How young is too young?
Your child’s been pestering you for a motorcycle, and you’re on the fence about whether it’s a good idea, and a safe one too. So you’ve landed here trying to find a little more information on how to go about getting started.
For some, riding is a fashion statement, but for others, it’s pure passion and adventure. This has led to an increased number of young bikers wanting to get their hands on the throttle. So, what is a good age for one to start riding motorbikes?
With 16 being the age to legally start riding some motorbikes, you’ll still want to be sure you select a suitable bike for your child. That means, choosing a motorcycle with a reasonable sized engine (50cc), with a speed that maxes out at around 45 k/ph.
To ride a 125cc (equivalent to 11Kw OF power) motorbike, you need to be at least 17 years of age and possess an A1 license. However, if you’re 19 years of age, then you’ll need an A2 license to be legally allowed to ride a 35Kw (47bhp) bike.
To obtain a full A2 license an age of 19 years of age or above is required.
|What's In This Guide?|
Is it legal to ride off-road as a minor?
In the UK, minors are allowed to ride powered toys commonly known as mini motos’ or go peds’. As a rule, any petrol or electric powered motor machines is classified as a motor vehicle. That said, the government has regulations for the minors on the roads.
What about off-road? – You ask!
The law state that the only place a minor can ride a mini bike off-road is only on private land after the landowner allows it. Nevertheless, a landowner can be prosecuted if motorbike accidents happen on their land.
You should be careful not to land someone on the wrong side of the law for they (landowners) can be prosecuted even if they hadn’t permitted you to ride on their land.
Check here for some facilities where you can take your child for sporting.
What pieces of kit will be needed?
While you take your kid out to have some motor fun, you need to consider their well-being and safety. For example, in the case of an eventuality, you want to ensure that the child is well protected. For the protection, the following items should be used appropriately for the best results:
- Children’s crash helmets
- Children motor boots
- Jackets and gloves
- Training wheels
If you desire to pump out some more power of the mini motor, there’s a ton of adjustments and performance tuning kits available on the market. Just don’t overdo it as this can render the bike un-roadworthy.
These kits include:
- High-performance spark plugs
- High-performance air filters and stack
- Race sprockets
- High-performance carbon reeds
- High-performance rocket keys
- Race jets (for tuning the carburettor for power gains)
Where can under aged riders ride? (UK list)
After establishing that you want motor fun for your child and meeting all the mandatory requirements, it’s now time to decide where. Many legal places offer the service. Most of these are kart tracks, but they offer booked mini motor evening services.
Check below to see which is the most convenient for you.
|West Kingsdown (Dartford) DA3 8NG||AdrenalinX. Unit A, Brands Hatch International Circuit||01474 872331||brandshatch.co.uk|
|Stiper’s Hill, Polesworth, Tamworth B79 0JS||Polesworth Moto X||07527 899914||N/A|
|Armthorpe, Doncaster DN3 3EH||Fat Cat Moto Parc||07990 514509||fatcatmotoparc.com|
|Benwick Rd, Doddington, March PE15 0TY||Washbrook Farm Motocross||01354 740442||washbrookfarmmx.co.uk|
|Billington Rd, Stanbridge, Leighton Buzzard LU7 9JH||210mx Moto Park||07495 934611||N/A|
|Shootersway, Berkhampstead HP4 3TY||Chiltern Young Riders Motocross Track||07957 200471||N/A|
|Austerfield, Doncaster DN10 6EZ||Doncaster Moto Parc||07950 311092||N/A|
|Ormskirk L40 4BN||Bleak Hall Motocross||N/A||N/A|
|M5, Tibberton, Worcester WR4 0AA||Apex Motocross||07989 098289||apexmotocross.co.uk|
|Leigh, Bickershaw, Wigan WN2 5XP||Crankwood Motocross Track||07555 249658||N/A|
|Upton St Leonards, Gloucester GL4 0WW||Brookthorpe Motocross track||N/A||N/A|
|Barton Hill, Mitcheldean GL17 0DS||Mitcheldean Motocross Test Track||N/A||N/A|
|Crick lodge farm Off, A428, Rugby NN6 7SN||VIP Motocross||N/A||N/A|
|The 4ED, Great N Rd, Micklefield, Leeds||Micklefield MX Track||07471 935533||leedsmotocross.co.uk|
|Upton St Leonards, Gloucester GL4 0WW||Brookthorpe Motocross track||N/A||N/A|
|Bonsall Moor Lane, Matlock DE4 2PD||Bonsall Moor Motocross||07599 991984||bmmx.co.uk|
|Ryton-on-Dunsmore, Coventry CV8 3DX||Moto 45 Motocross Track||N/A||N/A|
|14 Woodland Ave, Bacup OL13 8PF||Bacup MX Track||N/A||N/A|
|Marston Green, Birmingham B92 0HJ||Olymipia Motocross Park||N/A||N/A|
|M1, Northampton NN7 3AW||Milton Park MX||01788 566400||miltonmxpark.co.uk|
Here are a few indoor places to check out for your little ones to get started in a safe inside environment.
