Out of the Blue | Morgan Johnson | Brought to You by Schrader’s

By Jensen Amyotte

Brought to you by Schrader’s

Name: Morgan Johnson
Date of Birth: May 18, 1999
Hometown: Orange Park, Florida
Occupation: Medical Insurance Prior Authorization Specialist
Race Number: 159
Bike: GasGas 250 F
Classes: Women’s, 250/450 B 

This week, we feature #159 Morgan Johnson from Orange Park, Florida. | WFO Productions photo

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

My father got me involved with motocross. He had raced professionally prior to me racing, and my grandfather raced road racing. I had gotten my first motorcycle at age 3 and have been on them ever since.

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

I tried to do other sports in school but never committed to those sports. I was always more worried about racing on the weekends than focusing on another sport. I now work a full-time job that keeps me busy most of the week. If I’m not working or racing I enjoy my time at the gym.

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

I feel that within the sport, women aren’t seen as “valuable.” Don’t get me wrong, we have our own class but I raced in the Women’s professional series and a year or two later they completely got rid of it due to not having enough women to fill a gate. I think that women have to overcome the fear of racing with men. Typically, men are on a different level of intensity when it comes to our sport. 

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

At first, my biggest fear were the HUGE jumps! I always second guessed myself when it came to, “Could I clear this?” Now, thanks to my fiancé, I have learned to overcome that a lot sooner than what I used to do. It would take me all weekend to build the courage to jump something that was different than what I was used to. Now, maybe a lap or two is all it takes. He taught me that following someone who is jumping that helps me know what speed I need to jump it. 

Who is your all-time favourite rider and why? 

When I was younger, Tim Ferry was my idol! Now, even though he still doesn’t race as often, I always enjoy seeing Ryan Dungey out there. I always looked at his riding style and compaired it to mine. He is always so consistant. 

Morgan raced the Mini O’s in November. | Photo supplied

What is your favourite track and why?

I love the tracks in Florida. The sand and the layout of those are just completely different than in South Carolina. If I had a “favorite track” I would say maybe Windy Hill MX. I have not been to that track in a long while and hope in the next few months when they have races that I can head that way and participate. I also enjoy riding at ClubMX. Typically, they only have practice days, but it is nice to go there and enjoy the day. 

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

I always want to go to Loretta Lynn‘s. Ever since 2015 I have been there. That is like our family summer vacation. I’ve made it in Girls Sr. when they had that class a couple times, raced Women’s, and also had the chance to race the Women’s Pro race there one year. 

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

My biggest inspiration on and off the track would be my fiancé. He has shown me so much support in the sport that we do. He always believes in me when it comes to racing. 

Do you have a pre-moto rituals?

The only crazy ritual that we have is throwing anything new and unused on the ground. If I was to get a new set of gear I’ve got to throw it on the ground before putting it on. One year my buddy threw my jersey on the ground and not my pants. Well, with that being said, I questioned why he did that. His response was “It’s new. If you don’t throw it on the ground it’s bad luck.” Well, let’s just say that moto I fell and ripped my pants, so ever since then I always throw my new things on the ground. 

Tell us about your 2022 race season. 

This year included trying for Loretta Lynn’s as normal. I came one spot out of making it this year. Due to working a full-time job it is hard for me to actually train and ride often. I did get the chance to race Mini O’s this year where in Supercross I finished 17th overall, and in Motocross I had a 11-24 with 24th overall. 

What are your biggest accomplishments to date?

I would say that within Motocross my biggest accomplishments would be getting the chance to race Loretta Lynn’s. 

Loretta Lynn’s is always the goal for Morgan. | Photo supplied

What is the biggest lesson that motocross racing has taught you so far? 

I have learned to become more independent and overall learn things quicker than I used to. Within motocross you have to learn how to adapt to your environment quicker than people are used to. 

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

I hope that I will still be racing in 5 years. Hopefully, in life outside of motocross, I will be helping my fiancé run his business, and have a family to support. 

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

I think within motocross all women who have been involved with motocross have helped other women be successful. How I see women in this sport is supporting of all others. 

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

I really enjoy rough tracks and sand tracks. I tend to excel in those tracks better due to endurance. Most people tend to start getting tired after the first few laps. If it is a longer race I tend to excel more at the end. 

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

Of course! I hope that we will continue to be in this sport and they would enjoy it just as much as me. 

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

Enjoy every second of it. Whether you do well or not, it’s about having fun. 

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

I was so worried that I wouldn’t become the person I am today. I have learned to embrace how I am out there and to have fun. 

What was your first race number and how did you choose it?

159. My parents had chosen this for me. It stands for the 18th of May (5) in 99. 

Maybe we’ll see Morgan up here in Canada for a round of WMX or two. | WFO Productions photo

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

I would love the opportunity to travel over to Canada to at least race one race. 

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

I enjoy that Canada has brought many women over there to race. 

What do you like to do in the off season?

We love hanging out on the lake, fishing, hiking, etc..

What do you want to be when you grow up?

Still to this day I do not know. I have gone back and forth on Engineer, Healthcare, and a Vet. 

Who would you like to thank?

I want to thank my family for supporting me in everything that I have done, my sponsors: Pheonix Handlebars, Dunlop, FXR, Scott, Privateer Connection, Thomas Stire, 6D Helmets, Acerbis, TwinAir, and everyone else that continues to support me. 

Thanks to Schrader’s for their continued support of WMX.