Monday, November 16, 2015

Him Too...Matt Babbitt.

Influence and inspiration are key to any athlete. Influenced by the people around you, yet inspired by those you look up to and model yourself after. One offers courage and support in the toughest of times, while the other drives you to be better every time you climb on your motorcycle.

Cayuga, New York's Matt Babbitt is a guy who likes being outdoors. Boating, hunting, fishing and two wheels are his life. He loves the sport of motocross and threw a leg over a bike for the first time at just 3 years old. He began racing at 8 years old. His dad got him involved in the sport and like many of today's racers, he grew up idolizing the finesse of Jeremy McGrath and determination of Ricky Carmichael. Wanting to follow in their footsteps as a professional motocross racer. Now 23 years old, Matt has become a consistent rider who is in his 7th professional season.

Matt gets in a couple laps at RedBud. Photo: Diffysmooth
Privateers like Matt must squeeze training, bike maintenance, travel and even finding the time to ride during the week between races. "It's not always easy to juggle everything at once." He has taken advantage of time he gets riding his own track at home, spending some time at South Carolina's South of the Border and WW Ranch in Florida. The laps that Matt has put in make him a guy that is strong for the entire 30 plus 2 of a Lucas Oil Pro Motocross National.

This season Matt had his share of ups and downs along the way to what most would consider a good year for a privateer. He would bruise his tailbone in practice at RedBud, which would cause him to sit out the event along with the following week at Spring Creek. Matt would come back strong and qualify for the remaining 4 rounds, making 7 of the 12 events on the season.

Matt would earn his first pro points in 2014 at Budds Creek. He would again get himself a point in 2015. His 26-20 scores at Ironman were good enough for 23rd overall, which matched his season best from High Point. At the seasons end, Matt would be 43rd overall in a class that saw a total of 98 qualifiers.

Matt has found himself under the tent of the Western Powersports/FLY/Privateer Journey along with sponsors like DTA Racing, TCD, Just1 Helmets, Dunlop, Works Connection, FMF, ICW, Hinson and Joker Dezigns. He is a rider who is grateful for the support from not only those sponsors, but his dad, girlfriend, family and friends who have really stood behind him as he chases his dream.

Follow Matt on Instagram @BABBZ987

Preparing to head out. Photo; Jim Edgar
We think of guys like James Stewart or Chad Reed as we think of professional motocross racers, but we forget that as a little kid roams the pits on a Saturday afternoon, riders like Matt Babbitt are in those same pits for the same reason. He may be a privateer, but he too is a professional. Lining up for just one pro national in a lifetime is an amazing feat, but 7 in a season. Earning a point in the toughest sport in the world. Matt Babbitt we #cheerprivateer for you.

-Kyle Pesci

1 comment:

  1. Mat is a friend of my brother in law. Seen him ride and talk to him personally. Not only is he talented he is a nice easy going guy who is funny but has his head on straight. Love your updates on facebook Matt.