What is Our BMX? In short, we are the Ride BMX staff out on our own. We’re building from the ground up and our goal is pretty simple: We want to continue what we’ve done for the last 16 years…to create great content, feature amazing riders, and contribute, push, and show why we love BMX. We’ll be making videos, shooting photos, we’ll be covering events, and everything else in between. And yes, we’ll still be holding NORA Cup. As far as I’m concerned, it’s the status quo for us…we’re just building our own brand with the same dedication, quality, and passion that we did with Ride. With that said, thanks for the support… —Ryan Fudger, Jeff Zielinski, and Adam Watkins
I’m not sure if this story is out there outside of the Unclicked/Enarson podcast, so I might as well just tell everything and then give an update. On January 31st, we (myself, Jeff Zielinski, and Adam Watkins) were called into an office along with the Transworld Motocross staff and told that they were putting our titles on “pause” and letting us go. This was a surprise to us for multiple reasons, but let me back up… Our media group, The Enthusiast Network, had been for sale by the parent company for upward of six months. That in itself isn’t scary, as in my 16 years with Ride, the company had been bought/sold three other times and usually it had very little effect on our day-to-day happenings. But these days, media is a hard battle and six months of not selling the company meant that some heavy stuff would be going down. For a time period, I was pretty shook; mostly assuming that our budget would be slashed and we’d have to let some contributors go… But, I didn’t believe Ride would be no more. The main reason being that Ride, as a brand, wasn’t doing horrible. We were not profitable this year, but we weren’t far off and we were trending the right way. Further, within the building there were other brands who were, quite literally, shitting the bed and short hundreds of thousands of dollars. We were not.
But really, my perspective is narrow and when large companies make major acquisitions, a relatively small brand like Ride may simply be more hassle than it’s worth to them. So yeah, we got fired. But, in that meeting, we were told there was “a path” for us to be able to purchase Ride from the new owners. We entered into talks and made an offer and were told it was too low. We got some information about what level we needed to be at and put in a new offer. Then, a certain nationwide news scandal (I won’t go into detail here because it’s not really relevant anymore) dropped involving the new parent company and all conversation ended. After being ghosted for a week, we were finally told to reach out in a month. After that month passed, we were told to reach out in a couple weeks. After that couple weeks, we were told a couple more. Every conversation was short and without detail.
While we waited those two months, we created “Our BMX” because of the support from the BMX community. All the calls, texts, and comments really motivated us to do something. But, I’d be lying if I said we put a ton of effort into Our BMX… It just felt absolutely pointless to go out and create content for something that I thought wouldn’t be around for very long. Nonetheless, we knew we had to lay the foundation for getting Ride. So we created an official company, we had a site designed (thank you again, Francis), and we kind of poked in and out doing things when time allowed. As time passed and calls continued to be ignored, doubt definitely began to creep in and I resolved the idea that owning Ride may not just be in the cards…
Finally, last week, we were told that they were not willing to sell Ride.
While I was obviously bummed, I also felt a huge sense of, I guess it would be relief. I finally had a decision…even if it wasn’t the one I wanted. Upon reflection, my only regret is that I wish I hadn’t sat idle under the assumption that what I was being told about selling us the brand was true. Because, at this point, I’ve begun to feel like we were simply being strung along in hopes of mitigating any backlash. Or maybe they just changed their mind? Really, neither scenario really matters at this point. I suppose most of you are thinking, “What are they doing with Ride?” As far as I understand, they will be repurposing some of the “evergreen” content that Ride has for their larger, general audiences. There will be no new content produced. It doesn’t make sense to me, but again, my perspective is narrow… I should say that I hold no hard feelings towards anyone on that side of the fence. I understand that I don’t understand business on that level and shit happens beyond my wants/control.
So all of that leads us to what you’re seeing. We are now Our BMX. While I can’t claim that we’re going to reinvent BMX media, I do know that we are more motivated than ever. Our plans are to create quality content. Daily web content, throw a couple jams, have an event, and hopefully some print, too. As we build this from the ground up, we sincerely appreciate all the love, shout-outs, and support. From Jeff Zielinski, Adam Watkins, and myself…thank you. —Ryan Fudger
If you want to reach out to me with suggestions, submissions, or to just tell me I’m crazy, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Here’s a couple of photos of us riding (of varying quality/age) because I’m not really sure what else really should be here…