Factory Team Rider / Josh Smith
Name, hometown and racing classification:
Josh Smith, Springboro, Ohio, Vet Pro.
How and when did you find BMX?
When I was eight (1994), a kid on the bus told me about it. He described a mud race that was so bad they had to carry their bikes to the finish line. I couldn’t imagine anything cooler at that age, Ha-ha! My Dad was racing motocross, so he was into it. I raced until I was 10, then stepped away for a few years. Once my brother Jeremy was two, he was riding BMX with me and building jumps. I got back into racing once he turned five and we’ve been racing ever since.
You wear a few different hats for DK. You work in the building, handling logistics, order processing and other heavy lifting. How does this gig compare to your previous job as a school teacher?
It’s night and day. A bad day of bicycles beats a good day without, so it’s more enjoyable overall. I learned a lot as a teacher and met a ton of cool people, but in the end, the change was worth it. I haven’t looked back.
You are the DK race team manager too. How does this factor in to your day-to-day?
It’s a fun addition to the day. I typically go to the events that the team riders are going to anyway, so I’m already planning those events and getting the riders set up. Some days the TM role doesn’t factor in too much while other days it involves meetings and getting riders dialed in for a trip or on a new bike.
Do you feel a sense of job security having your brother Jeremy as a Pro rider for team DK? Or maybe it's the other way around for him?
Ha-ha, of course! He might think it’s the other way around, but being related to the 2020 Pro of the Year should have some perks. It’s awesome to be a part of DK Bicycles with Jeremy again, no doubt.
Obviously, you are a busy guy. With an awesome family and lots of responsibilities in your BMX/professional life, how do you maintain your first straight pull for the Vet Pro class?
I’m definitely busy. My family has always been so supportive of my racing. My Dad lives and breathes anything racing related and my Mom is an entrepreneur/businesswoman, so they’ve always been into the racing and the individuality of it. As a married man with three kids, I would be lying if I didn’t say I owe it to my wife, Chelsea. I run #968 on my number plate which is our anniversary (September 6, 2008). Because of our responsibilities, I really couldn’t do this without her support and sacrifice, so I felt it fitting that I carry that number with me around the track!
Dream BMX day/location/crew?
This is ever-changing. On one end I’d love to be back in PA racing the TRA event with Charley Tallent and Jesse Tschudy, but on the other end, hitting the local bike park and pump track with my sons, Brayden and Devin, is one of the most satisfying days I can find on a bicycle.
Any advice for someone interested in holding down a job in the BMX industry?
I spent a lot of time and energy chasing a career that I didn’t really want, but I thought it would allow me to do more of the thing I wanted to do (teaching gives you the summer off for racing BMX)!. I found out soon enough that wasn’t the ticket for me. I would say that no matter what career you go after, make sure it’s something that you can enjoy while you’re there and feel good about on your way home.