Every generation of racers has a few real
Racer X: How did you get into racing dirt bikes?
standouts, and in the amateur female ranks
right now, 15-year-old Hannah Hodges is one
of the elite. The Suzuki-mounted AMA Female Athlete
of the Year has been turning heads in both the men’s
and women’s classes lately, and in the not-too-distant
future we might see her doing the same on the profes-
sional level. She took a few minutes out of her busy
race schedule to give us the scoop.
Hannah Hodges: My dad got me a bike when I was
2, but I didn’t like training wheels and didn’t want to
ride it so he sold it. Then I started wanting another
bike as soon as he sold it! But once he got me a new
one I wasn’t riding it much. All of a sudden when I
was 6 I just wanted to ride all the time, and it all went
How’s your racing been going lately?
It’s been going really well. I got AMA Female Athlete
You race against the boys a lot. Is that just normal
of the Year, the Ironman award at the Mini Os, and
I’ve gotten six titles so far at the Spring Nationals. I’m
on great equipment—my parents got me really good
stuff—and I’m just really excited to be racing.
for you or is it a lot different?
I grew up racing against guys, so I’m just used to it. I
really like racing against them. I have to try really hard.
Not taking away anything from the girls, of course,
because there are some really fast girls out there, but I
just really enjoy racing with the guys.
Do they give you a hard time?
It’s kind of hard being a girl because some of them think
you won’t be up front, but I always try my hardest. I really
like being out front when I race with the guys. But they
don’t really give me a hard time, though. If anything it’s
some of the dads who aren’t okay with it, but I think most
of them are okay because they see how hard I work.
Have you ever considered trying to race against the
men once you turn pro?
It’s definitely one of my goals. I’ve been working really
hard this year and throughout my whole career so
far, and I really want to be the first girl to qualify for
a national, or even a supercross. I really enjoy riding
supercross. I haven’t gotten to race much supercross—
I’ve done a little bit and some arenacross, but I really
like riding it. I really want to win the WMX too.
Who’s influenced your racing the most?
I’ve really looked up to Ashley Fiolek because of how
hard she’s worked. I can relate to her situation, how
she’s had a tough road, racing with the guys and trying
to get a good program for the girls. That’s pretty much
the same thing that I’ve been doing since I started racing, and I appreciate how hard she’s worked to get a
good women’s program.
What’s it like being a 15-year-old on the road a lot?
It’s fun. My dad and I drive in the moto-van everywhere.
We’ll be going down the road and he’ll just throw a loaf
of bread or something at me, then he’ll look out the
window like nothing happened. Of course he always
looks over at me and starts laughing eventually. He
throws stuff at me all the time. One time we were in
a rental car in California and we’d just gone to In-n-Out Burger. He had a big basket of fries in his lap with
ketchup and everything in it and he just chucked the
whole thing at me! I had ketchup, fries, everything all
over my lap. He just smiled and didn’t say a word. And I
had to clean the car out!
Other than your parents, who is helping you out at
The Lord Jesus Christ, Farren Racing, MAVTV, Lucas Oil,
PR2 Racing Technology, Troy Lee Designs, FMF, Smith,
Dunlop, Alpinestars, MTF, Impulse, Hinson, Suzuki, VP,
EHR, and ICW.
FIVE MINUTES WITH
HANNAH HODGES: SUPERMINI SUPER GIRL