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‘This is real’: Hawaii’s only pro motocross racer hopes his story inspires others

Published: Jul. 1, 2021 at 5:00 PM HST|Updated: Jul. 1, 2021 at 5:13 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Professional motocross racing is fast, furious and unforgiving. Make a mistake and the rest of the field leaves you in the dust.

Kauai’s Brian Medeiros experiences the ups and downs from the driver’s seat.

“It’s physically demanding and mentally demanding as well. If you make a mistake you have to be able to forget about it and move on,” he said.

Medeiros, 26, lives in California ― the mecca of motorcycle racing. He is Hawaii’s only professional motocross racer.

“My dad raced quads when he was back in the day. I saw photos and videos of him doing it and I was hooked,” he said.

Medeiros raced his first motocross bike when he was just 5 years old. When other kids followed pro football, basketball or baseball, he followed motorcycle racing.

“I used to always get busted in school for looking up race results and stuff like that on the computers in class,” he said.

He grew up idolizing former national champ and hall of famer John DeSoto, “the Flyin’ Hawaiian.”

“He is a legend,” Medeiros said.

In 2013, with his parents’ blessing and $500 in his pocket, he bought a one-way ticket to the West Coast, bunked at a friend’s house, and raced qualifying events.

He supported himself by working on construction jobs. It took him four hard years to break through.

“In 2017, I was able to get all the points that I needed to get my pro license, and in July of 2017 I raced my first pro national,” he said.

Medeiros is now a sponsored rider on the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross tour, where he pits his skills against the best in the world.

“Just sitting there on the starting line, the National Anthem’s playing, you look up and there’s 50,000 people along the fence. It’s like, ‘Whoa! This is real,’” he said.

When he isn’t racing he tests racing bikes, and he owns a dirt bike business that customizes motorcycles for other riders. He hopes his story inspires Hawaii youth to chase their dreams.

“I want to get the next generation up. Let’s see if I can help a kid from Hawaii get further than I have,” he said.

Medeiros thanks his family, his girlfriend and his sponsors for believing in him. His next pro race is the Washougal National on July 24 in Washington state.

He’s still chasing that elusive first win, but living his dream already feels like a victory.

“I look back at the life lessons I have learned. I wouldn’t change it for the world,” he said.

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