By: Robert Janis
ATV Racing Has Traction
With World PowerSports Association
Now in its ninth year as a sanctioning body,
the World PowerSports Association (WPSA),
actually began as the World Snowmobiling
Association. It wasn't until November, 2005 that
the group was recognized in its present
According to Justin Anderson, Director of
Public Relations for the WPSA, the change in
name led to an expansion of vision and the
creation of two racing sanctioning groups--the
PowerSports Snowmobile Tour and the PowerSports
The group first got involved in ATV racing
with its first Tour event in May, 2006 at the
Daniel Boone MX Track in London, Kentucky. The
ATV Tour consists of 10 races per year for three
different categories--the MX, the Quad Terrain
Challenge, and the Super Sport Side-by-Side.
"The Quad MX consists of professional and pro-am
sport MX racing on pro style, big-air MX racing
circuits. The Quad Terrain Challenge consists of
professional and pro-am sport-utility racing on
purpose-built all-terrain racing circuits, which
includes obstacles such as logs, mud bogs, and
uneven terrain. ATVs allowed to compete in the
Quad Terrain Challenge are stock, near-stock,
utility type, and modified. SuperSport
Side-by-Side is open to two-person utility
vehicles which race on MX tracks," explained
Riders making their way through a
section of whoops.
Eight tracks will be used during the 2007
racing season: South Fork Dirt Riders in
Taylorville, Illinois; Cooperland Raceway,
Stillwater, Oklahoma; Daniel Boone MX, London,
Kentucky; Virginia Motorsports Park, Richmond,
Virginia; Wild Cat Creek MX, Rossville, Indiana;
Old Bridge Township Raceway Park, Englishtown,
New Jersey; and Carolina Adventure Park,
Charlotte, North Carolina. "A venue in Georgia
is still being negotiated," said Anderson.
Tracks that host the PowerSports ATV Tour
have to satisfy certain criteria concerning the
track and locale. "Obviously, it's important for
us to race near population centers and where ATV
racing is a popular hobby," said Anderson.
Track layouts are designed to optimize
television coverage and fan viewing and the
QuadTerrain courses are a half mile or less in
length. In order to allow competition from
amateur and junior classes without taking away
from the professional event, the courses include
amateur alternative lines.
The SuperQuad Pro 450 class leaping
through the whoops.
Setting up a race starts one year in advance
of the scheduled date. WPSA crews go to the
venue and analyze it to be certain it can host
the association's version of ATV racing. In
addition, employees of the WPSA work with track
personnel and in the market to promote the
event, also about a year or so before it is
actually scheduled to take place. About one week
before the event, WPSA personnel are on the
ground setting up signs, building the track to
the association's specific regulations, setting
up timing and scoring boards, and building a
"Racers must pay an entry fee of from $40 to
$125 depending on the class they intend to race
in," said Anderson. About 4,000 spectators
attended each event in 2006.
There are 27 classes in the PowerSports ATV
Tour's Pro, Pro-Am, Amateur, and Youth
Categories. The youngest class has riders who
are as young as four years-old. There are two
women's classes. All racers are required to be a
member of the WPSA. Membership fee is $50 a
year. There are two categories of membership--An
Annual Competition membership which allows the
rider to compete in every ProSports ATV
Championship Tour event for the full season, and
the One Weekend Only Membership which allows a
rider to compete in a single ATV Championship
A look at one of the 8 tracks that the
WPSA will attend in 2007.
There are four ways to join the association:
- Online registration
- Download and print the appropriate application
form, fill out and fax it to WPSA headquarters
at (651) 209-7447. You must pay with a credit
- Mail the form, along with payment to: WPSA
headquarters, 1863 Buerkle Road, White Bear
Lake, Minnesota 55110, Attn: Memberships.
- Sign up at track registration. This is
discouraged, but registration will be available
on a limited basis at each race.
Pro riders are eligible to compete in Pro and
Pro Am classes. Pro-Am classes include Pro A,
16-24 years, 25+, 35+ and women's class riders
can compete in the Pro-Am classes. Pro-Am riders
cannot compete in any B or C classes.
To compete in the QuadMX classes, riders must
be 16 years of age or older. QuadMX classes
include: SuperQuad Pro 450; SuperQuad Pro Am; A
class; B class; C class; Women; 16-24; Plus 25;
Plus 35; and Open Amateur.
The Quad Terrain Challenge Log section,
which is brutal on the machines.
To compete in the Youth Classes, riders must
show proof of age. Categories in the Youth
Classes include: Production Lites (age 13-15);
0-90 modified (ages 8-15); 0-90 Sr. (ages
12-15); 0-90 Jr. (ages 8-11); 0-70 (ages 6-11);
(ages 6-8); 0-50 Jr. (ages 4-6).
Riders must be 16 years-old or older to race
in the Quad Terrain Challenge.
Classes in the Quad Terrain Challenge
include: Pro Stock, Pro Open, Pro-Am Unlimited,
and Pro-Am Superlite.
Anderson boasted that about 300 riders
participated in each event in 2006. He added
that more than 20 women participated. it is
expected that more than 600 riders will be
competing in each event in 2007.
Machine and rider is tested in the log
section of the course.
A typical ATV racing weekend starts with
racer registration which takes place typically
all day on Friday and Saturday morning and
Sunday morning if needed. When riders check in
they will receive a weekend access wristband
after signing an insurance waiver. The wristband
allows access to the facility and the pit area.
A practice session is held, weather and time
permitting, usually the Friday before a race
weekend. A mandatory drivers' meeting is held by
the race director on Saturday and Sunday
morning. During this time there is a pre-tech
inspection which may include ATV safety
equipment and rider safety gear.
All riders have to pass pre-tech inspection
before they can race. Heats are then held. There
is a staging area at the facility where heats
will be posted on a board to alert racers which
race is being staged. Within a half- hour after
a race the race results are posted in the
The World PowerSport Association includes
marketing and advertising departments that
promote races through advertising in the local
newspapers and campaigns geared toward the local
The rock challenge section for the Quad
Terrain Challenge race.
Companies involved in the ATV industry that
sponsor WPSA Racing include Jack Link's Beef
Jerky, ITP Tires, Dunlop, Elka Suspension,
Suzuki, Can-Am, AMSOIL, Arctic Cat, Rocky
Mountain ATV, Dennis Kirk, Outerwears and more.
Sponsoring companies are encouraged to exhibit
at PowerSports ATV Tour events. "We believe in
working with our sponsors as partners, bringing
them on and introducing them to a suite of
opportunities both at the race and on
television," said Anderson. "Our ESPN2 telecasts
last year beat Supercross ratings by nearly
double and with our 'TiVO-proof' signage, we
offer great value for the dollar."
The association website (www.wsaracing.com)
includes news and event information as well as
race photos, race results and point standings. A
section on racer information includes how one
can get started with the WPSA as well as
membership registration and racer forms. This
section also includes the association’s rule
book which you can download from the site. There
is also an online store.
The future calls for the association to grow
the sport. "We have plans to expand the Tour to
include a regional series. This will allow local
racers to compete in WPSA-sanctioned races at a
lower fee and close to home. Additionally, we
are planning to expand our promotional
activities in market to build our fan base,"
Click here to see the complete
2007 WPSA RACE SCHEDULE