To say that Adam Kingsmill is accident-prone is an understatement.
When asked how many times he has been injured in a motocross race, he simply replied with a smile.
“How much time do you have?” he asked.
The 14-year-old motocross racer is currently first in the 85cc 12-16 year old class in the North with the British Columbia Motocross Association.
More recently, he finished in the top five at the Pine Valley Motocross Association race in Chetwynd last weekend.
“I had a pretty decent crash this weekend, I don’t even know how I made it out of that one,” said Kingsmill. “I’ve had a few major injuries for sure.”
In past races, he split his spleen in half twice, suffered concussions and often walks away with bumps and bruises.
In fact, Kingsmill originally got his start on the bike when he was roughly nine or 10 years old after a quad accident in Saskatchewan.
“My dad bought my brother and himself a bike and I got myself a quad. I just crashed and I decided to go to two wheels instead of four,” he said.
When he was only two years old, he also lost his leg in a lawn mowing accident in Smithers.
He now wears a prosthetic leg.
But sitting in the dimly-lit dining room with the Smithers Secondary student, his face lights up when he talks about the thrill of racing and he sits confidently and comfortably in his racing attire.
It soon becomes clear that nothing will stop him from doing what he loves — racing.
“I like that you can just go out there and don’t have any worries on your mind, you’re just on your bike,” he said. “The fun overtakes [the danger] for sure.”
The Smithers Secondary student competes in over a dozen races all across the province throughout the year, specifically in the northern circuit, which includes Terrace, Quesnel, Smithers, Prince George and Chetwynd.
For the Kingsmill family, motocross racing has become a family affair.
Not only is Adam one of the top young racers in the North, but his father and brother also compete on the race track as well.
“It is dangerous, but they love it and we get to do it as a family. We meet such great families while we’re doing it,” said his mother Bobbi, adding that they provide the kids with all the top-of-the-line safety equipment.
“They practice and they train, and they have fun, which is the main thing.”
The boys also had the opportunity to train with some pros including Ross Johnson and Brock Hoyer this summer who also help them out during races.
“If the boys have never been to a track before, they’re really good at texting them back and letting them know how to handle certain tracks,” said Bobbi.
While he has learned a few things from the pros, Kingsmill said he continues to learn from one of the people closest to him, his brother Matt.
“My brother is a great rider. I do learn a lot from just watching my brother out there. But sometimes we have to teach my dad a few things,” he joked.
It’s all fun and games until the wheels hit the track during a race.
“It’s just you and the bike,” he said. “During races, it’s like what line are you going to hit on the corner or how are you going to pass this next guy.”
With Kingsmill racing around some two-kilometre tracks in two and a half to three minutes, watching from the sidelines can be nerve-racking even for people watching him.
“It’s exciting, when he’s riding really well, it’s really great to watch him but at the same time it’s kind of scary,” said Bobbi. “You just wish them to do well — come across the finish line on two wheels, that’s all we ask.”
Kingsmill just tries to keep it simple on the track.
“Just stay on two wheels and go fast and try your best,” he said. “If you can’t do it, then slow down. It’s just you and the bike — it’s nice and relaxing.”