For Madison Snider, 831 not only represents her birthdate, it signifies the number of a champion.
That’s the number she races under on her motorbike.
Racing on the bikes is nothing new for the 13-year-old Dade City native. She began competing when she was 7.
Although her father, Wilbur, enjoyed watching bike races on TV, Madison never expressed an interest in learning the sport herself.
That is, until her mom Carol surprised her with a four-wheel motorbike.
“She got me a quad for my seventh birthday,” the teenager said.
She fell in love instantly with the bike, and began practicing at the local Dade City Motocross track.
In her first year at Motocross, her hard work paid off when she won the championship for the 70 cc mini quad division.
Her victory propelled her to continue in races and, the following year, she won second place in the 100 cc mini quad division.
After two years at Motocross, Madison began racing in the Florida Trail Riders (FTR) events, allowing her to perform in hare scramble competitions.
These types of races are off-road and are usually held on rugged terrain such as mountains, woods or desert.
At this point, Madison had gone from quarter-mile to 1-mile competitions and had now moved on to racing several miles while doing multiple laps.
She gradually climbed the ranks at FTR races and last year won the Quad Super PeeWee A championship.
Her rising notoriety took her to the Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) tournaments in Florida, Georgia and West Virginia, where she would compete with kids from around the U.S.
The three-state competitions granted Madison the opportunity to not only race in mud and up steep mountains, but to develop relationships with other riders.
“The kids go out and battle, but they get off the track and they’re still friends,” Wilbur explained of the riders’ camaraderie.
Wilbur and Carol’s support for their daughter has been evident. They admitted that if she wanted to quit racing the next day, they would be right behind her.
Many weekends they have loaded up their truck and traveled across the state for tournaments, as Madison averages about 15 races a year.
Local sponsors have also supported and rallied around her through the years – a dedication the family appreciates.
While Madison enjoys the exhilaration that comes with riding, she also understands the need for safety. When racing, she is sure to put on her gear, which includes a chest protector, gloves, helmet, neck brace and boots.
She is also versed in the mechanics that keep the bike running, sometimes having to adjust her brakes and change tires.
Madison is her own coach, as she trains herself. As an observer, she will often watch races so she can pick up techniques that will be beneficial to her.
Although tournaments are a priority, she makes time for her friends, family and collection of pets – a cat, a rabbit, two fancy rats, two sugar gliders and three dogs.
She also enjoys fishing, as well as hunting, and is passionate about volleyball.
“We’ve raced races on the other side of the state and drove home to go to a volleyball game,” chuckled Wilbur, on his daughter’s commitment to the two sports.
Now an eighth-grader at Centennial Middle School, Madison is racing on her fourth bike, a Yamaha Raptor 250.
Her backyard is a wide-open field, which makes practicing at home convenient.
Still determined, she has hopes that motorbike 831 will one day make it to the professional level.
Published October 24, 2018