She’s the only woman in Puerto Rico to race an ATV in motocross and win and she owes it all to dear old dad. Caguas, Puerto Rico-based nail tech and CND educator Marilyn Garcia started racing in 1988 with her dad, Norbert Garcia, a winning drag racer.
She’s the only woman in Puerto Rico to race an ATV in motocross and win and she owes it all to dear old dad. Caguas, Puerto Rico-based nail tech and CND educator Marilyn Garcia started racing in 1988 with her dad, Norbert Garcia, a winning drag racer. “I have four younger brothers and I was the first to start competing in motocross with an ATV — or four-wheeler,” says Garcia, who no longer competes at the professional level.
Motocross, a form of motorcycle racing, is held on enclosed off-road circuits. “I won 12 races with guys — I’m still the only girl that has achieved that.” Her biggest accomplishment was the time she placed first. “The Federation gave the checkered flag to my dad. He was so proud of me,” she says.
What she loves about the sport is the adrenaline. “I feel free and powerful,” she says. “And I love to beat the guys, of course. It was a challenge keeping pace with them. They have more strength than me, so I have to be lighter and race using more technique.” And she had to train hard. “To build strength I ran every day and spent one hour in the gym. At my peak, I would finish my work in the salon on Saturdays at 1 p.m. and go to the racetrack for four hours. Every Sunday morning I’d spend four hours practicing the jumps and details of the track.”
Though Garcia never broke any bones, she had two crashes that left her injured badly enough that she woke up in the hospital. Still that wasn’t what caused her to walk away from professional motocross. “I still race for fun, but not in motocross competitions because I prefer doing nails. I had to decide between nails or racing professionally and I decided on nails,” she says. Garcia still competes successfully on the nail circuit.