Motorcycle racing is in the doldrums we’re told, dominated by the international racing we can see on TV, with no crowds going to the local races.
All true, sort of.
While there was a brief period – basically the 1970s – when locals went to see local domestic racing and the occasional imported international, once the ball games raised their professionalism, built comfortable stadiums and put in lights for night matches, motorcycle racing couldn’t compete.
And after Wayne Gardner won the 1987 World 500 Championship we started getting the action beamed to our TV screens, so the only events most riders are interested in attending are MotoGP and World Superbikes.
Of course us older riders hanker for the glory days so we trudge along to the Island Classic or Festival of Speed to get a dose of classic magic.
What you might not know is there is heaps of motorcycle racing happening, and you can see it either free of cheaply.
Pretty-well every weekend there’s dirt track, motocross, enduro and, of course, road racing happening somewhere near you.
Most of the spectators are parents, friends and pit crews of the riders, most of whom are there to ride hard – they are there to test themselves and their bikes, knowing they won’t win.
That doesn’t stop them battling for tenth position.
Click on the link below and you’ll be rewarded with a calendar of events which can be filtered by state. Jump on you bike, go for a ride, check out some racing, buy a cheap lunch from the club’s canteen and ride home – that’s a great day out.
– Nigel Paterson