Ashley Fiolek is the type of person that writes motocross history with her back tires. She has overcome incredible odds to become one of the fiercest competitors in motocross today. Ashley Fiolek’s name has been synonymous with motocross ever since she burst onto the professional scene!
Ashley grew up with motocross running through her veins! Her dad and grandfather were both racers and Ashley would often ride with them as a child. Ashley pretty much just skipped the bicycle stage that most kids go through entirely and got her first motorcycle at just three years old. Her first motorcycle was a Yamaha PW50 which she rode around with training wheels that were meant for a bicycle until she was fully comfortable. That bike and the influence of Ashley’s supportive family would be the factors that determined what she wanted to do with her life!
Ashley was born completely deaf which came as quite a shock to her parents Jim and Roni Fiolek. That didn’t deter Ashley or her parents from anything. The family fully embraced Ashley’s disability and became heavily involved with the deaf community. Of course they were worried when Ashley became interested in professional motocross but her skills, determination, and dedication to safety persuaded them to let her go for her dreams! Ashley says that while not being able to hear may be a disadvantage on the track she works with it, it’s also great that she doesn’t have to listen to the other riders talk trash!
Ashley began racing motocross in 1997 at just 7 years old. By 2008 Ashley was a full on professional motocross racer. She gained her first professional win in 2008 at the six-race (WMA) Women’s Motocross Association Pro Nationals at the famous Hangtown Classic course near Sacramento, Calif. In 2009 Ashley won lots of professional races including Moto 1 at Hangtown and both motos at Glen Helen. In 2009 Ashley also won the 2009 WMX Pro Nationals during which she was suffering from a collarbone fracture due to a moto injury and scored her first gold medal at the Women’s Moto X Super X at X Games 15. In 2010 Ashley gained her second X Games gold medal in Super X Women’s. Again in 2011 Ashley repeated her WMX success winning the nationals however during her X Games 17 practice she crashed and was knocked unconscious and doctors determined she wouldn’t be able to participate. In 2012 Ashley was at the High Point Raceway in Mount Morris, Pennsylvania when she crashed and suffered a tailbone fracture and a severe concussion. After taking just a month off to heal she came back with a fury and raced the RedBud MX in Buchanan, Michigan. In 2012 for the fourth time Ashley took the 2012 WMX Pro National Championship at Lake Elsinore, California.
Ashley has had an incredible career beyond motocross as well! In 2008 Ashley was the first woman to grace the cover of TransWorld Motocross. In 2009 she became the first female to be signed to the American Honda Racing factory team and was nominated for an ESPN ESPY (Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly) Award. Ashely also appeared as the first deaf person ever to be featured on the late night show Conan. In 2011 Ashley published her first book titled Kicking Up Dirt and was also became the sixth athlete ever to be sponsored by Red Bull in a commercial. In 2012 Ashley was featured in an issue of Vogue Magazine, appeared in an episode of Switched at Birth and presented an inspirational TEDx Talk called Motocrossing Against All Odds.
Unfortunate for the entire motocross fan base Ashely announced in 2012 that her outdoors series racing was over. She again reiterated in 2013 that she had quit women’s motocross. However you can still see Ashley ride! Since then she has begun touring as a stunt performer with the Marvel Universe Live show.
Ashley’s new calling in life is coaching other young people who dream in motocross! In 2010 Ashley met Noora Moghaddas a top motocross rider from the Middle East. Fiolek said, “Noora continues in her quest to help Iranian women learn how to ride, race and become stronger. I hope to be a part of that important mission with her, so that we can both share our love of motocross with people in other countries! It is great to know our world is really not that big. Even with different languages and cultures, we can all come together and share something we feel passionate about.” Ashley is now available for lessons and coaching in southern California both on an individual level and for groups.
In addition to her incredible and inspiration control Ashley also values safety above all else! She has recently begun using the Shark Kage™ 24 x 97 multifunctional loading ramp to load her bikes when she’s on the go! It’s the #1 safest motorcycle loading ramps on the market and comes highly recommended from the #1 women’s motocross star of all time!