When Ashmore Ellis and Anya Violet realized they were some of the only women constantly running into each other at different motorcycle events, they decided it was time for a much-needed change. They wanted to make more connections with like-minded ladies in the two-wheel world who shared their love of riding, so with a flyer shared to their Instagram accounts, and a lot of unexpected reposts, they found themselves greeted at a Temecula gas station by 50 other excited women on street bikes (they expected 15) ready to ride…without any idea of where they were going.
They ripped out to Borrego Springs that day, camped out on a dry lakebed, and the rest, as they say, was history. “Those 50 women were so enthusiastic about it and felt like it was something that was kind of missing,” recalls Violet. The immediate support led to the creation of Babes Ride Out and a few years later, Babes in the Dirt, women’s only motorcycle and dirt bike events that now attract hundreds of attendees of all skill levels.
“When you’re riding dirt there’s a certain sense of freedom about it that you just can’t get riding street [bikes]. I think it’s really due to the space and being in nature,” says Ellis. “I got into dirt biking just watching other women do it. I’d been riding street for a few years, and it never really clicked with me until probably around year three of Babes in the Dirt, so it took me a while to really love it.”
Anya, on the other hand, has been riding dirt bikes since she was six. “My mom rode dirt bikes and got us kids into it, and I was really the only one that really took to it,” she says. “I went from a 50cc motorcycle to a 125 and a 125 to a 250 and just kept upgrading and really fell in love with it.”
Aside from getting exclusive access to destinations that you can only reach by off-road vehicles, both Babes founders love the camaraderie that comes with the particulars of the sport. “I just love the teamwork it takes to get through certain sections,” says Ellis. “Maybe in your mind you don’t think you can do it but there’s your friend over there cheering you on and clapping when you get to the top.”
There’s a certain advantage to having a buddy with you when throwing a leg over a dual sport, as “you can get into some hairy terrain,” according to Violet.
That’s why proper planning and safety is always part of the Babes founders’ riding regimens. Whether it’s having the right armor like knee braces, boots, elbow and shoulder pads to avoid serious injury, or something as easy as always checking the tire pressure or using a fuel additive like Techron Powersports & Small Engine to clean and protect the bike’s interior before ripping off into the distance.
“Maintenance is super important,” says Violet. “You want to have your bike running optimally at all times.”
“It only takes one time to forget something or just overlook a problem and not fix it right away,” Violet adds. “You don’t want to get stuck somewhere 100 miles out with no help and no one in sight. There’s no tow trucks that can get out here so you’re leaving the bike for dead.”
That’s why “you’ve got to protect yourself and protect your bike,” says Ellis, a Techron Powersports aficionado (she uses it for her generator too) who saw benefits from the top fuel additive when she had to shelf her bike when she had her baby. “Without Techron Powersports to put in [the gas tank] to make sure everything was stabilized and running clean, it was just awesome to know that the bike would start when I was ready to ride again,” she recalls. And ride again she has.
So if you’re ready to rip, on your own, in a group of friends, or perhaps with the Babes themselves at their upcoming October Babes in the Dirt 6 event (tickets on sale here for female riders of all experience levels) be sure to grab a bottle (multiple sizes available) of Techron Powersports to keep your dirt bike’s fuel system clean from carbon deposits, protected from corrosion, and stabilized during storage (it keeps fuel fresh for up to 24 months). Learn more about Techron Powersports here!