Dirt bike riders of all levels are wheelin' it to Medaryville to experience the new over-under bridge at the Leisure Time Motocross (LTMX) track. According to Track Owner Bill Ricard, there is only one other motocross track with an over-under bridge and that one is in Birch Creek, Virginia.
“It is a pretty rare thing to have an over-under bridge as part of an outdoor motocross track,” Ricard said. “It was quite an undertaking to build it. We started the engineering in January of 2021 and completed the bridge in July 2023.”
They first took bin blocks of concrete and stacked them 10 feet tall by 24 feet long to create the bridge abutments. The bridge itself is 24 feet wide by 40 feet long.
“We were struggling with a good spanning material that could handle the weight because it had to hold all the dirt and our heavy equipment enough to be able to drive a bulldozer on it,” he said. “What we ended up finding was something called a flat rack container. They use those to load bulldozers on and off ships. We were able to locate three at a New Jersey port and had those trucked out to our site. Those flat rack containers make up the bridge back.’”
While there are quite a few motocross tracks in the State of Indiana, LTMX wants to be the go-to destination for motocross riders.
“We draw in riders from Ohio, Michigan and Illinois in the Midwest,” he said. “Families will drive up to four or five hours. In addition to the bridge, what riders say they really like is that it is a sand track. There are not a lot of sand motocross tracks around.”
The tracks are kept as safe as possible for experts, pros, intermediate and beginner riders.
“Our big track is for riders ages 12 years and over,” he said. “Since it is sand, it is a challenging course to ride. It's so loose that it is like trying to ride your bike on the beach. That's very appealing to a skilled rider and the guy or girl who wants to be a better rider. These tracks are known for being very good training facilities. On our mini track, we have mixed in clay. Beginner riders and young kids didn't like the sand at all. It was just too challenging to navigate for them. We trucked a lot of clay and mixed it in to make a real hard surface on our mini track.”
However, even with the sand track, riders said they wanted a change, and it is very difficult to change a motocross track layout.
“We think we have come up with something really unique with the over-under bridge, but the bridge itself wasn't the big deal. The biggest change happened when we reconfigured the track to a figure eight. Half the track is now clockwise and the other half is counterclockwise. On one half it is mostly left-hand turns and the other half consists of right-handed turns. People just love the way it flows. That's the only way you can make a figure eight, is to have an over-under bridge.”
To Ricard, it is an interesting, exciting sport that is catching on. Nowadays, a lot of kids are on their phones or playing video games indoors. Parents are struggling, in some cases, to find an activity that can be as mentally stimulating as apps on a phone.
“Motocross gets the kids outside and active and is mentally stimulating,” Ricard said. “Some mom groups found that the sport can offer much more than going out and playing football, baseball, or softball in team environments. It appeals to the kids that may be a little introverted, but very independent, and likes the stimulus of thrill and risk taking which is what motocross brings. It's a very family friendly sport.”
While the cost of entry may be prohibitive for some, Ricard said the introduction of the electric motorcycle is making a difference helping with the cost for young kids.
“With an electric motorcycle you don't need all the maintenance involved with an internal combustion engine,” he said. “That's a game changer in our sport. We don't have many big electric dirt bikes because of the power requirements, but they are filling a niche in our mini bikes. We are starting to see quite a few of them. That's helping to make the sport more appealing. Parents don't need to worry about changing the oil, maintaining the engines, etc. Although they are quieter and you can ride them at home. However, you probably don't want them ripping up your front or back lawns.”
These reasons are why it is better to come out to the track in Medaryville to practice and let LTMX do all the maintenance.
“We want people to feel like it is their own 32 acres,” Ricard said. “They can come out any time and enjoy it.”
LTMX is located at 10469 W. 200 N. in Medaryville. The track is open Tuesday through Sunday, 10:30 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. (CST), and is closed Mondays for maintenance. Cost is $25/beginner/mini track, $35/ intermediate/expert/pro track (cash/debit/credit) first 11 rides. $5 thereafter per season (open year round). Once the rider has paid $35 for the first 11 rides, it is just $5 for the rest of the year. Two-wheel cycles only.