Deliberate damage to Rajini Krishnan's bike ruins JK Tyre championship finale
Indian motorsport's bike division has been hit by a fresh controversy.
The JK Tyre National Racing Championship at the Buddh International Circuit over the weekend was marred with a fresh controversy arising in the Superbike 1000cc category on Saturday morning.
A statement from nine-time National champion Rajini Krishnan on his Racr academy Facebook page, brought out in light the differences between some of the riders competing in the category.
Krishnan, who was racing to break the lap record, took pole in the 1000cc class on Friday - alleged that his Kawasaki Ninja ZX 10R was tampered with in the pits, late on Friday night when everyone left the circuit for the day.
The next morning, when Krishnan and his team arrived to prepare his bike for the race, they found water in the fuel tank - which destroyed the whole engine, preventing him from racing in both the scheduled races.
The statement read: "I was on pole in qualifying yesterday [Friday] and was hoping for a good race today [Saturday]. Yesterday after qualifying, someone poured water inside my petrol tank with intention of preventing me from racing.
"My engine has been destroyed and I have been [am] unable to take part in the race. It is a sad day in Indian Motorsports, where bikes kept in a secured pit garage, is tampered with. I am very disappointed. It has never happened to me in all my years of racing either in India or abroad.
"For my experience and achievements I did not need to race at the JK championship , I just rode so that the Delhi fans will get to see a professional superbike racer in action and to set a official lap record. But unfortunately jealous rivals don't want that to happen.
"They seem to be powerful enough to change the rules. We were told today by the race officials that we could not race our team bikes with our tire supplier "Pirelli " stickers on the bike today. There is no rule that a tire suppliers sticker cannot be stuck on a bike.
"It is arbitrary rule, made overnight. The whole episode is very depressing, hope Indian racing will not go to lower depths and discourage talented racers from racing."
The 36-year-old's team informed the organisers JK Tyre, as well the governing body Federation of Motor Sports Clubs of India (FMSCI) about the incident, but no official complaint was registered, since Krishnan didn't wanted himself to be dragged into another controversy.
With the garages very close to each other, it is said that it provided for an easy access to one's rival's pits for anyone inside and with the CCTV at BIC also not working, it added for more dramas to find the eventual culprit, if any.
It hasn't been a smooth sailing for Krishnan in the Superbike category after last year his weekend was marred with a crash due to brake failure. After Krishnan's issues, Racr's Ritesh Sapre also pulled out of last weekend's races.
The only Racr rider to compete was Anand Nagarajan, who raced in the Superbike 600cc, finishing second in both the races - in the first race he was third, but was promoted to second after disqualification of the winner.
The social media has promptly taken up the matter and the support for Krishnan has been immense. The fans have alleged Delhi riders Manmeet Singh, Gurvindersingh Matharu and Simran Singh as the culprits, since the riders had mocked Krishnan in the past.
However, Krishnan ruled them out since the riders apologised for their behaviour and that they friends now. "We had resolved the previous issue with Manmeet Singh and we are actually good friends. We do not think Manmeet or our other friends Gurvindersingh Matharu or Simran King were involved in any way in the sabotage," said Krishnan.
"We have never blamed anybody for it and I request everyone not to make any personal accusations against anybody .We do not know who has done it and don't know whom to suspect.We do not wish to make this matter personal."
Full statements and pictures of the damage can be found below: