COLUMNS

Evo India - - CONTENTS -

Bijoy Ku­mar, Adil Jal Darukhanawala, Karun Chand­hok, Richard Meaden and Ted Kravitz

IDON’T KNOW WHAT TO BE HAP­PIER ABOUT when news came in last month on the clas­sic and vin­tage car and bike scene in In­dia. Do take in the word ‘bike’ be­cause this is most sig­nif­i­cant and which some­how, or more of­ten than not gets glossed over by the glo­ri­ous cars that we have in our land. OK, this isn’t about car ver­sus bike or such but just plain out­lin­ing the fact that there is a thriv­ing mo­tor­cy­cle her­itage scene on­go­ing in the land. This has cul­mi­nated in prob­a­bly the first time any In­dian en­try in an in­ter­na­tional clas­sic mo­tor­ing event has re­sulted in best of show be­ing won by an In­dian-owned, In­dian-re­stored In­dian mo­tor­cy­cle!

The scene at The Quail – A Mo­tor­sports Gather­ing run in the Mon­terey penin­sula in the last week of Au­gust this year to cel­e­brate the mo­tor­car and mo­tor­cy­cle at around the same time as the Peb­ble Beach Con­cours d’El­e­gance was a red-let­ter day for the art of mo­tor­cy­cle restora­tion and cel­e­bra­tion of our In­dian crafts­men. The 1947 In­dian Chief Road­mas­ter, for­merly of the Ma­haraja of Pa­tiala (and sport­ing his own per­son­alised num­ber plate PAT 1) was daz­zling to say the least and not just be­cause it was fin­ished in sun­shine yel­low but also be­cause it was exquisitely done up to as orig­i­nal as it could have been when it rolled off the In­dian Mo­tor­cy­cle works some 70 years ago! Ar­jun Oberoi who bought the bike off the Pa­tiala roy­als had en­trusted it to Gur­mukh Singh Sahl who painstak­ingly re­stored it to not just bag Best of Show at the 2017 Cartier ‘Travel with Style’ Con­cours d’El­e­gance in Hy­der­abad but his and In­dian mo­tor­cy­cling’s big win came at The Quail. Doff my hat to both Ar­jun and Gur­mukh and long may this spur many oth­ers to em­u­late them.

The sec­ond big de­tail that is just as sweet to the ears and eyes was the fact that the man who has done so much for the cause of the clas­sic and vin­tage car move­ment – Rana Man­ven­dra Singh of Bar­wani was hon­oured in grand style at the Peb­ble Beach Con­cours d’El­e­gance. Now keep­ing aside the fact that I have known Man­ven­dra for the last 34 years or so, I can clearly say that he in in his own un­der­stated man­ner has done yeo­man ser­vice to the her­itage car move­ment in In­dia. That he was tasked with cu­rat­ing

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