More From FIM MiniGP Canada: A Kid And His Mom Go Racing

More From FIM MiniGP Canada: A Kid And His Mom Go Racing

© 2023, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc. By Misti Hurst.

FIRST PERSON/OPINION:

By Misti Hurst

Ashton’s FIM MiniGP Canada win

On Sunday, I watched my 14-year-old son, Ashton Parker, win the final race of the FIM MiniGP Canada Series, and it was more exciting and emotion-filled than anything I ever felt when competing in road racing.

 

Ashton Parker (45) taking a victory lap at Lombardy Karting Club, in Lombardy, Ontario, Canada. Photo by Misti Hurst.
Ashton Parker (45) taking a victory lap at Lombardy Karting Club, in Lombardy, Ontario, Canada. Photo by Misti Hurst.

 

I couldn’t even process the emotions colliding in my head as I watched the race. Unless you have kids yourself, it’s nearly impossible to convey the depth of love you have for a child.  You’d do anything to protect your children, except you can’t.

I taught him to ride his first dirt bike at four years old and took him mini road racing at six. I’ve picked him up and dusted him off more times than I can count. I’ve wiped tears, spent nights at the hospital, and put in hundreds of travel miles just so the kid can race.

 

Riding instructor and former Pro racer Misti Hurst holding an umbrella over her 14-year-old son Ashton Parker prior to a race. Photo courtesy Misti Hurst.
Riding instructor and former Pro racer Misti Hurst holding an umbrella over her 14-year-old son Ashton Parker prior to a race. Photo courtesy Misti Hurst.

 

Sometimes I question why I do it. The long, hot, exhausting days, the early mornings, the packing and unpacking and loading and unloading, making food, buying water, registering for races, organizing, logistics, and hours and hours of driving.

But then I experienced a day like Sunday. It was absolutely priceless, and I mean it. I watched him come into his own over the weekend when he listened to me as “Coach Misti” instead of just “Mom” and spent time improving his riding. I watched him discover a new ability within himself. I watched him realize that coaching helps.

 

Ashton Parker (45) leading Michael Galvis (83) on track. Photo by Colin Fraser.
Ashton Parker (45) leading Michael Galvis (83) on track. Photo by Colin Fraser.

 

He got the fastest time in one of the practice sessions, and that caused a spark to form, a belief in himself that maybe he could win, that maybe he did deserve to be there as much as the other kids.

Then I watched him ride like a bat outta hell.  He was several bikelengths from the two leaders, Ben Hardwick and Michael Galvis, when Lincoln Scott, in fourth place, passed him to take over third.  Ashton didn’t like that and grabbed the position back with a sly pass.

Then it was as if someone lit a fire under his arse.  He put his head down and turned some of the fastest laps of the race to close the gap before pulling an insane pass on Hardwick and Galvis into the tight left hairpin off the front straight.  I was terrified, proud, excited, and shocked that he was now winning the race!

 

 

Everything in my entire being wanted him to love that moment. I know what it feels like, I silently tried to tell him as I shook my fists and yelled, “Common kid, you’ve got this!” We were in the stands, and I wanted him so badly to feel all the emotions of what it’s like to lead and win a motorcycle road race.  I felt so much pride that he was mine and that I
KNEW what he was experiencing, even though there was also so much fear. Fear he might get hurt, fear he might NOT win. No mom wants her son to feel disappointment and heartache.  I wanted him to win so badly I could hardly contain my excitement.

 

Misti Hurst with her race-winning son Ashton Parker. Photo courtesy Misti Hurst.
Misti Hurst with her race-winning son Ashton Parker. Photo courtesy Misti Hurst.

 

He rode incredibly, from a coach’s, a racer’s and a mom’s perspective and took the win like a boss.  As the stands erupted, we all screamed for him and jumped up and down before I ran to hug him and congratulate him.  To see such growth, maturity, race-craft,  determination, and some super-talented riding in my kid made me the proudest mom in the world.  There really is nothing better than sharing your passion with your children and watching them experience success, especially in something as cool and exciting as motorcycle road racing!

 

Ashton Parker (center) standing on top of the FIM MiniGP Canada podium with runner-up Ben Hardwick (left) and third-place finisher Michael Galvis (right). Galvis won the inaugural 2023 FIM MiniGP Canada Championship. Photo by Collin Fraser.
Ashton Parker (center) standing on top of the FIM MiniGP Canada podium with runner-up Ben Hardwick (left) and third-place finisher Michael Galvis (right). Galvis won the inaugural 2023 FIM MiniGP Canada Championship. Photo by Collin Fraser.

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