Club Hub Featured Club: G.O.D.S Club Hub is a dedicated section for Motorcycle Clubs in India, featuring one club at a time. We aim at highlighting India's most eminent and prestigious motorcycle clubs under this section. In this article, we feature Group of Delhi Superbikers.
G.O.D.S have a single, common passion in life - Superbikes & Biking!
Can you please take us through your journey with G.O.D.S and your inspiration behind setting up this group?
My fascinating journey with motorcycles started in the year 1984 when I just completed my MBBS & Yamaha came out with the gorgeous RD350. It was love at first sight & the starting of my life in a way. I still have it in a mint condition & will never let it go till I am alive. It was an addiction & soon enough I got my hands on a superbike in 1986-the Kawasaki 440 LTD, a 4 stroke parallel twin. The whole world used to drool over it when I rode it, such a rarity it was in those days when such bikes were a distant dream for many. Its presence & the feel just got me addicted more & more to the world of motorcycles. These 2 bikes taught me a lot also in terms of maintenance & upkeep & in those days without the internet, spares or good mechanics it was a do it yourself thing, sometimes it worked & sometimes it didn’t but that was the best part, it made me work a lot harder to achieve perfection; can’t forget those late nights in the garage trying to sort out problems over n number of cups of coffee, sometimes having sleepless nights worrying whether the bike would get all right or not- amazing stuff if I look back now.
After ‘86 many superbikes came & went through my garage & I adored every one of them and they were all very special to me & they taught me a lot. I used to ride a lot, obviously alone because there was not even a single superbike owner in the city in those days. From 1984 to 1998 it was a solo journey but luckily in ‘98 I came to know that one Mr. Rais Mohammed had a superbike & I then finally hunted him down & so began the journey leading to the formation of GODS. On one of the routine Sunday breakfast ride suddenly out of the blue, the name-GODS- group of Delhi’s Superbikers struck me & Rais bhai was overwhelmed & I immediately decided to register it.
After riding solo for so many years, riding with other likeminded person was a revelation. The fun was doubled & the conversation over breakfast was just about motorcycles & more motorcycles. It was then when I decided to induct more such likeminded members but I was clear that I needed educated & mature people who were genuine bikers & not show offs. Quality was important & not quantity. In the next two years as some superbikes entered Delhi , the groups number rose to 10 by the year 2000. We used to have sleepless night before every Sunday ride, such was the addiction & people used to stare in amazement when 10 superbikes used to hit the roads; what a feeling it was & still is.
That’s how the group was formed, no inspiration as such but my burning desire to collect mature superbike riders together in one group & to enjoy this wonderful passion together with safety being the top priority & that’s the reason I kept some strict selection criteria which are followed religiously till today- minimum age-25 years; minimum bike-600cc; minimum 1 year riding experience & finally the educational & professional background.
What was the concept behind instituting a name to describe your club?
Right since its inception, the group’s focus has been to enjoy motorcycling together as a family giving safety the top priority. During all these years we have strived hard to give a very positive image to motorcycling which was once considered a hooligans prerogative, though I think we have succeeded but we still have a long way to go. The society now accepts educated people riding motorcycles but our group wants the hooliganism associated with motorcycling to be totally eradicated forever & that’s why we regularly keep doing safety rides with some NGO’s & the traffic police. No one in the group rides without the safety gear irrespective of the weather & this philosophy is automatically inculcated in the young riders who regularly are in touch with us every day on the social media-80,000 & counting on facebook. I personally get 10-15 messages & mails everyday regarding issues related to bikes and biking & every time I stress the importance of being a responsible rider & I am really happy when these young kids agree with me completely.
This has been the focus of GODS & always will be.
What is the focus of your club going further in the years to come and what keeps the spirit alive?
The spirit of the club is kept alive by its wonderful members & their extreme love for their machines. There are no fights, no ego issues & everyone just follows whatever I say coz they believe that Doc can never guide them wrongly & he’s the sole reason that they are all together and I really love them for that. Apart from the routine Sunday rides which have been happening since 1998, we always do one extreme outstation trip a year spanning 10-12 days & it generally includes leh/ladakh; spiti valley; sach pass etc & everybody looks forward to it every year. Such is the addiction despite riding in mind numbing cold, no roads & stratospheric heights (we recently did the Marsimikla Pass- the world’s highest at 19,000ft). That’s the spirit & that’s what keeps us going.
Last year in September, 37 of GODS riders did north of Thailand, a record of sorts & almost twice a month there is always some event happening in the city where GODS are invited. In the recently concluded JK Tyre championships at the Buddh International Circuit, GODS occupied all the 3 podium positions having the best times in the country & creating a record in the process.
Let us know key highlights or motivators towards the growth of?
From scaling Marsimikla without the roads & bagging all three spots on the race track, GODS have achieved all these feats because of their never ending spirit to ride till the end.
What are the most memorable rides of G.O.D.S and what are the rides planned which will mark another milestone in your achievements?
I don’t know where to start regarding our most memorable rides because there are so many but I would definitely name a few:
Marsimikla- the world’s highest pass at 19,000ft was conquered by GODS this year in june. 22 riders achieved this feat in the worst possible riding conditions-sub zero temperatures, mind & body numbing cold, insane heights & no roads; but we enjoyed each & every moment of it.
