Down & Dirty
Ripping through the dirt, floating through the air, roaring around a steeply banked curve—these are the stuff of motocross dreams. And every year, hundreds of motocross riders make these dreams come true at Jim Gibson’s Motocross Training Camp. To casual spectators, motocross might look like simple dirt-biking, but it is in fact an incredibly nuanced competitive sport that requires discipline, strategy, and training, as well as considerable physical endurance and strength. Spend a little time at Jim Gibson’s and soon you’ll be flying like the big boys.
Jim Gibson’s Motocross Training Camps take place at some of Southern California’s most challenging motocross tracks. The typical camp lasts 4 or 5 days, costs around $1,000, and includes everything from dormitory-style accommodations and meals to exercise and dieting tips. Bike rentals are available depending on availability. The focus here is not on the freestyle acrobatics that are famous at events like X Games (see ), but rather the straight-ahead racing skills that will put riders in the winner’s circle.
Gibson emphasizes skills like holeshots, where riders jockey for position early in a race. Precision braking is another key strategy, and cornering safely and successfully can make or break a rider. Physical conditioning may be more important here than in any other motorized sport, because riders are handling 200-pound (91kg) bikes moving at top speeds between 50 and 70 mph (81–113kmph), and the motocross camps give riders plenty of opportunities for weight training, running, and gymnastics.
Gibson, a former factory rider for Yamaha and Honda (big names in motocross), was a member of the gold medal-winning team at the 1982 Motocross des Nations event in Wohlen, Switzerland. He went on to win several more medals and awards in U.S. and international motocross. He’s available for training sessions not only at his motocross camps, but also for group lessons and private one-on-one sessions.
Jim Gibson’s Motocross Training Camp ( 951/698-9272; www.jgmxt.com).
When to Go: Year-round.