When you hear the word motocross, people often associate it with the X Games or the flying motorcycle riders that jump from one ramp to another while doing tricks for spectators. In reality, it's a sport that's akin to racing with a hobby stock car - without the roll cage. 

"I don't know if it's, you know, the price of everything nowadays or if it's people don't have time anymore. But yeah, it is kind of seem like it's on the decline," Orin Janke shared. 

Orin is the president of the South Alameda Motocross Corporation (SAMC), a non-profit that operates a racetrack in the RM of Enniskillen #3. He noted that the sport's popularity comes in waves, with a noticeable uptick during the pandemic. "Over COVID, it was super popular. I guess nobody had anything else to do, you know? There was lots of people turned up and then the last couple of years, it seems like it's declining. There's a lot less interest, I find, than there used to be. I'm sure something will happen and it will pick up again."

Janke compared interest to a recent motocross event in North Dakota. He noted that in that circuit, there were close to 400 racers that signed up. In the circuits nearby, they'd be lucky if they saw about 200 riders.

The weather was also a factor for the hinderance of motocross in the southeast. Environment Canada called June the wettest month so far for the southeast, despite rainfall levels continuing to be below average. "It's been crazy. Like, the track's built in a valley so all the low spots were flooded. Then of course, when you get an inch of rain in a hurry, it makes ruts down all the jump bases, the landings and down the hills - it makes a mess. I was down there the other day and it's a mess again, so we've definitely been battling the weather."

Similar to the Estevan Motor Speedway in May, their sanctioning body, South Corner Racing Circuit (SCRC), was forced to cancel its first race at Trackside Motocross due to the track being flooded. At the moment, SAMC only had one race pan out on their track.

All hope is not lost though, as racers and volunteers are keeping the track viable. Janke said that he's got a few younger riders that he has high hopes for. There's also an army of community members that continue to help keep the track in good shape. Manual labour from volunteers has kept the track running smooth this season, from forming the jumps, putting up signs, picking up garbage, painting and cutting the grass. He noted that at times, he has two or three helpers with him maintaining the track. Other times, close to 15 people show up to help out. 

"One of these days, a guy's going to have to step back and let the next generation take it." -Orin Janke on passing the torch for motocross in the southeast.

Janke provides coaching, guidance and bike maintenance tips to interested riders who are just starting out. He's urging the public to consider the sport. "If you got bikes, and if you've ever thought about maybe wanting to race, just come on out. We'll get you settled up and on the track. You know, there's classes for everybody, beginners, pros, old guys, young guys, girls, everything. So, come on out."

Orin has high hopes for the sport as a whole. He's been around the Alameda racetrack since 2008 and he wants motocross to grow in the southeast. 

"Motocross needs a bit of a push. I would love to see it like it is down south, you know? Like the crazy turnouts, I'd like to see it like that here - and we can do it. There's so many people with dirt bikes and kids that want to ride that just don't want to get into motocross for some reason. Maybe they're intimidated or whatever. But I mean, it's such a family friendly series and there's no point in being scared of it. It's pretty family friendly There's no crazy yelling or people getting mad. It's just good old fashioned fun."

The South Alameda Motocross Corporation will be the host for a doubleheader weekend on July 13 and 14.