Out of the Blue | Tamala Whiteside | Presented by Schrader’s
By Jeff McConkey
Name: Tamala Whiteside
Birthday: May 27, 1996
Hometown: Black Diamond, Alberta
School: Bow Valley College – Practical Nursing
Bike: YZ 250f
Race Club: Wild Rose Motocross Association
Classes: Ladies, GP Junior
How did you get started in racing?
My dad was the one to first introduce me to the sport. Before he had kids he started racing at 19 years old. However, when my mom was pregnant it was time to sell some toys and get ready for kids. From the very beginning racing has always been a family sport. We started out just practicing at Calgary on a Honda 50 cc. One weekend my dad decided to sign us up and ever since then we have been hooked!
As a little girl, did you ever expect to be this deep into a sport like motocross?
When I first started I had no idea that I would love it as much as I do now! When I was younger I was always involved in many sports including volleyball, basketball, badminton, rugby, hockey and dirt biking. As I got older I became to love hockey and dirt biking more than the rest of the sports.
Do you think motocross is harder for a female to compete in?
Yes, and no. I agree with Samantha Puky. There are so many classes for ladies to race in which is awesome! I find racing with the ladies to be a lot of fun! Racing with the guys can be difficult at times. The best part is the competition level is higher and there is always someone to battle with! However, the fact that you’re a girl and you’re passing them can hurt a lot of men’s egos. However, being a female in the sport does draw a lot of support from members and family. Amazingly, female motocross is growing which is awesome!
Who is your favourite rider and why?
My favourite rider is James Stewart.
Is there one lady racer out there that you think has paved the way for other girls to be successful in the sport?
There is definitely more than just one. I admire Ashley Fiolek most. She has an unbelievable talent and is inspirational to many.
What Canadian Pro do you look up to and why?
A Canadian Pro that I look up to would have to be Colton Facciotti. He is so smooth and consistent and is a great rider to watch.
What is your favourite track and why?
My favourite track would have to be the Pro track in Calgary. It’s my hometown track and it has a nice flow. Recently, they just changed the track but I am starting to love the changes! There are some nice big jumps and there is more than one track to ride which is a bonus!
Who is your hero?
My hero is my dad. He is the hardest working guy I know. Everyday he works so hard to provide my family with the life that we have and I can never thank him enough. After a long hard day at work he still drives 45 minutes to the track so that I can ride. We all know that I can drive myself, but he wants to be there to support me.
Even on the track he will chase me down and push me to go faster and give me pointers. He has taught me lots in life and has always supported my dreams and wishes in life. No matter what it is he is by my side and I am so thankful.
What are your goals for this season?
My main focus this season is to have fun! This is my second year fully getting back into racing and it’s been a blast so far! I have been training very hard for the National series and my goals are to finish within the top 10. As for the Super Series in Calgary I plan on having some more great battles with Danika White and improving on my bike.
What are your biggest accomplishments?
My biggest accomplishments so far in life would have to be playing hockey for the Female SAIT Trojans. Hockey has always been a passion of mine. At the age of fifteen I had to decide whether or not to pursue dirt biking or hockey. I chose hockey and played Midget AAA for the Highwood Raiders for 3 years. These were the best years! After my Midget career was over I was approached by SAIT to play hockey on a scholarship (which I could not turn down). I ended up taking Nutrition while playing Hockey.
What is your favourite part about going to the races?
My favourite part about going to the races would be the atmosphere! Everyone is so friendly and full of passion for the crazy dangerous sport we all love! Nothing smells better than the air after practice – the smell of all the race fuels burning gets me fired up for my moto! Another part that I love about the races would be being with my family. My entire family rides and supports one another. During my National Series I am the only one riding. However, my entire family is still behind me supporting each and every step of the way. There is nothing better!
What do you like to do when you aren’t racing?
In the summer when I am not racing I am mainly working and at the gym. I work as a lifeguard for two pools and I love it! When I am not working I love to travel to BC with my family and hangout with my friends. In the fall I return back to school for my second year of Nursing, and continue working part time. When there is free time I love boating, hiking, traveling, sledding, and camping!
Is it important to have a motocross racer as a boyfriend/partner, or just a bonus?
My current boyfriend is not a motocross racer but that’s okay. We ride at his house so that’s good enough to me! Maybe one day he will, but that would just be a bonus!
If you ever have children, will they be motocross racers?
Yes, I would love that!
Who do you want to thank?
I would like to thank al my sponsors: Cycle Works Foothills, TMT Concrete Construction, LRX Performance, Lime Nine Designs, Sosa Original, my mom, Marleen, my dad, Trent, my brother, Tyler, my boyfriend, Josh, and my good friend, Samantha!