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Badass - Jackie Reiss  "This one's for the girls"

Badass - Jackie Reiss "This one's for the girls"

“This one’s for the girls." For the girls who truly believe in themselves and the ones that need a little push to see it. For the girls who have fought to be where they are and the ones that are pushing to go even farther.

My dad purchased my first dirt bike from a family friend. His daughter outgrew the bike, so it was only fitting that another little girl got the chance to develop a passion for motorcycles. After sitting on the bike in the garage, waiting to grow big enough to ride it, I had my first solo ride at the age of four. “Go down to the tree and come back” were the instructions I got from dad, but I ended up in mom’s flowerbed instead. This wasn’t the place I wanted to be, but far from where I ended up.

After countless laps around the house, we ventured to the local motocross track and I was hooked from there. We spent many weekends at tracks across the country, racing and enjoying the community we became a part of. Up until the age of 10 I competed with the boys since there wasn’t a separate girl’s class. I loved making the boys mad, and their dads even more frustrated. “You’re really going to let that girl beat you?” was the motivation I needed to keep pushing. 

As I grew older, I had a successful career in the girl’s and women’s classes. After winning many state and local championships, my racing escalated to the national level. However, the intensity of my racing soon diminished as I started my college career.

Though my motocross career slowed, I was introduced to the developing sport of snow biking in my sophomore year of college. In 2017, I competed in a handful of races in the women’s class and finished 5th overall in the series. In 2018, the series grew to a national scale and included a professional women’s class. We traveled the country to follow the series and I finished 2nd overall.

In 2019, the series we previously raced was demoted. It is no longer a nationally ranked event, leaving women without a national or professional series to compete in. This has led me to race a professional men’s series, and as the only woman to do so, I am up against tough competition.

My choice to compete at this level isn’t just for me. It’s to prove to race promoters that women are just as invested in this sport as men are. It’s to prove that women can go fast and want an opportunity to show their skills. It’s to prove all those men wrong.

The main reason for a lack of a national women’s class is the perceived lack of interest in the sport. Though race promoters claim this, I claim it is lack of opportunity. In an effort to increase involvement, I and others that share this view are organizing a free women’s riding event. We are doing so with goals of increasing women’s involvement in racing and creating a community of women riders. It’s only fitting that as this sport grows, women’s involvement grows with it.

Again, this one’s for the girls and all we can accomplish together.

- Jackie

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