TWMX Race Series Racer Profile
Age: “A young 44”
Hometown: East Los Angeles, CA
Classes Raced: 40 Intermediate
Sponsors: TransWorld Motocross, Donn Maeda, Shock Therapy, O’Neal Racing, Bell, Eks Brand, ODI, most of my clients that I deal with at work.
For this interview – and in honor of National Donut Day – we thought we’d interview one of our own, Dominic Gaytan, who works on the sales staff of TransWorld Motocross Magazine. A regular competitor in the +40 Intermediate class at most TWMXRS events, Dommer seems to have developed a small social media following, thanks to his regular appearances on my father’s Instagram account. Without further ado, let’s meet the master of #THEPROGRAM.
We know you work at TransWorld Motocross, but can you tell me about your position there and what you do?
I’m an account executive and I’m responsible for handling accounts for advertising. For the magazine, for the race series, for the website, for our major events, for social media…everything!
You’ve become locally famous on my dad’s Instagram (@swapmoto), can you tell me about what #theprogram is?
The program for me is just living in your life, you know? Whatever you want to do to make you happy; that’s the program. And you know what, let me just say this too, your dad makes things worse! It’s all a set up! Like, I don’t eat donuts, your dad gets them and sets me up all the time. I don’t eat candy, but he plants this stuff! People love it, but he plants it. Now I go places and people yell at me, “I love the program!”
My dad wants to know how many people have requested to follow you on Instagram since you’ve come to fame.
A lot! I think I had over 460 requests, but I don’t let people in…I don’t know these people! But your dad says to let them in so they can see my life. He’s open to the world, he’s the Oprah of our sport. (Laughs)
Okay, how long have you been racing and what led you to choose motocross?
I’ve been racing since I was about 13 years old. My dad raced and my grandfather rode, so as a kid I always wanted to ride, but my dad used to get busted up so my mom and grandma they would never let me have a bike when I was a little kid. If you look out here, some of these kids are little: 5 or 6 years old, racing. So I played baseball, football, basketball, played everything, they did that to keep me off the dirtbikes. So I did not get to ride until I was 12, my mom told me if I got straight As she would get me a bike. From there I got Honda XR80R and that was my first bike. And that was it! After that, all I wanted to was ride dirtbikes, to be around the bikes, I’d beg my dad to take me to the dealership so I could just see the bikes.
Do you participate in any other sport or hobbies?
Well, I like to mountain bike with your dad. I like to road bike; I’m a huge road bike fan I follow the Tour De France and all that stuff. I surf, I’ve loved to surf since I was a kid. I used to play softball a lot with some friends, but it’s fallen apart cause everyone’s got lives and families and it’s hard to maintain. Right now its just bicycles and dirtbikes, just riding weekly.
How seriously do you take your racing?
I wish it was more for fun, but your dad pushes us. I’d never imagined in our 40s we would still be racing, but obviously because of the TransWorld Race Series it has definitely helped us to come out here and race. I’ve tried to talk him into going riding just for fun, but he wants to go out and race. And now he’s going home because he fell in the second corner and he is quitting on us today. He’s soft as baby shit today! (Laughs)
Who is the biggest influence in your racing?
My childhood hero is Ron Lechien. The Dogger still is my hero, actually. But, like I said your dad is the one pushing all of us, he’s always the one busting us to come out, “come on we’re racing” so if it wasn’t for him I wouldn’t even have been here today. I would’ve ridden somewhere fun like Perris, no offense to Milestone – I love Milestone, but it’s stressful, you know? You have to prepare the day before, last night I was getting stuff ready, and then I got up early to load up, but once you’re here its fun. I’ve been hanging out with everybody, its good times. Until football starts, that is. Then I won’t come race.
Gaytan’s childhood hero Ron Lechien offers some training advice…EDITOR.
What are your favorite types of tracks and track obstacles?
My favorite track is Perris, I love Perris, always loved it since I was younger. The dirt is magical and it’s always got fun jumps. I like Milestone, Comp Edge…I don’t like Glen Helen, I wish I would never have to ride there ever again, I’m not a fan of that place at all. That’s just cause it’s not the kind of riding I like, but I like jumps and more technical stuff, not the rough gnarly stuff. It’s not for me, I’m soft like that.
What is your favorite thing about being a motocross racer?
I don’t know, I’ve just done it for so long it’s just a part of what I am and who I am, and I see other people with what they do, whether it’s with their kids or not- I always think if I didn’t ride then what would I be doing? You know? I’d probably be a full-blown alcoholic or something. (Laughs)
Tell me about your bike and why you chose it and what have you done to make it work well for you?
I chose the 2018 Husqvarna FC450 because this is the bike your dad told me I could ride. It’s a test bike. Husqvarna was nice enough to let us have it so I could ride it for the year. I love it. Its got an electric start so I don’t have to kick it, that’s the biggest plus. Bill’s Pipes helps us, so I have a magical Bill’s Pipes system on there. That’s about it, pretty stock. Shock Therapy suspension, bar set up for me, but other than that it’s good! Most of the bikes now all of them are good.