Shimano Moto Athlete RideMost of us motorcycle enthusiasts started with the good ole’ bicycle and Shimano, a leader in bicycle components, brought a group of top motorcycle racers back to their simpler times on their mountain bikes with the Moto Athlete Ride Day.The third rendition of this event switched from road to dirt. Several racers that comprised the 100 person field could be found doing what they do best at Anaheim 2 Supercross. Those names included: Chad Reed, Davi Millsaps, Wil Hahn, Cole Seeley, Justin Brayton and Cooper Webb. Justin Bogle and Broc Tickle had to exclude themselves from the Anaheim round due to injuries but still took part in the Shimano event.
It wasn’t just today’s great riders who turned up to the Shimano event; stalwarts such as Jeremy McGrath, Jeff Ward, Ryan Hughes and Phil Lawrence all took to their pedals at the Moto Athlete Ride Day.“I’ve been a huge motocross fan for years, and I love seeing how into cycling these guys are,” said Joe Lawwill, Shimano Mountain Bike Marketing Specialist. “The Moto Athlete Ride Day is a great opportunity for us to get all these amazing athletes together for a fun ride with our Shimano staff and spend some time hanging out in our Shimano Business Center at HQ. This is our 3rd year hosting this event and means a lot to me that these guys make the effort to come out spend the day with us, especially the guys that raced the night before!”Lawwill presented all the moto athletes with commemorative jerseys of Shimano’s 50th anniversary in the United States and sent them out on the 18.5 mile loop made up of dirt roads and trails at Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park in Trabuco Canyon, Calif., which was accessed by the Serrano Creek Suburban bike path. A fitting reward met the riders at the end of their journey; a taco-truck lunch.“Shimano has been supporting me for the last five years,” said Reed, who had finished runner-up at Angel Stadium the night before. “The product is second-to-none and super-reliable, which is good since I don’t have mechanics for bicycles like I do motorcycles! We racers use bicycles as a tool, but I enjoy riding them as well, especially mountain biking here in California.”“I was cycling before it got cool!” joked Josh Hayes, a four-time AMA Superbike Champion. “It’s a staple of my training because it’s low-enough impact that you can do it even with most injuries, and since I’m the biggest guy on the road race grid, it’s great for stripping weight. I’ve done this event every year, and it’s always a good time riding with your peers, plus riders from different disciplines and eras.”