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Motorcycle Racers Are Athletes?

December 17, 2014 | By More

Of course they are. This subject came up as a result of a Bike Bandit article that asks the question Are Motorcycle Racers Really Professional Athletes? It points out that the stick-and-ball athletes don’t think so, but do they really understand what all is involved with going out week after week and getting beat up out on a dirt track? Do they understand the strength involved in leaning a bike way over, at speed, while having precise control on clutch and throttle? Apparently not. Even riding a street bike requires one to be in good physical condition. The worse the shape you are in, the harder it is to have control over your motorcycle, not to mention the fatigue after a long day’s ride. That fatigue can impair your strength further as well as your decision making skills. You don’t want to make poor decisions while riding a motorcycle.

Just for an example, let’s take a look at a night of Supercross racing. Riders have to practice during the day to get to know the track. Some tracks are going to be familiar, but new ones are added to the circuit each year. Riders have to qualify for races as well. When the racing officially starts, figure on a heat race, plus the possibility of a Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ) if the rider didn’t qualify in the heat race. Then, there’s a 20 lap Main Event to get through. The track conditions change, getting dryer or wetter, and certainly more rutted as time wears on. Some upkeep is possible, but the track changes are still a factor. Add to that, that in recent years, the racing speeds have been elevated to an all-time high due to the sheer talent of the current pool of riders.

These riders have to train. They have to work out, strengthen musculature structure, and develop super human stamina to take a beating riding and landing on a severely rutted dirt track. The strength needed for handling it and taking it is not developed over night and must be maintained just to continue. And though it must be mentioned, mishaps do happen. A rider in optimum condition certainly stands a better chance of walking away unscathed than does someone who skips the workouts. Plus, there’s always the chance of having a bike land on them. Are motorcycle racers really to be considered professional athletes. Damn right they are!

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Category: Motorcycle News

About the Author ()

Linda Carruth is a freelance illustrator and designer who enjoys riding her motorcycle. Her professional work can be seen at, but her motorcycle, humorous, and motivational designs are available at,, and at

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