Before I ever secured credentials to start shooting at National races for “The Art of Moto”, I shot hours of footage at Nationals and other events. On one of those occasions, I was at Redbud shooting practice trackside when I noticed a rider watching other riders practice just a few feet away from me. I approached him and we began conversing. I asked him how he was doing and if he qualified for the race. He politely responded, “Yes, I’m running 9th in the series so far this season.” I quickly apologized and asked for his forgiveness. He smiled and said, “No worries!” Andrew McFarlane introduced himself and invited me back to the Kawasaki pit area to do an interview. He was as gracious as one could be and shared his immense passion for the sport we love. He truly loved riding his “motorbike” (that’s what he called it) for a living and genuinely loved this sport.
It was my pleasure as we shared our thoughts about motocross and how difficult it is. We had a conversation afterward, and I felt like a got to know him in that short amount of time. He spoke about his wife and family and how much he loved them. When we finished, all he asked for was a DVD for giving me the interview. I promised him one, but Andrew had the misfortune of physically leaving our planet just two years later in a horrific crash that ended his life. After we met, it would be six more years until the film was completed. I regret I wasn’t able to come through with my promise to Andrew and decided it would be appropriate to dedicate the film to him. Thank you so much, Andrew. Godspeed and my eternal prayers to your wife and family.
While at the gate shooting some pre-race shots at Hangtown’s MX National, I noticed a rider trying to get some shade on that sweltering hot day. I introduced myself to Tyler Bowers and asked him to share his perspective on this grand sport. His passion for motocross is as strong as any rider I’ve talked to. He was very humble and said that even though he was now racing professionally, he still wouldn’t feel like he had made it until they started making toy dirt bikes of him.
That season I talked to him at different races and watched Tyler advance and prove himself by regularly finishing in the top fifteen. Bowers is a four-time champion in the sport of Arenacross and is now back to racing Supercross and AMA Pro Motocross. Tyler is here to stay. He shares what we all feel about our favorite sport in The Art of Moto.
I first met Tom White at REM Saturday Motocross at Glen Helen. He raced every week and did a great job as an announcer calling the races as well. With all the contributions he made to the motocross industry, I was sure he would be great for the film. I was right. He was probably the most knowledgeable person on the sport that I’ve ever met. He invited me to his home and his museum. The Early Years of Motocross Museum in Orange County, California is one of the most extensive motocross bike and memorabilia museums in the world. He was so gracious and helpful and allowed us full access to his photos, motorcycles, and posters. He was a pivotal person in the industry, but never put himself above others and interacted very closely with everyone at the track like family. He saw my passion and believed in me, which helped make things happen. Without him, this film probably wouldn’t have happened. What he brings to the film, no one else could.
All of us who raced with Tom knew him as a fun, approachable, sincere and downright good person. Life is full of surprises. Not all good ones. I didn’t know the man who was the most instrumental in helping me with my film would lose a battle with cancer ten years after I met him. RIP Tom and thank you again for sharing so much with us and allowing us into your life so graciously.
It was my first trip to Spring Creek Raceway in Millville, MN to shoot. Ryan Dungey was at his home track and looking for his first win in the 250 class. He won the race that day and afterwards spoke about winning…and how you never forget the feeling of accomplishing that goal. He didn’t know at the time that he would win the championship that year, but he sure spoke like a champion that day. As you will see in the film, he shared that the celebration only lasts for a short time and that the hard work starts pretty much immediately after the champagne gets shot out of the bottle.
No one can argue that his hard work ethic has paid off. He put down one of the best careers ever in a sport that does a good job to shorten careers. As everyone in our sport knows, Ryan walks the walk. His reputation amongst other racers, the media, and the fans speaks for itself and the world loves him. Congratulations to one of the best ever and looking forward to seeing what the next chapter is for Ryan.
Gary was the National Champion when I first got involved with motocross in 1974 at Motosports Park in Byron, Illinois. People at the track would speak about him and how he became the first American to beat the Europeans to win the National Championship. Over 30 years later, our paths crossed at REM Saturday Motocross at Glen Helen. Gary is one of the coolest guys I’ve met in my life. He’s a true champion. I race the over 50 class. Gary is in the over 60 experts. At REM, they usually have two gate drops per race to help move the day along faster. They drop the gate for the over 50, then about 30 seconds later they drop it for the 60-year-olds. He passes me twice per race… once right after he catches me after his start, then once when he laps me. If I’m going to be passed twice in one race by the same rider, it might as well be Gary. Gary races regularly with his son Justin, who has won the Baja 1000 numerous times.
He is unbelievably fast for being over 60 years old!
From the start of my dream to make a documentary about my favorite sport, I knew that one of the riders I had to include in the film was the greatest of all time. Even though I saw RC at several races before, I was never close enough to ask him for an interview. My journey… Continue Reading
When I was a kid, Roger De Coster was THE motocross racer in the world. Now he’s known as The Man. While I was shooting the National races, I saw Roger all the time… coaching his riders, discussing strategies with his team members and mechanics, going through everything on the bike to try to make… Continue Reading