The pioneering association in Goan motorsports, the Goa Motor Sports Association (GMSA), headed by the ever-evolving Ashley Gomes is all set to make history next weekend when it hosts the biggest grid event ever in the history of the sport in India – the TVS Sports and Tourism Goa Gold Cup National FMSCI MX Championships 2011-12 at the Gomes Race Track, Anna-Waddo, Candolim.
Forty-four riders, including 9 Goans – the biggest entry list thus far – have confirmed their entries in the Foreign Class itself, thanks to the FMSCI, who have entrusted upon the GMSA the responsibility of hosting all the three rounds of the National MX Championships in November, December and January.
For the first time, this event will be a three-day affair and the first of the three rounds will be held on November 18, 19 and 20 at the Gomes Race track.
It is commendable that Ashley and his team bagged the rights to host a major event of this stature and as always tagged in their ever-growing support from two-wheeler giants TVS, whose team itself has been a force to reckon with over the years in Supercross, when the event used to roar at the Campal parade grounds a few seasons back.
GMSA has really made a big time progress since then, bagging rights for supercross, motocross events of national reckoning and assured the parent body FMSCI, which is presently managed by chairman Mr Vijay Mallya, who himself owns an F1 team – Force India and therefore his overwhelming support to GMSA in awarding the hosting rights for all the three rounds of the first-ever FMSCI MX National Championships in Goa is a welcome sign.
Ashley, himself, acknowledged in an emotional press briefing here on Friday that this has been the biggest achievement of his motorsport career thus far.
He said he was determined to prove that only GMSA deserved to host this event in a big way and possessed all the organisational qualities to stage a history-making event like the MX National Championships. He minced no words in acknowledging the solid backing TVS has been providing GMSA as far as this sport is concerned and since 2003, the association has grown in leaps and bounds. Ashley was quite categorical when he stated that motorsports was the way to go forward in Goa and that GMSA had created the right environment for Goan youth in terms of building a sporting culture to understand the true value of this sport which gelled well with the tourism-infested belt of Calangute and his ultimate aim was to promote tourism and sport to put Goa on the world map. He maintained that the journey thus far has been a long and rewarding one when the erstwhile Goa Racing Association underwent a metamorphosis to the present Goa Motor Sports Association (GMSA) only for the modern generation to witness various events such as supercross, motocross and now the MX National Championships being hosted in Goa.
Ashley proudly stated that Goa now has 13 foreign bikes – the biggest team in the country and is raring to give Team TVS a serious challenge – a fact that was well appreciated by Mr Cecil Dewars, Senior Vice-President, TVS Motor Company, Hosur.
Mr Dewars said he seriously hoped that Goan riders would challenge Team TVS and make the podium. “We expect Team Goa to win, but Team TV also needs to be challenged, needs to know what it means to lose and fight,” the TVS official thundered. Mr Dewars complimented GMSA for their environment-friendly track and for the natural terrains and surrounding the Calangute track had, which made it a unique one in the entire country. “Supercross in man-made, while motocross is God given,” he highlighted.
SAG snubs GMSA proposal
On a concluding note, Ashley lamented that he was also saddened by the cold response shown by SAG as far as the MX National Championships were concerned when the GMSA’s proposal of a ` 3-crore grant (1 crore each for hosting, bike and racing equipments and infrastructure) was turned down by them.
“Basically, the GMSA thought that since a major sporting event was being hosted in Goa, the SAG would come forward and support us with grants. But despite our proposal to SAG that they would get the ticketing rights and an assured sum of ` 25 lakh per round (totalling to ` 75 lakh for 3 rounds), they shockingly snubbed the GMSA proposal,” Ashley disclosed adding that he even got a call from SAG ED, Mr VM Prabhudessai who told him that there were no funds with the SAG to support this event.
“I hope the Government wakes up before the event gets actually started and hopefully makes the best use of the existing situation and extends us the grants,” Ashley stated, praising former CM Mr Manohar Parrikar for his total support to GMSA when the supercross events were held in the state during his reign in 2001-2005. “Post 2005, there has been no support from the government as far as supporting the GMSA initiatives are concerned. I hope the government balances it out and supports GMSA in promoting motorsports and tourism only for the state to benefit in the end,” Ashley summed up.
Classification of riders as per seedings approved by FMSCI: MX1-Yogesh Barguje, Javed Sheikh, Gourav Khatri, Harith Noah, Jatin Jain, Jignesh Patel, Vineet Kurup, Rabbani Mulla, R Prakash, Shabari, C S Santosh, KP Arvind, HK Pradip (all TVS), Alan Sequeira, Md Kadar, Shabuddin Syed (all Goa). MX2 – Jatin Jain, Jignesh Patel, Vineet Kurup, R Prakash, Sabarie Ramkumar, Ankur Limaje, Gaurav Sharma, Amir Dalvi, Shabudin Syed, Rabbani Mulla, Md Kadar, Raju Fernandes. MX3 –Shabuddin Syed (Goa), Ankur Limaje, Gaurav Sharma, Prajyot Priolkar (Goa), Royal Caeiro (Goa), Rajesh Naik (Goa), R Prakash, Shabari Ramkumar, Amir Dalvi, Ritu Matre, Vineet Kurup, Suraj Kute, Yash Pawar, Harshal Kadbale, Rabbani Mulla (Goa), Raju Fernandes (Goa).
Goa On Wheels team wishes all the best to the riders for the Motocross
Info source: Navhind Times