Friday, February 27, 2009

MMSC Track Day Experience - 22nd Feb '09


here are some pics. .

had lots of very safe fun, without maxing out the bike cos' the first priority was safety.

wrote this mini-log for the xBhp forum,

I rode 150 kms on my Unicorn, around 35-40 laps ithink, split in 4 sessions. First three sessions were spent in getting to know the track. On corners, the throttle was open just enough to maintain speed and i was on 5th gear most of the time. Experimented and learned the lines for most corners.

The C8 was a little scary, cos' of the crashes. I guess 3 riders crashed on this corner and the scratch marks leading into the grass made me take it easy all the time.

The C6-C7 ( never ender) was fun when done in 4th, like we stay at full lean for more than 5-6 seconds(ithink) and by exiting at 75-80, i could reach my top end of 105 kmph before braking hard to enter the wicked C8. 105kmph was also possible on the back straight (c3-c4) but not on the home straight, prolly' cos' i was a little scared about the C1 bumps and the front wobble, so took the main straight and C1 easy all the time.

The last session was the best, i tried increasing corner speeds intentionally by staying in 4th all the time, opening the throttle immediately after the apex. Too bad the session ended 4-5 laps after i started riding this way.

I did not push my bike to its limits, but i'm happy it went all good. The surface was really asking to be ridden hard on but i stayed within my limits.

I also found out that i had a 'very' weird riding posture, my head stays cocked against the lean and from the pics i've seen it looks quite crazy. I tried to correct my posture for a few laps, but dropped that after i almost ran into the apex and the cement edge thingy when i tried leaning my head into the corner against my natural posture.

My Unicorn was handled beautifully, not a single washout or slip up the entire time. The hard rear suspension setting does wonders on the track, the front was a little soft this made the bike wobble on C1 but otherwise everything was fine.

The first time i got to see the MMSC track at Sriperumbur was two years back, i went there on my scoot to' watch' superbikes at an official track day. I remember standing near the first corner after the straight and ogling (yep) at the bikes and cars that were on the track. And back then, I was happy just to be there and watch all the action from so close up. And now, to actually ride on the track was some huge dream come true for me.

This is not over with the one track day btw, i'm addicted to track riding and i'll try to save up money and prolly' do this once every 2-3 months. :)


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

On the Civil war in SL....

this post is in response to a question( at least the Q got me started on this issue) raised in a comment on this blog post. I first wrote a huge comment, but then thought i would make a response post on my blog instead. The Q will make more sense if you first read the post and the comments following it.

Yayathy: My question is why Indian politicians keep talking about saving the people there and not about killing LTTE terrorists?

my 2 cents,

The TN political parties that protest the military action in SL are all LTTE supporters. Some, like the MDMK, VCK show their direct support, a few others like the DMK do it indirectly by claiming to support the tamils in SL, and so... they end up supporting the LTTE cos' they 'represent the tamils'. Now, the DMK has a two-pronged approach, while the TN govt. part of the DMK has a more neutral stand ( cos' they still are part of the coalition at the center and cos' they cannot possibly openly support a banned organization accused of assassinating a prime minister) and the DMK party otherwise itself has a pro-LTTE policy very similar/close to the MDMK-like parties.

The AIADMK, in my opinion have a more sensible and ballsy stand on the issue - LTTE does not represent SL tamils and they support the flush out happening right now, but as of now they've gone a little soft from being aggressively 'anti-LTTE' to just supporting the cause of innocent civillians caught in the middle of military action. By refusing to support the LTTE, the ADMK is pissing off its vote bank here in TN (i'm sure the opposition will make JJ's support to the SL govt.' a poll issue by making JJ look totally anti-tamil).

No political party would want to directly diss the LTTE, this is cos' popular opinion in TN is still that the LTTE are 'namma aalunga' fighting for tamil freedom. This sympathy is cos' of a lot of things, starting with 'we share the same language'. The first point that comes up when someone pro-LTTE talks about the situation in SL is the inhuman treatment of tamils by the SL army, closely followed by how the tamils are always treated like dirt, no rights, no dignity etc.

