19-25 December 2014 #737

The biker

Senchelung Limbu, Himal Khabarpatrika, 18 December

Thirty-year-old Ashish Kumar Shakya went to America seven years ago with only a driving license in his wallet. Today, he is a professional superbike racer and a racing coach based in the US and has participated in races in India, Malaysia, and Australia.

In 2010 Ashish was named the rookie level ‘Suzuki 650 cc Class Champion’ and became the expert level ‘Yamaha 600cc Class Champion’ in 2011 and 2012. Last summer, he won 31 out of the 33 races he participated in.

“My passion for bikes and hardwork has earned me this success,” says Ashish whose professional career started after he placed in the top five of ‘rookie air level’. As a child, Ashish rode his father’s old motorcycle and practiced his stunts in MotoGP. It was only after going to the US that the biker got to test out sports bikes.

Ashish races in expert class races in Central Roadracing Association and Midwest Karting Association both of which are considered professional superbike racing in the US. Ashish’s dream is to participate in the World MotoGP Championship, but he admits he has been spending more time coaching than racing.

“Superbike racing is not only dangerous but also expensive,” he says. But with sponsorship from companies including Kawasaki, Bridgestone, EBC, GoPro and Super 8, his goal doesn’t seem far-fetched.