skills.

Best on the grid

Best on the grid

As ever, the best riders will qualify for the FIM MiniGP world final alongside the top riders from each series, with the possibility of promotions up for grabs on the Road to MotoGP.

India, along with Australia, Austria, Indonesia, Japan and Qatar are the new additions to the Series that already includes 10 other countries -- France, Ireland, Italy, Malaysia, the Netherlands, North America, Portugal, Spain, the UK and Alpe-Adria.

Selection trials

Selection trials

The children, who made it to the first batch of riders, were screened by experts during a selection trials at the Meco Kartopia track in the first week of July.

The uniqueness of the India series is that Ohvale, the reputed Italian manufacturer, is providing mini bikes and full racing kits besides service at no cost to the competitors.

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Story first published: Wednesday, July 27, 2022, 21:52 [IST]
Other articles published on Jul 27, 2022