Srinivasa Gowda, a 28-year-old man from Karnataka, has become an overnight sensation after a video of him running at lightning speed went viral on social media.
#WATCH - Srinivasa Gowda from Karnataka ran 100m in 9.55 seconds at a "Kambala" (buffalo race). He was faster than Usain Bolt who took 9.58 seconds to create a world record. pic.twitter.com/rrbf3lxnpn— News18 (@CNNnews18) February 14, 2020
He was participating in the traditional sport 'Kambala', popularly known as the buffalo race.
Gowda ran 142.50 meters in 13.62 seconds and though it is not possible to compare the records directly, people calculated what his speed would have been for 100 metres. It turned out to be just 9.55 seconds, which is .03 seconds faster than Usain Bolt’s record.
Experts believe that there's a difference between running on tracks and on muddy fields. The president of the Kambala Academy where Gowda was trained also denied comparing him to Bolt due to lack of accurate timings. Talking to TOI, he said:
We are proud of him. In the 11 Kambalas held this season, he has won 32 prizes. We will not compare him to Usain Bolt because we cannot vouch for the accuracy of timings.
The new internet sensation, Gowda, told media that he was surprised by the response on his win.
I love Kambala. The credit of my success should also go to my two buffalos. They ran very well. I chased them or drove them.
While people understood that there's a huge difference between his and Bolt's run, they shared the video on social media platforms, asking the government to take note of his talent.
Wow and Usain Bolt ran on paved track. Srinivasa ran on slush!! https://t.co/5dd9NxULbI— Eshwar (@eshwarchandra) February 14, 2020
It's a very complex force equation...There may be pull force sometimes, but there are times he has to run faster so the Buffalo races up. But remember all these he has to do in muddy water. Definitely a talent for international athletics once trained on right track.— Girish Alva (@girishalva) February 14, 2020
Well done. It's team work . The buffalo and him broke the record together. So respect to the man and his beast. Look at his fitness. He's ripped.#inspiration— Badri (@badri_nair) February 14, 2020
Definitely he got lot of potential and he is an awesome runner...but its impossible to beat bolt's record in this specific scenario where he need to hold the rope and run in the water!— sarath reddi (@sarathiisc) February 14, 2020
govt should provide funding and train him for 100m and 200m sprints
He should be encouraged by Athletic Association of Karnataka for participating in Olympics!— Cdr_Kunal🇮🇳 (@CdrKunal) February 14, 2020
This can be amazing but understand .. its bull power making him run so fast. If he could run on field at this speed it will be great achievement .— Kushal Jain (@kushalvj) February 14, 2020
He should be encouraged by local sport association after testing him on track and he may need trainer later.— S.R.Srinivasa mur (@SrSrinivasamu) February 14, 2020
Just one look at his physique & you know this man is capable of extraordinary athletic feats. Now either @KirenRijiju provides him training as a 100m sprinter or we get Kambala to become an Olympic event. Either way, we want a gold medal for Srinivasa! 😊 https://t.co/H3SBiOVSKr— anand mahindra (@anandmahindra) February 15, 2020
Union Minister Kiren Rijiju took note of it and tweeted:
I'll call Karnataka's Srinivasa Gowda for trials by top SAI Coaches. There's lack of knowledge in masses about the standards of Olympics especially in athletics where ultimate human strength & endurance are surpassed. I'll ensure that no talents in India is left out untested. https://t.co/ohCLQ1YNK0— Kiren Rijiju (@KirenRijiju) February 15, 2020
It should be noted that the sport, Kambala, was banned a few years ago owing to the cruelty inflicted on buffaloes, but the ban was later lifted following the passage of a special legislation.