Deep thoughts at the truth of motocross.

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7/30/2015 10:09 AM

I am just writing this to see what others think, or if others agree. (Sorry if there is slight grammar problems for you grammar nazis)

As a kid growing up most of us starting out in motocross did it simply because it was fun and we though it was cool. As years pass bikes got bigger, skills were acquired and things became a bit more serious. At one point for anyone who takes it serious realities sink in. Amount of injuries become a factor, along with finances, or the lack of the fun factor. Typically this is the cause of riders fading away. For the average rider chasing the dream to make it pro of anylevel its life consuming.

As an expert in this sport I know the struggle I didn't see when mom and dad were paying for most of it. If I want to take it serious traveling is a must. To get my SX pro card I have to travel each week to far away states. (Ex. I am from MA and must travel to Pa, Md, Nc, Al, or even FL). All this travel requires time off from work possibly costing me my job. The employers simply don't care as a worker is simply replaceable. I feel the AMA "favors" the rich. Lorettas itself is costly along with chasing pro-ams.

Most people think it's stupid to chase down the dream that aren't affiliated with the sport. The lack of support from industry companies is also an issue. Help to get to these races seems to be low to none. Maybe it's just me but it seems for the average joe 9-5 worker trying to chase the dream is a 50/50 gamble. What do you think?

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7/30/2015 10:16 AM

yep

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7/30/2015 10:20 AM

50/50 is great odds compared to the reality of how many make it ha

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7/30/2015 10:20 AM

I would also argue that many parents and kids do not take sponsorships seriously. They are just looking for handouts and don't see the work that is associated with top-level sponsorship. It's more of a "what can you give me" and not a "what can we do together" mentality.

The kids who work hard, give themselves a good image on and off the track and have parents that hold them accountable do pretty good. Parents that work on getting their child's face in front of the industry's main companies and individuals before they are 15 years old are brilliant. It does often come down to who you know!

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7/30/2015 10:20 AM

News flash: Motocross is expensive. The truth is most who make it in the sport "make it" before the whole 9-5 thing even comes into play.

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7/30/2015 10:21 AM

Maybe it's just me but it seems for the average joe 9-5 worker trying to chase the dream is a 50/50 gamble. What do you think?

I think it's just you.

The gamble is more like 999999999/1

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7/30/2015 10:22 AM

That's deep, bro.

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7/30/2015 10:26 AM
Edited Date/Time: 7/30/2015 10:28 AM

Most guys could make more money pushing carts at Walmart... Not talking you, but in general...
In the 70's local pros raced about 5 days a week in Southern Cal. I'm talking about guys like Dave "DG" Taylor...
Just from what I read...

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7/30/2015 10:29 AM

Having brief stints in other motorsports, I do not agree with the "AMA favors the rich" comment. Motorsports are expensive, that is just the nature of the beast. Motocross is dirt cheap relative to just about ANY other motorsport. I think part of the appeal of motocross has always been that it is cheap to get into relative to karting, formula cars, stock cars, dragster, etc. and that is still true today.

At one point my old man and I when I was a kid had a sweet box van that we had built, several bikes, new gear, etc. I remember when my dad went through a professional transition on his career though our family finances got tight. That was the first time as a kid I realized how expensive motocross was because even though it is cheap compared to other motorsports, it is still a heck of a lot more expensive than playing football, baseball, etc. So later on we found ourselves just out there with one bike (old man stopped racing), in my beater pickup truck sleeping in a tent or maybe a motel 6 the night before if it was a big race and we could sneak the bike in the room. My old man spent most of his energy telling me how a stock bike was the best in an effort to not spend any more money. I'm only talking about the amateur level here but where theres a will theres a way.

I never chased the dream. I went to college and stopped riding which was more or less a decision that was made for me (and rightfully so). I got back into riding though along with spending time at the track with my old man with the edition of my wife and son. Motocross is the best thing on earth, even if you're just a slow, out of shape, amateur has been or never was rider. That is my deep thought at the truth of motocross.

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7/30/2015 10:32 AM

I don't want to quote everyone but to reply as a whole...I feel a sponsor likes to sometimes turn a blind eye on the ones who struggle. If someone wants to go pro just to go pro and say they did it seems like a stretch. People like myself who train hard and spend the pay checks to make it to all the races and call out seem to be overlooked. I have sponsors who help me out with discounts and occasional free stuff. However, some just can't see themselves doing that for most of their life. Thinking of how many great riders who could make it gave up. It's the sad truth and I wish companies would help some more.

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7/30/2015 10:34 AM

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scte3.0 pro-line trinity tekin

7/30/2015 10:45 AM

I think the truth is that if you have the ability and motivation to be the best at any sport you will have success.

