Youth Racing - Chicagoland Sportbikes
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-02-2011, 11:33 AM Thread Starter
JMN
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Youth Racing

Hi clsb. Loooong time no posts. Anyway - My boy is about to turn four and I have been casually looking for youth roadracing in our area and it doesn't look good. He's not going to be on two wheels right away but I don't see it very far-off and I wanted to get him racing pocket bikes. I guess I assumed that most higher-end go kart tracks would also have pocket bike racing, but it doesn't look that way. Anyone have any info on getting the little ones on the track in this area?

~Jesse

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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-02-2011, 12:13 PM
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Curious what this brings. I think I checked on this quite a while ago, and had very little luck.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-02-2011, 12:16 PM
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Youth road racing is very scarce at best and I don't know of any going on locally. I'd say that you should think dirt. There is already a thriving youth racing program going on all around you with youth classes in MX, Hare Scrambles, Grand Prix, Trials, Hillclimb and even dirt track. There are also lower key events geared to families and youth like family enduros and egg hunts.
Check out www.amadistrict17.com and www.midwestenduros.com for more info about local youth racing.
All the great ones started in the dirt...Kenny Roberts, Wayne Rainey, Eddie Lawson, Freddie Spencer, Nicky Hayden and even Valentino Rossi just to name a few.

"Dirt is for racing on...Asphalt is for getting there" OR "Flat trackers go in deeper and come out harder... OR (With apologies to General MaCarthur) "Old motorcycle racers never die, they just slip off the groove and fade into the dust!

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-02-2011, 12:18 PM

 
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Super Moto or Mini moto may be the best choice for him. http://northwoodsgp.com/

I don't know much about it, but maybe that points you in the right direction.

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-02-2011, 12:25 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OldTimeBiker View Post
... I'd say that you should think dirt.
My first bike was an 85' KX60, so I hear you - but I would have jumped at the chance to road race at that age.

~Jesse

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-02-2011, 12:50 PM
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Sorry, I'm no help with your question, but would like to say:

Please, be sure this is what HE wants.

This sport is a passion, and sharing that passion with your son is awesome, as long as it is what they want to do.

If you don't understand the point I'm trying to make watch "Toddlers and Tearra's." So many people live vicariously through their kids. Living out their dreams as children, through their own kids, never realizing that the kids are miserable, and only do it because mom/dad force them to.

Goodluck in the adventure that awaits you and your son.

If you go dirt, KTM's are a pretty competative starter, and openely available.

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-02-2011, 01:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gkotlin View Post
Super Moto or Mini moto may be the best choice for him. http://northwoodsgp.com/

I don't know much about it, but maybe that points you in the right direction.
This. The NWGP guys are basically an adult mini roadracing group. A couple years ago they broadened their scope to include full size Supermoto bikes, and also added a more Beginner friendly class. The "Mini Touring" class listed on their site, while not purely limited to kids, has basically become a kids class. The son of one of the organizers of the series started racing last year at 5 or 6 yrs old I think. There aren't a lot of kids, but typically 3 or 4 under 10 yrs old. Their website isn't the most detailed on information, but there are quite a few people on here that post in the Supermoto section that run with that organization.

As OTBr said, there are a lot more options in dirt, and in many ways, I would agree that dirt may offer a wider array of learning opportunities, but there are some RR options in the area.

The race that NWGP has up at Badger Kartway in October would be a good chance to take your boy to go see it first hand. It is the closest to Chicago at about 1.5-2 hrs Northwest of the city (half hour west of Milwaukee).

I just got a used PW50 for my 3 1/2 yr old daughter, so I'm in a similar position you are. She won't be riding it until she gets better on her bicycle (probably next year, but having it sit in the garage has been great motivation for her). I will probably get a set of road tires for it along with the dirt tires and take her with to all the places I ride to see what she wants to jump into.

---------------------------
Colin.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-02-2011, 03:23 PM
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I tried to get my son into street racing a few years back and also couldn't find anything local. Another issue that we faced was gear. It was impossible to find good quality leathers unless I wanted a custom set with a large pricetag. Even a street helmet was hard to find although we went with a womens extra small which he wears on the street now. We opted for mostly dirt and he has a blast. He's just turned 11 and is faster than most of my buddies (on our backyard track). Good Luck !!
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-02-2011, 06:47 PM
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Sugar River Raceway used to do a family-oriented YSR mini series. They're up in Brodhead, WI.

www.sugarriverraceway.com

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-03-2011, 09:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moto804 View Post

I just got a used PW50 for my 3 1/2 yr old daughter, so I'm in a similar position you are. She won't be riding it until she gets better on her bicycle (probably next year, but having it sit in the garage has been great motivation for her). I will probably get a set of road tires for it along with the dirt tires and take her with to all the places I ride to see what she wants to jump into.

My son started with his PW50 at 3.5 yrs on training wheels last year and stayed on them until this spring. He could not ride his bicycle without training wheels until after he was able to ride his PW without them. It seemed easy for him to ride the PW without training wheels because he didn't have to concentrate on pedaling to move and balance, just grab some throttle and go. A few days after riding the PW without t-wheels he was good to go on his bicycle too and I never had to run behind him.

I do suggest the training wheels on the PW too because it gives them a change to figure out the throttle, brakes, riding position etc without worry about falling over. At that age you just can't throw too much at them all at once.

Good Luck with the PW!

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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-03-2011, 10:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KBOlsen View Post
Sugar River Raceway used to do a family-oriented YSR mini series. They're up in Brodhead, WI.

www.sugarriverraceway.com
I'm not sure of the full history on this, but at some point this series merged and/or got taken over by the Northwoods GP group. They still do one race a year at Sugar River (last weekend), but the rest of their races are at Badger Kartway in Dousman, WI, Road America on the Kartplex track, and USA International Raceway in Shawano, WI.

USAIR is the farthest from Chicago at ~4 1/2 hrs, but it is a really cool track.

Sugar River also has open practice for bikes the 2nd and 4th Thursday of every month from April thru October.

---------------------------
Colin.
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