Out of the Blue | Amber Giroux | Presented by Schrader’s

By Jensen Amyotte

Presented by Schrader’s

Name: Amber Rae Giroux

Date of Birth: December 25, 1986

Hometown: Eckville, Alberta 

Occupation: Sales Associate at Rainy Creek Powersports for Polaris and Husqvarna 

Race Number: 61 

Bike: 2019 Husqvarna TE 250i

Race Club: Rocky Motorcycle Club 

Classes: Adult A 

This week, we feature Amber Giroux from Eckville, Alberta. | Photo supplied

From being exposed to motorsports since you were 3 weeks old, then starting to race and excelling into pro motocross and then into enduro racing and snow bikes. Can you tell us about your journey?

My journey in the world of motorsports has been absolutely amazing! It all started in the motocross world, growing up right from the beginning watching dad, Roland Giroux, excel and do extremely well in his classes. From the road trips, the weeknight practices, the different tracks we got to experience, the motocross clinics and riding schools attended, the friendships made between people from different provinces and countries, it has all shaped me into the crazy lady you now all know me to be.

After motocross then quickly came the enduro experience. Let me tell you, I sure got thrown into the deep end with this one. Straight from track riding to crazy single-track adventures!

My first year I got straight into competing with the southern Alberta circuit then right into National level and I will say I definitely had my fair share of DNF’s that season and the season to follow. I sure wouldn’t change a thing though because if I didn’t get pushed as hard as I did from my buddies and my fellow competitors I sure as hell wouldn’t be as good of a rider as I now am today.

Then comes the world of white…the most, as we know it, dreaded season of snow. I got right hooked into sledding in the mountains but not with much amount of confidence, until the day I threw my leg over a snowbike and my entire perspective changed in an instant! I sold my snowmobile that following week and have been 100% hooked on snowbiking now since 2015!

I even got the chance over the past few winters to have a go at ice oval racing with dirt bikes and studded tires. I will say that’s the most adrenaline a girl can get in a quick 6 laps leaning one direction with the throttle wide open dragging pegs!

Amber has pretty much done it all on two wheels! | Photo supplied

When not on a bike, how do you keep yourself busy?

I enjoy doing a little bit of it all. I am always open to new ideas and opportunities. I used to be in dance for 17 years of my life and then quit after high school and now have found myself attending tap classes again. Turns out I’ve actually quite missed it. I’ve also taken up rock climbing which I’ll say is fairly quite physically challenging as well as mentally.

As a racer, are there any obstacles you feel a female racer has to deal with that maybe a male racer does not?

In this day in age how far the sport has come, I really don’t think we have much standing in our way. If a lady wants to compete in the guys’ class, she’s got to work hard to do so. If a lady wants to go pro in the women’s nationals and wants to do good, she’s got to work hard to do so. If a lady wants to go out riding with the guys in the mountains and wants to make it to the top of that climb, she’s got to work hard to do so.

Everyone starts somewhere and I can speak from experience from motocross and off-road that in both I started from the bottom and worked my way up to where I am today. It takes time, dedication, will, and goals to keep climbing that ladder ladies!  

Tell us about the opportunity you have in Africa! 

Well, it took a bit of convincing to get me to join my team mate, Cynthia Prefontaine, in going to compete in the 30th Annual Rallye Aicha des Gazelles in Morocco, Africa (www.rallyeaichadesgazelles.com/en). This is an all girls rally through the Sahara Desert for 9 days navigating only with black and white topographical maps from the 1960’s and compasses.

The objective of the rally will be to make it in the shortest distance to all of their coordinates that we will have to place on the maps ourselves and calculate the best routes. We will be competing in the ATV, SSV, and moto class with our 2017 Polaris RZR XP 1000 Rocks and Trails Edition.

We first originally started talking about this event in January of 2018 and hopefully, with our fingers crossed, be finally able to go over and compete on March 12 to March 27, 2021!

We will be the first Western Canadian ladies to compete in the entire history of the event. So be sure in March to follow along by going to the website www.rallyeaichadesgazelles.com and follow us, Team #31! 

Amber has even competed at the ISDE. | Graham Lavery photo

Who is your all-time favourite rider?

The G.O.A.T. Mr. Ricky Carmichael! Super short, but fast AF!

From racing the women’s pro nationals which was your favourite national track and why?

Walton, Ontario. Always groomed to perfection, flowy, awesome jumps, great starting line, and the funnest battles had! The Lee family has always been nothing but friendly and great people to be around! 

What event do you look forward to most every year? One you don’t ever want to miss? 

