Ever wondered about the history of flat track racing? The AMA introduced the sport in the early 1930’s. Since then, it has always been considered a truly American sport. In the 1970’s and into the 1980’s, the Grand National Championship proved to be a fertile training ground for world champion road racers, as AMA dirt track racers, such as Kenny Roberts, Freddie Spencer, Eddie Lawson and Wayne Rainey all went on to win the 500cc road racing world championship. In recent years, Nicky Hayden won a MotoGP world championship, and he comes from a flat track background. Many riders worldwide are recognizing the value of training in flat track racing. Only recently, in 2011, was flat track racing recognized by the FIM. Regardless, flat track racing’s entertainment value cannot go on without notice. World competitors are taking interest in the sport and it’s creating a buzz. Valentino Rossi posts videos on YouTube of himself and his buddies racing flat track on a regular basis at his home ranch.This weekend, January 11th, will see a huge event in Barcelona, Spain. Spain’s top competitors, such as Pol Espargaro, Marc Marquez, and Maverick Vinales, will be racing in the Superprestigio Dirt Track race, which is basically DTX-style flat track racing. The interesting thing is that they’ve invited 2013 AMA Grand National Champion, Brad ‘The Bullet’ Baker, as well as Xavier Galindo, Fabrizio Vesprini, and Francesc Cucharrera, to join them. Next weekend, January 18th, will have a very impressive world rider field at the annual Troy Bayliss Classic in Taree, Australia, which includes
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Troy Bayliss, Jason Crump, Karl Muggeridge, Chris Vermeulen, Shayne King, Jeff Leisk, Robbie Phillis, Henry Wiles, Masatoshi Ohmori, Chris Watson, Darcy Ward, Stephen Gall, Matt Davies, Phil Lovett, Jack Miller, Cam Donald, Toby Price, Dave Armstrong, Barry Cockle, Damian Cudlin, Vaughn Style, Mick Kirkness, Anthony Gunter, Sammy Halbert, Gary McCoy, Alex Cudlin, Troy Herfoss, Jamie Stauffer, Sean Giles, Chris Hollis, Paul Caslick, Wayne Maxwell, and Josh Waters. Why are we excited about this? Never before has the world been this interested in flat track racing! This is amazing! The industry hasn’t given flat track too much credibility in the past, but now it’s our time to shine! Flat track racing has a very strong grass roots foundation that is similar to motocross, therefore it’s easy, affordable and sustainable. Because of this, flat track racing around the world is starting to grow, and Canada could potentially see a world event! Only time will tell, but with the continued hard work of Flat Track Canada, there’s definitely a possibility of hosting world championship events.
We see Flat Track growing instantly in the world market and pro road racers are taking an interest in road racing. Therefore we see us possibly teaming up with road racing in the future. The opportunity is there create more interest in each sport. Road racing will offer flat track more credibility, meanwhile flat track has the grass roots infrastructure that road racing lacks.
If we can raise the profile of Canadian Flat Track and build a larger regional infrastructure, we can achieve our goals of having a large profile series in Canada which will include television and quality live shows. Support from sponsors will give us legs to get from A to Z.