We're well aware that Royal Enfield isn't exactly geared towards the performance side of riding, and instead, focuses on the individuality and character brought about by riding a motorcycle. However, the Indian manufacturer does have a sporty-style retro bike in the form of the Continental GT 650. In fact, beneath its classic styling lies a rather nimble and capable chassis developed by Harris Performance, which Royal Enfield now owns.
To maximize the sporty nature of the Continental GT, the Indian company has rolled out a racing series in India dedicated solely to showing off the bike's performance on track. The Continental GT Cup has officially been announced by the company, with registrations now open online, free of charge, until September 30, 2021. Those who are accepted into the Cup will be notified and required to pay an initial amount of Rs 2,500, or the equivalent of $34, plus taxes. Those initial roundup of riders chosen to participate in the cup will undergo a series of tests to gauge their technical riding skills, as well as their prowess on track.
A total of 18 riders will be shortlisted, and will subsequently have to make an advance payment of Rs 20,000, or the equivalent of $271 plus taxes, and will compete in four rounds of circuit-style racing beginning October 21, 2021. Three rounds of which will be held at Kari Motor Speedway, and the finale at Buddh International Circuit. The testing and shortlisting of riders wil happen between October 18 to 19, with around one hundred riders expected to participate in the initial phases of the Royal Enfield Continental GT Cup. Royal Enfield notes that participants of the Cup must procure their own certified helmet, gloves, and boots.
The race bike for the Continental GT Cup will consist of a specially track-prepped Continental GT 650 dubbed the GT-R650. Built on the standard platform of the Continental GT, the GT-R650 features track-oriented components such as rear-set foot pegs, a full stainless steel exhaust system, soft compound racing tires, and a retro-style race fairing and belly pan. All these modifications result in a race-prepped machine that's 24 kilograms lighter than stock.