Press Photo: Paddoc Girls in WSBK! 2012

Paddock girls (or grid girls, umbrella girls) is a term that has been used in professional motorcycle racing for many years. It refers to young women employed to hold umbrellas above racers to protect them from the sun.

Moscow Raceway, 24 august 2012, World Superbike, Volokolamsky District, Moscow Region, Russia, photographer Aleksandr B. Seregin (ASppaImages.COM) | Photo equipment Canon

“Paddock” refers to a pen where racehorses are saddled and paraded before a race, or in this case, where the motorcycles are prepared and serviced before and during the race.

Before the start of a race (either SuperBike Championships or MotoGP), the riders have to pull up onto their grid and wait for all the other racers to take their places on the line. The riders stand on the grid until all pre-race checks, adjustments and fueling have been completed. Racing weather is often over 30 °C (86 °F), and this together with the heavily padded leather racing attire can make the wait on the grid a very uncomfortable experience. To prevent the riders suffering from fatigue andheat stroke, the sponsors hire paddock girls to hold umbrellas for the racers whenever they are in the sun.

Moscow Raceway, 24 august 2012, World Superbike, Volokolamsky District, Moscow Region, Russia, photographer Aleksandr B. Seregin (ASppaImages.COM) | Photo equipment Canon

Paddock girls are also typically used to advertise the sponsors of their race team. Also known as promotional models, they usually range from 18-30 and are models. They attract attention by wearing tight fitted clothing (often short and revealing) which sport the logo/design of the sponsors.

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