The go-fast girl, Alisha Abdullah, is officially the first and only female professional motorcycle racer in India. It is extraordinarily difficult for women to achieve success in any career in male-dominated India, one of the most female-oppressive countries in the world. Additionally, Ms. Abdullah faces consternation among Muslim men, who base their mistreatment of females on their religious beliefs. When asked how she feels about the uphill struggle she endures, Alisha said on her site, “It’s all in your mind! Nothing is impossible! I got put down, mocked, and what not, but I believe that’s how you become stronger.”
A Fast Woman in a Man’s World
Alisha started racing at age 9 on go-karts, and she was winning races at 11. At 13, she won the MRF Indian National Go-Karting Championship. She also nailed the Top Novice award for National Formula 4 Auto Racing. Then she switched to bikes; running a Formula Car was just too expensive for her father, R.A. Abdullah. In addition, R.A., as a former motorcycle champion himself, always wanted his daughter to race bikes. Since then, her motorbike career is a matter of record.
Advocacy for Women Racing Superbikes
Alisha is a fervent promoter of women in superbike competitions; both at home and abroad. Ms. Abdullah acted as a celebrity advocate at the recent Women’s Road Racing Training Camp in Albacete, Spain. The first-time event was organized by the Women in Motorcycling Commission (WMC), a wing of the Federation of International Motorcycling (FIM). As stated by WMC official Nita Korhonen, the event shows “that there is a real existing potential in road racing [among women] that has to be supported and developed.”
How a Woman Rider Gets Into Superbike Racing
If you’re interested in track racing, chances are you already ride a sport bike on the street. With that experience and the assumption that you already took an on-road riding course, you can sign up for Racing School. There are many fine programs around the country, including several that have recently developed courses specifically for the ladies. One of the first to teach women-only classes is California Superbike School.
Don’t Forget to Bring the Right Gear Along
Before you head out for Track Day, you should check with the school about allowable or recommended riding apparel and/or motorcycle modifications (if you’re taking your own bike). In addition to renting the bikes, most, if not all, operators will have proper equipment available for rent. If your stuff doesn’t meet the guidelines, you can save money on anything you need in the way of motorcycle accessories from BikeBandit, one of the biggest motorcycle parts distributors on the Internet.
Join a Club
You should join one or more of the national racing organizations in order to participate in their rides and races. One is the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA), the mac-daddy of motorsports racing events, from little kids’ motocross to International Moto GP championships. For more races at the amateur level (they have Pro Series as well), contact WERA Motorcycle Roadracing. WERA headquarters are in Canton, Ga., but their racing schedule covers the entire U.S.