Secret Lives: Vic Anand

Day Job: Assistant Professor of Accounting, Goizueta Business School

Secret Life: High-performance motorcycle track racer

Vic Anand says he’s always been a “gearhead.” As a child, he liked taking things apart—parts from a car or truck, things in the garage—which didn’t make his father too happy, since Anand didn’t always know how to put them back together. He went on to major in mechanical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where a few fraternity brothers introduced him to high-performance motorcycle riding. His first bike was a 1983 Honda Magna 750 and, despite a fall on his first day riding, he was hooked. During the next several years, he owned motorcycles including a Honda Nighthawk 650, a Kawasaki Ninja, and a Kawasaki Z1000 while moving around the country and earning an MBA at Carnegie Mellon University and a PhD in accounting from Cornell University. While at Cornell he attended a high-performance racing school at a racetrack in New Jersey. After moving to Atlanta in 2012 and buying a BMW R1200R, he began attending monthly “track days” at local racetracks, where he can work with a coach and practice his racing skills. His current motorcycle, a BMW S100RR, can go from zero to one hundred miles per hour in 5.13 seconds and has a top speed of 190 miles per hour, but Anand says he usually tops out at 150 to 160 miles per hour on straightaways at his favorite track, Road Atlanta. He says the fun comes from taking turns at anywhere from thirty to seventy miles per hour.

His words: “The first thing people always ask me is, ‘Isn’t that dangerous?’ It is somewhat, but I take all of the safety precautions to the extreme. I have a riding suit that has so much armor built into it you could hit me with a baseball bat and I wouldn’t feel it. That’s why I like track riding. It’s a controlled environment with lots of rules and no cars. When you can do seventy or eighty laps on the same course, you really learn where the bike should be on the course and you can focus on your skills. When you are going straight, you really can’t tell the difference between ninety miles per hour and 150 miles per hour. Leaning into the curves is the scary—and fun—part. It’s amazingly therapeutic to have to be so intensely focused on one thing that there isn’t room in your brain for anything else. It ends up being a great stress relief.

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