Jim Cole recalls going with his father to buy his first motorcycle at age six. The experience led to a remarkably long and accomplished career in motorcycle racing, while competing in multiple divisions. He started Motocross racing in the Sports Riders Association of Colorado in 1975, and turned professional in 1980. His road racing exploits included endurance events, Snow Runs, and competing in the Pikes Peak Hill Climb. He is the current Colorado State Ice Racing Champion in the Masters class of age 40+, and has held that title for eight of the past nine years. Jim started racing at the Motorcycle Speed Trials on the Bonneville Salt Flats in 2008, and has returned each year since, breaking six national class records and two world speed records, ranging from a 211.169 mph American Motorcycle Association class record in 2017, to a 232.972 AMA record in 2018. He entered the Colorado Mile event when it began in 2015 and rode to a top speed of 213.86 Miles per hour. He went on to improve his speed each year after, and achieved the event’s top speed of 247.8 miles per hour in 2018. Jim cites these records as the career accomplishments he is most proud of.
And when it comes to flat track racing, Jim began his flat track career in 2016, at the age of 53. He won the Colorado State Championship for the age 30+ Class in 2017 and 2018, and has won State Championships in the age 40+ and 50+ classes.
Jim is quick to credit many people who have helped him along the way, including his longtime friend “Stormin’ Norman” Meyer, who gave him his first job in a motorcycle shop and introduced him to the varied racing disciplines in which he has enjoyed so much success over the years. He cites Bill and Shari Vickery, along with Bruce Sass from Vickery Motorsports as being highly influential in his racing career, and gives ready acknowledgement to his family, including his wife, Jo, and sons Travis and Brooks, for their endless support and sacrifices made that have allowed him to live out his dreams.
When asked how he would like to be remembered, Jim says “I don’t give up. I fight through weather, time issues, financial restraints, age, and injuries simply because I love the sport”. He has helped many of his competitors over the years, and states: “My hope is that I was able to pass along the spirit of competition to those around me, from when I was a struggling youth, on through the years to being a seasoned veteran. I hope to be remembered as a mentor, a fighter, but also a fair and gracious competitor”.And in 2021, this remarkably versatile motorcycle racer can also lay claim to being a member of the Colorado Motorsports Hall of Fame.