Question 1: Where are you from and how did you get into riding?
I'm from a Old crusty town called Milford, located on the outskirts of Cincinnati, Ohio. I was about 12 years old when I got my first BMX bike. It was a GT Mach 3 and it was just to cruise the neighborhood. At the time I was into skateboarding. Nothing serious. Just out and about, "not" landing kick flips, and trying to stick that 3 set down the road. You could say I was already a little bit of an adrenaline junkie. It wasn't long until I was launching myself off an X'factor ramp. There was just something about pedaling as fast as I can to see how many sidewalk blocks I could clear. I never forget the days of riding the curbs with my neighborhood homies, or sliding my wheels thru puddles when it was raining, and even building dirt jumps in the woods of my best friends house. I have always been addicted to being on two wheels and the life style it brings, ever since I was a kid.
As long as I've heard about Mike V from Cincinnati you've always had the "Park Rat" reputation, what made you switch to street riding?
To me, park and street are two completely different styles of riding. I grew up blessed with a skate park 5 minutes from my house, but I also had friends that were years older than me take me to ride street in Cinci. Since they were older then me, those dudes eventually stopped riding and I found myself riding park with a good group of park style shredders. I guess you could say I was more interested in learning tricks at the time. But now, I love to change the scenery as much as possible. Having the opportunity to ride thru ally ways of buildings to find that new setup you've always dreamed about. There is just nothing like it. I still get that same rush and feeling of accomplishment sending myself down a 10 stair rail as if I was trying to 360 a box. I'm just more of an explorer now.
Have you been on many trips? What was your favorite one with details?
I have been on a lot of trips in my life, but none were over a 10 hour travel period. I've been to Woodward, Pittsburgh, every major city in Ohio, Detroit, Indianapolis, Louisville, Lexington, and even one to the Jomo Pro contest with some Ohio Dream locals, but they were all just 2 to 3 days. My favorite by far was the DailyGrind trip to Pittsburg. It was my first trip with DG and even though it was a cold and rainy, I still had a good time. Being able to witness Zack rolling a concrete trash can down a hill is priceless, and watching Conway the savage switch hanger a rail with the ground soaked was insane! That whole trip was a lot of fun.
Tell us about your job, and how you got into that.
I am a machinist and I work for a company called Die Craft. I run a CNC lathe, so basically I am like a glorified potter. I spin a hunk of metal, and shave it into a mechanical part. What's cool about my job though is that I work with BMX riders, so most of my day consists of talking about BMX. I got into machining by being around it. At the time I worked general labor at a machine shop called Magna Machine. Cleaning machines and removing metal chips. Then one random day in the summer the CEO called me into the office. Thinking I was in trouble he ended up offered me 18 months of training. Couldn't turn down the opportunity.