Catching Up with…#11 Kyle Chisholm
By Billy Rainford
Catching up with Kyle Chisholm. | Bigwave photo
It was Florida racer, #11 Kyle Chisholm‘s week for the Frid’Eh Update today, but Kyle was busy hitting the track for Media Day at Petco Park here in San Diego. Kyle was kind enough to answer a few questions for us, so here’s what he had to say:
Direct Motocross: Hello, Kyle. Thanks for talking with us today. Let’s start by talking about your 2017 season up in Canada. Were you happy with your results? Can you sum up your summer for us?
Kyle Chisholm: Hey, man. No problem at all. I wouldn’t say I was happy with my results but I also wasn’t mad about them. I always want to do better no matter what. I had some good races and some bad ones. I got 4th place about 5 times which was a bummer to just miss the podium so many times. I also had a bad shoulder injury in 2016 that I felt like I was still building back from. So, while I always give it 100% I don’t think I was at my best last summer building myself back from that injury. So, I would’ve liked to be on the podium and battling for wins but I did my best, I just don’t think I was at my best given the circumstance of the injury the previous year. But I always enjoyed myself up there and the Huber Motorsports team was awesome to work with.
What was the highlight of your Canadian season?
Man, to be honest, I can’t think of anything that really stands out. Like I said before, the whole season was just kind of vanilla. Nothing great and nothing bad. Getting 4th so many times kind of explains that (Laughs). I guess in a negative highlight I had a pretty spectacular crash on the first lap of practice at the last round at RJ’s. The big tabletop in the middle I lost and knifed the front end on the take off. I wasn’t really going fast or anything since it was the first lap. It caught me off guard and ripped the bars out of my hands and sent me into a full endo. I had to jump through the bars and it’s a fairly big and fast jump. I hurt my leg and shoulder a bit but nothing too serious and I still gutted it out the rest of the day.
I always ask people what their favourite track of the Canadian series is. What’s yours?
I’d probably have to say Gopher Dunes is my favorite track in Canada. I also really liked Ulverton, so I was bummed when they took that off the schedule last year. I also enjoy Deschambault and Riverglade too.
At this point, Kyle’s deal is for Supercross so he never rules anything out, like coming back to Canada, for instance. | Bigwave photo
What did you get up to when you headed home after RJ’s? You just told me sleep has been a little difficult, lately. Lol
After RJ’s I didn’t really have a break at all. I raced Budds Creek and Ironman on my own on my practice bike and then also the USGP at WW Ranch the next weekend too. So I was busy but I enjoy racing. Then I took a few weeks off and spent some more down time with my wife, Britney, and my daughter, Haven.
How are you balancing the new life change and racing? What’s the hardest part?
Yeah, having a daughter now definitely changes some things in life. Like you said, it’s just about finding that balance to do what I need to do and also be a dad. It’s definitely a challenge with how busy the racing schedule is but I think I’m getting the hang of it and I’m really enjoying spending time and watching my daughter grow. It’s awesome and I’m so happy and blessed to have her. My wife has also been super busy with her online clothing store, Pretty Rebels, so that’s thrown a little extra thing into the mix of me doing my work and her doing her work too but it’s been going great.
I don’t think you were sure what your Supercross season would look like. How did this deal all come together for you?
This deal for Supercross with the 51Fifty Energy Yamaha team ended up coming together a little bit later than I’d hoped. So, my prep time on the bike was only about 4 weeks before Anaheim so while it wasn’t ideal it has been awesome so far. We’ve worked hard in that short time and been getting better and better. I started talking with them back at the end of Supercross in 2017 and then again at the end of the summer of 2017. But, like I said, it took some time to get it all done but I’m happy with it all and trying to build each week.
Kyle will race this week and then move up to the 450 for a few of the east rounds. | Bigwave photo
You’ve been getting great starts and running up pretty high so far in 250 East. How has the series been for you?
My starts have been pretty good most of the time so far this year. I like the metal grates that they’re using this year. I’ve had some experience on them at some other events and I think I have them down pretty good. I’m also really happy with my bike. The Yamaha is definitely known for its power and the team has done a good job with it so I’m feeling good and confident with them for sure. Overall though I’ve been pretty happy so far. I’ve been riding a little better each week and running up front more and more each week. With the little prep time we had before the season that’s all I can ask for so hopefully I can get into that top 5 here soon.
But you’ll switch over to the 450’s in Dallas, right? Are you looking forward to that? What’s the biggest difference?
Yes, the plan is to race the 450 at some of the east coast races. I’m wanting to race Dallas through St. Louis before getting back on the 250 for Indianapolis. I am looking forward to it. I enjoy riding the 450 as well and also to get to keep racing. The new Yamaha 450 is awesome too which is nice. I’ve only ridden it about 3 times but it feels really good. I’d say the biggest difference is there are just more fast guys to contend with. On the bike side, the weight and power of the bike are the biggest adjustment for cornering it and getting your timing right.
Are you with this team for the Motocross season too? If not, what are your plans?
As of right now, my deal is for Supercross only with an option to go through the motocross season as well. The odd part is that the team doesn’t typically race the entire motocross season since they’re a west coast based team only. So they are planning to do the first three motocross races and Washougal also but that’s it. I would basically do the others on my own with help from the team unless something changes and they get the budget for the whole motocross season. So, technically I’m open to anything at the moment. I could end up with 51Fifty for the rest of the season or possibly not. It would be nice to stay with the team through the year but we’ll just have to see how things play out. I always enjoy racing in Canada so I never rule that out either now or in the future. But either way, I want to race somewhere so we’ll see.
Kyle currently sits 8th in 250 West SX points. | Bigwave photo
How many more years do you have in you? How old are you? What would you do when you hang up the leathers?
I’m 30 years old now. It’s crazy how fast time flies by when you’re always on the go like we are. Time literally flies by so fast year to year, but I’m enjoying racing just as much as ever. I’ve been doing this a long time now and I’m also learning to enjoy some of the things I maybe didn’t before or maybe took for granted. I know I can’t do it forever so I’m trying to enjoy the whole process, even some of the things that aren’t so fun sometimes. I’m not sure how many more year I will race. I’ve always said as long as I still enjoy doing it and I’m competitive where I want to be then I will race. So we’ll see. Maybe another 2-3 years at least. But maybe less and maybe more. We’ll just have to see how everything plays out. But I’m feeling good and always learning which makes it fun.
Thanks for the talk, Kyle. Good luck with the rest of the season. Who would you like to thank?
No problem. Anytime, man. I always have to give all the glory to God first and most importantly. My wife and my family. They always support me and help with the things nobody ever sees. The entire 51Fifty Energy Yamaha team and all of their sponsors for supporting the team. My personal sponsors HJC, Sidi, Shot Race Gear, XBrand, EVS, Atlas, Rickie Fowler, and my wife’s company Pretty Rebels. Thanks for the time.