Respect Cyclist – World Record at Hubballi
On 26th January, Hubballi Bicycle club took up the challenge of creating world record of highest number of cyclist in a parade of single line which is moving continuously. The objective was to create more respect for cyclist on Indian roads and improve safety for cyclist and of course encourage people into cycling as a lifestyle. The organizers invited me to be part of this record. On 26th January, I had many opportunities to be part of many programs but in the end I chose cycling. So I had to travel all the way to Bangalore and then to Hubballi, just to cycle 4 km and be part of it. In the end it all paid off…!
Road Safety for cyclist has become a major issue in India. I think in-discipline on roads should be treated as a national emergency for India. We have more people dying on roads due to road traffic accidents than diseases these days. The more number of people take up cycling as a lifestyle the more people are vulnerable to accidents by motorcycles and four wheeler. So the objective of the record is to create awareness on road safety for the cyclist and show the strength of the cyclist.
When I reached the venue of the record. Honestly, I was stunned by the level of arrangements made by the organizers. They had put in a massive tent, LCD screens, stalls and massive parking space. The detailing of the venue was extremely well done. We had small children doing Malkhambh and Rope Gymnastics. After sometime we had a formal inauguration of the program from sponsors. This was followed by felicitation and cultural program by different artists from Hubballi. This was followed by lunch for all the participants.
After lunch, all the participants were lined up outside the venue in a holding area. The organizers has to create a massive holding area to make 1500 cyclist assemble in line. After that it took around 45 minutes to make the track ready and the road was totally traffic closed for the world record. I was along with Mahanjan Bandhu in the front. it is a tricky affair. Everyone has to cycle slowly one behind the other. All you have to do is just focus on the rear wheel of the front rider and keep doing this for 4 km and believe that everyone else also will follow the line and maintain the right distance and not create massive gaps. If there is a gap more than 10 meter then the record fails. It sounds very simple to do but very difficult to practically execute. Getting 1500 cyclist to exactly ride at same speed in a single line is not easy. Individual records are easy to control but public records are very difficult to manage and execute.
So we were in the front, everything was going smoothly and we thought the record is done. We all assembled at the other end and it took more than 40 minutes to get the entire single line of cyclist to get assembled at the other end. It is massive amount of time – 40 minutes. After we all got assembled, the organizers told that the first attempt has failed. There were lot of discussion for more than 2 hours and they had to come up with a new strategy. More than 1500 cyclist were waiting patiently for more than 2 hours for the second attempt. The organizers had to create another holding area at the other end of the track. After more than 2.5 hours we started the second attempt, the traffic was entirely blocked for other vehicles. The second attempt was successful with 1235 cyclist cycling in one single line.
All the cyclist again assembled at the venue and official announcement was made. A big enjoyment for all the cyclist who had spent the entire day for this record. Hats off to all the cyclist for patiently waiting and listening to every instruction given by the organizer. It was heartening to know that cyclist from all parts of the country had come to participate in this record. Delhi, Udaipaur, Bnagalore, Kolhapur, Nashik, Belgaum so many cities. Hubballi Bicycle Club had organized a world class event and it will be remembered for a long long time. They had put in one year of preparations for this record. It was more than a massive VIP marriage and cyclist were the real VIPs on 26th Jan 2018 at Hubballi. I would say they have set up a new standard in event organizing. Thanks to the sponsors of the record to support such records of public significance.
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