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7/30/2015 10:50 AM

All it takes is money, time and talent. Some only have two of those qualities and turn out to competitive racer. which quality are they missing ? Any single one. But they need the other two to keep it a float.

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GP740
Since 1987

7/30/2015 11:01 AM

Here's something to ponder

1. The guys who unrealistically "chase the dream" end up changing oil at a Firestone car care center (nothing wrong with bending wrenches for a living folks) but end up in a profession that can't really support the hobby financially. Then, they knock up some track snack, have a boy, and the cycle continues.

2. The guys who put the dream on the shelf at 18-19, get an education, and a revenue producing career, are able to afford all kinds of cool, trick shit, take time off work, and ride whenever and wherever they want.

Decide who you want to be.

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7/30/2015 11:10 AM

MxRewind wrote:

I don't want to quote everyone but to reply as a whole...I feel a sponsor likes to sometimes turn a blind eye on the ones who struggle. If someone wants to go pro just to go pro and say they did it seems like a stretch. People like myself who train hard and spend the pay checks to make it to all the races and call out seem to be overlooked. I have sponsors who help me out with discounts and occasional free stuff. However, some just can't see themselves doing that for most of their life. Thinking of how many great riders who could make it gave up. It's the sad truth and I wish companies would help some more.

maybe if all the dream chasers would provide some tangible ROI plans for the sponsors it would be more productive...........this seems to be the only sport with the entitlement attitude of someone owes me something because I'm racing/competing

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7/30/2015 11:11 AM

MxRewind wrote:

I don't want to quote everyone but to reply as a whole...I feel a sponsor likes to sometimes turn a blind eye on the ones who struggle. If someone wants to go pro just to go pro and say they did it seems like a stretch. People like myself who train hard and spend the pay checks to make it to all the races and call out seem to be overlooked. I have sponsors who help me out with discounts and occasional free stuff. However, some just can't see themselves doing that for most of their life. Thinking of how many great riders who could make it gave up. It's the sad truth and I wish companies would help some more.

If you are fast enough and talented enough the sponsors will come to you, makes no difference if you train hard and spend your pay checks, you are overlooked because you are like the vast majority of riders who are a dime a dozen. The really good guys will stand out and get the sponsors and just because you struggle does not mean you deserve more help.

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Ed Johnson

7/30/2015 11:12 AM

wired4speed wrote:

I think the truth is that if you have the ability and motivation to be the best at any sport you will have success.

Especially in America.

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GP740
Since 1987

7/30/2015 11:16 AM

One of the big regrets of my life is that I did not head out on the road in 79 as my buddies wrench for the nationals. I had no money, he had no money, the trip ended up being aborted after he broke his foot back east. But I should have gone. Everyone should be realistic, but there is a period in young adulthood when those dreams can and should be pursued, at least to prove to oneself that you can survive failure and learn from it. I forgot that having nothing means having nothing to lose, and that most times it works out.

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Twitter: @ftemoto
Instagram: @mstusiak

7/30/2015 11:18 AM

The Narrator wrote:

Here's something to ponder

1. The guys who unrealistically "chase the dream" end up changing oil at a Firestone car care center (nothing wrong with bending wrenches for a living folks) but end up in a profession that can't really support the hobby financially. Then, they knock up some track snack, have a boy, and the cycle continues.

2. The guys who put the dream on the shelf at 18-19, get an education, and a revenue producing career, are able to afford all kinds of cool, trick shit, take time off work, and ride whenever and wherever they want.

Decide who you want to be.

This should be MANDATORY AT EVERY RIDERS MEETING.

Give these little kids a clue how hard they need to be riding, and then how hard they need to be praying they don't die or get hurt too many times to possibly make $10-50K a year.

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7/30/2015 11:22 AM

731chopper wrote:

Having brief stints in other motorsports, I do not agree with the "AMA favors the rich" comment. Motorsports are expensive, that is just the nature of the beast. Motocross is dirt cheap relative to just about ANY other motorsport. I think part of the appeal of motocross has always been that it is cheap to get into relative to karting, formula cars, stock cars, dragster, etc. and that is still true today.

At one point my old man and I when I was a kid had a sweet box van that we had built, several bikes, new gear, etc. I remember when my dad went through a professional transition on his career though our family finances got tight. That was the first time as a kid I realized how expensive motocross was because even though it is cheap compared to other motorsports, it is still a heck of a lot more expensive than playing football, baseball, etc. So later on we found ourselves just out there with one bike (old man stopped racing), in my beater pickup truck sleeping in a tent or maybe a motel 6 the night before if it was a big race and we could sneak the bike in the room. My old man spent most of his energy telling me how a stock bike was the best in an effort to not spend any more money. I'm only talking about the amateur level here but where theres a will theres a way.

