Real or photo trick?

Gugulothu Lachiram performs yoga on a speeding motorbike in Telangana, India. Using just the bike for support, the 40-year-old takes the ancient Indian discipline to new levels as he runs through a series of complex poses — while only a slip away from disaster.

Picture: Barcroft India

  • AlanUK

    O.K. I’ll be the first to stick my neck out. I think it’s a fake. Reasons?
    The photo has frozen perfectly the man, the bike, the background: everything.
    EXCEPT for the wheels which are blurred to show movement. Let’s face it. If everything was frozen by a short exposure time, the spokes would be frozen too and it would look like the whole thing was stationary. By blurring the spikes it gives the impression of movement which would not be there if the bike/man were actually going at speed.
    I’m not saying that the man could not balance on the bike but how does he keep it running without contact with the handlebars and speed control?
    And what has a simple balancing trick got to do with yoga? (Even it were true.)
    I would be more impressed with a video than with an easily-faked still photo.

    • Exile1981

      I think it’s fake but the closer background is blurred, look at the grasses along the road.

      I look at the angle of the bike to the road and it looks like the kick stand was airbrushed out to me. The bike is leaning towards the camera but the front wheel is turned the other way slightly; that’s a quick way to roll it. If he was in the hospital with serious injuries I could believe this was taken just before the crash but otherwise I say nope it’s a fake.

  • winniec

    The photo was taken by the local constabulary and submitted in evidence at his trial. Admiring letters may be sent to the Telangana State Prison.

  • bverwey

    I’ll put out there that’s real. As a rider I’ll say his can be done, just not by me.

  • SDMatt

    I say real – similar stuff is often done on the Salt Flats (sorry, you can’t undo seeing this).

    • AlanUK

      But he’s doing it holding onto the handlebars and controlling the power to the wheels and it was a few years before Photoshop. Indeed, it could be a charcoal/pencil drawing . I agree with Exile1981 that in the original the bike was stationary on a stand.
      Incidentally, “150.313 (or is it 150.315) mph” is utter nonsense. That says it is accurate to +/- 0.0005 mph. Rubbish. Maths (and common-sense) fail!

      • SDMatt

        Guy’s name is Rollie Free and apparently the photo is arguably the most famous one in motorcycle-dom. This was his technique for maximizing his speed, which was accurately clocked at 150.313 MPH.

        No, it’s not the same as the Indian guy but it’s pretty close and both are far beyond my capabilities.

        • Minicapt

          His run was timed over the required distance, one run in each direction, and the time/distance converted to ‘mph’.


    • Clink9

      I’ve done that weirdness in the past. We would pass each other on an Interstate like that at high speed when bored. Called it the “Superman”

  • Yusuf_Al_Kafir
  • Raymond Hietapakka

    I’d say he’s past the tipping point of rolling over backwards…5 seconds later, the rice rocket could be in one ditch, and Sahib in t’other….or, he could have been dragged behind the scooter on his kicks, and is now jumping back onto the pillion…

  • ntt1

    that’s how Indian Larry, at the pinnacle of his bike building career. took a fall and died of massive head injuries.

  • AlanUK

    Frau Katz
    Do YOU know the answer, having set the question????