Kacy Martinez started riding dirt bikes a bit older than a lot of professional riders, albeit, not by much. While some get bit by the riding bug at age 4 or 5, Martinez started riding at 8 and things progressed quickly from there.
After dismantling the competition in local sanctioned racing, Martinez set her sights higher moving on to the national stage where now seven years into her professional racing career, the hardware is stacking up.
She's a three-time World Off-Road Championship series Champion, three-time National Hare Scramble Champion, she's got X Games medals, an Athlete of the Year honor and most recently she won the 2014 Grand National Cross Country series in rather dominating fashion - four rounds early!
A MotoSport sponsored rider for 2015, Martinez has already started the defense of her GNCC title with two wins the most recent coming at the very muddy Aonia Pass Motocross Park in Georgia. It wasn't so easy this time out as she got stuck in a mud hole on the first lap, so she worked her way from last place and grabbed the lead with less than a mile to go.
MotoSport caught up with this talented young lady during the two-week break between the second and third rounds of the GNCC series.
Years riding pro: Seven
What age did you start riding and on what: I started riding when I was 8 on a PW 80
What do you ride now? I ride a KTM 250XC-F
Hometown: Sunol, California
- 2009-11 - WORCS Champion
- 2007-09 - National Hare Scramble Champion
- 2009 AMA Women's Athlete of the Year
- 2011 X Games Bronze Medalist in Women's Endurocross
- 2014 X Games Gold Medalist in Women's Endurcross
- 2014 GNCC Champion
Other sports participated in: Dance, Soccer, Softball
Other hobbies/interests: Mountain Biking, Jet Skiing
1. Tell us how you got into riding and when it became serious for you.
It all started as a family sport going on camping and riding trips at our local riding parks. I really enjoyed riding with my family and friends. My dad signed me up for my first Hare Scramble and not too long afterwards we were following the whole District 36 Hare Scramble series. Once I went through the ranks racing at my local series, we started moving on to national level races and that's when it started to become serious.
2. You went the off-road route rather than Supercross/Motocross, why?
From growing up and riding off-road with my family and friends, it's just what I loved to do.
3. You won the 2014 GNCC WXC class rather handily, what went right?
I signed with Factory KTM for 2014 and my bike setup was great, I was feeling very confident with my racing on the bike as well with off the bike. I put in a lot of time in the gym and working out so I can be my best when I get to the race.
4. How did you prepare for and how are you approaching the 2015 season?
I did pretty much the same as last year as far as training goes, but we did a lot of bike testing before the first round and we actually changed a lot of my bike set up and got it working pretty good. I am coming in to the 2015 season wanting to defend my number one plate so I'll be working extra hard.
5. You've competed in the X Games and got a Gold medal, you've won a GNCC Championship and three Women's World Off-Road Championships, what series was most challenging and what win was most gratifying?
I couldn't really choose the most challenging series because they all have their own challenges for me. When I first came into the WORCS series, (a high speed Motocross style race) I didn't ride much Motocross and so I didn't know how fast pace the races where. I started riding more and more Motocross and it took a while to become comfortable racing at such high speeds.
The GNCC series was very tough coming into also with learning the east coast terrain of roots, slippery quad trails and super deep mud holes. I've been racing Endurocross for a while now and I feel like I am very good at it but it's so hard to put together a clean race, it is very unpredictable.
My X Games Endurocross win in 2014 was most gratifying for me because I worked really hard at it and I felt it was long overdue.
6. You've started this year's defense of your GNCC title with two wins, if you get back-to-back Championships what's next for you?
I guess go for a third!
7. Women competing in Supercross has taken on some life thanks to Vicki Golden and now your success could help open the doors even wider for girls in off-road riding, have you seen more interest with women in off-roading or dirt bike riding in general?
I definitely notice the off-road women's line growing every year and I think the girls are also getting faster.
8. It's one thing to love riding, it's another to tackle the grueling training and put in the time to compete at the professional level, what's it taken for you to compete at such a high level?
I put in the work week in and week out. It consists of training off the bike, even when I am tired and don't feel like doing much, and the same with riding during the week.
9. What's your training routine consist of?
I train with my boyfriend and we do a lot of weight lifting for strength and our cardio usually consists of spin class twice a week. We will also throw in either a swim or a run for the week to mix it up then we will go riding in the afternoons.
10. The GNCC season takes three months off with four rounds remaining, what's your process to staying focused, in shape, and ready to battle for the title in September?
I usually will take the first month off from riding. I will get back into to it pretty quick though to make sure I feel just as ready as I did for the first round of the year to tackle the last four rounds.
Written By: AndrewT