While the name Sarah Roth may not be a household name yet, in the next year it is going to be making headlines. A big name in the growing sport of RallyMoto, the past 2 years Sarah has been competing against the men and winning. Let me introduce you to a girl who has been making a name for herself in the East Coast RallyMoto scene and is soon to be doing the same in the WORCS Series and deserts of the West. Meet Sarah Roth, 2011 NASA Atlantic RallyMoto Cup Lights Class Champion, and be sure to catch her interview on an upcoming episode of Jim Beaver’s Down & Dirty Show Fueled By Speed Energy.
1) You haven’t been riding for very long. How did you get into motorcycles and racing?
My father raced motocross in the 70’s and still had an RM 250 when I was a kid. I was never able to convince my parents to get a bike of my own so I had to wait until I could afford one myself. I had put it to the back of my mind while I was at college and it wasn’t until my cousin invited my brother and me on a riding trip to a popular riding spot in West Virginia that I had re-sparked an interest. It was pretty much all downhill from there.
2) Explain what RallyMoto is.
Like traditional stage rally with cars, RallyMoto is a time trial event raced on a closed course atop a motorcycle. Simply put, you haul the mail from start to finish on closed public roads. Stages can range from 5 miles to 26. Sometimes more, sometimes less.
3) What type of motorcycle do you race and what has been modified for rally?
I race a KTM 250 XCF-W. Most modifications have been made to the engine. After the engine blew up in South Carolina, we installed a 280 big bore kit in it, which included countless hours of fine tuning. The chassis is basically stock with a few small things here and there to suit my riding style. I’m still trying to put together the funds for a stator and lighting upgrade. My headlight has been pretty insufficient years past to allow me to really put down good times during night stages.
4) How do you prepare for a race both beforehand and at the event?
I typically get out and ride one of the local tracks or trail riding venues to loosen up a bit. I don’t really do much training other than play ice hockey when I’m not riding.
5) You had a pretty crazy crash in one of your YouTube videos and it literally never stopped you. Does something like that affect you mentally during or after the race, or is it all just a learning experience?
I find that it’s not something that really affects me during the race. After a quick inventory check, my main concern is getting the bike back upright and not losing any additional time. Unfortunately, shortly after that crash my engine locked up and I couldn’t continue. As far as after the race, I try to mentally review what happened and figure out the best approach to mitigating any future crash repeats.
6) Have you faced any challenges being a female in a male dominated sport?
Since I’ve started racing Rally I haven’t really encountered too many challenges with respect to being one of the few female riders. In my eyes, I don’t view myself as different from the guys. I’ve grown up a tomboy so it’s something I’ve grown accustomed to. Everyone I have met in the sport has been extremely gracious and inviting, both car and bike people alike. It’s definitely a sport where physical ability hasn’t had a significant effect on my results compared to the rest of the field. This is good for me, since my workout routine consists of a few hockey games here and there and indulging in my sweet tooth.
7) Anyone in racing you look up to or admire?
I really admire the heart of Doug Henry. For a guy that has faced so many adversities on and off the track, his ability to keep moving forward, do what he loves, and not let anything hold him down is a real inspiration for me.
8) What is you favorite event and why?
My favorite event is Black River Stages held in Harrisville, NY during the month of September. It was my first RallyMoto event so it has a special place in my heart. It’s a two day event with a set of night stages which provides a unique challenge with the limited lighting options available for a motorcycle. Plus, it’s beautiful that time of year in upstate New York.
9) What are your plans for next year and the future?
Next year I plan on running the full Atlantic RallyMoto Cup schedule which consists of Sandblast Rally, Rally West Virginia, and Black River Stages. My plans are also to sign up for a few enduros and hare scrambles to fill in the spaces between RallyMoto events. Once the nice weather hits, my weekends are usually booked with some kind of riding activity. I actually hope to get on the ice at the beginning of next year, granted we have a colder winter this season. Beyond that, it’s all based on my financial ability to explore other racing avenues. As it is now, I plan on moving to Park City, Utah next year and would like to try my hand at a few WORCs races and any additional racing opportunities that are available for me to run. I’m always looking to try out new things so my options are pretty open.
10) Where can people find out more information on you?
I’m on facebook at http://www.facebook.com/SFCMotosports and have a YouTube channel http://www.youtube.com/user/Hastyp3anut?feature=guide
11) Anyone you would like to thank?
I’d like to say a big thank you to my boyfriend for helping support my engine rebuild effort and helping to get me and my bike to events. My mechanic Josh Smith at StayTunedMX for keeping my bike race ready and making events run like a well oiled machine. My family for the support and the Rally community for being more like a family than a field of competitors.