Longtime journeyman Kyle Chisholm has now been racing as a pro since 2004. And while he has had several factory rides; San Manual Yamaha, Jeff Ward Kawasaki Racing, JGR Yamaha and HEP Suzuki most notable, he has largely done everything as a privateer. Chisholm has proven that with hard work, determination, and sponsor loyalty, you can make a career out of racing – as a privateer. Now 34 years old, Kyle was given the opportunity to ride for arguably the best 250 team in the pits – Monster Energy/Star Racing/Yamaha. Given the go-ahead by his personal sponsors, Kyle realized that he cannot bypass this opportunity. We tracked down that always friendly Florida native after Indianapolis after his seventh-place finish. 



WITH SUCH A GREAT OPPORTUNITY, HOW COULD YOU NOT PASS IT UP? I did not want to. It is a great opportunity for me. I am still on a Yamaha, but it is a 250. I am still getting adjusted, as I had only a couple of days on the bike. But I have known Bobby Regan since I was on minibikes. He is in the car business, and my dad has a trucking business that hauls cars. I initially thought it was just a phone call from Bobby to talk to my dad about hauling cars, but Bobby was like, “Hey, all my guys are hurt. I need somebody.” I said, “yes I would love to do it.” Then I talked to all my personal sponsors.

Kyle finding out how fast the Star Yamaha is across the start straight in Indy.

THEY WERE ALL OKAY? They were awesome enough to allow me to take this opportunity. Beyond this opportunity, I will still be working with them. They were totally understanding; especially for me at this point in my career to have this opportunity. This was a really cool thing. So, big shouts to all my personal sponsors for being cool and allowing this. Like I said, at this point in my career, I don’t want to be burning bridges and making people mad. I love the sponsors I work with, but this is just a great opportunity. They were awesome to see it that way, as well.   

Kyle Chisholm 2022 Anaheim 2 Supercross Qualifying-8595With his newly acquainted deal, his old sponsors are allowing him to come back once or if he is finished with Star Yamaha.

YOU HAVE NOT HAD MUCH TIME ON THE BIKE AT ALL. HOW IS THE STAR YAMAHA? The bike is awesome. It has been some time since I have ridden the 250, but man it is crazy how fast it is, and how good it is. It is very light. And you know the nice thing about the Yamaha is the chassis and the frame. Everything is pretty much the same from 250 to 450. They still feel different because of the weight difference, but the cockpit, sitting in there, everything is pretty much the same from 250 to 450. I have been on the Yamaha 450 obviously, so that makes it easy. It is more just getting used to the power, it is amazingly fast for a 250. It is just different the way it makes that power.

I had only had two days on the bike. Detroit was my third day. It is just different, but it is amazing how fast it is. 

HOW WAS THE FIRST ROUND IN DETROIT? Honestly, it was harder than I expected. I don’t want to say a lot about it; only that I expected better results. But I had a few little issues getting used to the bike and the class. Overall, it was okay, but Indy was easier and went better.

Jett Lawrence Kyle Chisholm 2022 Indianpolis Supercross-064334 years of age versus 18 years of age.

HAVE YOU SET ANY KIND OF EXPECTATION OR GOAL FOR THE REMAINING 250 EAST COAST SERIES? I think I could do well. There are a lot of fast, younger guys too that are going for it. They are in a lot of different parts of their career than where I am, and man it is hard. This week is going to be tough, only having a couple of days on the bike.  It has been a whirlwind of a time since Daytona and then going to Tallahassee and riding. So many things are different, and so much to adjust to, on top of the bike.

When you are racing with Musquin, Sexton, or Anderson and those guys are coming up on you, you must know how they are going to race you. I have been racing a long time with a lot of these guys and some of the younger 250 kids, they don’t’ really know how they are going to race themselves.

Kyle’s Star Yamaha ride.

THE CLASS IS SO DIFFERENT THAN THE 450 CLASS. That is an adjustment. There is just so much to get used to, so no real expectations for me personally. I just want to get out there and do my best and see where it is. I know I will get better as we go with more time on it.

My first goal was just to get through this first one, do my best, get fast starts and try to stay out of the mess. 

The 250 East Coast class getting airborne.

YOU MAY BE ONE OF THE FEW GUYS THAT AS A PRIVATEER HAS TRULY MADE A LIVING BY RACING. I love racing. I am a better person in nature for racing, and I love what I do.  I love everything that it takes to be here with the work during the week, the training, and the competing. I am very thankful for what I get to do.

I have done it a long time and I have made a lot of connections. I know a lot of people in the industry. I look back and there are so many times in my career where I could have said “I don’t have a ride; I don’t have this. I should retire.”

You see a lot of other guys doing that, but it is not for me. I am not going to throw in the towel and find a new job. I am just the way I am and love what I do. No matter what, I am going to figure out a way to make it work. I think when you persevere and do that for so long you develop these other relationships naturally and build your career around that loyalty. I just have a don’t quit attitude and do whatever it takes and again, and a lot of it is just because I enjoy it. If I did not enjoy it, it would be much easier to just throw in the towel, and I would not be here today. You must find a way if you want it bad enough.

YOUR DAD NORMALLY WORKS WITH YOU AS A PRIVATEER; HOW IS IT HAVING THAT FAMILY SUPPORT? I could not do it without my dad. My parents helped me a ton, along with my wife. My dad tries to make it to all the races. He works on my practice bikes for me. I would not be able to be here without him for sure, and I am thankful. My family has helped me so much.

I am going to look back one day at all these times, hanging out with my dad. I am grateful that he is in a position with his business that he can be here as much as he is.

You gain a different perspective on things as you get older and do this for a long time.  

ONE LAST QUESTION; IS THERE ANY OPPORTUNITY FOR DOING OUTDOORS WITH THIS TEAM? I don’t know; I am just taking it as it is. Obviously, that would be awesome.  For now, it is just the rest of the East Coast 250 races. Talking with Bobby a little bit, they have maybe some interests in me doing some training, coaching, and testing stuff with the team possibly. This is something that I would maybe do sometime in the future too. For now, I am just enjoying the weekend and trying to have fun, do my best, and see what happens. Obviously, any opportunities like this in the future would be awesome and I will see what happens.


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