The actual race for the Red Bull Indianapolis GP is Sunday, but the entire weekend is full of entertainment for people of all ages. From stunt shows featuring daring riders, to vendors showcasing all types of motorcycle gear, excitement can be found just about anywhere.
On my venture around the infield, I came across several sights and sounds as more people filed in to start the day’s activities. I found myself at the entrance to the Moto Midway, where colorful flags and banners enticed fans to come see what was featured at every tent. Food trucks awaited customers as people tried to decide what to do next, as there were so many options for all different ages!
The Midway was especially a great place for kids. Boys and girls as young as two could take a shot at learning how to ride a miniature motorcycle, and take a few laps in one area. The IMS Kids Zone had several fun activities including a bouncy house, obstacle course, and even some racing video games. I wish I could have gone! For those over the age of 10, there was still plenty to do. A motorcycle simulator called iWheelie, allowed fans to experience what popping a wheelie would actually feel like. For those who weren’t as brave to be airborne, different brands had bikes for fans to check out and sometimes sit on. Toward the end of the Midway a stage was set for live musical performances, and included a big screen with on track activity so fans wouldn’t miss any of the action. There was so much to see and I had only just begun!
Just outside of the Midway, loud music started to draw a crowd of all ages to a fenced off area, not much bigger than a basketball court. As I walked over, I knew this had to be the site of the XDL Street Jam, where two bold riders would show off their skills in street bike freestyle. Kyle Sliger and Aaron Twite held nothing back and proved their abilities with an impressive show. They started off with the “Evolution of the Wheelie,” where they gradually got more complex with the seemingly basic trick. After a couple head to head challenges, the pair did front tire drifts and were very close going headfirst into the fans! They each had their own set of tricks with Twite kicking a leg out and appearing like an ice skater with his spins, and Sliger basically swing dancing with his bike as he jumped from side to side. They made sitting on the gas tank look easy and facing backwards was no problem at all. The talent was incredible!
Not too far away in the Vendor’s Marketplace Presented by Westfield Powersports, a different type of show was happening with Red Bull Trials athlete, Geoff Aaron. The 6’4 10-time National Trials Champion jumped over very tall obstacles all while on a specialized motorcycle that has no seat. A variety of platforms served as the stage and Aaron made them look so easy to conquer. Aaron wowed the crowd as he hopped 3 cylinders, all on his rear wheel alone! The emcee joked about being worried as he lay on the ground to be Aaron’s next obstacle to jump, but the professional had no trouble at all clearing the emcee both length and widthwise. For his last act, the show added yet another high platform onto which Aaron had to leap, and he did it with ease. For someone like me who had never even heard of motorbike trials, this show was fascinating and a great introduction to a lesser known sport.
After the show was over, the Vendor’s Marketplace Presented by Westfield Powersports was still buzzing with people looking at all of the different miniature shops that were set up in garages. Various brands were scattered all around offering anything and everything one might need to ride a motorcycle. Helmets, leathers, gloves, and all sorts of memorabilia were available for both enthusiasts and novices. There was also a big screen similar to the one found at the Midway, so it was definitely worth checking everything out. Even when the motorcycles weren’t going around the track, there was so much to do at the Red Bull Indianapolis GP!