Motocross racing is a physically demanding sport held on off-road circuits. The modern form of motocross evolved from motorcycle trials competitions like the Auto-Cycle Clubs’s and the Scottish Six Days Trial. The sport became very popular in the United Kingdom and internationally. The name motocross racing is a combination of “cross country” with the french word “motocyclette”. Other types of motorcycle sport derived from motocross, such as supermoto, supercross and freestyle racing.
Supermoto is an off-road race created in the late 70s that involves a motocross bike modified so it can be driven on both roads and dirt. Tracks can have obstacles such as berms, jumps and for special events even metal ramps. Bikes are equipped with road-racing tires with a grooved tread for better grip. Some supermoto races are organized on adapted go-kart tracks, street racing tracks and road racing tracks. Kids can also participate in classes that allow a displacement capacity of 85 cc.
This type of motocross racing is practiced on artificially made dirt tracks, with obstacles and steep jumps. The high performance bikes are adjusted so they can manage on the rough terrain. Contests are held on professional football and baseball stadiums. Unlike regular motocross racing surfaces, supercross tracks have tighter turns, shorter straights and require a different technique because of the restricted indoor space.
Freestyle Motocross racing
Freestyle Motocross (FMX) is a new variation of supercross that focuses on acrobatic stunts performed from a ramp. The airborne stunts are scored by judges on difficulty level, crowd reaction, best use of course and style. Sometimes drivers copy difficult BMX tricks and often injure themselves. The bikes feature strong lightweight frames constructed with aluminum alloy or magnesium, so the rider can maintain control during tricks.
Pit bikes and mini-motocross
A pit bike is a small motorbike used to ride around pits, the staging area with team support vehicles. Upgraded models are used in races on motocross or supercross surfaces. Until 2004, the only way to obtain a pit bike was to buy a child’s minibike and modify it. Modern vehicles are powered by 4-stroke, horizontal, single-cylinder engines and have heavy duty suspension systems and tire upgrades.
Enduro and quadcross section racing clubs are popular in the United States and the United Kingdom. The Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) Series were developed in the 80s and include enduro races on terrains with obstacles, hill climbing, wooden trails, dirt roads and creek crossing. In 1985 the ATV National Motocross Championship was formed, and today events are held throughout the U.S. The Championship mud racing (CMR) was created in 2006 because of a need for uniformity of classes and rules.