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chasetwo79 chasetwo79
6/22/2022 4:51 PM

Off-road friends who also race Moto, I’d love to hear your thoughts on how you have effectively mixed in trail riding, enduro, or hell even super Moto into your training programs for racing MX in a track form.

Any primarily track riders who like to do trail or other Moto for cross-training? If so, what type of sessions are you doing? What’s the pros that you are seeing as it impacts your on track riding?

Curious to hear some feedback. I’ve been lucky enough to race Moto for 30 years and as I have gotten older, I am starting to enjoy a good scramble plus I live closer to world class off-road than the track.

Thanks in advance!

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Dirt.Squirt Dirt.Squirt
6/22/2022 5:04 PM

Almost every kid in the 70s 80s and 90s would come home from school and go trail riding then racing on the weekend. Trail riding WILL make you a better motocrosser no doubt. I know it did me

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FilthyGrungy FilthyGrungy
6/22/2022 5:18 PM

Good riding habits do not care if you are on a moto track, or in single track.

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chasetwo79 chasetwo79
6/22/2022 5:28 PM
Dirt.Squirt wrote:

Almost every kid in the ...more

I was a 90s kid and would trail ride sometimes. I just wasn’t a big fan of it back then. I had my own track and friends with tracks so I would only go trail riding like a handful of times a year at most. Always racing on tracks.

I still prefer the track and jumps and all that, I’m just curious what types of sessions people are putting in on the trails and such when they aren’t at the track.

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183Matt 183Matt
6/22/2022 5:34 PM

I ride MX as cross training for off road/trails. During the summer the trails around me are usually super dry and too susceptible to wildfires to ride, so I hit the tracks in Marysville once a week to keep riding.

I find that my endurance from off road helps me put in long motos at the track and the track riding helps me work on my sprint speed off road. I’m a believer any seat time is better than no seat time.

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Titan1 Titan1
6/22/2022 6:14 PM
183Matt wrote:

I ride MX as cross ...more

This!

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Pirate421 Pirate421
6/22/2022 7:08 PM

I also ride mx to train for enduro. My issue is accessibility to trail, really the only time I can get into the woods is during races. Half the time I try to compete for position and half the time I just pay the $40 race fee to get a 2hr trail ride in. We don’t have any public off-road riding areas anywhere near but do have a bunch of tracks so that’s what’s easiest.

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Jeremy Macduff Jeremy Macduff
6/22/2022 7:11 PM

If you race moto, and want to excel at racing moto, you should practice moto as much as possible.

There is very little correlation between trail riding and racing motocross.

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Titan1 Titan1
6/22/2022 10:22 PM
Jeremy Macduff wrote:

If you race moto, and want ...more

Um….throttle control, clutch control, balance, line selection, etc, etc, etc….lots of correlation, brother.

Trail riding isn’t a replacement for the track…but it can help sharpen certain skills…and perhaps more importantly, provide a change of scenery to help keep the motivation up.

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Sawfish Sawfish
6/22/2022 10:28 PM
Titan1 wrote:

Um….throttle control, ...more

Don’t feed the trolls.

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chasetwo79 chasetwo79
6/22/2022 10:36 PM
183Matt wrote:

I ride MX as cross ...more

I live in Norcal too. Some days like today it’s 103 at MMX and to me that’s just no fun. I live up in Truckee and just tend to lean into more trail riding as a back up on hot days up here. We usually only have a couple of weeks of no Moto due to fire this high up.

Today I saw that I could drive 1.5 hours to suffer in the heat or I could ride out my back door to an OHV loop for an hour. Not only did I save 3 hours of driving, I didn’t pay any gas to get there or an entry fee.

I still don’t love enduro enough to go race WORCs or GNCC event over a MX one or anything, but I am finding it gives me a close enough workout to my track days if done right. I’m totally fine with it being my second or third day of riding in a week, but don’t think I could do days on end of it.

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wrc777 wrc777
6/23/2022 5:56 AM

Hare scrambles will teach you about arm pump and let you work on technique to reduce it. When you get arm pump 15 minutes into a 2hr race you will figure out how to reduce/prevent it or you won't finish. If you get arm pump 10 minutes into a 15 minute moto you just suffer through it and don't learn anything.

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onewheelwheaties onewheelwheaties
6/23/2022 7:53 AM
wrc777 wrote:

Hare scrambles will teach ...more

I agree; with poor form you can still get through a 15 min moto at a decent speed but you won't be able to make through a 2 hour scramble. The intensity/sprint speed isn't the same as moto but you will learn a lot about your riding habits during a 2 hour race.