North Thailand- 37 GODS riders created a record of sorts when they rode for 8 days in northern Thailand in September 2013. The riders were spread over 4 kms & what a sight it was when the whole group rode in a formation.
Spiti Valley Extreme- this was GODS 2nd trip to Spiti & it was double the fun. Camping at Chandertaal lake was reason enough to undertake this treacherous trip as there were absolutely no roads for the major part of the route starting from Shimla & coming out at Rohtang pass but it was worth every stone.
GODS & Team Mahi Racing- it was an honor when the Indian cricket team’s captain, M.S.Dhoni’s MAHI Racing invited GODS exclusively to the Buddh International track in march 2013 to ride with two of their international riders; Kenan Sofuoglu & Fabian Foret. A fabulous day it was for GODS & a matter of pride. The interaction with the riders & the techniques learned on the track that day was simply an out of the world experience.
Nubra Valley 2012- the stunning Leh/Ladakh was again done by GODS for the 5th time but this time they went beyond the Khardungla Pass into the Nubra Valley- the valley of grey sand dunes & double humped camels. Again, words cannot describe the amazing journey, one has to experience it.
Sach Pass-Oct 2012- we got bored doing Leh-Ladakh so we thought that this time something new had to one & hence Sach pass was conquered. This beautiful route connects 2 states –Himachal Pradesh and J & K. You ascend & cross Sach pass & come out on to Rohtang pass after 200kms & boy what a route it was. The most beautiful interiors of India with small villages in the mountains which are totally cut off from the world in terms of progress. Time stands still there & you don’t feel like leaving from this mystic land.
GODS 2012 calendar launch- we were the first motorcycling group to launch their own biking calendar. Amazing riding shots taken in Delhi’s winters of the GODS riders in some breath taking environments e.g. a container depot. The launch at Hotel Claridges was outstanding with all the 2 wheeler industry’s top honchos in attendance.
Like I said earlier, I cannot describe all the memorable trips that we have undertaken so far but the ones mentioned above were some of the best. The future scene is also very bright & happening as we are finalizing a trip to Bhutan in April 2015 (approx 20 riders at least), before that some riders will be riding to Goa for the India Bike Week in Feb. After taking 37 riders to Thailand I had decided to do at least 1 international biking trip a year & if all goes well then I plan to take the group out in September or October 2015, not counting Bhutan.
What distinguishes G.O.D.S from other clubs in the country?
There are many things which separate us from others but mainly it’s the mature handling of this risky passion specially the taming of the ferocious monsters known as superbikes. Safety has been the top most priority for the group followed by selection of mature riders. People make a country & similarly nice, educated & mature riders make a respectable group.
Now that biking culture is growing, how would you plan to spread awareness among bikers to be a part of clubs?
GODS is the 1st & the largest Superbiking group of the country. People have always been motivated & inspired by GODS & we plan to continue this sentiment amongst the public by doing what we do best- riding maturely & giving biking a very positive image. Thanks to the internet, we keep posting all our events including safety rides & keep answering each & every query on any topic related to motorcycling and in this way guiding upcoming riders in the right direction. I am proud to say that many clubs have come up because of GODS. I personally answer all the questions & have helped many clubs in getting themselves registered & in formulating some important rules. Our presence on the internet has really spread the awareness about group riding & the positive aspects of motorcycling.
How do bikers outside your city participate in the events organised by your club?
Sadly the bikers not present in our city cannot be a part of the regular riding activities or events of the club, they can only see them on the internet.
How does your club ensure Safety during rides/how do you promote safety?
Like I had mentioned earlier, safety has been the key point with GODS since its inception & we ensure that no matter what ,no rider comes for the rides or events without his/her riding gear, also a formation riding is a must with nobody overtaking the leader.
Our riding format consists of one leader & one sweeper who brings up the rear & the newly inducted riders stick with the sweeper for a minimum of 4 rides i.e. a month. They are assessed regularly & corrected if not riding properly. A proper gap is also maintained between the riders & it becomes very important for us because of the huge numbers.
What is procedure one has to go about to join your club & what are the other skill sets that the group is on the lookout for besides a passion for biking?
We follow some very strict rules when it comes to selection of the group members & this are;
Minimum age 25years; minimum bike 600cc; minimum 1 year superbike riding experience; the educational/professional back ground & finally an interview where the nature & maturity of the person is assessed. GODS have always been about quality & not quantity & that’s the reason that apart from a good rider the person has to be a good human being first & a good education certainly helps. Minimum 25years age criteria was kept so that the rider gets used to the superbike on his own first before applying for membership; it instills a lot of confidence & over a couple of years he’s not afraid of the machine & the driving conditions anymore.
I personally talk to the candidate first over the phone & if I find him to be sensible & well mannered then only I invite him for the interview where I along with 3-4 senior members have an informal chat about his work & riding experience; if we all are satisfied then the new guy is inducted into the group. I have deliberately not kept any joining fee or other monetary compulsions as it’s not our profession & I feel money should never be involved amongst friends, the main focus should be biking.
These criteria were kept after a lot of deliberation & after our initial first hand experiences which were not pleasant at all and that’s the reason you will find lots of mature people from different professions in the group, e.g. doctors, pilots, ceo’s, bankers, ex-army men, businessmen etc. Also we don’t differentiate which kind of superbike the person is riding as long as its 600cc or above & that’s why GODS has some of the most amazing superbike collection in the world!