I never chased the dream. I went to college and stopped riding which was more or less a decision that was made for me (and rightfully so). I got back into riding though along with spending time at the track with my old man with the edition of my wife and son. Motocross is the best thing on earth, even if you're just a slow, out of shape, amateur has been or never was rider. That is my deep thought at the truth of motocross.

we have a pretty similar story. I grew up in a family where my dad built and raced late models for a living and crew chiefed for a small asphalt team for a little while. I think it was tough go of it but don't really remember because he got out of it before I was really able to realize it all. I just remember being young and missing my dad when he had to be gone for long periods of time at the races. Myself and my cousins rode and raced, but nothing beyond just local stuff. I never considered myself to be "chasing the dream." In retrospect, I'm so glad that I was pretty good at all the other sports I played and pretty slow on the motorcycle, haha. I also quit riding, went to college, have a business with my family, got married, kids, yada yada. I thought I would get back into it and do it with my oldest son. I bought a bike and he has a PW50, but he's not that into it (and i'm actually not too bummed about it). I'll probably start riding again once I get a piece of land for myself. But I doubt I'll ever go to tracks again.

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7/30/2015 11:22 AM

The Narrator wrote:

Here's something to ponder

1. The guys who unrealistically "chase the dream" end up changing oil at a Firestone car care center (nothing wrong with bending wrenches for a living folks) but end up in a profession that can't really support the hobby financially. Then, they knock up some track snack, have a boy, and the cycle continues.

2. The guys who put the dream on the shelf at 18-19, get an education, and a revenue producing career, are able to afford all kinds of cool, trick shit, take time off work, and ride whenever and wherever they want.

Decide who you want to be.

I'd say I'm #2.

I "turned pro" in 2005, riding the A class. I rode the 250A Pro Sport at Loretta's that year, and got my AMA pro license in 2006. Raced the Freestone National in 2007 and missed out making the show by 2 spots. My parents split in 2007 and I started college that year and moved out. I decided to take my education seriously and graduated in 2012, got a job and still continued to ride my 2006 KX450F a couple times a year. That was the last bike my parents bought me. I bought myself a brand new KX450 a few months ago and I have a ton of crap sitting in my living room waiting to go on the bike once I get it back from my suspension guy. Riding is fun for me instead of a chore, and I got to have all the life experiences most people "chasing the dream" missed out on.

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7/30/2015 11:22 AM
Edited Date/Time: 7/30/2015 11:23 AM

MxRewind wrote:

I don't want to quote everyone but to reply as a whole...I feel a sponsor likes to sometimes turn a blind eye on the ones who struggle. If someone wants to go pro just to go pro and say they did it seems like a stretch. People like myself who train hard and spend the pay checks to make it to all the races and call out seem to be overlooked. I have sponsors who help me out with discounts and occasional free stuff. However, some just can't see themselves doing that for most of their life. Thinking of how many great riders who could make it gave up. It's the sad truth and I wish companies would help some more.

One of the things about racing is that it is brutally honest, and results matter. The vast majority of people who don't get support haven't earned it. It may be one of the purest markets ever.

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Twitter: @ftemoto
Instagram: @mstusiak

7/30/2015 11:24 AM

Not saying me, but here's an example. Arenacross is a lites only class. They got ride of 450. A rider wants to go earn his SX card. Here's the catch he only has a 250 smoker and that is not the proper bike for AX, he has the talent and will but no money for another bike. These are the things I'm trying to focus on. Each year it seems harder and harder for a hard working talented guy that wasn't homeschooled and invested in by parents who flaunted their kids around to make it in the sport. For all people know that kid could be gnarly at Ax/SX but is held back. Not all of us expect a free bone tossed but we are willing to rep the brand in anyway for just the slightest support.

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7/30/2015 11:31 AM

You just articulated why I never considered it to be any more than a hobby. (Except on a few euphoric drives home after really great days/nights at the track). I have several friends that invested their souls in the sport without having a backup plan. A lot of them have had it pretty tough.

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7/30/2015 11:50 AM

The Narrator wrote:

Here's something to ponder

1. The guys who unrealistically "chase the dream" end up changing oil at a Firestone car care center (nothing wrong with bending wrenches for a living folks) but end up in a profession that can't really support the hobby financially. Then, they knock up some track snack, have a boy, and the cycle continues.

2. The guys who put the dream on the shelf at 18-19, get an education, and a revenue producing career, are able to afford all kinds of cool, trick shit, take time off work, and ride whenever and wherever they want.

Decide who you want to be.

RoflCopter726 wrote:

I'd say I'm #2.

