Friday, March 24

Women Motorcycle Diaries: Devika on her motorcycling stories, love for superbikes and track racing

technwheelz: How long have you been riding motorcycle?

Devika: It’s been 5 years. I mean, on public roads. Actually, I used to try controlling the motorcycle, not recommended though, when I was too young for this. That was my favorite part when my father used to take me for a ride somewhere nearby and I used to try different controls of the 2-wheeler.

Then I was very fond of bicycles and never missed a chance to pedal if someone approached me with one. I really struggled hard to get myself balanced on bicycles and has really helped me in riding motorcycles. Learning bicycles, I did fall a lot of times and I was even happy about those bruises. It kept me rolling. So I still love to pedal & it’s healthy though. Then after the age of 15, my interest in motorcycles started growing.

But for me, observing other riders was the only possible thing at that age. Then I used to ask and learn from my family, friends and obviously from internet about basics of controlling bikes and yes I am still learning. Later when I reached the age of freedom😂 I mean, 18, I was really excited to get my driving license. But then I did the greatest mistake ever! The two-wheeler license which I got was of category – without gear . Usually girls prefer to apply for non geared scooter license so the authorities without asking my preference issued a license for me.

As we all know, getting a driving license is so tough, the struggle and so I was just happy with what I got. I can ride atleast !! Later, after two years I got updated my license by adding geared vehicles too. Since then I tried riding motorcycles and never looked back.

technwheelz: Any specific reason you ride for?

Devika: Proud to say, “Just passion”
It makes me more happy and peaceful. Its like a good vibe for me.

technwheelz: Describe on how you got to where you are with motorcycling today.

Devika: When I got my first ride in between my college days, deliberately I started getting late and missing all the college buses available so that I can ride to college covering close to 60 kms daily. That was like once or twice in a week then started doing it on alternative days but within some months itself I started doing it daily basis.

One fine day my college Principal called me in to his cabin and he gave me a piece of paper. It had my scooter’s registration number written on it. Someone resident staying near the college premises complained that I was over speeding on my scooter and I was called to get a clarification on the same. I didn’t utter a word, kept myself calm and said sorry. He even called my parents. But for me, that was my first inspiration. Weird, but true!!
It took no time to realize that if I love to ride like that I must do it on tracks not on public roads.

Gradually, I started following other social media influencers & tried so many bikes after that. Also started watching MotoGP videos. My friends and brothers helped me a lot with their bikes and riding tips. I changed my Instagram account for bikes only with a new ID the_ravenlady_93. Raven means black (my rides are black in colour) also it is one of the sharpest bird’s name. Then 93 for Marquez obviously. These words from Marquez also inspired me a lot – “It’s not a man’s world, women can be very fast on the bike. It’s not only about the physical condition, also it’s about skill and mentality,”
Hope I will ride on tracks someday.

technwheelz: The first motorcycle you started riding/ learnt riding

Devika: That was a Honda Aviator & Bajaj Discover

technwheelz: Your ride now

Devika: Royal Enfield 500x Stealth Black, Honda Dio and Bajaj Discover

technwheelz: Tell us about your motorcycle

Devika: My parents are really scared of me riding sports bikes and hey won’t support SBKs anyhow. That’s because they are fast and powerful. Ninja is my favorite and hope I will buy one soon.
They just trust Royal Enfield and bought the best one that was available on sale – the 500x Stealth Black . But later they launched some good products like the GT & Interceptor. I just love the finishing and colour of my Stealth Black.

Some vibrations can be felt on handle bars riding at higher speed and hope changing or altering the handle bar will help reduce the same. Cruising at speeds less than 80kmph is joyful.

technwheelz: Do you maintain and repair motorcycles on your own?

Devika: I used to wash them myself and once in a while go for a foam wash ride. I know some basic things like oil changing, fixing the brakes, pumping the tyres etc.. But more often my friends do that all for me.

technwheelz: Joined any riding clubs/ motorcycle clubs?

Devika: Yes I’m a part of lot of rider’s clubs. Mainly the ones for girls in Kerala.

technwheelz: Is there a local motorcycling event that you regularly participate?

Devika: Not regularly but whenever I’m free I join the meetups. Its super fun!

technwheelz: 3 things you learnt from motorcycling

Devika: 1. As long as we keep on moving with something we love… We can reach miles. without any bothering…

2. If we are mentally strong enough and really passionate about something.. the physical conditions & the gender doesn’t matter

3. Once we really start working for our passion, the same people who used to demotivate you will starts praising. Just focus on what you want to do..what you want to achieve.

technwheelz: Do you have a motorcycling achievement that you take pride in?

Devika: Not yet. I’m still working for the same. My only dream for now is to ride in the racing tracks. I have some good friends in the field. I shall start participation from this year. Some plannings are going on.

technwheelz: Do you have any motorcycling heroes?

Devika: Marquez, Rossi & Dovi for sure. But I like to specially mention the name of a Dutch rider “Chantal Doortje“. She is a social media influencer. Her pictures always keep me motivated. She owns “Yamaha R6” one of my favorite motorcycles and that is also a reason to follow her.

technwheelz: How are women motorcycle riders treated by most people and by male motorcyclists?

Devika: Most of the passionate and true male riders always support us. I can say proudly that I’m riding bikes only because of them. My friends and my brothers, they guide me with so many good riding tips (and trusted me with their good motorcycles too😂). Being a girl who ride, I can feel the love and respect from so many good hearts.

But it’s still hard for some people to accept the fact that “Bikes are for girls too & it doesn’t know any gender”. We can read it from their eyes. Anyway that’s not their problem, they grown up like that. We have to accept it and just ignore the negativity.

technwheelz: Parents/ Friends- How do they feel of you riding a motorcycle. Any special comments?

Devika: Friends and brothers are really happy about me. They always support me. I can rely on them. I’m really lucky in that, people around me are awesome.

Parents support me for each and everything except sports bikes. They are really scared about powerful super bikes. That’s the reason why we bought Royal Enfield instead of a super bike. I love racing tracks and super bikes. I’m slowly convincing them, it takes some time, I know. Anyway I’m sure they can’t spoil my passion.

technwheelz: The motorcycles you wish / dream to see parked in your garage?

Vedika: I’m into SBKs actually. Anyway I love all bikes and I’ll list my top 20 since you mentioned it as “dream” 😜

Economic: Yamaha R15 and KTM Duke250

Sports & Street: Kawasaki Ninja ZX10RR Winter Edition Black, Kawasaki Ninja H2, Yamaha R6 , Honda CBR650R, Ducati Monster, Ducati Panigale V4, Triumph Daytona, Aprilia RsV4, MV Agusta Brutale, BMW S1000RR, Kawasaki Z800

Cruisers: Jawa Perak (Bobber), Royal Enfield Continental GT650, Triumph Bonneville T120

Classic: Yamaha RD 350, Yamaha RX 5-Speed, Yezdi Roadking

Cafe Racer: Fully Customized Triumph McQueen

technwheelz: Message to other female riders?

Vedika: Just follow your passion, everything else will be in your way eventually. Never mind about what public say or think. They always have something to say. So accept positive responses only. Slowly convince your loved ones if it’s hard for them. Always use safety gears & stay safe. Ride a lot, travel a lot and be happy.

Follow Devika on Instagram:

Interview as told to team technwheelz. Image credits to respective owners

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