Chris Doyle has been in BMX long enough to see “almost” everything there is to see, and is also very humble with all his travels and what he’s seen throughout his years. We got ahold of him on a few things about traveling for a good part of his life within BMX, the ups and downs and crazy shit along the way. All photos by: Murphy Moschetta
Being one of the older guys on Demolition, how is it going on trips and hanging with some of the newer riders and their behaviors?
Just about anybody will tell you, being a professional isn’t JUST being pro on the bike and having all the right moves, but it’s about personality as well. I guess some of the credit goes to Demolition on this one. You guys have done a good job at selecting guys for the team that are easy to travel with AND fun to ride with. Almost all of the guys on Demolition are mature beyond their years and are sound guys to travel with. Therefore, I’ve never felt like the “old guy” on trips. Plus, traveling with guys who are sometimes 10-15 years younger than me gives me new perspectives and different outlooks on things. Also, most of the young guys grew up on a lot of the videos that I was in and they like (or pretend to like) the stories from those days before the “internet takeover” – as a guy who enjoys telling stories, that’s fun for me. In a sense, traveling with the young guns keeps you young… with the exception of Hucker; that dudes is a 13 year old trapped in a 40 year old’s body. Love you, Hucker!
Summers are a busy season for you with contests, jams, trips and etc. Do you still get excited to hit the road and what part of traveling do you not like?
Yes! I think when I DON’T get excited to take a riding trip is the day that I’ll have to hang it up. Someday, when all is said and done, I think that the travel aspect of riding will be the thing that I loved the most. I’ve been to so many places and have met so many people – those are the things that stick with me the most.
” I think when I DON’T get excited to take a riding trip is the day that I’ll have to hang it up.”
The US open just happened a few weeks back and you were out for the bowl contest. Everyone that goes out there has stories from Huntington Beach one way or another, you see or do anything interesting?
Nothing crazy. It seems like the dudes who have the wild stories, are usually the ones who go out looking for wild times. Growing up on the east coast like I did, I only pictured California one way; sun, sand, babes, boardwalks, etc… When I turned pro at the age of 16, my first ever BMX trip was to Huntington Beach. We unloaded our stuff at Neal Wood’s place, built our bikes, and then rode down to Main Street Huntington Beach to get a bite to eat. I remember turning the corner and coming down Main Street and I was like, “Holy SHIT! California is EXACTLY what I pictured it to be!” Huntington truly is the post card of California. Then I was magically wisked away to… Riverside.
You just got back from Rooftop’s Secret Pool Party jam, what was that like and your experience there? Not a lot of people have heard too much about it still.
So crazy, Man! Legends from pretty much every generation. Funny to be sitting on the deck and looking left and seeing Dave Freimuth and Dave Osato, then looking right and seeing Tyler Fernengel and Dennis Enarsson. Truly a jam for the ages. My favorite part was when I asked Osato the last time he rode was and he told me it had been about 6 months. He then proceeded to drop in and do a perfect 540 nosepick on the jersey barrier… first try, no sketch, no hesitation.
Don’t want to focus too much on your age but can you talk about the big differences you’re going through now vs then? We definitely consider you an older rider that still “sends it”, which is always awesome to see but injuries when you get older…
Man, I only know how to ride one way – I like things a little fast and a little loose. I feel like I was consistently hurt all throughout my 20’s, I wasn’t good at calculating risk back then. As a guy who is now growing older within the sport, I’ve gotten a lot better at the whole risk/reward ratio, I pick my battles better now, ya know? As far as the biggest differences go between when I first turned pro and now? That’s a very broad topic, so much has changed. Career wise, there was a ton of opportunities in BMX when I turned pro – It’s like they were handing out contracts to anybody who could get top 20 in any comp and get a pic in a magazine. I don’t think I ever would have “made it” as a pro BMXer had I not come into BMX at the time that I did. Nowadays, the cream rises to the top. It seems if you want to make a living being a pro bike rider, you better be winning every comp and putting out the hottest edits every 2 weeks. There’s not much room for the middle-class pro anymore. I’ve been incredibly lucky, so I won’t dive much further into that topic. I just wish more of my friends were about to stick around in the sport a little longer. Mid-30’s BMX is actually a lot more fun than I imagined it would be.