I "turned pro" in 2005, riding the A class. I rode the 250A Pro Sport at Loretta's that year, and got my AMA pro license in 2006. Raced the Freestone National in 2007 and missed out making the show by 2 spots. My parents split in 2007 and I started college that year and moved out. I decided to take my education seriously and graduated in 2012, got a job and still continued to ride my 2006 KX450F a couple times a year. That was the last bike my parents bought me. I bought myself a brand new KX450 a few months ago and I have a ton of crap sitting in my living room waiting to go on the bike once I get it back from my suspension guy. Riding is fun for me instead of a chore, and I got to have all the life experiences most people "chasing the dream" missed out on.

Yup, option 2 was me as well. No where even close to a pro level rider, but I have a solid career and am able to use that as a base to ride pretty much where and when I want.

Sure I often look at the young rippers fly by my at the track and think at times racing more when I was young would have been a blast and I'd be a lot faster now. However mainly riding for fun while growing up, almost none at all while all my finances went to school really makes me love the sport even more now that I am back in it.

I in no way would tell a kid or family not to pursue the dream to become pro, but I would for sure offer the advice they think about the commitment long and hard and always have a plan on how/when to back out with the idea of a second career in mind.

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7/30/2015 12:13 PM

I think the key to MX and enjoying it , is to never be too good.. once you can settle into a level of performance that satisfies the amount of enjoyment you want , against the the $$ you are prepared to spend, you can a lot out of the sport , without it consuming all you have.

The other side is being talented above the amount of money you have to get that talent somewhere, and throwing everything you have at it , to maybe make a few bucks as a local pro that might cover your gas money.

I was lucky enough to be reasonably fast for a short period of time, and managed to make that last for a few years, doing a few Nationals here in the process, and getting close to points , which was enough of a carrot to keep going, with a goal i could afford to chase, but it wasnt like i was expecting to have anything other than a good day at the races.

While im doing that , guys i grew up with racing all drifted away, to drink , holidays, and all the other things that take people away from the sport, and although we had a few years off when we had kids , we have kept at it ever since, because we love the sport, and the good times it brings, and never got too wrapped up in the whole 'having to be good to make it worthwhile' thing that a lot a folk get drawn into.

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7/30/2015 12:13 PM

wired4speed wrote:

I think the truth is that if you have the ability and motivation to be the best at any sport you will have success.

Stuart Smalley agrees

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"My philosophy is to have a really good time and never to let anything stop me from doing what I want to do.

Michel Petrucciani

7/30/2015 12:25 PM

The Narrator wrote:

Here's something to ponder

1. The guys who unrealistically "chase the dream" end up changing oil at a Firestone car care center (nothing wrong with bending wrenches for a living folks) but end up in a profession that can't really support the hobby financially. Then, they knock up some track snack, have a boy, and the cycle continues.

2. The guys who put the dream on the shelf at 18-19, get an education, and a revenue producing career, are able to afford all kinds of cool, trick shit, take time off work, and ride whenever and wherever they want.

Decide who you want to be.

Bullseye. I am not one to discourage a guy's dream but succeeding at the factory level in moto has odds somewhat similar to winning the lottery.

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Four wheels move the body, two wheels move the soul.

Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn.

7/30/2015 12:26 PM

WoodsRacer wrote:

Yup, option 2 was me as well. No where even close to a pro level rider, but I have a solid career and am able to use that as a base to ride pretty much where and when I want.

Sure I often look at the young rippers fly by my at the track and think at times racing more when I was young would have been a blast and I'd be a lot faster now. However mainly riding for fun while growing up, almost none at all while all my finances went to school really makes me love the sport even more now that I am back in it.

I in no way would tell a kid or family not to pursue the dream to become pro, but I would for sure offer the advice they think about the commitment long and hard and always have a plan on how/when to back out with the idea of a second career in mind.

Excellent post especially the " but I would for sure offer the advice they think about the commitment long and hard and always have a plan on how/when to back out with the idea of a second career in mind" part. Getting an education and HS diploma is beyond important but this is overlooked by some "chasing the dream." Sad.

The guys closer to the top aren't immune to this "post moto" quandary either but they get a double whammy if they don't have an education base PLUS are dealing with just being a regular Joe after having gotten accustomed to being a big fish in a little pond. From what I've been told this going from being somebody to be one of the crowd is not an easy adjustment either which can lead to depression and substance abuse.

.

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"My philosophy is to have a really good time and never to let anything stop me from doing what I want to do.

Michel Petrucciani

7/30/2015 12:37 PM

The Narrator wrote:

Here's something to ponder

1. The guys who unrealistically "chase the dream" end up changing oil at a Firestone car care center (nothing wrong with bending wrenches for a living folks) but end up in a profession that can't really support the hobby financially. Then, they knock up some track snack, have a boy, and the cycle continues.

2. The guys who put the dream on the shelf at 18-19, get an education, and a revenue producing career, are able to afford all kinds of cool, trick shit, take time off work, and ride whenever and wherever they want.

Decide who you want to be.

Yes.

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