Sharmeen Mushtaq Nizami

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January 2018/ 1st woman to participate in snow-racing (Gulmarg)

Gulmarg snow-racing attracting motorheads to the Valley, January 19, 2018: The Hindu

Breaking societal and mental barriers, Sharmeen Mushtaq Nizami, 40, a doctor by profession, will become the first woman to hit the icy tracks of Gulmarg at the second race-on-snow event in Kashmir.

Dr. Nizami, who will be competing with 50 other participants, believes the race will help her overcome “a doctor’s sedentary but hectic lifestyle.”

The two-day event, titled ‘Big Frozen Rush 2’ and organised by Kashmir-Off Road, a Srinagar-based motorsport outfit, is aimed at attracting local talent to this high-adrenaline sport.

“This is an attempt to create home-grown events. It will help put Kashmir on the motorsport map of India,” said Ali Sajid, the chief organiser.

The participants, some of whom are travelling from Dubai and Delhi, are in the age group of 24-50. The race will be held at an altitude of 8,530 feet in sub-zero temperature on snow-smashed tracks. “We have prepared Gulmarg’s circuit road for the event and provided all safety measures required for such a single-lap race,” Mr. Sajid said. Each racer will do one lap of the 1.25-km snow-walled track.

The time taken to complete the lap will be recorded through high-end timers and drones, and the fastest driver will be declared the winner.

The snow multiplies the challenges for the racers as they have to maintain high speed and avoid skidding off the track at the same time

Snow racing, which began in 2017 in Gulmarg to celebrate heavy snowfall, has grown from 35 racers to 50, the organisers said. Enthusiasts from other parts are expected to join the event in the future.

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