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LungButter LungButter
6/23/2022 7:57 AM
Jeremy Macduff wrote:

If you race moto, and want ...more

This is one of the dumbest things I've read on here in quite awhile.

Thanks for the laugh.

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dust1905 dust1905
6/23/2022 8:18 AM

I've had more difficulty with woods racing as far as getting into a flow with body position then in mx. With single track switching quickly from speed sections to tight I find myself sitting in places I should be standing and vice versa. The constant standing/seated changes are definitely more of a workout in woods and help with my strength for moto.

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Falcon Falcon
6/23/2022 8:44 AM

We used to call it "playriding" when I was a kid in the '80s. Go out and find jumps, ride natural terrain, and do things that don't exist on a moto track. I guarantee you'll crash less on the track when you can handle yourself off-road.

Braaapin' aint easy.

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mvd61 mvd61
6/23/2022 8:46 AM
Jeremy Macduff wrote:

If you race moto, and want ...more

Wut

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JB 19 JB 19
6/23/2022 9:01 AM

I personally believe that really technical slow speed single track is awesome for balance. I don't mean easy crusing trail riding, I'm talking more along the lines mellow hard enduro. Technical hill climbs, extremely off camber feet on the pegs sections. I race a 350 in moto, but have a 300 XCW for trails.

When I ride technical single track and get back on a moto track I feel like I have this freaky balance that is kind of strange. Like you can go around flat corners with your feet on the pegs and be like blink .

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pelosi826 pelosi826
6/23/2022 10:28 AM
JB 19 wrote:

I personally believe that ...more

To piggy back off that. I'm a track rat. I grew up riding trails but haven't in 10 years. I recently went on a trip to Costa Rica riding across the country and back on a KTM 350. It was the most difficult, technical, and puckering riding I've ever done. It was a lot of hard packed clay, in their rainy season. It's all steep climbs and descents. There is no flat land there. When I got back home, I noticed on the track being more aware of my throttle control and keeping my revs a lot lower than I use to. I also felt like I was being more aware with bike control and placement, especially standing. I would say from my experience that trail/hard endure/single track riding helps improve your technical ability in certain areas that you can directly apply to moto.

Also, I definitely recommend riding in Costa Rica if you get the chance. It was a wild experience!

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motodad312 motodad312
6/23/2022 10:34 AM
Dirt.Squirt wrote:

Almost every kid in the ...more

This ^. I grew up racing in Ohio in the 80's. Every winter my dad would make me go race 2 hour hare scramble races. I hated it at the time but it helped immensely once spring came around and moto started.

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Jeremy Macduff Jeremy Macduff
6/23/2022 11:05 AM
Titan1 wrote:

Um….throttle control, ...more

I'm with you on the change of scenery. Aside from that, there is little to be gained on the motocross track by riding trails.

You're talking about rudimentary fundamentals. Those certainly require seat time on a bike, which can be accomplished anywhere. If you want to excel at motocross, you need to be on a motocross track. When is the last time any of the top pros spent time riding trails to hone their skills? Never. They hone their skills on a motorcross track. A variety of motocross tracks.

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chasetwo79 chasetwo79
6/23/2022 11:08 AM
Jeremy Macduff wrote:

If you race moto, and want ...more

Titan1 wrote:

Um….throttle control, ...more

Jeremy Macduff wrote:

I'm with you on the change ...more

We weren’t really talking skills to begin with anyhow. It was more on the using it as a cross training method beyond your normal track days to improve your on track fitness.

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Jeremy Macduff Jeremy Macduff
6/23/2022 11:17 AM
chasetwo79 wrote:

We weren’t really talking ...more

Well, if you ride trails with the same intensity as you would on a motocross track, then yes, you might gain something from a fitness perspective. Good luck finding trails that afford you that kind of similar riding intensity. You're better off riding a mountain bike if you're concerned with fitness.

I raced all these disciplines for years. Until I actually put in 3/4 to full intensity laps on a motocross track, my motocross fitness was shit. There is simply no replicating motocross conditions and motocross intensity anywhere but a motocross track.

Most of the top enduro and desert racers practice on motocross tracks to improve their fitness. You'll never find a top motocross racer cross-training on trails. What does that tell you?

