Avik Anwar won Race 2 of the Volkswagen Ameo Cup Class in India in June this year to become the first Bangladeshi to win an international motorsports event, and flew for Chennai Wednesday afternoon to take part in the last round of the same series (Indian National Touring Car Championship 2019), scheduled to be held at Madras Motor Race Track from Friday to Sunday
Bangladesh may not be the right place for an ambitious motor racer, due to the absence of worthy race tracks available in the country, but there are a few with big dreams, like Avik Anwar, who has been racing against the odds to fly the red and green flag in the international motorsports event.
Avik won Race 2 of the Volkswagen Ameo Cup Class in India in June this year to become the first Bangladeshi to win an international motorsports event, and flew for Chennai Wednesday afternoon to take part in the last round of the same series (Indian National Touring Car Championship 2019), scheduled to be held at Madras Motor Race Track from Friday to Sunday.
Avik was in a hurry to catch the flight while talking to Dhaka Tribune over phone, but couldn’t hide the excitement to try his luck at Madras Track, which was designed by Formula 1 legend Sir Jackie Stewart.
Having finished fourth in the last two years, Avik is more confident this time around while setting his target to finish among the top three in the 2019 series, featuring 10 races with practice, qualifying and race day.
Avik Anwar won the @VWGroup Ameo Cup held in India Sunday to become the first Bangladeshi to win an international motor sports event.https://t.co/bvSrTEZh36#AVIKANWAR #AVIK #ANWAR #AMEOCUP #AMEO #CUP #BANGLADESH #VOLKSWAGEN #VW #AC #GROUP #VOLKSWAGENGROUP #MOTORSPORTS #MOTOR— Dhaka Tribune Sports (@Sport_DT) June 24, 2019
“It requires 50% talent and 50% luck,” said Avik, before adding, “I can’t say about the luck because car problems can happen anytime, I can only hope that luck favors me. I will give my best effort. My target is to finish among the top three and fly the Bangladesh flag on the podium.”
Another Bangladesh racer Affan Sadat accompanied Avik in the same event the last two years, but this time Affan’s 16-year old younger brother Aiman Sadat will represent Bangladesh alongside Avik in India’s premier racing event.
Aiman finished runners-up, behind Avik, in June’s Race 2, which was held at Kari Motor Speedway in Coimbatore.
“This time myself and Aiman are participating in the last round of the Indian National Touring Car Championship 2019 in Volkswagen Ameo Cup Class. There will be three races this weekend Saturday (one race) and Sunday (two races). Qualifying is [Friday] and every driver must qualify,” Avik added.
Ameo Class Race 2:June 23, 2019
Winner - Avik Anwar (#17)
Runner-up - Aiman Sadat (#11)
Second runner-up - Anmol Singh (#6)#AmeoClass #MRFRacing #VolkswagenChampionship #MMSC #FMSCI #VolkswagenMotorsport pic.twitter.com/pnbQwywgps
Owing to a lack of race tracks in the country, Avik, the three-time local Rallycross Championship winner, had to depend on simulation driving to do the practice virtually and prepare him for the mega event, which he measured as 50% of the actual track driving.
“It doesn’t give you the fulfillment of the practice because you do it sitting on an AC room while there could be rain or dust on the wind shield during the actual race without mentioning many other factors,” Avik explained.
Canon JAN Associates and Car House Limited are sponsoring Avik for this race while Momentum Motorsports is his driving coach in India.
“They (Momentum) see my onboard camera footage and data from the car's electronic control unit and tell me which lines to take and when to accelerate and fix my braking point,” said Avik.
Avik earlier termed 2019 as a memorable year for his challenging career.
It was only last month he became the first Bangladeshi to secure third place in a Malaysian race circuit when he bagged bronze medal in Race 2 of round four of the 2019 Malaysia Championship series at Sepang International Circuit, a F1 track.
Avik has bigger dreams for the coming years.
“My ultimate goal is to participate as a Bangladeshi in the most prestigious racing series LeMans 24 Hour (24 Hours of Le Mans, the oldest active sports car race in the world)," said Avik.