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Jai Motherwell

Photo @Sven Martin

Photo @Sven Martin

Name: Jai Motherwell
Age: 27
Hometown: Queenstown NZ
Sponsors: DHaRCO, Blue Shark NZ, Marzocchi NZ, Etnies Australia, Krush OZ
Discipline: Freeride MTB
Instagram: themothership__

Favourite tune to listen to on the bike: "John Wick Mode - Le Castle Vania" "Devil in a midnight mass - Billy Talent" "The Mothership - K+Lab, Mic Smith" "Wish You Well Pt. 2 - Chillinit" "What's Going On - Darkzy, Bru-C" "Tell Em I'm Doing Eatswa - Hooligan Hefs"

Jai Motherwell By Sven Martin

Photo @Sven Martin

Tell us about your self, Who you are and what makes you so rad? I'm a professional trail builder working for Elevate Trail Building constructing everything from pump tracks, skills parks, general tech and flow trails, to world class level slopestyle and freeride courses around the world, including professional builds for the Crankworx tour. I'm an ex-downhill racer gone freeride due to my love for big jumps and learning new tricks, whilst eliminating the confines of any single timed runs against a clock.

Jai Motherwell By Pickup MediaPhoto @Pickup Media

Contests or just riding? Why. I am yet to compete in a freeride competition but it is high on my list of things to do. I love riding with my mates and watching everyone progress their own skill set whilst simultaneously working on my own. One of my favourite things to do is ride with people that are better than myself, that can explain the technicalities of new tricks that I'm trying to figure out. Being able to push each others boundaries and working on our own progression has been an incredible tool when it comes to bettering myself as a rider. 

Jai Motherwell By Sven MartinPhoto @Sven Martin

What’s your all time favourite mountain biking trip? Ha! This one is interesting for me as my favourite mtb holiday was actually a work trip to Crankworx Rotorua in 2019. Dealing with the pressure of building for events whilst under time and budget constraints can become quite stressful. When you add in the pressure of it being one of the biggest events in the world, ridden by the worlds best riders, you have quite the feat to achieve. All this combined into one project quickly becomes one of the most rewarding tasks I will ever do. So watching these guys come down the courses, pushing their own limits along with what we think may be possible on a bike, is a truly astonishing thing to witness. Add the matter of us test riding these courses with the worlds best by our side, and you'll quickly understand why this was all time favourite trip of mine.
If you love what you do, you will never work a day in your life and that is why my favourite mtb holiday was while I was working my 9-5.

Jai MotherwellPhoto @Sven Martin

What do you love about riding?I love the sense of freedom I feel on my bike, the sense of fitting in and only being bound by the limits I set myself. I feel like you can always work on something, whether it be a new trick that you don't quite understand yet or tweaking your style and body position on a bike. There's always room for improvement and I think that's why I've never got bored of riding a bike.I’m far from pro but my advice would be to make sure you keep having fun, be patient and stay humble!

Jai Motherwell By Sven MartinPhoto @Sven Martin

What you’re most proud of achieving through riding? I almost want to say flat spins ha-ha! I am yet to do a trick that feels anything like spinning a downhill bike off axis like that. Hitting big jump with the stability of a downhill bike, boosting into the air and looking down at the landing whilst floating upside down and sideways is a feeling that I will never get tired of.

Jai Motherwell By Dylan FootePhoto @Dylan Foote

One tip you would give to a grom wanting to become a pro rider like yourself. Stay humble, look out for your mates, forget about the credit others are getting and build yourself a portfolio. Sometimes sponsors don't just approach you and you will have to go out of your way to introduce yourself to a company but there is a very wrong way to go about this and a right way. First off, you want to make sure that you're a good representation for brand. Be a good human, be someone approachable. You're going to be using product that people want to purchase and if you come across the wrong way, you can completely turn people off that brand you're associated with. Develop a portfolio that sets you aside from everyone else, why should they sponsor you instead of the other guy/girl that's doing the same as you? Find your strengths and explain what you can do differently that will help better the company supporting you. Sponsorship is a two-way street and you need something positive to give back on their investment.