Top 10 Types Of Thrilling ATV Races scaled e1683126766842

Top 10 Types Of Thrilling ATV Races

Top 10 Types Of Thrilling ATV Races

Top 10 Types of Thrilling ATV Races

Racing is one of the best ways to get more thrills out of your four-wheeler, and when racing safely off-road, you can hit high speeds, big jumps, climb hills, and sling mud. Most races have different categories that cater to different skill levels. To provide you with a quick guide to the different kinds of races that might appeal to you—either as a spectator or a participant—ATV Trader has put together a list of the top 10 types of thrilling ATV races.

ATV Races

ATVs were first developed by Honda in the late 1960s to provide Japanese farmers with a motorized vehicle that could navigate isolated, mountainous areas that were impassable for other types of cars and trucks. The initial vehicles were three-wheelers.

Fast forward a decade or so and ATVs had not only spread in popularity around the world, they started showing up at off-road races normally reserved for dune buggies, four-wheel-drive trucks, and dirt bikes.

Check out four of the most popular ATV events the United States currently has to offer. Today, ATVs are welcome at a variety of race types, including motocross, hare scrambles, hare and hound, enduros, hill climbing, and even drag racing.

1. Endurance Races

Endurance races, as the name implies, normally take place over long distances and durations, covering a variety of terrains that are meant to test not only each driver’s skill, but also the limits of their grit. If you’re new to the sport, you might want to find a few shorter races to try out first before jumping into something more rigorous. There are generally two different kinds of endurances races, including time-keeping enduros and rallies.

2. Timekeeping Enduros

Timekeeping enduros involve keeping a predetermined speed over the course of the race. There are a variety of checkpoints throughout the race to determine which competitor is staying closest to the targeted goal. Arriving early or late to any checkpoint results in a penalty.

3. Rallies

Rallies, also frequently referred to simply as enduros, involve simply being the fastest one to complete the course, which may include a variety of extreme terrains. A course may be point-to-point, or it may involve an out-and-back or lapped course where the same terrain is revisited.

4. Hare Scrambles

Hare scrambles, also sometimes called cross country races, are off-road events where all the competitors start at once and must complete either a predetermined number of laps or time, for example, the competitor who goes the farthest in two hours. Hare scramble courses also include a variety of terrains, but they are typically more open than enduro races.

5. Grand Prix

Grand Prix races are a variation on the hare scramble in that they usually involve shorter, more open courses and riders can compete in multiple classes. In hare scrambles, all classes run together simultaneously.

Whether you’re in the race or spectating, get a better idea of all the popular makes and models of four-wheelers for sale that lead the competition.

6. Hare and Hound

Hare and Hound races are endurance races that generally run over desert courses with pit stops along the way. The race is called Hare and Hound because riders are not allowed to pre-run the course, so whoever is leading at any point acts as the trailblazer while all the other competitors are on the chase, like a pack of dogs going after a rabbit.

7. Motocross

Motocross races are usually held on a dirt circuit that includes a fun variety of jumps, turns, and obstacles. Riders normally go out in groups to complete a predetermined number of laps, with qualifiers being determined by place (first or second) or time. After the qualifying heats are completed, the top finishers from each heat go against each other again to determine the overall winner. There is also a winter version of Motocross called Snocross where the course is similar to a Motocross track, but it’s covered in snow and ice.

8. Mud Racing

Mud Racing involves a wet and muddy course that competitors must navigate to see who either simply finishes the course or who finishes it the fastest. Drivers are released one at a time based on a random drawing, giving each successive rider the chance to watch others ahead of them in order to potentially gain an advantage by watching for particularly troublesome spots, etc.

9. Drag Racing

Just like their Top Fuel and Pro Stock Motorcycle cousins, ATVs drivers compete head-to-head on a short, paved track to see who is the fastest to the finish. Competitors go through a bracket system, with the winners moving on to successive rounds until an ultimate champion is determined.

10. Hill Climbing

Hill Climbing normally involves seeing who can get to the top of a steep incline the fastest. Many never even make it to the top, which can be very dangerous for those competing when the ATV starts to fall backward or loses traction.

Ready to get your race on? Each type of race may require a slightly different configuration to take on the tasks at hand—such as pumped-up suspension or different kinds of tires. But when you’re ready to start shopping for the ATV of your dreams, be sure to take a look at all the new and used listings on the nation’s leading marketplace at

Frequently asked Questions about ATV races.

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