The Desert 100 down by Odessa, Washington! I have only competed at this event for the last two years, but it is by far the funnest event you can attend on two wheels! Having a poker rally on the Saturday with thousands of bikes on one loop to kick off the weekend, then heading into race day on Sunday with two main starting lines of the first group doing 100 miles (two laps) and 50 miles (doing one lap).

Everyone is all lined up together and last season I went in the ladies 100 mile class starting with all of the 100 mile classes of 910 riders all at once. It’s one of the most, what I would call…unorganized / organized events of all time! Every rider needs to stroke this one off their bucket list.    

Do you miss racing professional motocross? What made you decide to put an end to your successful career?

I do miss it once in awhile, but I think mostly for the friendships that were made. My suspension from national events that was decided upon at the end of 2010 was the ultimate deciding factor for ending the motocross racing. Which I do not regret one bit as it then opened up a whole lot more opportunities for me in the off-road side of racing. 

Canadian winters? No problem. | Photo supplied

What are your biggest accomplishments to date?

Placing second overall in the Women’s Class at Walton TransCan Event, placing second at a Women’s National event in Edmonton, having the chance to go compete in Germany at the 2012 Red Bull ISDE (International Six Days Enduro).

One other event that really stands out for me was being out east at a National Off-road event and I stopped at the end of a hard section to take a sip of water when one of the event volunteers come over to me and asked if I was “Miss Motormouth“ columnist Amber Giroux, and I said it sure is!

He then proceeded to tell me that his daughter was my biggest fan and asked if we could take a selfie together! That to me meant so much as it was a person I had never even met from a completely different province, so thank you for all of the support over the years followers! 

What is the biggest lesson that motocross racing/ off-road has taught you so far?

Two completely different lessons, for sure.

Motocross = keep the battles on the track and always show good sportsmanship. My thing back in the moto days would always be to say “good luck” and high five the riders beside me on the start gate. Keep it positive! I found the more serious I took it the more I struggled to have fun.

Off-road = if it’s a tough race don’t feel bad to get off your bike and help out another rider, because you don’t know if 20 minutes from then you might just be that rider who is in need of a hand.   

And she enjoys giving back to the sport that has given her so much. | Photo supplied

Do you have one piece of advice for females wanting to get into motorsports or try other kinds of motorsports?

My biggest advice would be to get out there and try it even if it’s on your own. Most of my greatest memories have come out of attending events solo and just figuring it out as I go. Everything will fall in line if you just have the drive to make it happen.

I remember moving to Alberta and attending all of the motocross events just with my truck and a tent to sleep in. Mostly surviving off of cereal and noodles to gain the funds to attend. 100% satisfaction if you can gain the confidence to step out of that comfort zone and push to reach your goals.  

Who would you like to thank?

Most of all, I would like to thank my other half Nick for joining me on all my adventures this past season! Can never forget about the two that raised me into loving the sports that I do, mom and dad! Rainy Creek Powersports for hooking me up with great support and always having parts in stock. Sosa Original Graphics for sticking behind me all of these years with my jersey designs and helping us out with our Cheetah support clothing. M7 Designs for always killing it with my graphics kit and always have my custom designs completed with a quick turn around time. They also did an amazing job at their first Side by Side design that got completely for our RZR for the Rallye Aicha des Gazelles. To all of our sponsors for the Africa Event: RAINY CREEK POWERSPORTS, POLARIS RZR, COL-LAR CONSTRUCTION LTD, BLACKWOLF CONTRACTING LTD, BAJA DESIGNS, UTV CANADA, ATV TRIPLE CROWN RACE SERIES, ALDO RACING, BULLET PROOF BUMPERS, GUY’S FREIGHTWAYS LTD, ROCKY MOUNTAIN VALVE, PRP, SUPER ATV, ROCKY MOTORCYCLE CLUB, RAZORBACK OFFROAD, M7 DESIGNS, OTSFF SHIPPING, AMC ELECTRICAL, FARLINGER AND ASSOCIATES, DEVILS LAKE MX, SOSA ORIGINAL GRAPHICS, MERKS TRUCKING, ARMOR WELL SERVICING, FIFTH PINNED LTD, TIREBLOCKS, RACELINE WHEELS, ARISUN TIRES, Five Gen Cattle, Pit Viper, Prefontaine, Just Clean Beef, Action Trax, Bill’s Painting, Toyota Ghost Wheelers, Speed Strap, Total Repair Inc, Grant Performance Motorsports Inc, Pro Mich Inc.  

Keep an eye out for #61. You never know where she’ll show up! | Photo supplied