The Federation of International Motorcycling has appointed Alisha Abdullah as the Indian representative for women in motorcycling upon the recommendation of Federation of Motor Sport Club of India.
Abdullah, an experienced bike and touring car racer, will be the contact person from India for FIM Women in Motorcycling Commission.
"As FIM Women's Commission contact person, Ms. Alisha Abdullah will be part of a global network including the FIM and its affiliated National Federations," the statement from FIM read.
"The objective of this network is to share dedicated information and useful documents regarding women in motorcycling but also promote and showcase the local initiatives and projects implemented and developed by the FMNs and give them exposure and visibility."
Speaking to Motorsport.com, Abdullah said: "It’s such a big opportunity for me. For the past year, talks were going on. This year it finally happened so it’s a very big honour.
"Now, it’s a lot of pressure on me. Hopefully, I will do very well in this."
Abdullah revealed that she has been in touch with the FIM for the past two years since she was invited to undertake training in Spain, which she couldn't do because of visa issues.
Her prime role being the Indian representative will be to get more girls into motorsport.
"I came out with a full-fledged [academy]. I’m going to colleges and getting girls registered for the academy," she said.
"I’m trying to get the best girls in India because I’ve been given such a big responsibility.
"I have a container where the girls can get the bikes inside and come for practice. I train girls individually," she continued.
"So, all the reports I do, and all the media things I do, I send them [FIM] a copy of it and they see my interest in this.
"And they’ve [FMSCI] selected me to choose the girls for India. So, that’s pretty exciting," she added.
Women need to work harder
Abdullah believes her female counterparts need to work harder and practice more to match the male performers on track.
"Generally, the girls aren’t fit enough to be competitive to men. I’m not putting myself higher, but it’s a truth," she said.
"I’ve seen a girl falling while standing. I think they have to have a lot of practice and a lot of training to push them hard.
"It will take some years to compete with the men, especially in bike racing because they are like really wild and girls are on the softer side," she continued.
Abdullah, thus, came with an idea to train girl riders with boys in her academy in India.
"That’s why in my classes, I’m training the girls with two other guys. I don’t train my girls with girls."
Elaborating more on her training regime, she said: "One of the best training sessions with every individual I train, I take them to every corner."
"I have a file, when they go out, I read the timing out. But when they come in and tell me what the problem is, I make sure I go stand there and I make sure they are fast enough.
"If I tell them, go there, don’t be scared, and they have to do it, they do it. Apart from that, I train them individually. I do physically training.
"I train them on what they are weak in. Apart from getting girls from different places, it’s very challenging getting girls to come down [in South].
"But I’m giving all my skill and all my knowledge to them."
Interview by Rachit Thukral