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World Wide Appeal

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Motorcycles

World Wide Appeal

Ted Belfour
April 3, 2006

Pocket bike racing is a sport that continues to grow in appeal all across the world. While Japan is credited with the first large scale cultural interest and organization of pocket bike racing, this is no longer just a Japanese or Asian phenomenon. Pocket bike racing has increased dramatically in popularity through out the world. While the United States and Australia are two of the most noted places where this sport is growing rapidly, don’t forget Europe!

Switzerland actually holds a championship that is gaining international recognition. Geographically close to Italy, where almost all of the highest quality racing pocket bikes are manufactured now, the Swiss Pocket bike Championship first appeared in 1996. This happened when a pocket bike club (the Gruyere Pocket Bike Club, to be precise) decided to compete against all Swiss pocket bike riders who showed. It has been growing ever since and now the Swiss Championship has grown to become one of the biggest in the world, when compared to the nation's size.

Commonly the competition will now have over 120 competitors, with a few of them coming even from nearby countries like France, Austria and Liechtenstein. There are between 8 to 11 races on 8 to 11 different tracks that are counted for the championship, meaning there are anywhere from 64-121 races. Several categories are awarded based on age and gender of the pilots and on the type of pocket bike (junior, stock or racing prepared).

The growth of this sport in Switzerland and Europe is a continued reflection of worldwide trends. Pocket bike racing has never been more popular in the United States than it is now, and there are no signs of it diminishing. New race circuits, pocket bike stores, and online forums pop up every year, and the devout group of pocket bike junkies grows with that number. Australia has a respectable series of races and a continued growth in the sport, and it is not like pocket bike racing just disappeared in Japan. The sport is still going strong.

The trend continues in pocket bike racing’s rising popularity, and seems to continue unabated. What was once seemingly a strange Japanese sideshow has proven itself to be far more, and with each new race, only further re-enforces its current respect. Dave is the owner of http://pocket-bike-faring.info a website that provides information on pocket bike racing



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