Ask any rider how he or she got their start on a dirt bike and you'll probably get the same answer almost every time.
In fact, in our extensive number of interviews over the years of privateers we always start with that question and "Dad" rules the roost. So, in honor of dads everywhere who got their children started on a dirt bike and then maybe trucked them around to various Motocross races we say "Happy Father's Day!"
And since Father's Day is Sunday we asked around at MotoSport for employees' favorite memories of Dad and for the Dad's that work here their favorite memories of helping their child throw a leg over a dirt bike. All of the stories below come from "The Guys That Ride."
Amanda Heaberlin learning the riding ropes with her dad
I grew up around dirt bikes, mini bikes, 3- and 4-wheelers. My grandparents had a place in the country with a lot of land and space to ride. My dad and his brothers and sisters built a track in the woods behind the house to ride on. Dad used to take me on little rides around grounds until I was old enough to hop on myself. I loved it and I've been hooked ever since.
I started riding street bikes when I met my husband in high school (yes, high school). My Dad now has an old Victory cruiser and we get to ride together every now and then. I have a 1 year old daughter that we hope will get the riding bug. We got her a strider to help her along. - Amanda Heaberlin, Creative Manager
Paul Nagy (right in both photos) and his son
My son, Sebastian, and I started trail riding when he was 13. He got his driver's license immediately after his 16th birthday and took the Team Oregon Motorcycle Safety Course a few months later, earning his motorcycle endorsement on his license. We have had a lot of fun together riding the trails and the highways. My son is away at college now so we look forward to his graduation and coming home so that we can go out riding together again. We dream of doing a long road trip to Alaska together. - Paul Nagy, Gearhead Operations Lead
Lindsay Montgomery and her dad
My dad and I were never very close for a long time. Almost like we were too much of the same person to get along very well. About four years ago, our relationship changed when we got together with our riding group and took on our longest ride together of nearly 800 miles. I wasn't sure if he even wanted me to go, until he handed me my helmet and said "You're coming."
Riding with my dad is exactly what our relationship needed. All of the problems we had with each other vanished when we jumped on the bike, and began our trek to Monterey, CA one year for the races taking part at the Laguna Seca Raceway. My dad has always been my hero, he's the strongest man I know. I look up to him and hope I can be as good of a person he is one day. I learned a lot about him on our trip and he learned a lot about me. We finally gained some ground in understanding and respecting each other. Our trip consisted of long beach walks, limo rides, restaurants, site seeing and meaningful conversations about life. That trip was probably the first time I've heard him say he was proud of me for the first time since I was 14. It was a very emotional and fun trip that made its impact and definitely mended our relationship. We were able to vibe with each other in the freedom that riding gives us. I will never forget it. - Lindsay Montgomery, Gearhead
Shane Teano and his son
Racing motocross most of my son's youth bonded us for life in a way not many others understand. It wasn't about raising a pro-Motocrosser, it was about raising a man. The track provided a large family and other dads that influenced his upbringing in a way I'm grateful for. Looking back, the ups and downs provide great memories and lots of laughs. His first driving date was in our Moto van which did not excite the girl's parents! My son has taken the skills and applied them to becoming the best man he can be for his family, his work and his life. - Shane Teano, Gearhead
Matt Brown (left) and his dad (also photo at top)
My riding memories begin one day when I was 16 years of age. I was looking at motorcycles to buy and went to purchase a new 2014 CRF250L at a small dealership. To my amazement my dad was the next customer In line behind me. He ended up buying the same bike the same day with me. He said I couldn't let you do it on your own and just sit and watch you (he rode many years prior but because of me and my sister stopped). We loaded these bikes up in the truck and headed out. Little did I know at the time how many memories this would later create! These bikes have now multiplied to 13 in our garage. We ride around town and have some road trips planned this summer, my dad on the slower 900f and me on the 1100f.
But the CRF250Ls have taken us down many dirt roads all though Utah and Nevada. We have ridden the Utah and Nevada Backcountry Discovery Routes together. Riding bikes with my dad sure has changed my life and can't wait for the adventures to come! - Matt Brown, Gearhead
Brandon Hoff (left) and his dad get ready to ride
My dad is an old school Moto head so I had an early introduction to the sport. My dad bought my first PW50 around the age of four, and we were wide open together every weekend from that point on. Our weekends pretty much consisted of him driving me to and from the track while I slept the entire time.
The bond that developed between us is almost impossible to put into words. Now that we live 1,600 miles apart, our riding days together are few and far between, but on my yearly trip home we always make it out to Moto a couple of times. The feeling of throwing dirt in the old man's face never gets old! Happy Father's Dollar Bill.- Brandon Hoff, Email Marketing Manager