Junior MotocrossPosted: July 1, 2011
So your kid wants to race motocross – Due to the growing success of Monster Energy Super X which was organised through the partnership of Michael Porra, the CEO of Global Action Sports and Australia’s very own and most successful Supercross rider Chad Reed, more and more boys and girls are turning to motorcross as the preferred activity on weekends. The Super X series kicked off for the very first time in 2008 and was televised live around most parts of Australia mezmerising mums, dads and kids around the country. For more info visit www.superx.com.au. On the back of the success of the Super X, media outlets such as Foxtel have picked up on the Australian Motocross scene and telecasting each round of state titles which lends support to clubs and up comming riders.
There is no better feeling than riding a bike to your full potential around a motocross track chasing down the bike in front of you whilst eating roost (roost is dirt shooting of the rear wheel) whilst fighting off a bit of arm pump. Motocross riding can be enjoyed by all age groups regardless of your skill and fitness level. Tracks can be shared by all, but if your child is just starting out there are a few things for the first time moto rider and moto parents must first consider especially if intending on racing motocross:
Experience – How much experience has your child had on a motobike if any? If your child has never riden before or is not yet confident on the bike obviously you would hold off on entering him or her into competition racing. It’s always best to let your rider get confident on the dirt bike before sending them off to become the next Chad Reed or Jay Marmont. Ideally a flat piece of land somewhere would be great for a new rider to get some practice however if it’s not available you can take your child to your nearest motocross club on weekends for some practice.
Join a Club – First time riders at a motocross track will be required to sign up for a yearly membership which is normally around $50 – &70 per year which varies club to club, each time you go back from then on you will pay for a day riding fee which can vary from $15 – $30 again each club will differ. You should read and understand the rules of the complex and speak to the club Clerk if unsure of anything or simply just need clarification, club organisers will only be too happy to help where possible as it’s in the interest of the club and your rider to have a safe first time experience and there after.
2. Protection – Before sending your rider on his or her way it’s absolutley parramount that your rider has all the basic protective gear before getting on the bike. Protective gear these days can be picked up quite cheap, great deals on protection can also be found on places like Ebay and other bargan websites.
First and foremost the single most important peice of protection is a helmet, it’s a fact that helmets save lives therefore you should never let your rider go without. When selecting a helmet there is a few things you should look out for, a helmet should be a snug fit (note – a new helmet may feel tight until worn in) and you should check that peripheral vision is satisfactory. Only buy helmets that meet the Australian Standards (AS/NZS1698), all helmets which meet the standard will have a sticker (AS/NZS1698) on the helmet which should be left on the helmet and not peeled off. Regular inspections of your helmet should be carried out to check for cracks and wear and tear on the straps and buckle. Helmets can be bought brand new for as little $60.
Like helmets goggles are a necessity when riding as they protect your eyes from foreign objects such as bugs, dust and roost etc. There are many brands of goggles on the market today which offer things like: no sweat foams, Aniti fog lenses, tear off compatible lenses as well as different coloured lenses, goggles range anywhere from $15 – $200.
Long sleeves shirt, pants and gloves must be worn when riding motocross, this will help minimise grazes and scratches as well exhaust burns.
In most competitive junior racing these days it’s club policy that a chest plate also known as a roost protector must be worn as an extra safety measure as well as your race number on the back for easy identification. Motocross boots are another must have piece of protection, boots protect from rocks and keeps your feet from twisting and possibly causing sprains and breaks to the ankle. When worn for the first time motocross boots can feel a little uncomfortable but after a couple of rides it will feel weird to ride without them.
So if you intend on child becoming a kid racer or just riding in general then the above protective wear is a must, but what about other protection like neck braces? Almost all riders these days are wearing the neck brace but there still lies some controversy as to wether they can actually do more harm then good, decide for yourself and visit www.leattbraces.com or do a Google search for other reviews and brands.
Get Licenced – To compete in any motocross racing you must first apply for a licence, for information on attaining a licence you will need to contact or visit the website of your State controlling Body (SCB).
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