A double target for Jatti
AVINASH NAIRAVINASH NAIR
Channu Jatti is on a mission to promote motocross and archery. He is setting up world-class facilities for them in the city
MOTOCROSS AND archery! One would surely wonder what the link us. To be frank, there is none but for the fact that the second grandson of former Indian vice-president B.D. Jatti, Channu Jatti, has taken up the onus of promoting these two vastly varied sports and put India on the World map in both.
The 29-year-old Channu is driven by passion. Curbed from driving in races or even taking up motor racing as a serious hobby by his parents, Channu pursued his interest in the sport during his stay in Australia where he completed his Business Management course. It was the six-month stay after his study that enabled Channu to learn more about the racing scenario. The venues at Sydney and Brisbane paved the way for the Jatti Motors tying up with former National champion Shyam Kothari and setting up the National Motocross Academy in Bangalore. But that is only one side of Channu's dream.
"True, it was a dream come true when the National Motocross Academy took shape and the ball was set rolling in May this year. And it indeed has been challenging. The National Archery Academy coming up in the same vicinity is off paramount importance as well."
Pat comes the reply. "Archery is something that we have been learning and reading from our Puranas. And despite some pockets in the country, this sport has not actually been given its importance. That is one area I intend addressing," says Channu.
"We have been drilled with the exploits of Arjuna, Karna, and Ekalavya, but where is the sport now? It is dying. If something can be done to revive the sport and we can produce a few champions down the line, then I shall give it my best. We need infrastructure in place and that is what I am providing for now," asserts Channu.
The discussion invariably veers back to motocross for which help and coordination from former National champion Shyam Kothari resulted in the development and design of a course on the outskirts of Bangalore.
"The booking for sessions is brimming. We are booked till August-end. And again thanks to Shyam, we have roped in Vikas Mankar, a National Games team coach from Pune to spearhead the activities. SAI coach Prakash Gangadhar will help in the day-to-day running of the academy."
"Both Vikas and Prakash seem to be in the same mould as we are and that has given me more impetus," feels Channu. The equipments have already arrived from Malaysia and three-fourth of an acre of land has been earmarked with all specifications. Only the range targets need to be completed and the first batch will start rolling from August 8 when the Academy will be inaugurated.
Initially, the Academy plans to have 15 to 20 member batches for a 15-day course. "Those interested in furthering their career in the sport will be taken in for advanced coaching and kept for a longer stint. Three hours of two sessions are planned for now," elaborates Channu.
"Much strength has been added to our projects with a few corporates coming forward to adopt a couple of archers which augurs well for the future of the academy itself. We are looking at a long term goal and will soon spread the concept to other centres such as Chennai, Hyderabad (where we have already identified a place), Mumbai, Pune, and one, up North, preferably Chandigarh," says Channu. "Periodic internal competitions besides an event at the National level is planned besides exposure at the Asian circuit for the talented youngsters.
In this respect IOA president Suresh Kalmadi has assured help through Government grants," said Channu.
Channu is not a dreamer, but then he does envisage thoughts of fulfilling his ambition which is to arouse an world over: "I want people from all walks of life to come over to the academies both motocross and archery in Bangalore and go back with a word or two in appreciation of facilities available. The Jatti Sports Academy should be accessible for all," feels Channu.
A small price indeed for a worthy cause.
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