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onewheelwheaties onewheelwheaties
6/23/2022 11:22 AM
Jeremy Macduff wrote:

I'm with you on the change ...more

Chance Hymas, Factory Honda Am and winner of Supercross Futures, has been cross training by racing off-road. Zack Osborne also raced a GNCC leading up to the season where he made his 450 title run if I recall correctly.

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Gordon Lightfoot Gordon Lightfoot
6/23/2022 11:26 AM

I think a good reference point might be the interview with Johnny O'Mara and David Bailey that Steve Mathes did quite a few years ago. The boys talked about their training in the mid-80's at the Honda Hills and how that track might be groomed once a year or so. They would ride a few motos but would invariably head off into the surrounding hills for some playriding, and they acknowledged how much they learned to ride from that activity alone.

In my day - and I am old - there was always playriding at the track. We would ride a moto or two, for sure, but popping wheelies up a hill, or just trying to master a hillclimb, were all things we did as well. A popular "game" was paying "Follow the Leader": a bunch would follow one guy around while he tried to loose the rest of us. It was trailriding, but it was also a race over any and all ground and obstacles, was as fast or slow as the leader would make it, and taught us how to handle those obstacles by doing and/or watching the others. And it was great fun. So that begs the question: if we're not doing this for fun at it's base level, then what are we doing it for?

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LungButter LungButter
6/23/2022 11:26 AM
Jeremy Macduff wrote:

I'm with you on the change ...more

Well lets see....just a few that I've seen with my own eyes or read about in race reports at off-road races over the years that I can think of off the top of my head. I'm sure there is at least a couple names you'll recognize...I'm also quite certain this list would get A LOT bigger if I took the time to do any research at all....

Mike Allessi
Brett Metcalfe
Eli Tomac
Zach Osborne
Aaron Plessinger - why do you think he's a contender to win any time it's a mudder?
and most recently Chance Hymas, you know the kid who has the full factory Honda Amateur ride?


These guys must think there is at least SOME value in it.

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onewheelwheaties onewheelwheaties
6/23/2022 11:44 AM
Gordon Lightfoot wrote:

I think a good reference ...more

I recall Jett mentioning that he and Hunter do play riding for about 15 mins after they finish their practice motos, where they practice stoppies and wheelies and such (possibly at the suggestion of Johnny O, I can't remember). I think it came up in an interview (Pulp maybe?) where it was brought up how long Jett rode the front wheel in that crash at A2 in 2020.

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Titan1 Titan1
6/23/2022 1:04 PM
Jeremy Macduff wrote:

If you race moto, and want ...more

Titan1 wrote:

Um….throttle control, ...more

Jeremy Macduff wrote:

I'm with you on the change ...more

I always say...if trail riding is boring, you just aren't going fast enough.

Riding single track has always paid huge dividends on the motocross track...pushing hard on an 18 inch wide trail, around trees, over/around rocks, uphills, downhills, switch backs, not knowing what is around the corner or over that hill, with less than ideal dirt conditions (usually) etc. makes the moto track seem HUGE, and smooth, with great dirt (traction), therefore, for me at least, it makes it much easier to go fast on.

Never mind all the body position, throttle/clutch/brake control, balance, etc.benefits.

And for a top pro, though they could probably benefit from riding off road, its not nearly as beneficial to them as it is to the amateur weekend warrior (like us). So using the argument that because the top pros (or all the tops pros) don't do it, it won't help us normal folk doesn't hold any water.

If cross training on a mountain bike is beneficial to moto...its just silly to say that riding off road isn't beneficial to moto.

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chasetwo79 chasetwo79
6/23/2022 1:13 PM
Titan1 wrote:

Um….throttle control, ...more

Jeremy Macduff wrote:

I'm with you on the change ...more

Titan1 wrote:

I always say...if trail ...more

Totally agree. Again, this thread wasn’t even started to talk about the hard skills applicability. To say that’s not there is insane.

I road cycle a lot and I think skipping a session there to trail ride is a much higher plus for my normal track riding focus. I wasn’t in here suggesting replacing the track with the trail, more like using it as a consistent compliment.

I can ride amazing mountain bike, road bike, or enduro right out of my garage. I still go to the track twice a week as it is, but I would rather enduro on my other training days than cycle pretty much any day from a pure fun perspective.

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mbw479 mbw479
6/23/2022 1:30 PM

Any seat time helps......just ride. I used to ride an xr100 and ct110 every day doing slow wheelies and backing them into corners around the farm, I didn't think it was helping me out on my CR250 at all, just fun. Then I stopped doing it......

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