Motocross is a demanding sport, and Bobby Fitch knows that. He started riding when he was 3 years old and began racing by age 4. Ever since, it’s played an influential part in his life. It’s all he wanted to do, even going as far as to move in with his grandparents when he was 13 for the moral support he needed and graduating from Columbine High School a year early in 1998. As a husband, father and entrepreneur, Fitch transfers all of his knowledge into his business adventures. Sports editor Michael Hicks spoke with Fitch prior to him racing this past weekend at the Denver Coliseum as part of the three-day, season-ending AMS Oil ArenaCross series.
1. You started riding at such a young age. How did you do that and continue through school, even graduating a year early?
“By just doing my work. A lot of kids drop out of school or they get home-schooled. If you’re dedicated and do all your stuff, you can still go to school and get all your work done and even do extra to get out early. That’s the case with racing for us. It’s 100 percent dedication. You have to train every day, and you travel a lot.”
2. What was it like turning professional at age 13?
“It was pretty difficult. Being so much younger, so much smaller it was kind of a conflict. Some thought I was too small to ride a bigger bike. I proved everybody wrong. There was nothing else they could do but to move me up in that class, or other people would complain.”
3. Injuries come with the territory — broken wrists, broken collarbone, broken ankles, torn ACL and MCL, and broken ribs. Fitch even survived being clotheslined by a barbed wire, which was tied between two trees on his practice track, nearly decapitating him. Is there one injury that stands out among the others?
“All of them. They’re all serious injuries. Anything you do where you break a bone, have to have surgery is all pretty serious. But determination is in our blood no matter what the injury.”
5. Your wife, Alyssa, is also a professional racer. Are any of your children involved in motocross racing?
“No. My daughter is in gymnastics. My 9-year-old is into BMX racing. My youngest just got his first bike — a PW 50. He’ll probably be faster than all of us.”
5. Fitch spent part of his day March 14 at the Shiloh House, a nonprofit organization that provides treatment for youths who’ve experienced issues with abuse, neglect and trauma. How often do you give back to the community?
“All the time. I try to do as much as I can. Coming from my background and having to leave my parents to go live with my grandparents, I didn’t have my parents to stand behind me and support me the whole time. My grandparents did an awesome job. They instilled in me to have total respect for everything, to don’t take anything for granted. Coming from having nothing, my family didn’t have money, didn’t have anything. I came through it and built a business, I’m training people. I made something for myself and for my family.”
School: 1998 graduate of Columbine High School
Family: Wife, Alyssa; children, Hallie, 11; Derrick 9, McKayden 2½
Career: AMA Professional Motocross racer; owns Absolute Race Technology, which does suspension and motor work; operates an amateur national team; runs a training school: Fast as Fitch Motocross School.
Contact Michael Hicks at email@example.com or 303-933-2233, ext. 15.