Motocross bikes hit the news once again this week as some bikes were filmed tearing up a famous Ryder Cup golf course at Walton Heath in Surrey. It comes the same weekend as illegal riders went onto the Park Gate track in Kent – which is fighting for its existence after a council clampdown. And last week some riders gained access to Canada Heights for an illegal rip round.
While the Park Gate and Canada Heights incidents were largely kept to the off-road scene, the golf course incident has had major national coverage in newspapers and golfing magazines. Golf Monthly magazine called it “Shocking vandalism! Ryder Cup venue targetted.”
TV presenter Piers Morgan showed the footage and rightly branded it ‘disgusting’ and was joined in the condemnation by former world No.1 golfer Justin Rose. Surrey police are currently investigating and will be trying to identify the culprits who caused criminal damage.
While the lure of trespassing onto an empty motocross track or even a golf course might be appealing to some riders, it’s illegal and doubly irresponsible during the Covid-19 lockdown crisis. And of course, if anyone were to get hurt, it would put an extra stress on the NHS.
We’d all love to be out riding right now, but MotoHead is calling on all dirt bike riders and fans to obey the lockdown and stay off your bikes until all is over. And then, of course, only ride where it’s legal and safe – not trespassing or damaging land.
Dirt bikes get bad publicity anyway, and to stir up even more anti-MX feelings during the Coronavirus situation adds fuels to the fire that we’re all irresponsible thugs. It’s negative publicity surrounding incidents like these that puts pressure on legal tracks and clubs. Please stay at home until we can all ride again. And if you know anyone who is thinking of going for an illegal rip around, please do us all a favour and stop them doing it. So that when the lockdown is over, we may all have somewhere to actually ride.