By Dennis “Alphado” Albrewczynski
Nate Adams, Chuck Carothers and Adam Jones might be the hot names in Freestyle Motocross today, but the road to success was paved much earlier for the current crop of Freestyle Motocrossers. Before FMX hit the big time, guys like Trevor Vines were crossing the country in vans planting the seeds that grew into what we know as FMX today. Vines’s hard work was noticed and rewarded by Yamaha when he became the first freestyler to receive full factory support. Hailing from Conneaut, Ohio-not exactly a motocross mecca-Vines was a mainstay on the Freestyle circuit in the early part of this century. The now thirty-two-year-old Vines is approaching a new chapter in his life and the sport. Although not competing as actively as he once did, Vines is still very busy within the industry. Recently he has been involved in numerous Freestyle Demos, Supermoto Races, teaching motocross schools and working on his latest venture, TV Land. TV Land is the name of Vines’ motocross compound in Pierpont, Ohio. Trevor has been off the mainstream moto radar for awhile, so when I recently had a chance to sit down with Trevor and shoot the bull with him, I jumped at the opportunity.
You are known as “Trevor from Wherever.” Where is “Wherever” now?
Recently I’ve been either on the road in my travel trailer with my fiancà‡, going to Clear Channel Jump Shows (mostly up and down the East Coast) or spending time in Ohio, where I have a 52-acre motocross facility that will open this summer to the public.
It has been some time since we have heard anything from Trevor Vines. What have you been up to recently?
My riding area in Ohio has taken much of my time. I bought the land about three years ago with thoughts of someday developing it into a track. Then almost a year later I broke my femur and shoulder, and that sort of sidetracked my freestyle career, so I shifted gears and focused much of my time to building TV Land. Since I’ve healed up, I’ve also been in many freestyle demos, and have enjoyed doing some local racing. I was invited on the IFMA Ramp Tour, and since January, we’ve had 17 events.
Freestyle Motocross has changed quite a bit since you first started competing some time ago. What is your take on what FMX has become today?
They have definitely taken some of the course technicality out of the contests, but the tricks have elevated quickly to things we never imagined. The sport definitely grew rapidly into what now makes a few people generous salaries. Unfortunately, left behind in the jet wash are many guys who hardly make enough to get from show to show. The promoters just keep dangling that carrot and kids keep stepping up for less and less. It’s actually kind of sad how the wage for a backflip in a show nowadays won’t even cover the ambulance ride if something bad were to happen. Guys now are doing way more than anyone ever did five years ago, but the pay has gone down in many situations. I don’t know too many other pro sports where the danger factor is raised so much yet the pay gets lowered. It’s still fun to do, and definitely awesome to watch, but it used to not be so political. I think that made it seem more fun.
Rumor has it that you did some backflips in a foam pit last summer. Any plans for flipping in the dirt?
Maybe; I don’t really have any reason to at this point, but I still kind of have that urge to do it. Doing it into a foam pit was fun because I got to feel how it happens, but taking it to dirt has some big consequences. So for now I have to say…I don’t know, maybe.
The Pit-bike racing scene is really taking off, and you seem to be right in the mix. Do you think that it is just a fad or here to stay?
Pit bikes have been around for a long time, so I don’t see it being just a fad. I think it may have grown recently because of the newer bikes actually having enough power to be a lot of fun and also being able to handle the abuse so well. There are also sso many aftermarket companies making parts for pit bikes now, giving people variety in products definitely is helping pit bikes grow in popularity.
Tell us more about TV Land.
It is 52 acres of moto fun. You can check trevorvines.com for some pictures. I can’t wait for summer-for the past couple of years, all we did here was move dirt and work on the property. Last fall I pretty much got my tracks all completed, then the snow came and it’s just been sitting here waiting for some good weather. We have two moto tracks, a pit bike track and a freestyle park. There’s something here for any level rider, and the dirt here in Ohio is awesome when it’s not covered with two feet of snow.
What does the future hold for Trevor Vines?
For summer I hope to spend a lot of time here in Ohio. However, I do have a few FMX shows scheduled. In September I’m getting married to my beautiful fiancà‡ Apryl. After that I don’t know; I plan to keep riding a lot; just maybe not so many demos or contests. I really enjoy spending time here on my land, and being with my family is the key to my happiness. With an always-evolving life, it’s hard to say where I may end up in a few years’ time.