Scooter Cannonball

Coast to Coast on Scooters
The Scooter Cannonball is a test of both rider and machine that takes in some of the best motorcycle roads on the North American continent. The Scooter Cannonball is a time, distance, regularity rally where points are awarded based on miles completed and the ability to maintain the standard pace.
2021 Cannonball
The Scooter Cannonball will begin in Bar Harbor, Maine on July 12, 2021 and finish 10 days later in Eureka, California on July 21st. The total distance of the recommended riding course is estimated to be 4,500 miles. As of May 2021, approximately 180 riders have registered. Registration will remain open while hotel space remains available.
Past Events
The Scooter Cannonball is a coast to coast ride for scooters held every two years since 2004. The 2020 event was postponed to 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Morro Bay, CA to Virginia Beach, VA


Fernandina Beach, FL to Mukilteo, WA


Hyder, AK to New Orleans, LA


Savannah, GA to San Diego, CA


Vancouver, BC to Portland, ME


San Francisco, CA to Ocean City, MD


Portland, OR to New York City, NY


Virginia Beach, VA to Los Angeles, CA

Scoring & Format

Scooter Cannonball Format
Each day riders start and end at a predetermined hotel location. In-between they travel along a common route to mandatory checkpoint locations and visit optional bonus locations. Points are awarded completing each segment and claiming bonus locations.
How are points and scores determined?
The maximum point value for each segment correlates to the travel distance between checkpoints. Riders are scored against a handicap adjusted standard time for each segment. Bonus point locations have a fixed point value.
How are points awarded?
To be awarded points the rider must provide photographic and/or GPS location data as proof that they arrived at the designated location. The event has created an iPhone/Android app to help collect and verify this data. It is compiled throughout the day and later verified.
Why is there a handicap adjustment?
Each scooter is assigned a handicap valued that normalizes its performance based on performance of scooters in prior events. The handicap is calculated using the original manufacture year of the scooter and the age of it's current engine and its displacement.
How do you win the Scooter Cannonball?
It's not a race or speed competition. Winning requires navigational accuracy, eliminating mechanical breakdowns, accurate fuel planning, and general traveling efficiently for 10 days to almost 100 checkpoints across American's back roads.
How do you not win?
Each rider must complete each day's route entirety under the power of only their scooter and/or rider (pushing). One rider ('driver') per scooter and one scooter per rider. Failure to satisfy the logging requirements at each location results in zero points awarded.

Frequently Asked Questions

How many riders participate?
Typically 40-100 riders register for the ride, however, only 2/3 of those actually make it to the starting line. Riders from all over the United States/Canada/Europe have participated in the event. In 2016 the average ride age was 50 years of age (ranging from 28 to 72 years).
How do riders get their scooter to or from the start/finish?
Some riders actually ride their scooter to and from the starting line and finish. Others ship their scooters using commercial services, private carriers, or partnering with other participants. ForwardAir is the most common commercial shipping used by participants. Private Carriers have been contracted through UShip.Com or similar web based services pairing shippers and drivers.
Are there teams?
Riders may informally establish teams with other riders to combine support resources or assist each other with planning. Riders will only be awarded points based solely their specific performance. Riders actually riding together and passing at checkpoints concurrently must individually maintain their own documentation to be eligible for points and are not permitted to substitute or share documentation with other riders.
What happens if I breakdown?
The event does not officially provide support. Many riders have participated without a trailing support vehicle while others have organized their own support individually or collectively. These arrangements are worked out in the Registered Riders section of the Rider’s Forum.
Is there a predefined route?
There is a preferred or recommended route each day that is defined by “mandatory” checkpoints. Checkpoints are published in advance of the ride and are strategically chosen to keep riders off high speed interstates and mostly on the same roads. The roads riders decide to take to arrive at these checkpoints is entirely up to them. A riders ability to navigate between checkpoints efficiently is critical to earning points in this event. Navigation directions provided by the event are considered to be advisory only. Riders are responsible for their own navigation planning.
Is this a group ride?
No, not necessarily. With the exception of the first day (starting line), riders depart from the hotel each morning on their own schedule. Scooters range from 50cc to 278cc and have different performance outputs. However, with so many riders traveling mostly on the same roads and you will pass (or be passed) by other riders throughout a typical day.
What about Hotels?
All of the hotels for the overnight locations are planned & booked in advance. The list of “official” hotels is made available in the Registered Riders area. Riders are solely responsible for booking their own accommodations.
What is this going to cost me?
Depends on personal circumstances and logistics. A rider with a working scooter, appropriate riding gear, and shipping their scooter in only one direction should expect to spend $3000-5000 to participate. Riders are responsible for arranging and paying for their own accommodations
Some riders do seek and receive sponsorships to (typically) help offset their cost of participation. This is permissible so long as the sponsorship does not give the rider an unfair advantage and the rider is not incentivized (monetarily or otherwise) by the sponsor to “win” the event.
Is this a race?
No. This is not a race. Riders are awarded points based on their ability to ride and navigate their scooter to predefined checkpoints each day. No benefits, actual or implied, monetary or otherwise are awarded to any rider who finishes with the highest number of accumulated points each day or at the conclusion of the event.