In a series where all motorcycles are of the exact same spec, rider skill tends to be the differentiating factor – even more so when it’s a class of retro-styled machines. In this case, Royal Enfield has prepped the Continental GT 650 into a one-off special for the Continental GT Cup in India.
With 100 successful applicants whittled down to 18 riders at a ‘rider selection round’ then onto a ‘rider training programme’, the full series to take place over three rounds with a finale, from October to January 2022.
When it comes to the bike used, the Continental GT 650 may not be the first that comes to mind when you think of a thoroughbred racer – but it does have a history of racing. In this case, the cafe racer foundations have been tweaked and elevated to become a racier ‘Continental GT-R 650’.
Making use of the same capable 650 twins, the Continental GT platform is accessible and easy to get on with, but still provides enough ‘umph’ for experienced riders with the GT-R package.
Said to have ‘tweaked performance by 12%’ Royal Enfield has shed 12 kg of weight, stiffened the suspension and added a cafe racer fairing, amongst other touches like reducing the teeth on the front sprocket from 15 to 14.
As mentioned, it’s a level playing field with all riders on the same bikes, so this provides the perfect experience for new and aspiring racers to turn their hand at a competitive format with the Built Like a Gun marque.
Interested in a Royal Enfield cup racer experience? So are we!
Whilst it appears to only be set for the Indian audience at the moment, Royal Enfield is keen to get motorcyclists on their bikes with various incredible experiences – like the incredible Flat Track experience we tried earlier this year.
So we wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a Europe & UK edition in the works – we’d definitely not turn our nose up at the chance to race around the esteemed UK circuits on a purpose-built racer.