———— WHO ————
I am Yogesh Chavan. An IT Engineer by Profession, I am currently working as SEO Head at Mirraw in Mumbai. Out of my many passions, Riding Motorcycle and Exploring new places tops my list currently.
———— WHEN ————
All this started back when I purchased bullet and joined BOTs (a group of an experienced Biking enthusiasts here in Mumbai) for first ride. Being a beginners covering 100 – 200 km was like a big milestone for me. Riding back to back with these experienced individuals I learnt a lot about riding in groups, riding in average high speeds & to face bike problems on long journey. Along the journey, I made few friends Sudeep, Anand & a few others with whom I started riding more.
Overtime, I started getting a good hang over my biking skills & an increase in riding experience for long distances. After that I planned my first long ride to Agra with Anand Panikal. We nearly completed Mumbai to Agra and back to Mumbai in 3 days but while returning back to Mumbai I met with a major accident. On our way back, on Malegaon highway (in Maharashtra) the accident caused my left hand to go into semi paralysis stage. The major reason of accident being improper rest throughout the journey.
Being in 5-6 months of recovery period, Bike riding was like almost done for me. But the passion had just began & hence, slowly I started preparing myself to get back on Road. My family helped a lot in bad time. My dad especially kept motivating me so I can overcome all the pain which I was going through. My friends also supported me during this bad time. This helped me mentally to push myself to get in shape for riding again. (Also the physio therapy did wonders. :P). The pain was worth it & soon enough, I was back in the game. This was also the time I got my all new Mahindra Mojo. Small rides were now a piece of cake.
The day I felt good enough for long ride I decided to go for every bikers ultimate dream – Leh-ladak trip. I decided I would do it & that to solo. This was to overcome all the doubts which were generating in my head overtime. I kicked start from Mumbai and successfully reached Leh-ladak within 3 days. That was the big boost for me to be ready for some more thrilling experiences in future.
Earlier this year in July when I was recuperating, my friend was planning for North-East ride in last quarter of the year & wished if other friends could join him. Fast forward to October, I was well rested after the Leh-Ladak ride in September & after Leh I was also confident that I could stretch more miles. So I decided to ride North-East with my friend but instead of transporting vehicle like my friend, I planned for riding straight from Mumbai to the North-east. Within few days, more ideas started popping up in my head after discussions with friends. Finally after all the build-up, I set my mind for riding West to East & also East to West section of India.
———— WHY ————
Before attempting any records, I gone through many records attempt out of which North- South was attempted by many riders, GQ was attempted by many people and also east-west was attempted by few riders, but both west to east and east to west was attempted by very few people. And I wanted to test my limit so I selected to go for both west to east and east to west of India.
Usually people starts with koteshwar and then go to Arunachal Pradesh, but I reside in Mumbai which is to the west of India. So I came up with idea rather then going to koteshwar its better I start with Mumbai itself and then proceed to Arunachal Pradesh and then ride east-west to Koteshwar. This would complete my map for how I had planned.
———— HOW ————
Unlike Leh-Ladak, there was not much info available on routes & riding conditions for North-east from other rider friends. So I did my research and collected a lot of data. After this, it just hit my mind, why not go for a record attempt also, as the route I was planning was very unique for west to east and east to West. I had the bike, good physical condition & miles munching riding capacity thanks to my previous endeavors. This surely did worry everyone as I had just recovered from a major accident a few months back. So with all goals set I started preparing myself for the biggest challenge of my life.
Normally for such a big ride & also a record attempt, people usually hunt for sponsors. I was planning for this record attempt for very first time. I was collecting info from people for things like – how to initiate with documentation, potential sponsors, etc. My friends and other riders helped me a lot in terms of guiding and pointing me to right direction
But in my head it was clear that rather going towards sponsor I should start with my own budget. I don’t have any records previously and if I would have approached any sponsor, it would have been very difficult for me to make them understand. So I decided to complete the first record and then will go for sponsor for Next record attempts in future.
I selected my own bike Mahindra MOJO for my journey. I have already rode my Bullet and (my friend Sudeep’s) Honda CBR 250 in the past. After riding Mahindra mojo for long time my body was well adapted to the bike. I had anyways done many back to back ride with other friends as well as solo ride. Some of them include –
- Mumbai to Hampi with friend Aniket Mohite,
- Mumbai to Mount abu with Sudeep and Pritam,
- Mumbai to karantaka ride with Sudeep
- Mumbai to Leh ladak Solo ride
Apart from this there were many other rides that made me confident about my Mojo.
Even though bike was not completely launched throughout India, Mahindra team had given their best support throughout my journey.
UPGRADES DONE IN BIKE!
- Installed CEAT (Vertigo Sport) and MRF (Meteor) tyre good for terrain road
- Bolt: to keep mobile and power bank charged
- Bubbler GPS: to keep online track of location
PREPARING MYSELF FOR WORST CONDITION
We all know before starting any big task we are super excited and when the start comes closer, we start consuming more energy thinking what we are missing and are we prepared for all challenge. I was caught up with same things in my head, but in my case lot of thing were cleared because of the leh-ladak trip experience, I had faced many things during that ride like Cold, heat, wind, high altitude sickness, headache & dizziness. The most important thing learned was the drastic change in climate, that I had to face due to relatively quick distances covered in the ride. Also for this kind of challenge I had already rode in different location to gain more experience of climatic change and to analyze how my body will respond to that temperature change.
Many riders do a lot of exercise or yoga and prepare their body for every worst situation which is very good, but in my case I didn’t get a chance to do any of those. The only thing I did was to ride as much as I can whenever I used to get time. Weekends were totally devoted to long rides. I also used my office work as training by working late hrs, sitting in one place for long and working for long durations. The same thing I implemented on ride which helped me riding for longer duration without feeling sleepy. And its normal behavior during work we consume very less food & that too only during break-lunch time or when u leave. So I used to do the same on ride by consuming energy drink only on the few halts. The main focus was to Ride for longer hours, eat less, drink more (Water or energy drink or ORS) and sleep less.
This is how my preparation was for Ride
MAJOR FACTOR IS ON ROAD EXPERIENCE;
- During day rides we need 100% focus on road and 200% focus when riding in night,
- Need to keep our body hydrated and consume light snacks or energy drinks or ORS
- Keep using indicators as well as follow road indications and signals, this helps in reducing accident to a greater extent
- Keep track of vehicles in front by watching their tyres, to avoid pothole and bad patches of road
- Keep left to right focus for animals and humans crossing roads or some vehicle crossing from wrong side