Out of the Blue | Harley Lawson | Brought to You by Schrader’s

By Jensen Amyotte

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Name: Harley Lawson 

Date of Birth: 2006

Hometown: Calgary, Alberta

Grade or Occupation: High school Student and SAIT pre-employment welding student 

Race Number: 250

Bike: KTM 2022 Supermini

Classes: Ladies A, Ladies Pro, 250 B/J

This week, we feature #250 Harley Lawson from Calgary, Alberta. | Candace Lawson photo

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

The people who inspired me to get into the sport of motocross would be my parents, as they grew up racing as well. Ever since my sister and I were very little they threw us on a PW-50. The amount of passion my whole family has for this the sport is huge and growing up doing it has been amazing. I’d like to thank my parents for everything they do for us. I’ve been riding since I was two years old and I’ve been racing since  I was 2 1/2 years old. I was always an off-road racer until 2020 when Covid hit and after that I tried motocross, so now I do both and love them equally…

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

Most of the time I’m usually playing on my basketball team at my high school for the senior girls. We are currently second in our division! I also snowboard in my free time and mountain bike as well. But most of the time I just enjoy being outside in the fresh air being active. 

Who is your all-time favourite rider and why?

Trystan Hart because he worked from the bottom up as it didn’t come natural to him. He showed me that you can become good at anything when you put in the time and effort, and over time you can become very smooth and natural at any obstacle in life and riding.                    

What are your  plans for this upcoming season? Any specific events you’re looking forward to?

To race/ride as much as I can doing both motocross and off-road and the event that I’m really looking forward to is the Big Kahuna in Kamloops. It’s such an awesome event and I absolutely love riding the track and the atmosphere is awesome

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

My biggest lesson to this day would be that nothing is impossible, and not to give up. There was this one off-road race two years ago where I was in the Ladies Intermediate class on my 2022 85 KTM, and I started it with a holeshot and was leading for the 1st km and a half and I fell over. Every single female rider, which was about 20 of us, passed me, and I was struggling to get my bike up. It was super hot that day and I just kept struggling and struggling. A sweeper comes by and I said, “Can I just turn around and quit because I can’t do this?” and Stephen Fordy the sweeper said, “Just keep pushing.” So from that moment on, I kept pushing throughout this race. It took me multiple shots at many of these hill climbs, rock gardens, and sweepers were helping me. I don’t like to ask for help so they made sure I got through.

By this time, my Camelback ran out of water and I had heat exhaustion terribly. I was about less than an hour away from camp to the finish line so I kept going. At this point there was an easy section (longer) or hard section (faster) so I went on the easy side and so when I was going up this hill climb, I could hear this bike and it sounded like my dad’s bike (BJ Lawson) and he ended up catching me on his 2nd loop and we switched Camelbacks as he just refilled his and mine was empty.

After that moment we tag-teamed back to camp and he was trying to give me these tips on doing these hill climbs/sections and I was like, “Don’t worry, I’ve done harder than this.” I went up them with no problems and my dad was very impressed with me.

We got back to camp and I found out only four ladies finished that A loop and that was a big accomplishment and everyone that was at the pit was extremely stoked for me. So, to this day this was definitely the biggest lesson that you can’t give up because you fall down once and there are always people there to help you.

Harley wants to race the Canadian Triple Crown WMX Series when she’s not too busy with school. | SuperFine Media photo

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

For motocross, it would be Danika White getting not just one but three classes here at Wild Rose Motocross Association (WRMA) , and everyone else that has made that safe riding community for Surfin’ Berms!

For off-road, it would be Melissa Harten as she got a Woman’s Pro class in our AMSA off-road series which I think is pretty rad for the girls community and to get a payout for it. 

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

Most definitely because I believe you learn a lot from the sport and how to overcome challenges, plus it’s a great way to be outside and create long lasting relationships.

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

My advice to any female rider that is starting to ride would be if you have any questions about safety or just riding in general, ask. There are so many people in this riding community that would love to help. I would also recommend going to the “Surfin Berms” events here in Calgary as this club gets together once a month and shuts down one of the tracks here at Wild Rose to let girls ride on this one track and it’s safe because everyone’s going the same pace. People always help, they lead laps, and overall is just a great atmosphere. And the stoke is always super high! Also, remember anyone can do anything they want if they put their mind to it, and that’s what I always believe in. From first hand experience it’s true… don’t stop believing. 

Watch for Harley on the track or in the woods in 2024. | Tree Three Media photo

What are your thoughts on the Canadian WMX Triple Crown series and do you see yourself ever competing in the Canadian WMX Triple Crown series?

I think it’s absolutely amazing that we have a Canadian WMX Triple Crown Series  for female riders and it’s amazing to see so many ladies on the line altogether competing and just building the relationships for the community. I definitely see myself competing in the Triple Crown series for WMX sometime soon, I’m hoping, as I’m just really busy with school. 

What do you want to be when you grow up?

I want to be a journeyman welder and later after that become a welding inspector, but during the journey of this I also want to continue racing motocross and off-road.

Who would you like to thank? 

I would like to thank my parents for everything they do to get me to the track and everything else in between, my sister, and I would like to also think all my sponsors: Blackfoot motorsports, KTM Canada, Fox Racing Canada, Mika metals, Matrix concepts Canada, M7 designs, TopKnot.co, SurfinBerms, Sosa original, Iride supplements, Team SmileRHJ, Guts racing, and all my friends and family.

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