GEARS - Goan Enthusiasts And RiderS
Aaron, Akshay and Carlton
For your club, what does motorcycling stand for?
GEARS is an initiative to bring the biking community in Goa together in a single setting. Our members range in age from 18 to 63 and bikes owned by GEARheads range from ungeared scooters to litre-class superbikes, which is a true testament to the group's versatility! We organize rides and events in and around Goa on a regular basis that help members from all over the state connect with each other and share in the passion that binds them all. GEARS supports and advocates the use of riding gear at all times and this is strictly enforced during group events and encouraged at all times. Motorcycling for us is not a convenience, it is a way of life!
Tell us briefly about the motorcycling ethics followed collectively by your club especially when related to practicing and promoting safe motorcycling?
GEARS understands that motorcycling demands respect and responsibility from riders besides raw passion. Respect for their machines and the limits of their own human capabilities and responsibility for their actions and the results thereof. Riding safety is paramount in our group and we ensure that every member is suitably geared up for our rides and events. GEARheads follow a set riding formation and the group moves at a pace that is ideal for prevalent riding conditions. If, unfortunately, a mishap does occur or a bike develops a mechanical fault, fellow members are always around to assist with getting the rider and their machine back in form.
How would you justify the inherent dangers and risk involved in riding motorcycles?
Riding is risky. Riding in India, far more so! Crashes may occur at any speed, in any situation and on any road surface. Looking at the other side of the same coin, it is the awareness of this danger and overcoming it that translates into the thrill and passion we all experience every time we swing our leg over our machine and ride. Yes, riding is risky but accepting this fact and doing our part to minimize risk is what defines us as true bikers. Employing proper technique and wearing appropriate gear can only enhance our experience. GEARS organizes workshops to help its members improve their skill and technique, resulting in better cornering, braking and riding position, besides yielding other benefits.
Tell us briefly about the 2 most memorable/important motorcycling events organized by or participated in by your club?
GEARS has come a long way since its inception and a couple of events that have contributed to its respected standing amongst the biking fraternity in India today are:
1- The GEARS Solidarity Ride 2013: This was our first (and very successful) attempt to conquer Khardung La. We decided to go with 'plastic' machines having engine capacities of 150cc and 180cc only. This experience helped us learn so much about ourselves, our machines, our riding and how having responsible riders along can be such a blessing!
2- xBhp Grand Indian Roadtrip 2012: xBhp's visit to Goa during the GIR 2012 truly put GEARS on the biking map of India. While many GEARheads have also been xBhpians for years, being part of such a historic event and earning recognition from the people that elevated biking in India to what it is today was truly priceless!
How has your motorcycling club contributed to the society/brotherhood and plan to do so in the years to come?
GEARS has primarily focused on promoting riding safety and proper riding technique in Goa and has also paired this with National holidays like Independence Day and Republic Day (GEARS Freedom Rides and Republic Day Rides, respectively).
The group has earned recognition from local print and television media for its efforts to promote safe and responsible riding in Goa.
GEARS has decided to be more active as a unit to support social causes in the State and is planning to organize events like clothing drives, blood donation camps and biking-related awareness workshops for students and lay persons in the near future.
What are the best and the worst things about motorcycling in India?
Some of the best things about biking in India are the freedom to ride at any time and any where, the limitless riding destinations (deserts, mountains, plains and forests) and the spirit of biking brotherhood that unites riders from all over the nation under a single banner, xBhp being largely responsible for this!
The worst things would probably be the inadequate infrastructure (bad roads) that we encounter around the country which can cause serious injury or even death in some unfortunate circumstances, some ignorant law enforcement personnel who at times target responsible, geared-up bikers instead of the hooligans who give motorcyclists a bad name and the excessive duties and taxes on exotic machinery that keep them out of the reach of so many deserving Indian bikers!