Jesse Showtime Kirchmeyer
The Early Years
Jesse is a 20 year old professional motocross/snocross/snowbike racer from Western New York. He was born in Warsaw, NY on May 29, 1999 to Jeffrey & Nicole Kirchmeyer. At the young age of 11 days old his parents brought him home to Arcade, NY (Jesse is the 4th generation to grow up in his house) and his father laid him face down in the grass so he could smell the dirt.
If Jesse is not on the track, he is working for his parents site-work construction company or training hard at the gym. His passion and determination to be a champion started at a young age when he won his first motorcycle race on a 50cc. The majority of his childhood was spent at the track. He was always the first one out and the last one back. As he grew older, so did his love of racing. One day he said, "I'm going to be a champion." His friends and family would reinforce to him that if racing didn't work out he should have a back-up plan.
His response would always be "a champion doesn't think like that."
At the age of 9 Jesse attempted to jump his lawn mower tractor and instead, flipped it onto himself. He never told anyone what happened until his parents saw a Wheelhorse lawn mower logo stamped into his chest. Everything he drove as a kid was always wide open. His need for speed certainly worried the neighborhood parents. He had a $50 field car that he painted #42 onto the sides of and the neighborhood kid's father would yell across the field to his son not to get in the car with that boy (Jesse).
Since 2006 the Kirchmeyer family has been racing or training every weekend. Monday through Friday consists of working for the family business, while nights and weekends are reserved for bike work, training, and racing.
Addiction comes in many forms and racing became our drug of choice.
Jesse backed away from snocross to pursue his career in motocross where he was very successful. He earned his pro license and spent most of his winters training down south to prepare for the summers up north, but everything changed in 2017...
The Snocross Journey
Jesse started his snocross career on a 120cc at the age of 4 with the East Coast Circuit. Jesse's very first race began when the flag dropped and ended when the red flag was raised because he missed the first turn. Jesse, with a face full of snow and a sled that had overturned, was asked what happened (did the throttle stick?) and his response was "No! Dad told me to hold it wide open!"
Most 4 year olds, after a traumatizing experience at the track, would not get back on a sled at all, but Jesse wanted to get back to the track as soon as his sled was fixed. He made some adjustments and led the race from flag to flag winning the first race he was entered in.
Fast forward to the spring of 2017, Jesse returned home from work one day and there was a snocross race close to home. Reluctantly, Jeff loaded up the trailer and they headed to Peak n' Peak Resort, NY. Jesse won every heat and race he was entered in on a 17 year old Arctic Cat (a dinosaur in the race world). The owner of Team Southside Polaris, Bruce Gaspardi, approached Jesse and offered him a spot on their team racing new Polaris sleds the next year. Not shortly after that Jesse found the snowbike and pursued that dream.
The 2018-2019 season was filled with ups and downs, mechanical failures and new testing and development on the team's end. The season started on a 450SXF KTM (not a new bike) and a brand new Yeti SnowMX kit (thanks for Bruce Gaspardi).
Jesse converted a small school bus salvaged from a junk yard for $1,500.00 into his main form of transportation for race season and that's what brought him to his first ISOC National race in Duluth, MN. He took a podium on the first day and the rest is history!
Through some friends he found out that there was an X Games Qualifier coming up and he was going to compete for his chance to race in the January 2019 Aspen X Games. Jesse maintained a 14 second lead in the first heat for the win. Unfortunately, the bike suffered a suspension break which began a frantic rush to swap the suspension to make the final race to guarantee a spot at X Games. Jesse came out with a 4th place win in the final heat which meant he was headed to Aspen, CO in January.
There are now 4 weeks to prepare Jesse and a bike for racing at 9500' elevation. Jesse needs to be practicing and acclimating himself to the conditions and elevation physically and mentally while Jeff builds a new engine to produce enough horsepower at that elevation. Two weeks before X Games, Jesse made his way to Aspen to practice. One week before X Games Jeff and Nicole head to Aspen with a new motor in their suitcase to do some testing before the event.
Race day finally approaches, but Jesse has to run another heat race to qualify for the main event. After qualifying he had 45 minutues to make adjustments and prepare mentally for the final. The time has come, he is at the gate for the last time, and it's for all the marbles, now. There were fans lining the fence, TV and magazine personnel, cameras and microphones everywhere. Although it was difficult, maintaining his focus was top priority. Jesse knows a good holeshot will give him an advantage. The gate drops, a cloud of snow dust fills the air, and visibility of the riders is non existent, but once the air clears Jesse was leading the way around the first corner. Jesse led all, but 3 laps of the 14 laps total to take home a silver medal. A silver medal at X Games in his rookie season is a HUGE accomplishment.
As the Kirchmeyer's always say, "Adapt and Overcome"
After a long season of hard work, determination, mechanical failures, and other hurdles, Jesse received a silver medal at the 2019 Aspen X Games. Jesse competed in the FXR sponsored Sled v. Snowbike Dominator event in February of 2019 and became the World Champion. He also earned the 2018-2019 Season ISOC National Snowbike Champion title with his final 1st place podium finish at the ISOC National in Lake Geneva, WI.
Racing takes dollars and it takes sense. It is an incredible high to be a pioneer in the snowbike racing industry and to be #1, but with that comes responsibility to maintain that status and drive forward. The team all goes to sleep at night with different dreams, but the same goal:
Jesse- how to ride harder, smarter and faster
Dad- how to build a faster, more agile engine
Mom- how to continue to be the glue that keeps this team together
Please, join us in our journey though the 2019-2020 season through facebook, Instagram, snocross.com, CBS, ESPN, and at the races! We look forward to seeing you and hearing from you. The love and support from family, friends, fans, and sponsors is what keeps us going.