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A BMX moto sheet can be confusing to understand – especially if you’re new to the sport.  This article explains all of the fields on a BMX moto sheets so you can understand what everything means. 

BMX riders checking out the moto board at a BMX race
Photo Credit: JPennucci Photography | www. BMXActionPhotography.com

You’ve just registered for your first BMX race (congratulations!) and a track official announces that, “motos are posted!”.  What the heck does that mean?!?

Before we get into all of that, let’s go over some BMX vocabulary: 

A moto is a single racing heat in the sport of BMX. 

A BMX moto sheet is a printed sheet listing the riders and motos for the race day.  Motos are numbered chronologically and is the order the races will be called. 

A moto board is the area where the moto sheets are posted prior to the race.

When the track official announces that motos are posted, you’ll notice all of the rider flocking to the moto board – an area where the track posts the moto sheets for the day’s racing.

The moto sheets list all of the races for the day broken down by age and class.  Check out this post

for more information on that.  When you first see the moto sheet, it can be confusing.  What do all of those fields mean?  How do I know all of the information is correct?  We’re breaking it all down for you.


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Understanding the BMX Moto Sheet

Once all riders are registered, the track will print out a BMX moto sheet or what could be considered a master race roster.  

All riders will check the sheet for errors. Once the track is assured all the information is accurate, a final moto sheet will be printed and distributed.

Let’s look at some important entries. We have numbered them to make it easier to understand.

A sample BMX Moto sheet that labels each section.

BMX Moto Sheet Section 1: CLASS

Simply put, this is the BMX racing class of the riders in the particular moto. In our example sheet, moto 4 is for 8 year old Novice Riders. In moto 5, the riders are 11 year old Novices. 

It takes a minimum of 3 riders to form a class. If there are not, the rider will be moved to a higher age or proficiency class.  There can be advantages to this.  

BMX Moto Sheet Section 2: GROUPS

This is the number of groups. In our example sheet, for all 3 motos shown, there are 1 group of riders for each class.

If in one of the classes, let’s say the 8 Novice in moto 4, there were more riders, there would be 2 groups. In that case, moto five would show the second group of 8 Novice riders.

If there are 2 groups in a class, then there would be 2 separate finals. Each accumulating BMX points.

A sub section of a BMX Moto Sheet with each section numbered.

BMX Moto Sheet Section 3: QUALIFIER

This designates what type of races are held for the class. If you notice, moto 4 is a Total Points race, moto 5 is a 2 – 2 transfer to Main race, and moto 6 is a 1-1-1 transfer to main. 

While we won’t specifically get into points in this article, here is an explanation of each:

Example Moto 4:  Total Points Race

In a total points BMX race, each rider accumulates points in each round. In this example there are 3 riders, so that’s what makes it a total points race.

If there are more than 3, the race will become a transfer race as in motos 5 and 6 (see below).

In a total points race there are 3 rounds.  The first 2 are run with the qualifiers of any transfer races on the slate.  The third is run with the finals. 

The riders accumulate points in each round.  First place earns 1 point, second place 2 points, and so on. 

At the end of the third race, the rider with the least amount of points wins.  The points earned through the races are only to determine the final positioning.  Once the points are tallied through the three races, the riders are ranked.  Then points are earned according to the rankings.

Example Moto 5:  2-2 Transfer to Main Race

When there are more than 3 riders in a class, the race will be structured as a transfer race. And there are many different kinds. In this particular race it’s a 2-2. That means there will be 2 qualifying races with the first 2 finishers in each transferring to the final.

Once a rider finishes first or second in a qualifier, they are in the final and will not race in a subsequent qualifier.

In the example of moto 5, if Joey finishes first, and Makayla finishes second, they transfer. The second qualifier will be racing between Ian, Craig, and Peter only.

The first and second place finishers in that race, let’s say Ian and Craig, move on to the final. Having not placed either first or second in either qualifier, Peter would be done.

Points  do not accumulate in transfer races.  In the final moto, the placements are earned according to how the rider finishes and points are awarded.

Example Moto 6:  1-1-1 Transfer to Main Race

Again, because there are more than 3 riders in the 12 Intermediate class, they racers are placed in a transfer race. The track operators decide which kind of transfer races there will be based on what will make the day run most efficiently.

In this group there will be 3 qualifiers. In each, only the first-place finisher would transfer to the main, and again will not race in subsequent qualifiers.

The group gets whittled down from 4 to 3 after the first qualifier. The three-remaining race in the second. Then, the remaining 2 in the third. The rider that does not win the third is done for the day. 

Like the 2 moto transfer in the Moto 5 example above, points are awarded as they finish.

As mentioned earlier, there can be an array of transfer races set by your local track.  But they all work the same way and the types discussed here give you a nice template.

BMX Moto Sheet Section 4: RIDERS

Simply put, the number of riders in the class.

A sub section of a BMX Moto Sheet with each section numbered.

BMX Moto Sheet Section 5: MOTOS

The moto number.  This is the number of the race that your rider will compete in.  Lock this in.  You’ll want to pay close attention to track announcements so your rider gets to the gate for his/her race.

BMX Moto Sheet Section 6: PLATE NUMBER

This is the plate number for each rider. All points are applied in the system based on this number. Pay close attention that it’s listed properly.

If it’s wrong and you don’t realize until later in the day, your rider will not earn points.

BMX Moto Sheet Section 7: PLATE TYPE

There are different plates BMX racers display on their bikes. Since we are talking about beginners here we can assume your rider will have a District plate.

  • PA01 is Pennsylvania District 1
  • ST is a State plate
  • GC indicates a Gold Cup plate

BMX Moto Sheet Section 8: RIDER CLASS

This number, as shown in moto 5 as 8N, is the class of the rider.  In the case of moto 5, all riders are in fact 8 Novice class riders. 

If a lone 7 year old novice showed up today, and was forced to jump class in age, next to his name would be 7N.

BMX Moto Sheet Section 9: STAGING/POSTING GATE

This tells your rider which gate he/she will be in for each race. In the case of moto 4 it shows which gate for the qualifiers and the final because since it’s a total points race, it’s already known all riders will be in the finals.

In motos 5 and 6, those number are blank because it’s not know which riders will transfer to the finals.

Photo Credit: JPennucci Photography | www. BMXActionPhotography.com

In a previous article we covered how BMX racing works. We also covered how BMX Classes work – the differences between gender, age, proficiency, and wheel size. 

The sample moto sheet provided above is very similar to what you will see at any BMX track.  All BMX tracks that are official BMX USA member tracks use the same computer system and the moto sheets will be the same.

Here is the downloadable version of the BMX USA Rulebook for further clarification on any of the items mentioned above.

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