Out of the Blue | Brooke Henderson | Brought to You by Schrader’s

By Jensen Amyotte

Photos by Steve Greene

Brought to you by Schrader’s

Name: Brooke Henderson 

Date of Birth: June 27th, 2002

Hometown: Halifax, NS

Grade or Occupation: University Student at Vancouver College of Art and Design

Race Number: 47

Bike: YZ 125

Race Club: Atlantic Canada MRC 

Classes: Ladies 

This week, we feature #47 Brooke Henderson from Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Who/what inspired you to get into the sport of motocross and how long have you been racing/riding? 

My younger brother, actually. When I was 10, he got into riding and racing and I was jealous so I asked my parents to get me a bike and ended up really liking it! This will be my 10th year of racing. 

When not on a dirt bike, how do you keep yourself busy? Are you involved in any other sports or extracurricular activities?

With the race season being at the same time as college, I don’t have a lot of free time. I usually just flip flop between the two things.

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

The gear!!! I’ve always hated the way women gear is designed to be small and tight fit. Not all girls are build like that! 

From your first ride to where you are now what is something you never thought you would be able to overcome but have?

From where I first started I wouldn’t make it out of 2nd gear on my 65. To racing nationals and even claiming some USA titles I’ve really made it further than I ever thought I would. 

Who is your all-time favourite rider and why?

Growing up it’s always been Logan Gallant. He is a local pro rider who always took the time for the little guys. He’s given me multiple trophies from his winnings when I was younger and had taken a lot of his time to train my younger brother and I on how to corner. To this day he’s still one of the coolest riders to watch. 

Brooke is coming off two badly broken legs.

What is your favourite track and why?

MX207. Really simple track, super safe and it’s always fun on a two-stroke. Those big wide open corners and tables are a blast.

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

Just being on a bike! I’ve had my fair share of crashes and have been told many times, “No more dirt bikes,” but I keep bouncing back and getting on so every year is an event to look forward to.

Who has been your biggest inspiration/hero on and off the track? 

I don’t really have any. I’m always kind of in my own world at the track and never really took to anyone else’s style. 

Do you have any pre-moto rituals?     

I don’t eat on race days. Not much of a ritual, just more so I don’t puke.

Tell us about your 2021 race season and your plans for 2022.  

2021 has really just been my time to enjoy racing and feel out what it’s like even slowing down a lot. I’m coming of a crash back in 2019 where I broke both my legs and was told never to be on bikes again, but 3 plates and 30 screws later I’m back at it!

As for 2022 I’m supposed to be starting life and getting a job. I’ll be done college and starting my full-time career in graphic design, so who knows what that means for bikes.

What are your biggest accomplishments to date?

Making it to top 10 in a women’s national and qualifying for the first stage of Loretta Lynn‘s.

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

It’s ok to fail. You have a lot of good and a lot of bad days on a bike, so it’s ok to fail. Accept it and improve. Move on from it.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Scrounging up spare parts for a 2018 YZ 125. 

Are there any females out there who you feel have paved the way for other girls to be successful in motocross or off road?

Not really a lot of the female pros. When I was a kid it didn’t exist. It feels like only in the last couple years that women really had a place racing motocross.

Brooke is in school to be a Graphic Designer.

What kind of track/dirt do you feel you excel at most and why? 

Sand. I’ve always loved deep sand tracks and trained on them a lot as a kid. 

If you ever have children will you give them the option to race as well? 

Absolutely! If they want to. I’ve seen a lot of kids who are living their parents’ dreams not their own and it’s not nearly as much fun for either of them. 

If you could give 1 piece of advice to a female of any age who wants to start riding what would it be?

Just try it! It look scary but it’s good to do something that scares you. You might like it. 

What was your first fear when you started riding and how did you overcome it? 

Jumping, and I still haven’t overcome it, and unfortunately never will. Due to the condition of my legs it’s physically unsafe for me to jump again. That was one of the criteria for me getting back on a bike.

Do you see yourself ever competing in the Canadian WMX Triple Crown series? 

I have been since they came to New Brunswick, since I got on big bikes! I haven’t missed one there yet! 

Brooke never misses a WMX National when they head to New Brunswick.

What are your thoughts on the Canadian WMX Triple Crown series?

Little low in numbers, and I wish it was on TV like the men’s! The Girls are just as cool to watch. 

What do you like to do in the off season? 

Enjoy trying to find new hobbies for when this motocross thing ends. 

What do you want to be when you grow up?

Employed. Hopefully, working the Graphic Design job of my dreams. 

Who would you like to thank? 

Mom and Dad for letting me keep going after everything! Freedom Cycle, MotoFam (Adam Pearson and Family), MotoManics Graphics, Steve Greene my personal Photographer, The blue flag for keeping me out of Brooke Johnson’s way, The ol 125 for holding up after being abused by me all year, My Physiotherapist Kylee, OneOneMotorsports and FigNewton.

Thank you to Schrader’s