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Between the Motos: Ryan Capes

You hear a lot about “progression” in freestyle motocross, but nowhere else is that word more objective than in the relatively new spinoff of freestyle motocross – distance jumping. In distance jumping, if you can’t go 300 feet, you may as well not even show up. Well, Ryan Capes was the first rider to do just that.

Racer X: Ryan, usually when we get people calling in to tell us they spotted a mistake in the magazine, it’s usually not someone of your caliber, so we owe you a huge apology. When we did the story on Robbie Maddison’s Red Bull Experiment, we left out the 310’ that you jumped last year.
Ryan Capes: Yeah, I appreciate that. It’s funny, when I talked to my publicist about it, he was going to call, but I said, “No, I talked to Davey a couple times, so let me give him a call.”

Ryan Capes

With 322 feet to your 310 feet, he got the record by 12 feet.
Yeah, it’s one of those things where we need competition like this. I’ve been waiting a long time for somebody to break my record, and Maddison came along, stepped up and broke it. Records are meant to be broken, and it gives me a goal and another payday to break his record.

You’re right. Muhammad Ali needed Joe Frazier... Every kind of sport with individual accomplishments, you need somebody to come along and challenge it, or it can get boring.
Yeah, it kills it. If I was the only one who would keep breaking the record, nobody would be into it. But once you get a battle between a couple guys going for the record, it makes headlines. That’s what I’m looking forward to. I’m going to do a jump-off with Robbie Maddison and Seth Enslow on March 29th down in Melbourne, Australia, on the Crusty Night of Records. I’m going to show those guys up and jump as far as I possibly can.

Let’s go back to where you broke the record; where and when was that?
Actually, it was October of 2005 and it was up in Seattle at Pacific Raceway. It’s all over YouTube and all over the magazines everywhere. I went 310’ 4”—I was the first person to break the 300’ mark, and since then I’ve just been waiting for somebody to step it up and Maddo was the guy.

I thought that the way they presented the whole thing on New Year’s Eve was pretty cool with the live TV and everything. Maddo is a Red Bull guy and you’re a Monster guy. I know that the Red Bull/Monster thing is as competitive as any other rivalry, so what do you guys have up your sleeves?
You know, it’s awesome. It couldn’t be more fitting that Robbie Maddison is my major competitor, and he’s sponsored by Red Bull, which is Monster’s major competitor. So not only are we battling, but the energy drinks are battling, too. We have a bunch of things up our sleeves and I plan on going down to the Crusty Night of Records and smoking those guys down there and bringing the record home to the United States, and after that I’m going to jump over the Arkansas River in Wichita, Kansas. I’ll be about 75-feet above the water. It has never been done, to jump that magnitude of a river, and after that my plans are to jump 400-feet in September for a pretty big event that we got planned that will blow the doors off of anything and everything that has happened so far.

Wow, I look forward to that. Don’t you have something coming up this weekend, too?
Yeah, I do. I’m practicing for Huckfest at Toes MX Park up here in Washington. Seth Enslow and I will be jumping side-by-side, and working our way out to 320-plus feet as practice for the Night of Records. So, it should be good. The other day I went 322 feet, so I was seven inches away from Robbie Maddison’s record. I’m sure I’ll jump a lot farther; I plan on jumping near 350 feet.

If I open up the Guinness Book of World Records, would that be in there, or do you have to have the people there?
You have to have the people on hand to document it. I have a survey crew that’s going to come out there, but I know that I can go 400 feet tomorrow; it’s just one of those things...

Why? If you could go 325, why go 400, until you have to?
Safety is key, but the competition is there and we’re going to work our way up to that number. I talked to Maddison and it’s a friendly, good vibe. We’re going to work our way up to 400 feet, so it should be good.

What are you riding right now, Ryan?
I’m riding a Kawasaki KX450F – a 2008. It’s fully-modified by Mitch Payton and all the boys at Pro Circuit. It’s the fastest production 450 that they make, and it’s right up my alley for all I do. Having the best bike and the best people in the business behind you surely makes the records come a lot easier.

Anyone else you want to thank?
Monster Energy, One Industries, Kicker, BBR, Pro Circuit, and all of the people who help me out, huge thanks. I can’t thank you enough.

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