First off I want to say how much I like your magazine. It’s been really a great source for someone like me new to the sport of motocross. I have kept every issue and even started sharing them with a friend who rides as well.I am very new to the sport and after getting my endorsement in February this year, I knew with my very tight budget a bike of any sort was not something to be had in my near future. I did however decide I would try to purchase gear so by the time I was able to get a bike I would be set. Unfortunately a helmet is all I have been able to afford so far.But something truly great happened in the last month. An acquaintance whom I have known for a few years gave me his son’s 2003 Yamaha TTR125L because he knew how much I wanted to ride. I couldn’t believe it! He told me that I just had to promise him I would be safe and have fun. A week later the bike was sitting on my back porch at my apartment complex. A few days later I was able to find a storage unit for it. I still have a hard time grasping the fact that I have this dirt bike at my disposal.
Timing was a little off as I had traded in my SUV for a sedan earlier this year and so I wasn’t sure I would be taking the bike to a riding area anytime soon. Then to my great appreciation and gratitude a co-worker of mine who races offered to take me out to his track and also to Straddleline ORV Park to ride.When we went to Straddleline I was really nervous. I had only ridden my bike two times before then and knew I would be surrounded at this Park with riders of all ages who had more experience than me. Also being a woman in a male dominated sport was a little intimidating and not to mention I had no MX gear other than my helmet. I spent the whole day on the kiddie track being passed by kids not even half my age on bikes that weren’t any higher than the front tire of my bike (talk about intimidating!). They would zoom passed me like I was standing still!!!! I did fall on some trails my friend took me on and found that loose pointy rocks the size of my fist are not all that stable and hurt when you fall on them. Despite the few falls (the first of many) and my lack of real MX gear, which I am sure made me stick out like sore thumb, I had a really good time. I even watched my friend ride the main track. I included a picture of me with my bike and one I took of my friend riding at Straddleline.
It’s been really awesome to meet a couple of great people who are so generous to help out with the pursuing of my new hobby. Also I want to give a big thank you too Dirt Rider! Keep up the good work.Kristine
Mill Creek, WAKristine, thanks for the awesome letter. Your experience with getting into dirt bikes is not unlike most riders’ first encounters with two wheels—a combination of nerves, excitement and the occasional dirt sample or two. However, I have to give you props for jumping straight into the deep end and just diving right into the sport. You’re in a fun place now—the learning curve is steep and exciting and the Yamaha TTR125L is a perfect bike for you—but I know that you’ll find that things get really fun once you’re able to explore some more and expand on your skills. Now, a few bits of advice: Remember to remain patient and don’t ride over your head. Get a torque wrench and learn how to use it. Get active with a local club and help with trail maintenance days, which are a great place to meet even more riders. Make sure you always wear a helmet and have a quiet exhaust. Stay off the clutch, check your tire pressure often and don’t be scared to go to experienced riders for advice as you learn the ins and outs of off-road riding. Oh, and keep reading Dirt Rider, because we’ll teach you as much as we can about this great sport! —Chris Denison