I’m sure for all the guys who have been riding for years, you can remember your first custom complete you built up. My first was a MacNeil Ruben, with a bunch of Primo, and We The People parts. I remember wanting a MacNeil so bad because their team and everything was awesome. The frame still hangs in my garage to this day, I don’t plan on getting rid of it either. Needless to say I have been a Jay Miron fan for years, and just having a conversation with him at Interbike last year was one of the top things I did while in Las Vegas. It was time to do an interview with him, and this one is broke into two. You can check out some classic photos and some more questions over on the Dig site. Check out the interview, and leave him some love in the comments!
Photos: Harrison Boyce
Years involved with BMX:
What was it that first got you into BMX? Any real early memories come to mind?
I was jumping and trying tricks on the day I learned to ride a bike. I don’t know why, but I was just always into it. Then when BMX racing started in my town, I went to the first race and was hooked. It’s been my life ever since.
What’s new with MacNeil these days? Any new products, team changes, trips, videos, or cool things like that in the works?
There is a ton of new stuff going on at MacNeil. We don’t do those big events anymore like Elevation or Metro Jam. So we’re all way more focused on the company. We have three new team riders, Travis Sexsmith, Chris Martindale, and Dillon Lloyd. They all shred. We have the new Cruiser bikes coming out. I’m really stoked on them, bmx for old guys. We also have all new products coming out. All of our new frames and all of our new parts are going to be out in June or July depending on what part of the world you live in. I’m really psyched on everything MacNeil right now.
What’s new with you these days? Just the usual kicking ass or what?
I’m working 9 to 5, (at MacNeil) for the first time in my life. Before it was always, work a few hours, then ride, then back to work, then to physical therapy, then back to work, then ride. It was all day, every day. Now it’s just like a normal job during the day then chill in the evenings. I love working in the office every day. The only thing I don’t like is the commute. I’ve never had to commute regularly before. I might move closer to work soon to lessen the drive.
What is the first amazing spot that you rode that comes to mind?
The first time I ever went to California Mike Tokamoto brought my friend and I to a bunch of famous spots. He even brought us to the BMX Action and Freestylin’ warehouse for a session on their mini quarter. It was like a dream come true getting to ride with all the magazine guys.
What do you think you would be doing if you never got involved in BMX? Could you see yourself owning a different kind of business?
I wanted to be a schoolteacher back in the day. So maybe that.
Did you ever go to college at all? How did you learn the tricks to running a successful business?
I didn’t go to college. I learned the BMX business just from living it for so long. I also learned a lot by going for it with MacNeil. It forces you to learn as you go.
What are you usually up to when you aren’t working or doing something related to BMX?
Nothing worth bragging about. I did all my crazy shit back in the day. Now I just chill with friends and relax. I haven’t been on a plane in five months. It’s been 20 years since I went more than three months without getting on a plane. So it’s been really nice to chill for once.
You were on cribs a few years back, who did you have to beat up to get on that? Do you have any weird gigs like that going on again soon?
It’s been a life long dream of mine to get on Cribs. So I wrote numerous letters to them begging. When that didn’t work I flew to their studios and waited for one of the producers to come out into the parking lot. Then I fucked him up and told him I better get on. Actually here’s the real story.
MTV called me and wanted to come to my house and check out my ramps and jumps in my yard. I told them I lived in an apartment and that all my ramps were in the MacNeil warehouse. I suggested they check out Darren Berrecloth’s house instead. He has crazy jumps in his yard. So they called him and set it up. Then a few weeks later they called again and said they wanted to do my apartment, and it happened. It was cool having Harrison and Travis help me out with a few pieces of art. They kill it!
I actually have something weird like that going on right now. I was contacted by a design firm that’s putting on an exhibit on the history of bike culture in Vancouver. It’s called Velo-City, Vancouver and the Bicycle Revolution. They’re covering all types of riding and I’m going to be featured in the bmx section. Dave Osato actually welded my old bike to a rail for the exhibit so it looks like the bike is grinding. The exhibit opens in June 4th.
Are you still playing hockey? How’s that all going these days?
I was playing on a really fun team with a bunch of skaters, snowboarders and bmxers, actually Osato and I were the only bmxers. Anyway I haven’t been into playing hockey too much lately. So I quit.
Who or what are the biggest influences on your life?
I’m influenced by everything around me. So it’s hard to say what the biggest ones are. Maybe just reading books. I read a lot of books and the stuff I learn from them influences me.
Do you ever find yourself surfing around the internet? Any favorite websites?
Are you serious? I’m always on the Internet. Who isn’t? The Come Up is the best bmx site. Sprfls is super good too. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, I don’t always agree with their opinions, but at least they’re not just trying to tell us what they think we want to hear, like a lot of other bmx media sites. Red bmx, and Repset are cool Canadian sites. Repset’s new web contest mocking our new web contest is rad.
What kind of advice do you have for the people out there looking to start a company?
Make sure you have something original to offer. The last thing BMX needs is another stock frame company with different stickers.
Do you have any shout outs or thanks?
Thanks to the MacNeil team, the MacNeil crew, my friends, my sponsors over the years. Thanks to BMX for allowing me to live such a fun life.
Anything else you want to say?
Thanks to you Kurt for doing the interview with me. I don’t know what the fuck happened but I’ve done more interviews this year than I ever did when I was riding.
Check out more photos and questions over on