One of Motocross' Most Popular Athletes Is a 33-Year-Old Woman


Don’t ask Jolene Van Vugt how many bones she’s broken because she won’t tell you. The 33-year-old Canadian is one of the fastest rising stars in motocross and doesn’t want to mess up her focus by thinking of injuries. That, and she’s very superstitious.

Van Vugt has been riding bikes since she was only 11 and now stars in “Nitro Circus Live,” a motocross tour that’s currently touring the States. She has broken two world records and is the first woman to ever do a backflip on a full-sized motorbike. She has appeared in TV and movies, not only through Nitro Circus, but as the stunt double for Catwoman in in The Dark Knight Rises. In other words, she is as tough as nails, not to mention, the only female performer on the Nitro Circus team.

She tells Nightline, “When I broke into the ‘Nitro Circus,’ there were no girls. They had never –- not that they didn’t want to include one –- they couldn’t find one that could hang with them. I gave it a go and was able to complete it.”

Now, she says, she feels completely accepted by her teammates and that they feel like “a bunch of brothers.” (Her real brother happens to drive the Nitro Circus tour bus.)

People are coming in droves to see Van Vugt perform stunts and many of the fans who show up are women and girls. Look alive, parents — thanks to Van Vugt, we might have a whole generation of fearless, scraped-up, badass little girls coming our way.

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