Brandon “B-Ray” Ray
Hometown: Fremont, California
Classes Raced: Schoolboy 1, Supermini, 125 Open
Sponsors: My dad, our heavenly Father, EVS, DVS, Von Zipper, ASV, NoToil, Canvas, FMF, Mika Metals, CW 2 stroke, 707 Racing Suspension, Fastline Cycles, Les Schwab Tires, Dwayne Turner at Midvalley Protofab, Dr. Cats Canine Care, Sonul Super Sop, Dave Kelly Trucking, Posey Racing Engines, Bell Helmets, Gaerne, my friends, and all my family.
Brandon Ray is a regular at the TWMX Race Series and he is a common sight at the front of the pack, running away with plenty of style. What makes B-Ray’s regular showings at our events all the more impressive is that he makes the trek from Northern California each and every round.
How long have you been racing and what led you to choose motocross?
I started riding when I was three, started racing when I was five. My dad taught me how to ride a little PW 50 when I was three, he taught me to ride around in circles in our front yard. He had a tie down to my exhaust pipe so if I whiskey throttled, I wouldn’t crash. Then I got onto a KTM junior 50, and one day I was walking across the line and I told my dad that I wanted to race. He said hearing me say that was like music to his ears. Ever since then I’ve just been racing and I love it. I want to try to do it for as long as I can.
Do you participate in any other sports or have any hobbies?
I’m involved in a lot of active sports, like basketball, baseball, football. One of my hobbies is playing with RC cars. One day my dad came up to me and asked me if I wanted to stick to baseball and stop racing because I was a good ball player. He said to think of the good money in it and I how could get a scholarship. As he was telling me that I was looking away and when he was done, I looked him in the eye and said I’m a racer and I play baseball for fun, end of question.
How seriously do you take your racing? Is it just for fun or do you have bigger aspirations?
I take my racing really seriously, you know I have to go to school first, so racing has to come second. It’s something I love to do and I want to be pro, one day I want to be the best.
Who is the biggest influence in your racing?
I would have to say, my dad, he’s there every time I need him, he’s there every weekend, taking me to the track even though his health isn’t good at all. Some days he would be sick, tired, or hurting, but he would still get up at 3 o’clock to drive me hours away just to race. He’s wearing worn out clothes so he can buy me new gear and parts for my bike.
What are your favorite types of tracks and track obstacles?
My favorite type of tracks are sand tracks, I like sand berms, sand whoops, I also like technical terrain more than smooth terrain.
What is your favorite thing about being a motocross racer?
Going out and traveling every weekend and going to places a lot of your friends don’t get to go. Being out there on the weekends, hanging out with people makes the enjoyment of my bike everything to me.
What would you rather do, holeshot a race and run away or come from behind to win?
I would have to go with a holeshot and pull away because it is way easier and a lot of stuff can happen behind you when you’re at the front of the pack. I mostly come from behind all the time, but luckily I’m able to make the moves on people who make mistakes and I’m able to come up on them at the end of the race because of my endurance.
You’re racing minis and big bikes at the same time; what is the trickiest thing about moving up to a 125?
Right now I’m really not trying to stay on the minis, I’m mostly moving to the big bikes for good. I’m only 14 and I want to stay on the 125 until I get a championship. The transition from the minis to the big bikes is so hard because they’re two different bikes, it’s easier to go from the small bike to the big bike, but when I got from the big bike to the small bike, I feel weird and too big on it, but I’m able to throw it around more, throwing it into the corners harder. I’m mostly trying to stay on big bikes.
Tell me about your sponsor, does he buy your bikes?
Paul came into my program about 18 months ago when I was trying to get donations to help me get to Loretta’s and this random guy came up and gave me $500. My dad and I looked at each other wondering if it was real and before I went off to Loretta’s I was racing a local series, racing the supermini class on a bone stock 85 and first place ran away from me. Paul came up to us after the race and said he hated to see me get beat due to the other bike being faster and hated seeing me get beat by money. So, Paul and I, we built a Yamaha supermini from the ground up and ever since then he got me a like brand new YZ 85 supermini. He’s been helping us out with our gas fees, our entry fees, and recently this year he went out and bought me a 2017 KTM 125 and a 2016 KTM 125, those things are just so fast and I feel so comfortable in them. I can’t thank him enough, this is the first good competitive bike I’ve had. It’s fast, the suspension is good thanks to 707 suspension and I want to be on the bike for good.