Aishwarya Pissay finished off a spectacular season with a fourth-placed finish in Hungary which helped her end on top of the table and be named the new FIM World Champion. She became the first Indian to win a world title in the sport and was also placed second in the junior category standings.
Record five national title holder Aishwarya Pissay continued to make her country proud and be the trailblazer for fellow compatriots in motorsports as she was declared to be the FIM World Champion on Monday. The off-road racer has only been racing for three years and was the first Indian woman to be a part of the international tour and compete in the World Rally in Spain.
The 23-year-old from Bangalore was going into the race in Hungary with a seven-point lead over her closest rival Rita Vieira. Aishwarya had finished the Dubai round in pole position before ending the subsequent races in Portugal and Spain in the third and fifth positions respectively. This had helped her accumulate 52 points, while the Portugues Vieira was close behind on 45.
Aishwarya was placed fourth in the Hungarian Baja and earned 13 points, but Vieira couldn’t capitalize on the opportunity and finished third adding 16 points to her name but losing the World Cup by four points. Only last year, Aishwarya had suffered a horrible crash in the Baja Aragon rally, forcing her to retire from the event.
"It's absolutely overwhelming. I am out of words. After what happened last year, my first international season, when I crashed in Spain Baja and suffered career-threatening injuries, to come out and win the championship, is a great feeling," an ecstatic Aishwarya was quoted saying by Firstpost.
The racer also finished second in the junior category, losing out on the top spot by a considerable margin of 14 points to Tomas de Gavardo (60) of Chile.
"It was a tough phase of my life, but I believed in myself and was determined to get back on the bike which I did after nearly six months. So, winning the World Cup is huge for me and I will look to better my performance having gained this experience," Aishwarya added.