As macho sports go, motocross is not far behind the likes of NFL, football, and boxing. “Currently, the motocross industry isn’t oriented toward female riders at all,” says Makenzi Wassenaar, founder of Motocross Ladies. “Many don’t even consider us to be real athletes – but we’re out to change that.”
In a few short years, Wassenaar has built Motocross Ladies into a #1 leading women’s interactive motocross team and a go-to online community. This 22-year-old Dallas native has relied on her creative use of technology to make this possible while also holding down a full-time job and completing her bachelor’s degree at University of North Texas.
And Wassenaar isn’t stopping here. Armed with little more than Skype and relentless passion, she is rewriting the rules of the industry.
Motocross is no simple hobby or business opportunity for Wassenaar. She rode her first motorbike at the age of three. She says, “At 15, I lost my mom to breast cancer. It was heartbreaking, but my father and I really bonded in the aftermath. And we did that by riding dirt bikes together.”
Motocross Ladies started small. Wassenaar was used to being the only female at the track and longed to connect with other riders in different cities, countries and continents. She posted her insights on social media and found a huge response from others looking to talk about women’s motocross.
“Now Motocross Ladies is an important online community and represents a ten-member team of strong young women who are pushing the sport forward. I use Skype to meet face-to-face with sponsors in Southern California or riders in Canada,” Wassenaar smiles. “And when I need to call land lines and mobile phones, I can call anywhere in the world with Skype credit.”
Wassenaar will continue to connect the dots of Motocross ladies in different places around the world and work to influence a new generation female riders. “Whether in hotspots like Australia, Germany or Puerto Rico, I’m going to continue to use technology and my love of this sport to unite motocross women,” she smiles. “You’ll see. We’re going to make women’s motocross just as mainstream as any other sport.”