Somender Singh has long been an eccentric–a blue-jeans rock-‘n’-roller, a leather-jacketed motorcycle race champion and homegrown Evel Knievel, an autodidactic birdman who soars above the palaces and red clay roofs in Mysore’s first and only motorized hang glider.

Singh has always craved real bad-ass, teeth-gritting speed. And when, at age 10, a cricket ball to the eye destroyed his chances of following his father into the air force, Singh was destined to find that speed on the ground. So in 1968, following the time-honoured tradition, he dropped engineering college for the old-school curriculum of trial and error and the dog-eared hot-rod canon of J.E.G. Harwood’s Speed and How to Obtain It and Gordon Jennings’s Two-Stroke Tuner’s Handbook. He bought a motorcycle and then dedicated his life to racing it. When the sponsors didn’t pay attention, he started his own team and called it Speedwell–and it did, winning more than 120 trophies for him as a racer in national and international events, and some 400 more for the machines he tuned.

That’s not it, he has also invented a patented system called ‘Grooving’ that makes IC engines more efficient and powerful!

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