Ride fast, turn left!
You can’t fail to have noticed the rise in interest in Flat Track racing, not least because of Indian’s success in the new US American Flat Track series, the launch of Super Hooligan racing in the US and Hooligan over here, and – of course – Dirtquake.
There is a ridiculous amount of archive material that places racing at heart of the American custom bike culture – a lot of riders competed in formal and informal races, formed into teams and identified by colours – and the bobbing of heavyweight and middleweight Harleys and Indians was done to lose weight to make them more competitive against each other and the vertical twins that were coming from England.
And history has a habit of repeating itself.
With Indian’s backing of the DTRA National Championship and Harley-Davidson sponsoring Dirtquake, there’s everything to aspire to, but what if that’s just a bit too formal, organised and corporate for you?
Then you perhaps want to get involved in Dirt Diggers? more grass roots, less formal but growing: the chance to find out what you can do against riders with a broad range of experience and expertise, on an eclectic range of bikes?
It’s no less competitive, as anyone who has seen Crazy Odge racing will testify, and there are a range of classes to compete in – as diverse as the DTRA, as irreverent as Dirtquake:
- Flat Track
- Pit bike
- Street Tracker
- Inappropriate bike
- Moped Mayhem
- Junior 50 and
- Junior 110
Most of these are coming along nicely, we’re told, but there’s only a couple signed-up for the Harley/Cruiser class so far, so we’ve been asked to give it a shout-out.
It obviously helps if you’ve got some experience on the dirt, but it’s not essential: neither is youth, a huge budget or a sense of humour deficiency.
And, of course, it is racing, so it is dangerous: no point pretending otherwise. But then so is riding a motorcycle on the road.