AMA Pro Racing announced today its interest in a 450cc singles class for future AMA Pro Road Racing seasons. The purpose of the class would be to provide a gateway for young regional riders to ascend to the national ranks of professional motorcycle racing.
Over the coming months, AMA Pro Racing officials will begin the process of testing the concept for performance, competition and safety characteristics as well as viability and interest in the marketplace. Preliminary plans call for the entry-level professional class to feature an arrive-and-ride format utilizing a single, yet-to-be-determined manufacturer and 450cc single-cylinder motorcycles prepared by a single tuner. Entries in the class would be restricted to riders between the ages of 16 and 21, supplanting the requirements for AMA Pro SuperSport presented by Shoei.
With the inclusion of the new class, the age restriction on AMA Pro SuperSport would be lifted, allowing the class to continue as an option for young riders while permitting older entry-level riders an opportunity to enter the ranks of AMA Pro Road Racing.
"Combining close competition with affordable equipment provides a win-win situation for fans and riders alike," said AMA Pro Racing President Roger Edmondson. "The parity in performance brought with a single manufacturer and tuner puts America's young talent at center stage and helps them to refine their riding skills for advancement through the ranks."
The new class would borrow from Gavin Trippe's inspiration of repurposing the large, readily-available pool of 450cc four-stroke dirtbikes present in America for entry-level road racing competition. AMA Pro Racing is exploring the advancement of that vision and the potential to work with grassroots and national amateur motorcycle racing organizations to create a pipeline for young American talent that would culminate with an entry point to professional racing in AMA Pro.