21 years of age Sayali Milind Maharao from Mumbai has evolved as someone who has been breaking barriers and going out of her comfort with every single ride of her career.
She recently participated in a 2 days North Quest Challenge in the amateur category in Ladakh.
The first day there were 6 girls but on the second day, there were only four girls including Sayali.
When asked about the race, she said she did not get any technical support in the middle of the race. While she questioned, organisers responded they do not provide support for the amateur category; which did upset her but she had no choice. "I didn't perform as per my expectations but it's okay for me, maybe I will try to give my best in another race", said Sayali.
She had to complete 3 laps in total where her bicycle tyres failed in between 2 loops. But somehow she managed to finish the second loop. By then the other competing girls already finished all the three loops. Due to the technical issue, it took her another half n hour to reach to the camp where they declared DNF (Did Not Finish) for Sayali.
When asked about the frequent failure of tyres, she mentioned it was an off-road race so you cannot predict where or when your tyres might fail.
On her first day, her bicycle chain kept coming off (4 times) and the wind was too strong. She found it hard to keep steady and often felt blown off. She felt she couldn't give her best. But she never gave up, she finished all three loops with 12 km in her first day and good timing for the 5th place.
She is looking forward toward the next race. Her thoughts about participating in the upcoming Nationals is that she rather plan to go to Gwalior for the mountaineering course which will help in gaining more points in NCC.
Sayali also expressed gratitude to all her supporters specially freeride and other people who have helped her to participate.
All pictures are from Sayali Milind Maharao.