The MDMK site has a page about ' Why we support srilankan tamils' and knowing MDMK-Vaiko that literally reads 'Why I(vaiko) support LTTE'. The page starts off with pictures of corpses of tamils killed supposedly by the SL army in the offensive and goes on ( a rant imo) about the tamils oppression history in SL. I've seen some pics, and even videos of the kind of crap that goes on there, and my heart goes out for the people suffering there and i know the situation is real bad. This does not stop me from knowing that there'll surely be an other side to this.

But, there are people who base their opinion/support for the 'LTTE' on such pics, articles about the inhuman crap that goes on there. And i know of people who're so taken in by this content that they speak about 'how prabhakaran is the only hope for tamils in SL' and how we need a leader like him to further our causes. what crap ?

moving on...

About about your views and the comments on Muthukumar's suicide, i don't think it was as simple as you make it out to be. MK did not take his life after a sudden whim or a flash, but his action was a result of careful thought and was properly planned. I just think he deserves a little more respect than what you've given him, for he is someone who believed in social activism(however harsh). He believed in something, and he was ready to go as far as taking his life for that, i might not actually support the way he chose to channel his activism and i think he could've done more good by living on, and continuing his work.

Read the english translation of his last words here to read his views and to see how involved he was in the tamil cause.

Again, i might not agree on his views in the letter, but i see he was someone who believed in what he stood for and had the balls to do something.

I think i made this a rant myself,..well i hope it adds on to the discussion on this post.

more later..

comments invited btw...


Friday, February 13, 2009

Shop for East Asian Inspired Furniture @...

... lombok.

lombok[dot]co[dot]uk is a website that sells East Asian (to be more particular Indonesian) inspired furniture among other stuff like lighting equipment, home accessories . 'Lom bok' is based in the UK, and they have around 20 outlets all over the country. The site is an online catalogue cum shopping portal targeting their home customers, this is evident from how they don't directly ship orders outside the UK for now, how their pricing is in pound sterling.

The site design is soft and easy to use, the interface is fairly quick, at first it looked like just another basic html template based website, but the design also has a few cool functional flash details like 'mouse over to zoom' for the product catalogues etc. which make the page interesting without slowing it down too much. The pictures of their products are wonderfully shot and the description that accompanies each one of them is complete with info like exact dimensions etc., this should be a great help when you are looking to order furniture online.

The customer service section of the site has useful, well laid-out information about their delivery, return policy and also has other resources for furniture maintenance, warranty claims etc.

Their range is complete with all the furniture, lighting equipment you will ever need inside the house, this includes minor stuff like lamp shades, laundry baskets, candles, log baskets etc. They have products to suit all budget ranges, also the pricing seems pretty value for money to me.

Check out their 20% discount sale on their new Canton designs that goes on till March 2nd, and also their online clearance store for its excellent bargain buys or you could look at their Spring Summer 2009 collection online. You can also request for a complete product catalogue to be mailed over to you for free.


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Track day on 22nd Feb at MMSC

If everything goes by plan, yours truly should hit the track on the said date. Trying to gather gear for now, i'm still a jacket, gloves, knee guards short. This ( if it happens) will be my first track riding experience. The track day is organized by a few chennai xBhpians and is a Pay & Practice session, ie. get your own vehicles - 400 bucks for 2w and 1000 for 4w.

here is a pic of the track,

we'll mostly be running the short loop, i guess the complete lap is open only for 4wheelers or proper track days.

What you need to ride on the track ?

A bike + 400 bucks entry fee + Basic riding gear ( a helmet, a jacket, shoes). The session is from 8am to 1pm and you can ride as much as you want, 30 min sessions with 15-20 min breaks would be the best ithink.

I'm a total noob when it comes to track riding, and even the simple cornering stuff. The track is not just for the good/fast riders, but is a great place to learn and perfect your riding skills. That is what i'm looking to do.


Madras Motor Sports Club site.
Track day discussion thread on xBhp.

more later..


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