Poker and MotoGP Have More in Common Than You Think


No one would have thought that a motorcycle racing sport and card games such as poker would be similar in any way. But in all actuality, there’s a good amount of poker terminology used in MotoGP. Here’s how the competitive table card game is linked with motorcycle racing:

  1. Wild Card: If you’ve ever witnessed the premier racing event, the expression wild card is commonly used for players who doesn’t have the odds on their side. This term, actually comes from poker where a wild card is used to represent another card a player needs to make up a hand. Whichever card is declared wild can stand in for whatever card the players wants. On the other hand, wild card rides in MotoGP are used to signify when a racer only takes part in individual rounds of a championship. The comparison between poker and MotoGP here suggests that the player, like the card, could be interchangeable.
  2. Poker Face: This term is used famously in the card game, referring to the need to conceal true thoughts and emotions as you play live poker. How you proceed with the game and strategize playing your own hands is very much dependent on how you lead your opponents with the way you react to any good or bad a hand you might have. The need for pulling off a good bluff isn’t as important while the race is undertaken in MotoGP, although there needs to be a certain level of sportsmanship and mystery that’ll make the races more enjoyable and engaging for the fans. Often the aspects of a poker face come into play after the race is over, especially if the racer didn’t achieve the position they hoped for. It’s hugely important for a racer to act neutrally and sportingly even if a championship has been lost, especially in interviews and with the press. In fact, its part of playing the game.

    Nicky Hayden wearing his ‘ALL IN’ Kentucky Kid monikered leathers
  3. All In: Poker Attitudes: Maintaining a positive attitude is used both in poker and MotoGP in order to throw opponents and giving yourself a morale boost. Such poker attitudes are also used in races, often used to explain how players should behave, how they should view races and hurdles in their work and how they should treat the growth of their careers. In poker terms, ALL IN refers to putting all your chips in the middle and counting on your hand being an eventual winner. In MotoGP terms, the infamous win in 2006 of the late Nicky Haden at the Ricardo Tormo circuit came as a shock to many Grand Prix fans. Hayden even altered his Kentucky Kid monikered leathers to read ALL IN alongside a stack of poker chips.Poker has been with us for years, evidently its terminology can get seeped in other areas of sports and entertainment. While poker has elements of rising tension and takes a slow turn of events at times, MotoGP is like a super-fast rollercoaster ride across the tv screen. Both games are extremely competitive and even though the terminology might be a common denominator, you can never know who takes away the biggest piece of cake until the very end.