Indian National XC/DH team selections for 13th South Asian Games 2019

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The 13th South Asian Games 2019 is scheduled to take place from December 1st to 10th in Kathmandu and Pokhara, Nepal. Seven nations will be participating in the 13th SAG. Nepal, Pakistan, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Bangladesh and India will fight it out for the top spots.

For 2019, Indian Cross Country and Downhill MTB team will be entering the competition. This would be a first for the DH contingent from India. Selections for the same were conducted in Gahunje, Maharashtra. Near Pune, the XC and DH courses for this selection were scouted and built by the local mountain bikers from Pune.

For the South Asian Games Indian MTB team, only riders above the age of 18 were eligible to contest according to the Cycling Federation of India (CFI).

Style don’t hurt! Pune’s Abhijeet Gharad got his hands dirty helping build this DH course. Clocking the 2nd fastest time of the day. Being under age according to CFI, he couldn’t make it into the #13thSAG2019 Indian MTB team. \\ Photo: Sandip Sakharkar.
India’s National DH Champion 2018, Slade Gomes from Maharashtra displayed his winning speed in the team selection, making the cut. \\ Photo: Sandip Sakharkar.
Making it in the Indian team for South Asian Games 2019. Maharashtra’s Gautam Taode is a strong contender for a podium spot at the 13th SAG in Pokhara, Nepal next month. \\ Photo: Sandip Sakharkar.
Cross Country churner, Shiven cranked it hard inspite of bruises sustained in a road biking accident. He made it into the team. \\ Photo: Sandip Sakharkar.
Downhill racers and Cycling Federation of India officials on the DH start line.

National Cross Country Champion of India, Karnataka’s Kiran Kumar Raju will be racing at the 13th SAG 2019 in December. \\ Photo: Vinay Menon.


Himachal Pradesh’s Devender Thakur (Cross Country) will be flying the tri colors at South Asian Games 2019. \\ Photo: Vinay Menon.

National Cross Country champion, Pranita Soman will be up against some good competition from Nepal and Sri Lanka at the South Asian Games 2019. \\ Photo: Sandip Sakharkar.

India’s DH/XC team heading to Nepal for the 13th South Asian Games 2019

Cross Country (Men): Kiran Kumar Raju, Devender Thakur, Shiven and Rajat Pandey.
Cross Country (Women): Pranita Soman.

Downhill (Men): Slade Gomes, Gautam Taode.
Downhill (Women): No registrations.

For more details about the 13th South Asian Games, please visit


Shout out to Spirit of Mogli, GT Adventures, the riders who made these selections possible and the Cycling Federation of India for being open ears to racer’s suggestions! Freeridermag wishes all the racers at #13thSouthAsianGames2019 a safe a healthy competition.



Title photo: Rider: Rinku Thakur \\ Photo: Sandip Sakharkar


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