Coimbatore, an ancient city, was the capital of a small tribal village, Kongunad, before the 2nd century AD until it was brought under Chola control in the 2nd-3rd centuries AD by Karikalan, the first of the early Cholas. Among its other great rulers were the Rashtrakutas, Chalukyas, Pandyas, Hoysalas and the Vijayanagara kings. When Kongunad fell to the British along with the rest of the state, its name was changed to Coimbatore. Today, Coimbatore (Kovai in Tamil) is a commercial city of considerable importance; it is home to over 60 spinning and weaving mills and textiles is its main industry. It is also well known for motor sports with regular events being held at the Kari Motor Speedway.

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