Rachel Combs, 13 Corona, CA Sponsors: Factory Connection, Dynamic Engine Factory Motocross is filled with everyday people who do everything they can to get the chance to ride, but occasionally you run across a racer who has a genuine drive and enthusiasm for the sport. When we stopped by to catch up with Rachel Combs at Cahuilla Creek, we immediately knew she was a true enthusiast just by the way she spoke about racing. On the track she rides aggressively and with confidence, competing in multiple classes during the day against both the girls and boys. Written words don’t express all of the enthusiasm Rachel showed while talking about riding and racing, so as you read these words, imagine an ear to ear grin as she spoke to us about it. How did you get started racing? I originally started racing karts and then my dad bought me a little TTR90 to just ride around on. Then he took me to Starwest, that was the first track I ever rode at. I rode on the 50 track and started liking it and riding a little more. Then he got me a 65 and I got better and progressed and I just kept going. I love it. Do you prefer motocross over karts?
Anyday! It is cheaper, more fun and what I love about it is it is all about the rider. In karts, if your car was set up good you’d win. But I love this sport and it is definitely my favorite.
How does it feel to be a girl racing against the boys a lot of the time?
I think it is cool, it makes them push me. Them knowing I’m a girl they definitely don’t want to hit me to get by me, but it makes me ride harder. That is my main goal, to get in the mens’ pro league. It’s my number one goal and I think it makes me ride harder and I think it’s a lot of fun.
Do you prefer to race in the girls classes or with the boys classes?
Definitely the boys. I love racing against the boys. I love that competitive edge to it, they’ll take you out, they don’t care. I think that’s the only way I’ve learned to ride with the rough stuff was to race against the boys.
Your ultimate goal is to go pro, and you’d rather race with the men than the women?
I want to compete with the guys. I’d love to go pro with the women, and if I could I would do it, but my goal is to be with the men.
What rider is your biggest inspiration?
Probably James Stewart. I love him so much. If you read about him, he came from a family that wasn’t in a good place financially and all the hate against him. It makes me want to be better.
What do your friends think about you racing motocross?
Not a lot of them know what it is like, but a lot of them wonder why motocross. I just tell them that I grew up a racer and always will be a racer and that I love it.
Do they ever try to talk you into doing other sports like soccer?
Football! I’m actually really good at football and they try to get me play with them. I tell them that I am good, I already have a sport.
What other activities do you do besides motocross?
I play drums. Me and my friends have a little ‘band’ just for fun. I like to run, just go by myself and run.
Why do you love riding?
Ever since I was a little kid, I watched it on TV and always wanted to do that, it looked so awesome. Also my dad is an ex-professional racer, and so was his dad. We come from a background of racers and I got into it and there is nothing else on the planet I would rather do.
What is your plans for the year?
Definitely going to hit the Transworld races. I like how the Transworld races go to a variety of tracks. They hit Perris that has the jumping, and this place for all the good stuff. Also Gold Cup and Mammoth. I love Mammoth, I got 10th last year on my 150. Best track I’ve ever ridden, I love it!