|Oval Race Lane, Water Ln, Angmering, Littlehampton BN16 4EL||Angmering Mini Moto Club||01903 859807||angmeringraceway.co.uk|
|Gartree Rd, Leicester LE2 2FG||Stretton Race Circuit||0116 259 2900||strettoncircuit.co.uk|
|Several locations across the UK (check website for convenience)||Team Sport Karting||01252 732300||https://www.team-sport.co.uk/|
|Jurby Airfield, Motodrome, Jurby, IM7 3BD||Jurby Karting||+44 7624 305811||https://www.iomkra.com/|
|Mitchelston Ind. Est., Merchant Pl, Kirkcaldy KY1 3NJ||Kartstart||01592 650200||kartstart.com|
|Dunfermline, Fife KY12 9TF||Knockhill Racing Circuit Ltd||01383 723337||knockhill.com|
|Link Road, Red Lodge, Bury Saint Edmunds IP28 8LE||Red Lodge Karting||01638 552316||redlodgekarting.com|
|Chapel Gate Circuit, East Parley, Christchurch BH23 6BL||South Coast Karting||01202 577733||southcoastkarting.co.uk|
|Hangar 88, Hullavington Airfield, Hullavington, Chippenham SN14 6GU||M4 Karting||01666 838600||m4karting.com|
|Dengemarsh Rd, Lydd TN29 9JH||Lydd Karting Ltd||01797 321747||lyddkartcircuit.com|
|Chippenham Rd, Kennett, Newmarket CB8 7QJ||WildTracks Outdoor Activity Park||01638 751918||wildtracksltd.co.uk|
|Brookmead Industrial Estate, Jessops Way, Croydon CR0 4TS||Traq In London Go Karting, Quad Biking, Minimotos Activities Centre||020 8665 0222||quadbikeracing.com|
For booking and/or more information about these kart tracks, contact them directly on the addresses given in the tables above.
What places are NOT legal for a minor to ride in?
Mini motors are recognised as vehicles that must meet the law requirements for the places they are to be used. First, if you’re a minor, you need to be of the legal age to ride one. Generally, mini motors cannot be used on pavements as they are powered.
Using it on the pavement makes you as a parent or a minor liable to prosecution. You also can’t use your mini motor on the road. You often visit areas like parks, but did you know that you can’t ride your go ped’ here? Now you know.
Be sure to consult the police for more information on this.
How to pick the right sized motorbike for a child
Pretty much as you’d do for yourself, you must choose the right size bike for your child. Comfort and safety should be your primary guidelines. There’s no fun where comfort lacks, and no thrill where safety is questionable for a parent.
First, go for a bike that is easy for your kid. The child should be able to securely reach the ground with both feet when seated on the bike. He/she should also reach the handlebars comfortably.
Unless your kid is experienced, don’t go for a manual clutch bike, as this will need a higher level of control as compared to the basic mini motor.
Depending on your child’s age, be sure to choose what fits them legally- may it be 50cc for a moped rider or 125cc engine capacity for 17+-year-olds.
As you get your kid that new toy, bring them along to have them test it.
What are the maximum speeds for 50cc, 85cc, and 125cc bikes?
How do you tell if an 85cc bike can outperform a 50cc bike? What do the numbers represent? You probably must have wondered what the cc means. To begin with, engine capacities (cylinder displacement) are measured in cubic centimetres (cc).
The numerical value represents the displacement of the engine. The engine displacement is directly proportional to the power output of the engine. A 125 cc engine outputs more torque than an 85cc or 50cc engine. Below is a list of different engine capacities and their corresponding average speeds;
|Engine (Power)||Maximum Speed|
Best motorbikes for 6 to 13-year-olds
As the demand for mini motors rises, manufacturers are also racing against each other to you and your kid’s satisfaction. Below is a list of the best legal motorbikes available around;
Razor MX400 Dirt Rocket 24V Electric Dirt Bike
This bike is easy to use. It can rack up to 12mph. It is very suitable as a first-time user, usually younger children due to low height.
Kuberg 2019 Cross Electric MX Bike
This one is great for the overall size but has a lower top speed of about 17mph. It comes with an emergency kill switch. Another great thing about this bike is that as a parent, you can be able to restrict the top speed for your child’s safety.
Razor MX350 Dirt Bike
This bike is ideal for children of around 12 years. It has a peak speed of 12mph. This bike needs a professional for setting up so you should have extra pennies to pay for that.
Razor Miniature Electric Bike
For a kid younger than 12, this is a good bike. It can go up to 12 mph. Your kid can also ride it in the garden at home, how convenient!
This is a nice small beginner bike for children under the age of 10. I personally used to have this bike myself and it’s pretty neat for a 50cc. They’re super robust and will give your little one a. great experience of what it’s like to ride a bigger bike.
Some other things to remember before you start-off include;
- Ensure your provisional motorcycle entitlement iv valid for either Great Britain or Northern Ireland.
- You need to be able to see clearly the new-style license plate from at least 20 metres away.
- Ensure your bike is roadworthy and insurance covered
- Ensure the L-sign is displayed in front or at the back of your bike until you.ve been certified.
Frequently asked questions
Can adults ride mini motors?
So long as your weight does not exceed the bike’s maximum threshold, you’re good to go.
Does my bike need to be assembled?
Most dealers will offer you an after-sale service that includes assembly of the bike. Others will send you the bike with some detached parts like side-view mirrors, wheels, and handlebars. You will need to fix them by your own or seek the services of a technician.
Does my bike arrive with fuel in it?
Bikes are rarely shipped with any fuel in them. This is a precaution since most fuels are highly flammable.
Can I ride a mini motor on the road?
Simply no! It’s illegal.
Is it hard to learn to ride a mini motor?
No. It’s easier to ride because they don’t have gears to change (thus no clutch lever).
Motorcycling is a sport loved and dreamt of by almost every kid. When you finally get your child that toy, don’t let excitement overtake their judgment. There are things you can do to ensure their safety as well as the safety of others. Virtues such as patience and good judgment are vital.
Make sure your kid has undergone compulsory basic training (CBT) and has passed both the theory and the practical tests. Train your kid to be responsible while riding. Emphasise on concentration and discipline as well.