Motorsport is a broad term and defines any and all races, competitive events (racing and non-racing) and leagues that involve the use and operation of motorised vehicles. These motorised vehicles consist of both two and four-wheel vehicles as well as those unique vehicles with more than four wheels.
Motorsport, in various forms, dates back to 1894 when a French newspaper organized and executed a race that had a route that started in Paris and made it all the way to Rouen and then back to Paris. This was actually the beginning of city to city racing, which still exists today. These races brought spectators and provided entertainment from this point onward. It was so enjoyed by both competitors and spectators that the Gordon Bennett Cup was created in 1900. Unfortunately, around this time, most forms of races (including road and closed circuit) were banned on all public roads.
These laws and strict regulations lead to the creation of specific and dedicated courses that are now known as Grand Prix races. These really gained momentum and popularity after World War I. Though these street races were popular in Europe, the United States started to favour dirt and off-road racing. As these circuits gained popularity and interest worldwide, it became apparent there was a need for more formal organization and cohesion amongst these races to allow for competitors and drivers to compete in races all over the world. Following World War II, these Grand Prix circuits were more formally organized and regulated. This lead to more firm boundaries and regulations in the stock and drag racing as well.
As racing became more popular and well attended, races started to be divided into different classes, types, divisions and separated into categories that made sense.
Today, motorsports are a profitable, popular, and booming industry and sport.