Catching up with Kyle Lewis

Kyle Lewis has been on the professional race circuit for over 15 years now. At 32-year-old the veteran of the sport, he has seen a lot of fads come and go. Kyle has been around long enough to have witnessed such crazy things as purple gear and pink seats. Kyle has also seen a lot of teams come and go over the years, as well. One of which was the Noleen Yamaha team of 1994. Kyle was a part of that team back then and wound up seventh in points at the end of 1994. That was the year that Kyle says was his best. If you ask us, the 32-year-old looks to be on the road to his best season ever in 2002.

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TransWorld Motocross: Are you exited about your season, and the results you are turning in?

Kyle Lewis: Yes, I am really happy. I wish that Larry Ward would be doing better. Our team would be really strong then. It kind of stinks that Nick Wey got hurt, but I think our team has come together well. Moto XXX has been on the scene now for six years and they are awesome to ride for. Yoshimura is doing a great job with our motors. DGY is backing the team big time. It’s almost like having a factory deal having those guys behind us. Williams Brothers Racing hooked the team up with a great rig this year. I think that truck is one of, if not the best looking truck on the circuit. To top it off, our team is having some good results. Yeah, I am pumped about this year!

TWMX: Why do you think you are having such good results this year?

KL: It is really a combination of things. I have been working really hard to run the pace this year. The team and my mechanic are doing an incredible job. My Mechanic makes my bike perfect. It gives me even more incentive to ride good because I want to do good for him too. There are also a few guys that are hurt right now. Pastrana, Windham, are out of the running. Roncada and Vuillemin are out with a couple of bum ankles. If those guys were in the mix, it might be a different story. I am just trying to give it 110 percent every moto.

TWMX: Do you have a specific goal for the rest of the year?

KL: Just to put in hard motos. I am not going to say to myself, “Lets go get top three or top five.” I know that if I ride hard the results will come. I just have to put my head down and give it all I have. I wish I had the equipment that the factory guys have. It might be a little bit easier to hang with Carmichael at least for a few laps. That guy is on a different planet right now. You know, I have been racing motorcycles for a long time. When I get behind him, I feel like a novice. It is difficult for me to say that–I have to race against him every weekend, but you have to give credit where it is due. They guy is just on it. My hat is off to him. I think a lot of it is equipment. He has so many parts on his bike that you could never buy. All the factory guys do. I hear so many people crying that the CRF450 is a cheater bike–the factory guys are on cheater bikes. Nobody can get the works equipment that they ride.

TWMX: Getting back to Ricky, I would have to agree. He has taken outdoor motocross to another level.

KL: The first lap of the second moto at Budds Creek, Ricky turned a 2:15 lap. LaRocco and I turned a 2:20. That is five seconds in one lap! It’s like, where did he cut the course? How? I don’t understand.

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TWMX: Do you feel like you were prepared for this season?

KL: Right before the start of the SX season, I had a gnarly crash. I was out play riding, doing about 95mph down a hill and my front wheel hit a rock. I endoed down the hill about 150 feet. When I finally stopped, I thought I broke my back. I wound up tearing the cartilage that attaches my ribs in the front and back. One week prior to the first race in Anaheim, I could not even push 20lb. dumb bells. Every Sunday for the first four rounds of supercross, I could not even get out of bed. The sponsors pay for us to be out there. I feel obligated to go out and do the best I can.

TWMX: Can you tell me a little bit abbout why the Moto XXX team is so unique?

KL: It all stems from the love of motocross. That is what drives the company. All the guys that work there have that passion for the sport. The sponsors see that, that is why O’Neal, DGY, Yoshimura, Williams Brothers Racing came on board this year. All these sponsors believe in what we are trying to do. Some people have the misconception that Moto XXX has to do with pornography, but really it means motocross to the extreme times three. I put about 85 percent of the package together for the team this year. It took two months of my time, but it was worth it. I am in control of my own destiny now. It’s a lot of work to make it happen, but it was a lot of fun to do.

TWMX: Is there anyone in life that you look up to?

KL: I really respect people that are honest, and give 100 percent to what they are doing. I hate fake people that say they are your friend one minute and the next minute they are stabbing you in the back. I try to be as honest as I can. Maybe that is not the best way to do things, when you are trying to claw your way to the top. At least I can look myself in the mirror at the end of the day.

TWMX: I heard through the grapevine that your daughter Kelsey does some acting. Is that true?

KL: Yeah, she does some modeling and acting. She just finished doing a play in Hollywood. She also just shot her eighth commercial for Tropicana Orange Juice. Next week she is doing a commercial for M&M’s. That will be her ninth commercial!

TWMX: Is that something you do as a father daughter thing?

KL: Oh no! That is my wife Kathy’s full time job. They are gone so much going down to Hollywood on auditions and casting calls. The schedule they keep is pretty crazy.

TWMX: I read that you want to be a bodybuilder when you are done with MX. Does that still hold true?

KL: I just want to get more focused on lifting weights. My buddies can go to the gym for two months and load up on the creatine and protein. I can’t do that because I have to stay lean and light for motocross. Have you seen Ryan Hughes lately? He is getting pretty big!

TWMX: Since you have been a pro, what do you think is the most significant change in the sport?

KL: I would say that the sponsors are a little narrow minded lately. They are going outside the country and signing someone that they have never even seen before. Then they get them here, and sure they ride good but, what ever happened to giving the up and coming guys in America a shot? I don’t understand shelling out $200,000 on a hope and a glimmer. Look at Sean Hamblin. He’s been given a shot, and he is riding his ass off. That is what I would like to see more of.

TWMX: Ok. Any last shout outs?

KL: I just want to thank all the sponsors that have made it possible for the team to go racing this year. Moto XXX, DGY, O’Neal, Atomic 22, WBR, HJC, Maxima, Factory Connection, Tag Metals, Yoshimura, Wiseco, Works Connection, Sun Star, Sidi boots, Smith, Epitaph, Fat Wreck Cords, Nitro, Etnies, RK chains, Excel, Twin Air, N-style, SMP, Maxxis, Hinson, Motion Pro, Braking, Nutec fuel, O’gio bags, Cycra plastic, Fuel Gloves, MX Generation, Daniels Insurance, Ride Engineering and Metal Tec.