Ashley Fiolek may have retired two years ago, but she hasn’t slowed down. The 24-year-old ex-motocross racer is offering motocross coaching for girls, and last year she was a stunt rider for the Marvel Universe Live show. She got to play the villain, and she loved the challenge of playing a different kind of role. She said, “Everyone says that I’m so innocent and sweet, but I think it’s fun to play for the villains. It’s challenging for sure.”
Ashley was born deaf, and in a sport where loud noises and sounds influence so much of what the rider does, Ashley dominated like no other woman. Usually, motocross riders listen to their bikes to know when to shift. Instead, Ashley learned how to feel the vibrations of the bike to decide when to change gears. She would also keep an eye on her competitors by looking over her shoulder or checking for shadows on the ground. Riding the bike became second nature to her, and fans loved to watch her smooth, fluid ride.
Ashley’s talent has earned her many awards. She won the WMX Pro National Championship in four out of five years and two gold medals in the X Games. In 2008, she became the first woman ever to grace the cover of TransWorld Motocross magazine, and she was the first woman to become part of The American Honda Racing Team. In 2010, she co-wrote her autobiography Kicking Up Dirt, and in 2011 she took part in a Red Bull commercial.
After her retirement from motocross, Ashley started the Ashley Fiolek Foundation. The Foundation visits schools and organizations to teach Ashley’s simple philosophy that she has always followed: Dream, Work, Achieve! This motto is what Ashley has lived her life by and hopes to pass along to kids everywhere. With her determination and skill, Ashley continues to be an inspiration to all kids and proof of what can happen if you work hard and don’t give up!